Changing Your Oil the Easy Way
Ready to try changing the oil on your car or truck? We're ready to help you get 'er done with some handy Powerbuilt tools, tips and tricks!
Follow along as Powerbuilt staffer Greg takes you through an oil change on his Jeep Wrangler.
Last week my change oil light indicator came on so we're going to change the oil in this Jeep today. So now that we're all quarantined for a while it's a great opportunity for me to change my oil and do this myself.
I'm going to walk you through the Powerbuilt tools that I'm going to use and give you some tips and tricks on how to change your own oil and some of the things to look for.
First of all you'll need to do some research to make sure you get the proper oil for your vehicle. The weight is very critical; you don't want to put the wrong weight in your vehicle, especially with today's tight tolerances on engines. A lot of folks will want to put a heavier oil in as it gets higher mileage and with newer cars that's absolutely something you don't want to do.
So I've got 111,000 miles on this Jeep, so I got high mileage oil in the proper viscosity for my vehicle. I also did some research because the standard for many cars for many years was five quarts of oil then some cars are 4 quarts or 3.8 quarts so on and so forth.
This particular Jeep is a 6-quart capacity so I bought the 5 quart jug and I also bought an extra one so I could get to the 6 quarts of oil that I'm going to need for this particular vehicle.
Alright so here are the tools I'm going to be using today. The Powerbuilt self-adjusting oil filter pliers are great. I've been using these for quite a long time they work extremely well especially if you have a real stubborn oil filter to take off.
These grip the oil filter very tight and have an awesome range - 2-1/4 to 4-3/4 inches.
And they've got a new one out with the 30-degree bend on it to get in deep in tighter spaces. Same technology - self-adjusting with a really nice grip and a similar range of capacity for the oil filters.
I don't really need the extra room on this particular vehicle but I'm going to go ahead and give this new one a shot. I'm also going to be using just a standard flex head Powerbuilt ratchet - a really nice ratchet.
I didn't do the oil change last time on this particular vehicle but the drain bolt has got some damage on it. These Powerbuilt Zeon sockets have been around a while now. They are specifically designed for regular fasteners but also damaged and rounded they'll actually do up to an 85 percent rounded fastener.
So you can see that's a good fastener on here - this is 85% rounded it to get in there you can see this thing is just completely damaged. I can actually get a really nice grip on this thing with this Zeon socket because of their broaching design in here.
So it can be used on a good fastener and it protects it, it can be used on a damaged fastener as well. It's awesome for drain plugs because it's a very common issue with drain plugs.
This is also new from Powerbuilt this is an original equipment oil filler funnel. You've got all these different adapters - original equipment adapters for Ford, Chevy, Toyota, Lexus... you name it and then they've also got some universal adapters in there as well.
This is the one that fits this Jeep it's labeled Chrysler, fits the Jeep perfectly and I'll show you how this whole thing works but this is brand new from them and a really nice setup.
Normally you'd need a jack to jack up your vehicle to get under it. But you can see I'm working on this Jeep with 35-inch tires. So I don't really need to lift it up to get under it.
But I wanted to point out some of these cool new lift items from Powerbuilt. This is their newest low profile jack and I like the fact that it has a foot pedal on it - a nice added feature, extremely high quality. This particular one is a 2-1/2 ton jack.
Here's the 3 Ton Unijack -they've had this one for quite a while.These work fantastic for trucks and off-road vehicles. I'm able to lift even this lifted vehicle up quite a bit. I was able to do my entire brake job using just these Unijack jack stands. It's got a built-in hydraulic jack so it's a jack and a jack stand all in one. Absolutely fantastic item.
And then I really like this work seat. A lot of folks will have a creeper and a work seat to do brake jobs. This one does both. Really nice design. So I was able to do my brakes by using this rolling work seat. You can do some detail work with it. It works in a lot of different configurations. Today I'm going to use it creeper style. So you can see just how easy it is to change the configuration of it.
And although I won't be using this today, I did want to point out another cool item from Powerbuilt. It's their truck step. As you can see I've got some very big tires on this - 35-inch tires. This thing is fully adjustable to fit a very wide range set of tires and wheels.
So you can customize it the configuration to your particular vehicle and it has a 300 pound capacity. So as you can see if I was moving stuff on top of my SUV or if I'm trying to get deep into the engine compartment this is an awesome tool to have and it also folds up so it's nice and compact when you go to break it down.
