OIL LEVEL CHECK
Every time the vehicle is refueled, the engine oil should be checked, making sure the engine has fully warmed and the vehicle is parked on a level surface. Because it takes some time for the oil to drain back to the oil pan, wait a few minutes before checking the oil. When doing this at a fuel stop, first fill the fuel tank, then open the hood and check the oil, but don't get so carried away as to forget to pay for the fuel!
- Make sure the car is parked on level ground.
- When checking the oil level, it is best for the engine to be at normal operating temperature, however the engine should be stopped for about 5 minutes before checking. Checking the oil immediately after stopping the engine will lead to a false reading. Waiting a few minutes after turning off the engine allows the oil in the upper engine and cylinder head to drain back into the crankcase.
- Open the hood and locate the dipstick, which will be in a guide tube located in the front of the engine compartment. Pull the dipstick from its tube, wipe it clean (using a clean, lint-free rag), look at the level marks, and then reinsert it.
- Pull the dipstick out again and, holding it horizontally, read the oil level. The oil should be between the upper and lower dots on the dipstick. If the oil is below the lower dot, add oil of the proper viscosity through the screwed-in capped opening in the top of the valve cover. See the oil and fuel recommendations listed earlier in this section for the proper viscosity and rating of oil to use.
- Insert the dipstick and check the oil level again after adding any oil. Approximately one quart of oil will raise the level from the lower dot mark to the upper dot mark. Be sure not to overfill the crankcase. Excess oil will generally be consumed at an accelerated rate and may cause problems. Overfilling the engine oil is much like overfilling a blender. Once running the liquid expands and needs somewhere to go and could force its way past a gasket or oil seal creating a leak or cause sluggish engine operation.
- Close the hood.
OIL & FILTER CHANGE
The manufacturer's recommended oil change interval is 7,500 miles (12,000 km) or at least once a year under normal operating conditions and every 3,750 miles (6,000 km) or twice a year for vehicles driven in severe operating conditions. Because frequent oil changes help to prolong the life of an engine, it's a good idea to adopt an oil change interval of at least twice a year or every 3,000-3,500 miles (4,800-5,600 km) under normal conditions; and more frequently under severe conditions.
The following is a list of what the manufacturer considers severe use. If the vehicle meets any one of these conditions, the severe maintenance schedule should be followed.
Additionally, it is recommended that the oil filter be replaced EVERY time the oil is changed.
Please be considerate of the environment. Dispose of waste oil properly by taking it to a service station, municipal facility or recycling center.
- Run the engine until it reaches normal operating temperature. Then turn the engine OFF .
- Remove the oil filler cap.
- Raise and safely support the front of the vehicle using jackstands.
- Slide a drain pan of at least 5 quarts (4.7 liters) capacity under the oil pan. Wipe the drain plug and surrounding area clean using an old rag.
- Loosen the drain plug using 17mm socket on a ratchet, or a suitable box wrench. Turn the plug out by hand, using a rag to shield fingers from the hot oil. Wear disposable latex gloves to protect the skin from exposure to the engine oil. Keep an inward pressure on the plug as it is unscrewed, then the oil won't escape past the threads and it can be removed without being burned by hot oil. Quickly withdraw the plug and move your hands out of the way, but be careful not to drop the plug into the drain pan, as fishing it out can be an unpleasant mess without the use of a magnet. Allow the oil to drain completely.
- Examine the condition of the drain plug for thread damage or stretching. The manufacturer recommends replacing the aluminum drain plug crush washer with a new one every time the drain plug is removed.
Install the drain plug, with a new crush washer, then tighten the plug as follows:
Cast aluminum oil pans: 29 ft. lbs. (39 Nm)
- Move the drain pan under the oil filter. Use an end cap-type tool to loosen the oil filter. Use disposable gloves to protect the skin from exposure to the used oil and cover the filter with a rag to minimize the risk of slinging engine oil, as the filter is unscrewed from the engine. Keep in mind that the filter holds about a quart of dirty, hot oil.
Be careful when removing the oil filter, because the filter contains about 1 quart of hot, dirty oil.
- Empty the old oil filter into the drain pan, then properly dispose of the filter.
- Using a clean shop towel, wipe off the filter adapter on the engine block. Be sure the towel does not leave any lint, which could clog an oil passage.
- Coat the rubber gasket and pour some fresh oil into the new filter before installation. This will lubricate the engine more quickly during the initial startup. Spin the filter onto the threaded fitting by hand until it contacts the mounting surface, then tighten it an additional 1 / 2 - 3 / 4 turn. Do NOT overtighten the filter.
- Carefully lower the vehicle.
- Refill the crankcase with the correct amount of fresh engine oil. Please refer to the Capacities chart later in this section.
- Install the oil filler cap.
- Check the oil level on the dipstick. It is normal for the level to be a bit above the full mark until the engine is run and the new filter is filled with oil. Start the engine and allow it to idle for a few minutes.
- Shut off the engine and allow the oil to flow back to the crankcase for a minute, then recheck the oil level. Check around the filter and drain plug for any leaks, and correct as necessary.
When finished with the job, there are four or five quarts of dirty oil and a used oil filter to be disposed of properly. The best thing to do is to pour the oil into a sealable container, then, locate a service station or automotive parts store that will accept the used oil and oil filter.
Improperly disposing of used motor oil not only pollutes the environment, it violates federal law. Dispose of waste oil properly.