This is my first thread in the forum since I joined about almost a month ago
I know that there has been a similar post of DIY oil change stickied and it is originally posted by @tcrankwa
. He did a good job for the oil change but for the first timer DIY of oil change like me, I found it hard. I would like to contribute to complement his thread with a step by step procedure and I will share my own lessons learned for you.
RESOURCES AND TOOLS
We need to prepare the right resources and the tools for the oil change job. Here are the resources needed for the job:
- Hydraulic floor jack (not shown)
- Jack stands (not shown)
- Flat screw driver (not shown)
- 3/8” drive socket wrench
- 8 mm socket (not shown)
- 13 mm socket
- Oil filter “B” cap wrench
- Drive socket extention (not shown)
- Oil drain plug gasket (14x20 mm)
- Engine oil (6qts)
- Oil filter kit
- Oil funnel
- Oil drain pan
- A pair of strong latex gloves, it is a messy job!
Preparation for any job is an important part. The first step of the job is to park your car in a flat surface. I did the job inside the garage. Then, we need to raise the front part of the car to access the oil reservoir under the engine bay. We do this to unplug the oil reservoir to flush the dirty oil.
Use a floor jack to raise the car. I used the MB hydraulic jack which can be connected to the side jacking point under the front door near the front tire.
Locate your side jacking point and unplug the cover by prying it off with a flat screw driver.
Carefully set up your hydraulic floor jack in a safe and flat surface. Unfold the pin of the jack (red arrow) and place the longer section of the jack base (yellow arrow) aligned with the surface. Insert the pin to the jacking tube opening until it reach a full stop point (green arrow).
Begin raising the jack until the maximum height by rotating the handle clockwise. When the jack is fully raised, it will stand on the edge of the jack base. In my case, the jack base (yellow arrow) will not aligned with the surface.
Place the jack stand under a strong structural component. It is located at the outer end of the diagonal bar (green arrow) for both right and left side. The point is approximately parallel to the circle jacking point (red arrow). FYI, circle point can be used to raise the car using a flat hydraulic jack. I used a cardboard between the frame and the jack stand for protection.
Raise your car unequal for both side. The higher side should be on the right side of your car. The reason behind this is because the oil drain plug is located further to the left side of the car. To be able to drain the whole dirty fluids, we need to “tilt” the car to the left. This practice also make the draining even faster. If you raise your car on equal heights, you need longer time to drain the fluids.
The next job is to remove the engine tray. There are four 8 mm screws located at the front and rear of the tray. Work from the front to the back area. Once all of the screws have been removed, slide the tray front to rear to remove it. Set aside the engine tray in a safe place together with the screws and the socket wrench.
THE OIL CHANGE
Remove the drain plug (yellow arrow for the location) from the oil reservoir (red arrow) using a 13 mm socket.
Be careful because the oil is hot. Place the drain pan exactly under the drain plug. The center of your drain pan should be aligned with the drain plug location. FYI, I did the oil change after driving around for a couple blocks to increase the engine temperature. Hot fluids will flow easily compared to cold fluids.
Set aside your drain plug if you want to reuse it. Replace the drain plug gasket with the new one. I’m sorry that I didn’t take the picture of the plug removal process.
It took me about an hour for the dirty oil to completely drained. As I mentioned before, raising the car higher for the right side should speed up the draining process as we “tilt” the car to the left.
Credit goes to my son because I borrowed his playmat for the work
While waiting for the oil to drain, we can work to replace the oil filter. The oil filter housing cap is located on the right side of the engine. From the figure, you know why do we need a socket extention for the job.
Removing the oil filter is also a messy job. I use a cardboard from a used box to cover the other parts of the engine bay. Carefully rotate and wiggle the dirty oil filter and put it inside the new oil filter box.
I used Purolator for the oil filter since I couldn’t find K&N filter (my favorite filter brand) everywhere unless order it online. I needed to change the oil immediately.
The filter kit I bought comes with the o-ring gasket. Use a bit of new engine oil to lubricate the o-ring and replace the dirty o-ring in the oil filter housing cap. Insert the new oil filter carefully and point the hole to the center of the oil filter housing. You can see a center of the housing clearly.
Now that we have replaced our oil filter. Once the dirty oil is completely flushed, put back on the drain plug with the 13 mm socket and re-attach the engine tray. To re-attach the engine tray, slide the front end of the tray under the opening under the inside end of the front bumper. Tighten the front area first then move to the rear screws. Remove the jack stands and lower the car back to the normal position.
Return to the engine bay to fill the new clean oil. I used the Mobil1 0W-40 for 6 qts. Fill with 5qt of oil first.
Once it done, start the engine and drive around for a couble blocks to raise the engine temperature. Stop the car and observe the engine oil dip stick, look at the oil level. It should not reach the maximum position, because overfilling the oil will damage the engine. Start adding one more quart of new engine oil. Observe if there is any fluid leaking under the engine bay.
Complete your oil change job by readjust your tire pressures to the factory standard and re-setting the maintenance counter. To reset the maintenance counter, turn on the ignition to position II, right before the engine start. There are two knob on the odometer panel. Press the left knob rapidly twice, it will show us how many miles left until the next oil change. Press and hold the left knob for 10 seconds. During that time period, turn the ignition off and back on to the original position. Release the knob when the mileage counter change to 10,000.
The total money I spent for this job is approximately $91 before the tax, with details as follow:
- Funnel: $2.99
- Drain Pan: $3.29
- Filter cap wrench: $5.99
- Filter oil Purolator: $12.99
- Jack stands: $23.88
- Engine oil Mobil1 0W-40 (5qt): $25.47
- Engine oil Mobil1 0W-40 (1qt): $ 7.5
- Socket extention: $6.5
- Oil drain plug gasket: $2.5
For the next oil change which positively will be my next DIY project, I'l probably have to spent only $37 for the engine oil and K&N oil filter. This figure is way more cheaper compared for the cost I have to spent at local MB dealership in Tulsa, Oklahoma, US.
These are things I learned from the oil change:
- Oil change is a messy job. Once you unplug the drain plug, hot dirty fluids will flow from the oil reservoir. If you are not prepared like me, you'll spill the oil on the floor. The first lesson is, place your drain pan center exactly under the draing plug location and always observe the dripping point of the dirty oil. Credit goes to my son again for the spills
I was lucky he is not around when I did this
- Raising the car with unequal heights. "Tilting" the car to the left by rasing the right side higher than the left side will speed up the drain process. Initially I raised the car with equal heights and the last drips of the oil fell so slowly. So I experimented by raising the right side higher and the remaining fluids came out faster. However, I still observed that there might be a couple drips left inside since I didn't wait until it fully stop dripping. The best time of draining the oil is probably in the night time so you can leave it overnight and fill the clean oil the next day in the morning.
- Use a long neck oil funnel. I used a 5 qt of engine oil which quite heavy to lift. If I use a short neck funnel like the one shown in my picture, I'll might ended up spilling the clean oil in the engine bay. I didn't take my pic using the long neck funnel.
- The credit for this point of my lesson learned goes to @Turdo2.
I put the jack stand for the left side a bit further to the inside, which is directly at the bolt of the cross-braces joint. This is an unsafe practice.
I hope you guys will benefited from my post. If there is any comment or suggestion to add in my post, you are most welcome!