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How To Change The Oil In Your Car

How To Change The Oil In Your Car

A brief but very effective guide to changing the oil in your car. A simple necessity to prolong the lifetime value of a valuable asset. Learn how to do a perfect oil filter change with VideoJug's help.

Step 1: You will need

  • 1 jack, hydraulic or mechanical
  • 2 jack stands
  • 1 wedge or more
  • 1 new engine oil
  • 1 funnel
  • 1 new oil filter
  • 1 chain wrench
  • 1 combination spanner
  • new drain sealing washer
  • large open container
  • 1 empty sealable container
  • 1 a plastic bag or a sealable zip bag
  • old newspapers
  • rags
  • 1 pair of work gloves

Step 2: Warm up the engine

Part of preparing this job is to drive your car around the block for 2 to 3 minutes before you start. Running the engine will heat the oil. The hot oil is thinner and will drain more easily and completely from the engine.
When the temperature gauge indicates that the engine is warm you can drive back and get stuck in.


Don't run the car too hot to avoid skin burns when touching engine parts later. Wait for 2 hours if the car is hot from a long drive.

Step 4: Set up a safe working environment

Park the vehicle on a solid and level surface. Make sure the workspace is well lit.

Shift automatic cars into the parking position,
in manual cars shift into first gear, and engage the parking brake firmly.
Turn the ignition off.

Release the bonnet with the lever in the interior. You will have to open the bonnet at a later stage.

Block the tires with a wedge for added safety.

Now line up your tools close to the car- You don't want to start searching when you are under the car.


Take extra care when securing your vehicle. You will have to work under the car and you want to rule out any risks.

Step 6: Access car's underside

You will need to get under your car for an oil change. If you have a pit you are lucky to have easy access, otherwise you will have to carry out this job by sliding under the car.
Most likely you will have to raise the car on jack stands to have enough room.
Apply the jack at the lip running along the frame. Raise the car with a mechanical or hydraulic jack and settle it on jack stands.
Repeat this process on the other side of the car.


Never get underneath a car supported by a jack alone. Use additional jack stands.

Step 8: Protect the floor

Unfold the newspaper and spread it widely under the engine. Have the empty waste oil container ready to be used under the car.

Step 9: Locate the oil drain plug

You will now have to slide under the car to locate the oil drain plug. The drain plug is found at lowest point of the engine closest to the ground. Look for a big nut with a washer underneath.


Do not confuse the oil drain plug with the transmission drain plug. The oil drain plug is generally smaller and can be easily recognised by the bigger heat of the metal surrounding it. If in doubt consult a service technician.

Step 11: Remove oil drain plug

Wear work gloves if you want to keep your hands clean. Take a spanner with the appropriate size and place it over the drain plug nut. Applying a little force, turn the spanner counter-clockwise and dislodge the nut. Use your fingers to turn the nut slightly loose. Keep the nut in the thread, though, don't undo it all the way.

Slide the empty waste oil container under the drain plug. Make sure it will be right under the stream. Remove the plug entirely and store it in a safe location. Get your face out of the way of the hot oil stream and slide out from under the car.
Let the oil drain completely. The initial stream will subside after about 2 minutes.

Step 12: TOP TIP !

Let the oil drain for up to an hour. This is worth the time, as you will get rid of almost all the old oil.

Step 13: Vent the oil system

Now we have to open the bonnet to get access to the engine from above.
Move the bonnet catch for final release.
Lift the bonnet and secure it with the prop rod.

To drain the oil completely we have to let air enter the system, so first remove the oil filler cap and keep it on the engine block.

Next identify the oil dipstick.
Look for removable thin metal strip. Remove the dipstick entirely. Now the rest of the oil will d