OIL LEVEL CHECK
See Figures 1, 2, 3 and 4
Checking the oil level is one of the simplest and most important checks. It should be done FREQUENTLY because low oil level can lead to engine overheating and eventual starvation of the oil pump. This can mean inadequate lubrication and immediate, severe engine damage. Because oil consumption patterns of an engine can change quickly and unexpectedly due to leakage or changes in the weather, check the oil every time you stop for fuel.
If the engine has been running, allow it to rest for a few minutes until the oil accumulates in the sump, before checking the oil level.
- Raise the hood, pull the oil dipstick from the engine and wipe it clean.
- Insert the dipstick into the engine until it is fully seated, then, remove it and check the reading.
The oil level on all Acura models should register between the 2 holes indicating high and low oil level.
- Oil is added through the capped opening of the rocker arm cover. Do not add oil if the level is significantly above the lower mark. If the level is near or below the lower mark, ADD oil but do not overfill. The length covered by the marks on the dipstick is roughly equivalent to one quart of oil.
- If oil has been added, replace the dipstick and recheck the level. It is important to avoid overfilling the crankcase because doing so will cause the oil to foam due to the motion of the crankshaft, affecting lubrication and may also harm the engine oil seals.
OIL AND FILTER CHANGE
See Figures 5, 6 and 7
Oil changes should be performed at intervals as described in your owners manual. However, it is a good idea to change the oil and oil filter at least three to four times a year depending on how many miles the car is driven. If your car is being used under dusty conditions, change the oil and filter sooner. The same thing goes for cars being driven in stop and go city traffic, where acid and sludge buildup is a problem. The oil should also be changed more frequently in cars which are constantly driven at high speeds on expressways. The relatively high engine speeds associated with turnpike driving mean higher operating temperatures and a greater instance of oil foaming.
Always drain the oil after the engine has been run long enough to bring it to the normal operating temperature. Hot oil will flow easier and more contaminants will be removed with the oil than if it were drained cold. A large capacity drain pan, which can be purchased at any automotive supply store, will be more than paid back by savings from do-it-yourself oil changes. Another necessity is containers for the used oil. You will find that plastic bleach containers make excellent storage bottles.
To change the oil and filter:
- Run the engine until it reaches the normal operating temperature. Raise and safely support the front of the car.
- Remove the filler cap, wipe it off and set it to the side.
- Slide a drain pan under the oil pan drain plug.
- Loosen the drain plug with a socket or box wrench, and then remove it by hand. Push in on the plug as you turn it out, so that no oil escapes until the plug is completely removed.
- Allow the oil to drain into the pan.
- Clean and install the drain plug, making sure that the gasket is still on the plug. Tighten the drain plug to 25-33 ft. lbs. (34-44 Nm).
- Refill the engine with oil and replace the filler cap. Start the engine and check for leaks.
The car manufacturer recommends changing the oil filter at every other oil change, but it is more beneficial to replace the filter every time the oil is changed. Aside from the obvious improved filtration that a new filter affords, what most people don't realize is that a quantity of the old oil remains in the filter at all times. If the oil filter is not changed with the oil, the old, contaminated oil has a chance to mix with and dilute the new oil. Not renewing the oil filter at every oil change, in reality, only constitutes a partial oil change.