OIL LEVEL CHECK
- If the engine has been running, wait a few minutes before checking the oil to allow it to drain down into the pan.
- Remove the dipstick from its tube. On V8s it is on the driver's side of the engine; on sixes it is on the passenger side.
- Wipe the stick clean and reinsert it into the tube.
- Make sure that it goes down all the way. Remove the stick and examine the oil level. It should be somewhere between the FULL and ADD markings.
- Replace the dipstick and add oil as necessary at the rocker cover filler cap.
The distance from ADD to FULL is one quart.
OIL AND FILTER CHANGE
Assuming that the recommended oils are used, the oil and filter should be changed at the intervals shown in the "Maintenance Intervals" chart. This interval should be halved under severe usage such as dusty conditions, trailer towing, prolonged high-speeds, off-road driving, or repeated short trips in freezing temperatures. Although it isn't required by the factory, it is a good idea to change the filter with each oil change. A filter can hold a quart of dirty oil.
To change the oil and filter:
- Operate the truck until the engine is at normal operating temperature. If you don't, most of the contaminants will stay in your engine. Stop the engine.
- Slide a pan of at least six quarts capacity under the oil pan.
- Remove the drain plug from the engine oil pan, after wiping the plug area clean. If this is your first attempt at oil changing, make sure that you have the engine drain plug and not the one of the transmission or something else. It's the plug at the lowest point of the oil pan.
- Allow the oil to drain into the pan. Do not replace the plug before the oil has completely stopped draining.
- Clean off the plug, particularly the threads, and replace it.
- The filter is at the left rear on the V8, and the right front on the six. Use a filter wrench to loosen it. These are available at discount and auto supply stores and they're not very expensive. Place a drain pan under the filter. Unscrew and discard the old filter after wiping the area clean.
- If the filter has been overtightened and collapses when you use the filter wrench on it, drive a long punch or a screwdriver through the cartridge as near the base as possible and use this as a lever to unscrew it.
- Lubricate the new filter gasket with a few drops of clean engine oil, smeared on with a finger.
- Screw the filter on by hand until the gasket makes contact, then tighten the filter one half a full turn by hand. If you overtighten the filter, you may have to resort to the methods of Step 7 to get it off the next time. Just be sure it makes a good seal.
- Remove the filler cap on the rocker (valve) cover after wiping the area clean.
- Add the correct amount of the oil specified under "Fuel and Oil Recommendations." Overfilling could cause damage to the engine seals. Replace the cap.
- Check the oil level on the dipstick. It is normal for the level to be a bit above FULL. Start the engine and look for leaks around the drain plug and the filter.
- Stop the engine and recheck the level.