On the surface, changing the oil in your car is an easy task. All you have to do to change the oil is drain the oil out of the car, and then put new oil into the engine. It can be that easy, but if you don’t follow a few tips, that 10-minute project can take an hour or more.
Instructions on the basic steps can be found here.
Five pearls of wisdom that will keep the project closer to 10 minutes are as follows:
Avoid wind to stop spills
When the oil is coming out of the drain plug, the oil can spill all over the ground if it is windy outside. If you provide wind protection by changing the oil inside a garage, using a wind breaker, or changing your oil on a calm day it will cut down the cleanup time.
Time saved from tip – 10 minutes of cleanup time
Use something besides the car jack that comes with the car
A huge mistake that some car owners make is assuming that the scissor car jack that is included with the car can hold up the car for any extended period of time. Those jacks can fail and are unsteady. You can use anything from a cinderblock to a 10 ton car jack to keep the car raised without risking permanent damage.
Time saved from tip – Potentially Your Life
The engine needs to be warm
When you are cracking eggs, it be best to leave them out for 5 minutes before cracking them. Why you may ask? When the yoke and egg white have a few minutes to warm up, they come out of the shell quicker and in a higher percentage. With oil, the same rules apply. If you warm your car up, turn it on for a few minutes, the oil will come out quicker and in a higher percentage.
Time saved from tip – 2 minutes and less oil left in the engine
Don’t place the oil pan directly under the drain plug.
The oil will come at an angle because of the pressure pushing the oil out. If you put your oil pan directly under the drain plug, there is a risk it will miss the oil pan completely. This will add a good 20 minutes of cleanup time due to oil being spilled all over.
Time saved from tip – 20 minutes of cleanup time
Take the oil cap off before you drain the oil
Just like when you put laundry detergent into the washing machine, you have to unscrew the top to improve the flow of the detergent. By taking the oil cap off before you remove the drain plug you will get a continuous fast flow, instead of a reduced rate flow.
Time saved from tip – 2 minutes of flow time and limited risk of spilling
After following these 5 tips you will have your oil change go 34 minutes faster, your car will run longer and it may save your life.