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How to Change the Oil


Changing the oil is easy and inexpensive. Here's what you need to know.

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									How To…

            Image by Eric Schuttenmaer

          Change the
           Changing the oil, like brake
           fluid, windshield and battery
           maintenance, is an essential
  Why      part of keeping your car
           running at its very best.
Change     Over time, old oil breaks down

the Oil?   and the oil filter can become
           clogged with nasty bits and
           bobs. As a result, it’s important
           to change the oil and filter
How often   Check your car manual for a
            definite answer.
 should I   Depending on your car model,
            driving habits and other
 change     variables, you should be

 the oil?   looking to change your oil
            every 3 – 24 months.
          Get all the equipment to do
          the job - a new filter, new oil
          and all the tools you need
          (e.g. a spanner and / or a
          Lay down some cardboard or
Prepare   some newspaper onto the
          floor where you think oil may
          If you want to keep your
          hands clean, consider
          wearing a pair of latex
          To be extra safe, ensure the
          engine has cooled down fully.
            Open the hood and open the oil
            filler cap to increase air flow
            around the oil system
            Find the drain plug on the
 Remove     bottom of the oil pan, towards
            the back of the engine (check
the drain   your car’s manual for the exact

  plug      Loosen the plug anti-clockwise
            with a wrench.
            Replace the felt or paper drain
            plug gasket. If you have a
            metal one, it can be re-used if it
            looks sound enough.
             Remove the oil filter. They
             are not in the same position
             for every car, so can be hard
             to find. Check your car’s
             manual if you get stuck.
Remove       Remove it carefully, bearing
             in mind that there will be oil
the filter   it.
             Make sure the rubber gasket
             comes off with the filter. If it
             sticks to the car, it will affect
             the fit of the new filter and
             potentially cause a leak.
             Remove all packaging off the
             new filter, dip your finger in
             some new oil and work it
Replace      around the rubber gasket
the filter   Screw the drain plug back on
             the oil pan. It should be snug,
             but not too tight.
             Finally, pop on your new
             lubricated filter.
           Add new oil to the car at the
           fill hole under the hood.
           Check your car’s manual to
           see how much it needs.
Replace    You can use the dipstick as a
           measure, but remember it
 the oil   will be more accurate when
           the engine is cool.
           Once the oil is filled to a
           suitable level, replace the cap
           and close the hood.
            Clear up all of your tools,
            newspaper and cardboard.
            Check that everything is
            okay by turning on your car’s
            engine – the oil pressure light
Finish Up   should go off.
            Finally, check for any leaks.
            With the engine still running,
            put the car in neutral, apply
            the handbrake then have a
            peek under the car for drips.

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