Saturday, February 11, 2012

Guide to Replacing an Oil Filter

By Tauqeer Ul Hassan
Most drivers don't know how to change their car engine's oil. In fact it is a task that is needed after every 6000 miles or 6 months, whichever comes first. Many drivers drive with dirty and old oil which can result in engine degradation. It is not very difficult to change an oil filter and it can be done in DIY style, here is a simple guide. Follow the simple directions.
Things Needed
- New oil filter
- New oil
- New oil cap
- Container for old oil
- Wheelie board
- Jack
- Axle stands
- Spanner or socket set to fit sump plug
- Chain wrench
- Latex Gloves
Step 1:
It is essential not to do an oil change should within two hours time period of driving the car. Otherwise the dipstick will not show correct reading. A good idea is to run the engine with low revs for couple of minutes before thinning the oil and aiding the oil drain.
Step 2:
The car should be parked on a flat surface, this will ensure the stability of the jack.
Step 3:
Open the bonnet and remove the oil filler cap. It is usually made of plastic and is located on the engine block at the top. Check the air vents in the cap for any blockages and replace the entire cap if blocked.
Step 4:
Locate the oil filter and the sump plug. The sump plug looks like a bolt-head which is usually hexagonal facing downwards or sideways, it is usually located at the rear of the engine. In case these are easily accessible without putting the car on a jack, then skip the steps 5 and 13.
Step 5:
Now, the car has to be raised on a jack from the front end. Leaving the car's weight on the jack for any length of time is not recommended. Thus placing the axle stands under the front axles is important and is a double safety measure.
Step 6:
Unscrew the sump plug anti-clockwise with the spanner/socket set and make the container ready to catch the pouring oil. Keep your head away.
Step 7:
Rotate the sump plug taking it off by hand and let the oil drain down in to the old oil container. Keep observing the container as the oil flow likely moves. The drained oil should be disposed off properly.
Step 8:
The sump plug has a magnetic tip. The oil should be gently wiped off and observe it. If the tip has lots of small metal filings, this is a sign that the engine is degrading. There can be number of reasons for this including rust. Make sure the oil is frequently changed in future.
Step 9:
The oil filter has to be unscrewed anti-clockwise. Hands can be used but a chain wrench is mostly used.
Step 10:
Wipe a thin layer of oil around the rubber seal of the new oil filter for ensuring a perfect contact. Then screw the new filter and tighten it by hand only. Avoid over-tight.
Step 11:
The oil should have completely drained by this point. Replace and tighten the sump plug roughly one half-turn past with the spanner/socket set.
Step 12:
Now remove the jack and axle stands and bring the car back to a level position.
Step 13:
Now, locate and remove the dipstick, wipe off the old oil and replace it.
Step 14:
Pour in the new engine oil and take an interval after a pint or 30 seconds, then check the level of the dipstick. Continue pouring till the oil reaches the upper level on the dipstick.
Step 15:
Finally, replace the engine oil-filler cap.
Step 16:
Start and run the engine for few minutes to check the performance.

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