Often the first job for an amateur mechanic. Questions regarding changing the engine lubricant oil, or problems resulting from doing so.

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29
votes
9answers
5k views

What actually happens when there is not enough oil in a car engine?

When a car is topped up with oil, it clear to most people that you are supposed to fill it to the recommended amount as specified by the manufacturer (normally on a dip stick). What exactly are all ...
25
votes
4answers
44k views

How far can I drive with 1 gallon too much oil?

I have way too much oil in my Acura TSX. Do I need to take care of it without turning it on or can I drive it to a service station? If I need to do it in place, I don't have the ramps or a pan or ...
16
votes
10answers
48k views

How can you tell the oil needs to be changed?

I know oil should be changed every 3000 or 6000 miles (depending on the car and conditions) but I'm not all that great at keeping track and I've let the car go for 10,000 miles before and it still ...
11
votes
7answers
10k views

Engine oil change and getting rid of old oil completely

After running the vehicle for a certain distance usually we will change the engine oil. This will not only give engine new life with the brand new oil but will also get sludge and other sediments out ...
10
votes
3answers
7k views

How do I select the right oil for my car?

I can give you my cars make and model and the conditions that I drive in, but I'm looking for a general guide to selecting the right oil for a car. I'm not really knowledgable when it comes to cars so ...
9
votes
5answers
144 views

What can I do with used motor oil?

Besides recycling? I've heard, for example, that I can use it to lubricate the drive chain (in a motorcycle / bicycle), but that doesn't appeal to me.
8
votes
5answers
22k views

Is it normal for the oil to be dark in color right after an “oil change” in a 10-year old diesel car?

I took my 2002 Jetta TDI wagon to a neighborhood shop about 10 miles, 24 hours ago. They supposedly changed the oil, but the color is very dark, almost black. Definitely not light-colored/transparent. ...
8
votes
2answers
2k views

Is it safe to reuse oil that was drained for a repair?

Let's say that I just replaced my engine oil but decided I want to lift the valve covers to do some gasket replacement. I know it may sound cheap but I'd rather not throw away $25 worth of almost new ...
8
votes
1answer
1k views

Do newer cars actually monitor the quality of oil? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How does the change oil light system work and does it matter what type of oil you use for it to work properly? Starting last August, I am currently leasing a BMW 328i ...
8
votes
5answers
21k views

Stubborn oil drain plug caused by hot oil?

I'm trying to change the engine oil but running into difficulties removing the oil drain plug. One of the instructions I followed to change the engine oil was to give the car a short drive prior to ...
8
votes
1answer
71 views

A lot of smoke coming from exhaust after oil change (mixed old with new oil)

I put new oil in my nissan earlier today (5w-30) and as I was driving I started to smell what I thought was burning oil, and I noticed behind me excessive amount of smoke while driving. I went from ...
7
votes
4answers
3k views

What happens if unsuitable oil is used in a vehicle engine?

I recently heard an urban legend-like story about a guy in a developing country who decided engine oil was too expensive and so used some vegetable oil instead. The story says the car ran for some ...
7
votes
2answers
8k views

Is topping up the oil enough of an oil change?

If you use synthetic ester-based oil in a relatively new petrol engine, top it up regularly, and the engine runs very quietly and basically without any noise whatsoever (especially after another top ...
7
votes
6answers
7k views

Oil change with front wheels on ramps?

From the obsessive compulsive department: I've been changing my own oil by driving up on a pair of ramps, draining and filling. Based on a slight overfill condition after adding the specified amount ...
7
votes
6answers
1k views

Tips for an oil change at home: cleanliness and disposal?

Drain oil, add new oil... find oil everywhere. It spills, the funnel is full of it when I'm done and drips forever, and I'm pouring kitty litter all over the driveway. If I had a proper garage this ...
7
votes
3answers
288 views

What actually happens when there is way too much oil in a car engine?

I saw the answers to a question I posted recently highlighting the disadvantages of having too little oil in an engine, but that got me wondering what if the complete opposite were to occur! I know ...
7
votes
2answers
988 views

Do I need to go to a dealer for a simple maintenance?

I just bought a 2012 CRV. Now, it's time for an oil change. I already moved so the dealer is too far away from my house (may need half day off) and there is no other public transportation to go there. ...
7
votes
3answers
6k views

Is it normal for a car's first oil change to be sooner than the regular interval?

