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How to Change Your Car’s Oil: Step-by-Step Instructions 

How to Change Your Car’s Oil: Step-by-Step Instructions

Knowing how to change your car’s oil is an asset that will save you money throughout your lifetime. It’s not difficult to do, and part of routine maintenance that keeps your car running smoothly. Here’s how to do so, step by step.

What You Will Need

First, gather the supplies you will need. You’ll need an oil filter, new engine oil, an oil filter wrench, wrenches or a socket set, an oil drain pan, a funnel, jacks, a container to dispose of the oil in, and paper towels or rags.

How To Prepare Your Space

Always park the vehicle on a level surface. Use the parking brake to ensure stability. Choose somewhere that lets you move around the outside of your car comfortably. Then, raise and stabilize your car using a jack and jack stands.

How To Begin

Start by warming up your engine. Run the car for a few minutes. This heats the oil and makes it flow easier. 

Locate The Oil Drain

Whether you just bought that new Volkswagen for sale or have an old junker, you’ll need to find the oil drain. You can look in the owner’s manual if you have any doubts. It’s normally on the bottom side of the engine. The oil filter is on the side.

Drain It

Grab your oil drain pan and place it beneath the drain plug. Carefully loosen the plug with a wrench. Loosen it counterclockwise slowly, then remove it by hand. Let all the oil drain into the pan.

Remove the Filter

The next step is to use an oil filter wrench to remove the old filter. Some oil may spill out, so have your drain pan ready.

Prepare the Filter

Take your new filter and use a little of the new engine oil to prep the rubber gasket. Use your finger to spread some new oil around the rubber gasket on the top of the new filter. This ensures a better seal.

Install the Filter

Install the new filter, turning it clockwise. Keep tightening it by hand until the gasket makes contact with the mounting surface, and then go a quarter-turn more. Don’t over-tighten it.

Replace the Plug

Before you replace the oil drain plug, clean it. Then, reattach it. Use a wrench to tighten it, working clockwise. 

Add New Oil

Now you are ready to add the new oil. Find the oil fill cap and use a funnel to pour in the new oil. You should always check the owner’s manual to understand the type of oil and quantity you need for your specific make and model. 

Give the oil a little bit to settle, and then you can clean and use the dipstick to check oil levels. You should find a recycling facility that accepts old engine oil to dispose of your used engine oil.

Write It Down

Take note of the date you changed the oil, so you can know when it’s time to change it again.


It’s not overly difficult to change your car’s oil. It just takes a little time and practice, and you’ll be saving money every time it’s time to perform your routine car maintenance.

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