Alright. As you can see as I said before this drain plug is a bit damaged around it. It could be from a lot of things. It's very common for these drain plugs to be damaged I've seen much worse than this but if I use a regular socket on this I chance stripping it even more especially if this particular drain plug is over tightened or at very high torque.
So I'm gonna use a Zeon socket on this so I don't damage it any further, and my chances of getting this thing out easily will be much greater so I've got the proper size you can see pointed out the broaching on this that's what it's grabbing the sides of the socket or the fastener rather than the corners.
So we'll see how we do. Alright, so that one wasn't too bad. I am gonna put a new drain plug on anyway because I really don't like having damaged fasteners and taking the chance of having the problem the next time I go to change the oil. Now I've got this thing loose.
Typically this is gonna be fairly hot this thing's been sitting here for a little while but I'm gonna use this particular item here.
It's an oil drain plug remover. If I continue to undo this drain plug with my fingers I'm gonna get oil it falls in my hand and down my arm and if I was working on a hot vehicle that would be quite painful. So I'm gonna put my little adapter on it's magnetic as you can see that's a strong magnet. So I'm gonna use this here and this way when I pull the drain plug completely out it won't fall into the oil where I have to go and fish it back out.
Like I said, it keeps you from getting oil all the way down your arm and makes for a much cleaner job here so...There we go. I'm going to let this drain for quite a while and I'm going to go up top I'm going to show you some extra things you can do while you're waiting for this to drain.
So the first thing that I did before I even pulled the drain plug out, I took my oil filler cap off. This is going to allow the vehicle oil to drain faster and I'm gonna be able to pull all of that oil out. I want to let that thing drain as long as possible because you do get contaminants in there that you want to get out.
Here's the drain plug that I pulled out it actually has a magnetic tip you can see there's a nice flake of metal that this thing had picked up. You know there's very little particles on here but again I want to get as much of the contaminants out of this engine as possible.
The other thing that I do - a little trick that I do I take the drain plug and I place it here in this magnetic container that way when I go to fill this oil back up if I see my drain plug here I realize I forgot to put the drain plug back in.
So I want to keep it right here so I can see this is gone and that reassures me that the drain plug is back in. Now this particular drain plug since it's rounded a bit I've got a new one I'm going to put in there, but I'm gonna leave that here just as my reminder.
It's also a great time while you're waiting for it to drain to check your other fluids and also inspect hoses and belts. You're gonna be looking for cracking as you can see this one's very nice there's no cracks at all it's because I replaced it last May as part of the 100,000 mile service along with filters.
I also did new radiator hoses when I did that. But what I am gonna do is I'm gonna check all of my fluids. So here's my engine coolant and I can see from this angle over here that it's perfectly you know fine.
I can see through my master cylinder over on this other side then I've got the proper amount of brake fluid in here and when I did my 100,000 mile service I actually did the brake job and I replaced all the fluid so I know that that's good there.
I am a little bit low on windshield washer fluid so I'll go ahead and top that off while I have it open and again I'm just doing a general inspection over here under the hood to make sure everything is in working order.
Alright so here's my filter here. I've got my self-adjusting oil filter pliers. It sure gets an awesome grip on this filter. This filter is in here pretty tight too, so I'm glad I can get some leverage on it. Although I don't need that extra angle, on other vehicles I would need it.
Let's get this thing off here. Then I'll be able to show you some tips and tricks up top in the engine compartment.Alright so here's my new filter I'm going to go ahead and put that in and I'm going to put the drain plug in but what I like to do so I don't start a vehicle with a completely empty filter, I'm gonna put a little bit of oil in there maybe about halfway up.
I'm gonna take this extra oil here and put just a little bit around the gasket that's gonna keep this gasket help keep this gasket from pinching. If it's dry up against that block it may want to pinch just a little bit and you're gonna get a leak. This ensures that I don't get a leak.
So I'm going to install my new filter. I've checked to make sure that my gasket that the old gasket is off I'm going to spin this on and I do not want to over tighten it so I don't need the filter wrench for this. I just need to get it firm with my hand and that seal that gasket in there is going to seal that off. If you over tighten it that it's going to be really difficult to get off the next time and you risk creating a leak by over-tightening it and compressing that gasket too much.