Related: When should I change the oil, as the tech recommends or as my oil change light indicates Do newer cars actually monitor the quality of oil? How does the change oil light system work and ...
6
votes
3answers
318 views

Did the mechanic damage our car?

I purchased a 125k mile 2005 Toyota Camry in good condition and with a good service history about 5 months ago. It was due for its second oil change since we've owned it so my wife took it in to a ...
6
votes
1answer
384 views

When should I change the oil, as the tech recommends or as my oil change light indicates

I have a Toyota Corolla 2008. It has an oil change light indicator. The tech at the one hour oil change place recommends to change it every 3,000 miles but the indicator light only goes off about ...
5
votes
2answers
6k views

How to understand different engine oils?

When I went to shop for engine oil, I found many types as such: 5W-30 A5 5W-30 A1 5W-20 SAE 5W-30 10W-30 Also I see other information such as: Fully Synthetic Semi Synthetic Oil Synthetic ...
5
votes
2answers
520 views

Is it important that the gasket on the dipstick make a seal against the dipstick tube?

I just did an oil change on my 1995 Nissan Altima, and noticed that the gasket on my dipstick does not make a seal inside the dipstick tube. The inside diameter of the tube is maybe 3/32 of an inch ...
5
votes
2answers
261 views

Car stored for 6 months shows low oil level after 300 miles

Just bought a car from a BMW dealer and the guy told me it was sitting for almost 6 months before I came to purchase it. When I left the dealership the oil was above the min mark showing green. Drove ...
5
votes
3answers
501 views

When should I get an oil change if I drive infrequently?

I drive a 1997 Honda Accord maybe 6,000 miles each year. In past years, I've driven about 12,000 miles per year and changed the oil about every 3,000-4,000 miles, or about every three months. When ...
5
votes
3answers
1k views

How much oil will this fluid extractor extract?

The Griots Garage multi-fluid extractor is an example of a tool that certainly seems amazingly useful and convenient. If you haven't seen it before, the concept is that a semi rigid tube is inserted ...
5
votes
2answers
324 views

How to clean engine when oil is contaminated with metal shards?

During a recent oil change Istripped the oil pan bolt. It took a bit of trial and error for me to realize the stripped hole was a 14mm 1.25 thread so I got a tap and rethread it to 14mm 1.5 thread ...
5
votes
1answer
72 views

I used 0W-30 instead of 0W-20. Is it serious?

I have a Nissan Sentra 2014. I wanted to start using full synthetic oil, and the manual said I should use 0W-20. I changed both the oil and the filter (I used this one), and after finishing I realized ...
5
votes
2answers
626 views

Synthetic Oil and oil change frequency

My car (a 2008 Scion tC) says to have its oil changed every 5K miles or 5 months. I just took a new job and commute into the city by bus so I'm driving a whole lot less. I was told that if I got full ...
4
votes
4answers
65k views

Is it OK to drive Accord with 5% oil life left as indicated?

The 2010 Accord indicates that only 15% oil life is left. Oil level seems to be OK. The driver would rather complete the trip, which is 1400 more miles. At the beginning of the trip there were 20% ...
4
votes
3answers
8k views

Advantages of getting your car's oil changed at the dealer

Are there advantages go getting your car's oil changed at the dealership from which you purchased the car versus a "quick change" place like Jiffy Lube or Wal-Mart? I've used all three, and I feel the ...
4
votes
4answers
9k views

Oil leaks after oil change - shop says engine oil pan gasket needs to be replaced

I brought my 2000 Honda Civic to my local Castrol shop for an oil change. After leaving for work the next day my wife told me there was a three foot wide pool of oil where my car was. I moved my car ...
4
votes
3answers
4k views

Ford Taurus common oil leak area?

On my last oil change, the technician noted some oil around top and side of the engine block and said there is a small leak. The only way to find where it is coming from is doing the whole dye test, ...
4
votes
4answers
3k views

How could an oil drain plug fall out after 36 days and 2500 miles?

We had an oil change done at a quick lube type shop. After 36 days and 2500 miles driven, the oil drain plug fell out, resulting in severe engine damage. There was no oil leakage or any sign of ...
4
votes
1answer
225 views

What are the effects of excessive oil changes on an oil pump? (read description)

I would like to know what the effects on an oil pump are when oil is changed. Obviously after changing the oil filter the engine will run dry without oil pressure for the first few seconds while oil ...
4
votes
1answer
5k views

Oil leak - just keep refilling?

