DIY How to Change Your Own Oil

by TheParentSpot
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How to change your own oil

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #OilChange #CollectiveBias

Like most families, ours works as a team when something needs done. It makes tasks a lot less daunting to break them up so that one of us starts a task, while the other finishes.

Case in point: our most recent oil change.

Now, I know how to change our car’s oil, and I’ve done it myself a few times, but this time it was the hubby’s turn.
Quaker State Oil on truck Car hood

So, I handled the prep work, before handing off the actual oil change to him.  First stop, Walmart to pick up the oil and supplies he needs.

Quaker State in Walmart Isle

I found everything I needed neatly tucked away in the Automotive section at Walmart.

Quaker State on Shelf

Changing the oil in your car at the intervals indicated by the car manufacturer is absolutely essential if you are to maintain your vehicle in good working condition – improper lubrication can seriously damage the engine of your car, so oil replacement is among the most important routine maintenance procedures.

Regular oil replacement is vital for your car, yet it is not something very complicated – you can easily do it at home, which will not only save a few bucks for you, but will also give you the satisfaction that you know exactly what your car is running on.

Here is how to do it properly.

The oil and tools you need

My next step in our team project was to get everything ready for the oil change, before hubby stepped in to do the actual oil change.

To find out the exact type of the oil you need, consult the vehicle’s manual. Make sure you use a good quality oil like Quaker State, and buy exactly the type of oil you are required to use – the wrong type of oil might seriously harm your engine.

How to change your own oil under car

You will also need a number of tools to be able to carry out the oil replacement:

  • a wrench with an extension and a torque wrench
  • the filter and the oil recommended by the manufacturer
  • Quaker State oil (we use 5W30) that’s recommended by the manufacturer. Tip:  buy a few quarts more than indicated to have oil for topping up later.
  • a closed pan to contain the used oil
  • a jack stand to elevate the car
  • a tarp to protect the floor in case of oil spills

How to change your own oil

Now, I handed over the reins to my hubby to do the oil change and cleanup.

How to Change your own oil

An oil change is one of those tasks that is surprisingly easy to do, once you’ve gotten the hang of it. Here’s how:

  1. Run your car a few miles to make sure the engine warms up a bit – warm oil is easier to drain.
  2. When the engine is no longer hot, but still sufficiently warm, lift it on the jack stand (don’t forget to place the tarp underneath the car to contain any oil spills).
  3. Place the container for the Quaker State oil underneath the plug, and then loosen the plug with the help of the wrench.
  4. When all the used oil is drained and safely contained, remove the oil filter and install the new one.
  5. IMPORTANT: Tighten the filter by hand – don’t use a wrench, as it might damage the filter.
  6. Clean the drain plug and then remove the old gasket if need be. Apply a thin film of new oil on the gasket; then tighten the plug with the help of the torque wrench (make sure you tighten it sufficiently, but don’t overdo it).
  7. You are almost done – just pour the new oil into the pan and eliminate the contaminated foil from under the car. Make sure you dispose of the used oil and the filter according to local safety and environment protection regulations.

That’s it! Not that hard, is it, especially with teamwork in action!

Do you change your own oil?

Adding Oil How to Change your own oil



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Cyn November 6, 2015 - 11:58 am

I love how easy you make this with the step by step instructions. I think even I could do this! #client

Hazel Owens April 5, 2016 - 8:08 am

I really need to be better about replacing the oil in my car. Like you said, your car needs proper lubrication to run smoothly. I’m glad that you listed the steps to properly change your oil, including warming the car up beforehand, because that’s something I should start doing myself. Thanks for the article.

Petunia Evans April 5, 2016 - 4:05 pm

I was never taught how to to change my own car oil, so I really needed this help! I’m happy to hear that I can find all that I need just at Walmart, as I thought I had to find some car shop! I don’t think I have a torque wrench or a tarp for the oil spill, so I’ll be sure to get those as well. Thanks!

Christina October 19, 2016 - 9:08 am

That’s great that you found the supplies you needed so conveniently. Hopefully, your husband found the process just as simple.

Texas truck fleet maintenance May 28, 2017 - 9:04 pm

For me? Just pick the one that suits the needs of your car. Almost any oils can do it but just don’t buy fake oils.

Olivia Smith July 11, 2017 - 5:02 am

It is a great idea to change your own engine oil yourself as it helps you save few dollars. Without going to a garage, you can check the level of the oil and can change it if needed.

dave carr November 28, 2017 - 3:13 pm

A few little nuggets here, use a jack then place a separate jack stand under the car, or drive half the car on a curb, get the oil filer wrench that fits on your socket, when you install the new filter rub some oil on the rubber gasket, I hand tighten then 1/4 more with the wrench. Always run the car when done and look to be sure its not leaking, as the old gasket can stick to the block sometimes. And you can recycle the oil at most stores that sell it, I use an old 5 gallon gas can which takes a while to fill up. It takes less time than going to the shop and no new problems ever appear, just do all grease related things ( bearings and joints) as well when needed

CW February 25, 2018 - 3:23 am

Been doing these for years. And yes you are right with your procedures.


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