I've got my new drain plug here. You gotta make sure you get the proper size. This particular one is an M14 which means the bolt size is 14 millimeter and it's by 1.5. That's the thread pitch. So the two common thread pitches are 1.25 and 1.5.
You've got to make sure you get the proper one. I've already compared it to my old drain plug it's exactly the same and it should go in quite easily by hand. If it does not and it binds up then you likely have the wrong size or the wrong thread pitch and you need to change that and the proper one.
You definitely don't want to strip the oil pan. That would be bad news - that's a multi-hundred dollar repair. So I'm using my Zeon socket again so I don't damage my new drain plug and all I'm gonna do is get this thing firm not tight.
This has got a gasket in it as well. I don't over-compress the gasket and it makes it easier to get the drain plug out next time. Wipe this off a little bit and then I'm ready to go put the oil back in. Now I'm ready to put my oil back in you can see my drain plug is gone. I actually put my new one so I took the old one and threw it away already.
I'm gonna use this oil filler kit from Powerbuilt with the original equipment adapter. This makes it so you don't get spills.
So you can use a regular funnel but this will ensure that I don't get any spill down inside the engine then when you start it up and get the smoke and the mess and you just don't want that.
So this fits in here very nicely. I've got my oil here. Now remember I put a little oil in that filter from before I've still got 2/3 or 3/4 of this left. I'm going to set this aside, because I'm not going to put that in just yet.
What I want to do is put this oil in first and then I'm going to let the vehicle sit for a bit and then I'm going to check the oil. That way I can make sure that I get a proper amount of oil into the engine compartment. Not too much and not too little.
It's a nice little spout feature on this bottle of Valvoline. Again. be careful. I don't want to fill overfill it too fast but you can see with it using this funnel I get absolutely no spill whatsoever so I'm not gonna have any kind of nasty smoke or smell when I start the vehicle up plus when you get oil in here under the engine compartment it attracts dirt and grime and it just makes it for a big mess.
So I've put 5 quarts in. It says I need 6 quarts. This is gonna be my 6th quart but again I want to make sure that I get exactly the right amount of oil in this thing. So I'm gonna let this thing sit for about 5 minutes and then I'm gonna start it up just quickly get the oil to circulate and then I'm gonna top it off using that extra quart of oil that I've got there.
It's not really extra it's the sixth quart that I need to hit full capacity. Okay, so I've topped off the oil got everything cleaned up buttoned up checked it make sure I've got the proper amount of oil in there...I'm ready to go.
The last thing I need to do on this particular vehicle is reset the oil change light. A lot of people won't change their own oil because they don't know how to reset the light. I simply went on Google took a very short time found the instructions it's very easy on this particular vehicle.
Every vehicle is different so you'll need to check what the instructions are for your particular vehicle. But in most cases you don't need to take it to the shop or a dealer to reset the light you can do it yourself. So on this vehicle I'm gonna turn the key all the way to the on position without starting it push the pedal all the way to the floor 1, 2, 3 times and I'm going to turn the key back off.
I'm gonna wait just a few seconds. Now to verify that I actually did reset the light I'm gonna start the vehicle up again I'm gonna wait about ten seconds and as you can see no oil change light on so I was successful in resetting it.
So the whole process to change oil in the Jeep really took me less than 30 minutes and I really didn't need that many tools to do it. These were the must-have tools so I had my Zeon socket, my flex-head ratchet, the self-adjusting oil filter pliers these are about $23, $24 is all. Obviously my oil and oil filter but these were the only tools I really needed to do the entire job.
These were nice to have I didn't absolutely have to add them but this I really like this tool I'd never used one before and I'd never used this spill free funnel type system before which I love this I'm definitely gonna use that again. But I saved myself some money again it didn't take me all that much time. The materials that I needed to do the job cost me about $35 and again the tools that's just an investment now I can do oil changes do my own oil changes on this Jeep for the rest of its life.
- Zeon Sockets
- Flex Head Ratchet
- 2-in-1 Creeper
- Oil Filter Pliers
- Magnetic Drain Plug Tool
- Oil Fill Funnel Set
- Truck Step
- 3 Ton All-in-One Jack
- Tags: How To's
- Andy Somerville