DMS Basics - Step-by-Step Guide to Changing Engine Oil – DMS Fasteners
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DMS Basics - Step-by-Step Guide to Changing Engine Oil

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The information provided in these instructions is on an "as is" basis without warranties of any kind, express or implied. The author disclaims all liability for any actions taken or not taken based on this information. Users are responsible for their own actions and decisions based on these instructions. This disclaimer includes, but is not limited to, any direct, indirect, incidental, or consequential damages. By using these instructions, you acknowledge and agree to this disclaimer. If you do not agree, do not use the provided information.


Regularly changing your engine oil is one of the most important maintenance tasks you can perform to keep your vehicle running smoothly and prolong its lifespan. While it may seem daunting at first, changing engine oil is a relatively straightforward process that can be done at home with basic tools and supplies. In this beginner's guide, we'll walk you through the step-by-step process of changing engine oil, empowering you to take control of your vehicle's maintenance and ensure optimal performance.

1. Gather the Necessary Supplies

Before you begin, gather the following supplies:

  • New Engine Oil: Refer to your vehicle's owner's manual to determine the correct type and viscosity of oil to use.
  • Oil Filter: Purchase a new oil filter that is compatible with your vehicle's make and model.
  • Oil Drain Pan: A container to catch the old oil as it drains from the engine.
  • Wrenches or Socket Set: To remove the drain plug and oil filter.
  • Oil Filter Wrench: If necessary, to remove the old oil filter.
  • Funnel: To help pour the new oil into the engine without spills.
  • Rags or Paper Towels: For cleaning up any spills or messes.

2. Prepare Your Vehicle

Before you start draining the old oil, prepare your vehicle:

  • Warm Up the Engine: Run the engine for a few minutes to warm up the oil. Warm oil flows more freely and drains more completely.
  • Park on Level Ground: Park your vehicle on a level surface to ensure accurate oil level readings and proper draining.
  • Gather Safety Equipment: Wear gloves and safety glasses to protect your hands and eyes from hot oil and debris.

3. Drain the Old Oil

Now it's time to drain the old oil from the engine:

  • Locate the Drain Plug: Position the oil drain pan underneath the oil pan, then locate the oil drain plug on the bottom of the oil pan.
  • Loosen the Drain Plug: Use a wrench or socket set to loosen the drain plug in a counterclockwise direction. Be careful not to drop the plug into the drain pan.
  • Drain the Oil: Once the drain plug is loose, carefully remove it by hand and allow the old oil to drain completely into the drain pan. This may take a few minutes.
  • Remove the Oil Filter: While the oil is draining, locate the oil filter on the engine and use an oil filter wrench to loosen and remove it. Allow any remaining oil to drain into the pan.

4. Replace the Oil Filter

With the old oil drained, it's time to replace the oil filter:

  • Prepare the New Filter: Before installing the new oil filter, apply a thin layer of fresh oil to the rubber gasket to ensure a proper seal.
  • Install the New Filter: Screw the new oil filter onto the engine by hand, turning it clockwise until it is snug. Do not over-tighten the filter.

5. Add New Oil

Now it's time to add fresh oil to the engine:

  • Locate the Oil Fill Cap: Remove the oil fill cap located on the top of the engine.
  • Add New Oil: Insert a funnel into the oil fill hole and pour in the recommended amount of new oil, as specified in your owner's manual. Use a dipstick to check the oil level and add more if necessary.

6. Dispose of Old Oil Properly

Once you've completed the oil change, it's important to dispose of the old oil properly:

  • Pour Old Oil into a Sealable Container: Carefully pour the old oil from the drain pan into a sealable container, such as the empty oil bottle.
  • Take to a Recycling Center: Take the container of old oil to a local recycling center or automotive parts store that accepts used oil for recycling.

7. Clean Up

Finally, clean up any spills or messes and properly store your tools and supplies for future use.


Changing your engine oil is a simple yet crucial maintenance task that can help keep your vehicle running smoothly for years to come. By following the steps outlined in this guide and performing regular oil changes according to your vehicle's maintenance schedule, you can ensure optimal engine performance and longevity. With a little time and effort, you can take pride in knowing that you're taking proactive steps to care for your vehicle and avoid costly repairs down the road.