I have a 1995 Honda Accord with over 170k miles on it. I have the oil changed regularly every 3000 miles. My mechanic noticed the oil levels were pretty low at each oil change and took a deeper look. ...
3
votes
4answers
211 views

Is it possible to drain oil pan without getting any oil on your fingers?

This may be a frivolous question or a brain teaser... But I've always wondered if it is possible to so skillfully remove the drain bolt from the bottom of an oil pan upon oil change as to not get any ...
3
votes
4answers
8k views

Replacing oil sump plug washer after every oil change

As the title says, does the oil sump plug washer need to be replaced after every oil change, or can they be reused? Background - my 2005 Daihatsu Copen needs an oil change every 3000 miles. I have ...
3
votes
3answers
687 views

Manual says “Do not use the jack supplied with your vehicle” — why is it?

I just bought an used Toyota Yaris 2008 hatchback and I'm preparing to change oil for the first time. There's a jack supplied with the car (along the with spare tire). However, the manual seems to ...
3
votes
2answers
93 views

Damage from the Brief No Oil Pressure after Oil Change on Start Up

I was taught to fill the oil filter most of the way when doing an oil change. Usually, by the time I put the oil filter back on, I'm pretty annoyed and just put the empty filter on. I do put a light ...
3
votes
1answer
58 views

Oil overfill problem/oil foaming

Changed my oil today but like a fool overfilled when topping up, I did not notice this at first as I have a strange dipstick and fresh oil is pretty difficult to spot however I overfilled by around ...
3
votes
1answer
373 views

Why aren't oil drain valves more commonly used?

An oil drain valve is a device that replaces your regular drain bolt and makes an oil change a much cleaner job. When it's time for an oil change, you simply attach a hose to the oil drain valve, open ...
3
votes
1answer
51 views

How do I find out the proper torque number that I need to apply to an oil filter?

I am hearing mixed opinions how much should I tighten an oil filter. Does it depend on car or filter type? How do I find out the proper torque number that I need to apply to an oil filter? Thank you. ...
3
votes
2answers
7k views

Is short drive trip bad for your engine?

My wife's car often uses to drive to a nearby grocery store, which is too close to our house (about 2 miles). Some one told me that I should change the engine oil more often because engine is working ...
3
votes
2answers
13k views

Which provides better engine flushing, traditional flushing oil or adding a flush additive to old oil?

Background I think that my vehicle would probably benefit from having it's lubrication system being flushed out at it's next oil change. Checking prices of flushing oil at local suppliers I noticed ...
3
votes
1answer
341 views

What causes too much fuel for my Briggs and Stratton engine?

I recently bought a generator that uses a Briggs and Stratton 17hp Vanguard engine. Before purchasing the generator, it had not ran in several years. The fuel was stale and the oil needed to be ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

Should I get the oil changed before or after a road trip?

I have a 1999 Honda Oyssey minivan w/ 168,000 miles on it. I get the oil changed twice a year and my next oil change is scheduled for right after an up-coming road trip. Is there any reason to do the ...
3
votes
2answers
781 views

Honda CVT Multimatic Gearbox oil-change frequency

I'm planning to buy a 1999 Honda Civic with Multimatic Gearbox and the current owner claims that he needs oil changes after every 7,500 Kms. But when I read about it most suggest the oil change only ...
3
votes
1answer
69 views

JLO Rockwell 2F600

I have an old hovercraft that uses a small aircraft engine in the front to power both the lift and forward propulsion. I was hoping to find any kind of manual or literature on the engine itself. The ...
3
votes
1answer
301 views

Trouble reading oil level, 2007 VW Rabbit

This is a bit embarrassing. Since I got the car I've found it hard to read the oil level. The dipstick takes a turn as it enters the engine, and no matter how gently I pull the thing up, it seems ...
3
votes
6answers
25k views

How often do I need to change my oil in a VW TDI?

The manual for my 2003 VW TDI says to change the oil every 12 months or 10,000 miles. My dealer says every 6 months or 5,000 miles. Are they just trying to make twice as much money off my oil ...