Before going on a road trip, it's a good idea to give your vehicle a fresh oil change. You could take it into a shop to have done, but there are many benefits of completing this task yourself, such as saving money, using quality materials, or just making sure it actually gets done! In this Instructable, we'll use my 2002 Ford Expedition to showcase the basic steps on how to change your oil.
The following items are needed to complete this task:
1. Oil (quantity and weight determined by your vehicle)
2. Oil filter
3. Oil filter wrench
4. 3/8" ratchet
5. Socket (16mm for a 2002 Ford Expedition)
7. Drain bucket
8. Paper towels
By the end of this Instructable, you'll be able to change the oil in a 2002 Ford Expedition from start to finish.
Safety Disclaimer: There are many factors to consider prior to changing your own oil. You may burn yourself on the hot engine or engine oil, have oil splash onto your skin, eyes or mouth, or cut yourself on any sharp objects. This tutorial is provided for general educational purposes only.
Step 1: Step 1: Locate Your Oil Filler Cap, Oil Filter, and Drain Plug
Before you get started, it's a good idea to locate the three main items associated with changing your oil; oil filler cap, oil filter, and the oil drain plug.
Oil filler cap: will be located under your hood and on top of your engine. It should be labeled "oil," have a picture of an oil can, display the weight of the recommended oil, or any combination of these items.
Oil filter: most of the times, the oil filter will be located under your engine, but can sometimes be located on top. An oil filter comes in many different colors, so be on the lookout for a cylinder type shape.
Oil drain plug: will be located underneath your engine, and connected to the oil pan.
Step 2: Step 2: Drain Your Oil
Position drain pan underneath the oil drain plug. Once positioned, use your socket wrench and socket to loosen the drain plug. Once you have broken the plug loose, you can begin removing it by hand. Once the plug is fully removed, the oil will rush out with force, so it's a good idea to do this step as quickly as you can. Once all oil has been drained, tighten drain plug by hand, then give it an additional 1/4 turn by the socket wrench and socket.
Step 3: Step 3: Remove Oil Filter
Position the drain bucket underneath the oil filter. Using the oil filter wrench, loosen the oil filter. Once you have broken the oil filter loose with the wrench, you can spin it the rest of the way with your hands. As you turn, oil will begin to seep out from the seal, so ensure you're safely positioned and that the bucket is catching all of the oil. Once the filter is out, dump any remaining oil from it into the drain bucket.
Step 4: Step 4: Install New Oil Filter
Once the oil l filter is removed, the next step is to prepare the mounting surface by wiping it clean as shown in the video. Next, we need to prepare the rubber seal on the new oil filter. To prepare the seal, remove it from the oil filter and dip it into the bucket of used oil. Once the seal is fully saturated, place it back onto the oil filter. Now, thread the new oil filter onto the engine until the seal makes contact, then tighten the oil filter 3/4 of a turn.
Step 5: Step 5: Pour in New Oil
Remove oil filler cap, and place a funnel into its opening. Carefully pour in one quart less than the vehicle's oil capacity; in my case, it was 6 quarts. Once done, install the oil filler cap, start the vehicle, and allow to run for approximately 30 seconds.
Step 6: Step 6: Topping Off the Oil
Locate the vehicle's oil dipstick; typically it's yellow and labeled "oil." Pull it out completely, clean it with a paper towel, re-insert it into the tube, remove it once more and observe the oil level on the dipstick. If it's below the "max" level, add a little bit of oil, and repeat the above procedures until you've reached it.
Step 7: Step 7: Discarding Used Oil
Now that the oil has been changed, it's now time to be responsible and deliver your oil and filter to a collection point. To do this, place the used oil into the oil container using a funnel, and place the used oil filter into the box that the new filter came in. Now head to your local auto parts store, hazardous waste collection point, or schedule a pickup with your local agency.
Step 8: Step 8: Finish
Now your vehicle is happily ready to make a road trip!