DIY Oil Change with Pictures by BDoggPrelude

Parts Needed:
  • -4.5 quarts of 5w20 motor oil
  • -Oil Filter
  • -A new M-14 crush washer for the drain bolt
Tools Needed:
  • -Floor jack
  • -Jack stands
  • -17mm wrench
  • -Torque wrench
  • -Breaker bar
  • -21mm socket
  • -Something to put your used oil in
By diyauto
( 2 )

10 minute read

DIY Oil Change with Pictures 

Compliments of BDoggPrelude @


I looked around this forum and couldn't find a DIY oil change thread so I took a bunch of pictures when I changed my oil today. You'll have to excuse the picture quality. They were all taken with my iPhone.

First off, I do not assume any responsibility for your car. If you don't think you have the basic mechanical skills to pull this off I highly recommend paying a shop to change your oil. If you forget to put the filter or drain bolt back on you will seize your motor. Even worse, if you don't properly stabilize the car it could fall on you and you will die.

That being said, this task is probably a .5 on a scale of 1-10 in terms of difficulty in the grand scheme of automobile maintenance. My brother taught his ex-girlfriend how to change the oil on her Legend and she's about as smart as a sack of hammers.

Let's start off with a list of things you'll need to do the job.

-4.5 quarts of 5w20 motor oil
-Oil Filter
-A new M-14 crush washer for the drain bolt
-Floor jack
-Jack stands
-17mm wrench
-Torque wrench
-Breaker bar
-21mm socket
-Something to put your used oil in

To add to that list these items are very helpful
-Nitrile gloves
-Something to put under the car like a big piece of cardboard.
-1 gallon ziplock bag
-Oil filter wrench
-Shop towels for clean up

Now that you have all of those things it's time to get started:

-Start your car and let it get up to operating temperature.
-While you are in the car SET THE PARKING BRAKE.
-As the car is warming up you can move on to the next step. Use your breaker bar and 21mm socket to loosen the lug nuts on the right front wheel.

-The car should be warm enough by now so turn it off.
-Next look underneath the front of the car. Directly behind the front splash guard in the center of the car you will see this jacking point on the frame. (Sorry for the bad picture).

-Jack the car up high enough to get jack stands under both sides behind the front wheels.
-The jack stands go here on the pinch weld directly behind the front wheels.

-Now that the car is securely held by two jack stands and the parking brake, remove the jack from underneath the car.
-Now slide under the front of the car and find the oil drain bolt. It is labeled "Engine Oil" with an arrow pointing to the plug.

-The drain bolt has a 17mm head on it.

-I find it easiest to break the bolt loose first. Since it is underneath the car getting hit with water and road grime along with going through multiple heating and cooling cycles it can be difficult to break loose. Put your 17mm wrench on the bolt and give the wrench a few taps with a hammer or some other solid tool.
-Once you get a little movement out of the bolt put your oil catching pan underneath the drain.
-I use a 5 gallon oil drain pan that can be purchased at any auto parts store. It holds a enough oilfor a few oil changes and is easy to pour out. These containers are hardly water tight so be careful where you put it once it is full.

-Now that you have the oil drain pan down there twist the drain bolt all the way out and let the oildrain out.
-The oil may be hot so watch out.
-You may want to put on a new pair of gloves after this step since they will get covered with oil.

Next pop the hood and locate the oil filler cap and remove it. This will allow the oil to drain much quicker out of the bottom.

-While the oil is moving go back to the right front wheel and remove it completely.

-This is the easiest way to get to the oil filter.

-Depending on who put the oil filter on last, you may or may not need to use the oil filter wrench. See if you can loosen it with your hands, if not use the wrench but don't turn it too much yet.
-This is where the 1 gallon ziplock bag comes in handy.
-Put your ziplock bag around the oil filter.

-Now continue spinning the oil filter until it drops down into the ziplock back. Using this bag keeps all of this oil contained instead of all over your garage floor.

-You should be left with this.

-Now open up your oil and use a dab of it on the new oil filter threading and then twist it back onto the car. This filter should be reasonably tight. You don't need to put it on with the double fisted death grip but it should be fairly tight.
-New oil filter installed.

-By now the oil is probably mostly drained and it's time to put everything back together under the car.
-Note: there will probably still be some oil dripping out of your car. This is okay.
-Put a new M-14 crush washer on the oil drain bolt.

-And bolt it back into the oil pan under the car.
-If you have a torque wrench that fits under there this bolt torques at 29ft/lbs.
-I just give it a good hearty turn with the wrench since my torque wrench doesn't fit in this tight space.
-Remove the oil drain pan from under the car along with any other tools you might have left under there.
-Put the wheel back on the right front.
-Jack the car back up in the same spot, remove the jack stands and let the car back down.
-Before you do anything else torque down that right front wheel so you don't forget about it. The lug nuts torque to 94ft/lbs and make sure you go in a star pattern.
-Now we are going to add oil back in. I use a funnel for this. Some people just pour from the bottle.

-Remember, it's 4.5 quarts. I personally use Mobil1. I've used it since I was 16 years old in all of my cars. Mobil1 sponsors Formula1 racing so I'm okay with spending a little more on my oil if some of my money is going to a good cause. I usually just buy the 5 quart bottle and measure out 1/2 a quart that I save in another oil bottle.
-Don't forget to put the oil filler cap back on too.
-Get back in the car and start it up.
-While the new oil is cycling through the motor reset your oil life indicator in the MID.
-Press the SEL/RESET button until you get to the oil life readout.
-Once there hold the SEL/RESET button for about 10 seconds and it will ask you if you want to reset. (Yes, I was way past my oil change because I had a busy couple of weeks).

-Press the up arrow so it highlights RESET and the press the SEL/RESET button again to confirm.

-Your oil life should now say 100% again.

And you're all done.

I highly recommend taking the car for a spin to make sure all is okay. You would hate to find out on your way to work the next morning that you screwed something up. Better to find out now while you still have time to work it out. Once the car has been sitting for a bit you should also check underneath for any new oil spots just in case the filter or drain bolt were not tightened enough.

I hope that somebody on here that may be a bit timid about changing their own oil to give it a try. I personally hate putting my car in the hands of somebody else for any reason, much less once every 5,000 miles for routine maintenance I can easily do myself.

If anybody has any questions or wants to add something please feel free.