If you get your oil changed at a shop, you’re wasting money. An oil and filter change usually runs around $45. Doing it by yourself will save at least $20. If you drive the usual average 15,000 miles per year, you’ll save at least $100 by handling this process yourself.
If you’re not good with cars, don’t worry. An oil and filter change is one of the easiest DIY maintenance projects for cars. Today, we’ll walk you through the steps to do this at home. We’ll also talk about why your vehicle needs it.
Why Do I Need an Oil and Filter Change?
Oil keeps your motor running smoothly. The oil filter helps keep the oil clean for as long as possible. However, after 3,000 – 5,000 miles, the filter and oil are too dirty to keep helping your motor.
Don’t Get Nervous
A lot of people who aren’t familiar with cars get nervous doing repairs. Even simple things seem daunting when you’re not familiar with car maintenance.
If you can perform these three beginner car repairs, though, you’ll be able to execute an oil and filter change.
Buy the Right Oil and Filter
The first step is to make sure you buy the right oil and filter for your vehicle. An auto parts shop can help you identify what those are, or you can use an online resource like this.
Drain the Oil
Next, open the hood of your car. Find the oil cap and remove it. Then, locate the oil pan underneath your car. This is easy to see in most cars. It’s a large, flat pan with a bolt on one end.
Make sure you have an oil bucket underneath the pan, then remove the bolt. The oil will come out quickly and might be warm.
Remove the Filter
Once the oil pan is empty, replace the bolt. Make sure to clean off any excess oil from the pan.
Then, locate the oil filter. These are usually right next to the oil pan.
Using an oil filter wrench, remove the filter. It will have some oil in it, which you’ll want to drain into the oil bucket you used for the oil pan.
Finally, get the new filter you purchased. Double-check to make sure it’s the same size as the filter you just removed. Then, thread the new filter into place.
Add the Oil
Going back underneath the hood of your car, locate the oil cap once more. Insert a funnel into the opening. Then, double-check that oil you bought matches the type of oil printed on the oil cap.
You’ll then proceed to fill up the car with oil through the funnel. How much oil your car takes depends on its make and model. Resources like this can help you identify how much oil your car needs. You can also ask someone at an auto parts store.
Once you added the oil, you’re good to go. Performing an oil and filter change yourself is satisfying work. You’ll be surprised at how easy it is.
Keep Your Vehicle Running Efficiently by Changing the Oil Regularly
Learning to change your vehicle’s oil will help you save time and money over time. It is a good skill to pass on to your kids, as well, when they begin driving.