OIL LEVEL CHECK
The best time to check the engine oil is before operating the engine or after it has been sitting for at least 10 minutes in order to gain an accurate reading. This will allow the oil to drain back in the crankcase. To check the engine oil level, make sure that the vehicle is resting on a level surface, remove the oil dipstick, wipe it clean and reinsert the stick firmly for an accurate reading. The oil dipstick has two marks to indicate high and low oil level. If the oil is at or below the "low level" mark on the dipstick, oil should be added as necessary. The oil level should be maintained in the safety margin, neither going above the "high level" mark or below the "low level" mark.
OIL & FILTER CHANGE
The Datsun/Nissan factory maintenance intervals (every 7,500 miles or 6 months) specify changing the oil filter at every second oil change after the initial service. We recommend replacing the oil filter with every oil change. For the small price of an oil filter, it's cheap insurance to replace the filter at every oil change. One of the larger filter manufacturers points out in its advertisements that not changing the filter leaves 1 quart of dirty oil in the engine. This claim is true and should be kept in mind when changing your oil.
On turbocharged engines factory maintenance intervals are every 5,000 miles/6 months and diesel maintenance intervals are 7,500 miles/6 months.
- Run the engine until it reaches normal operating temperature.
- Jack up the front of the car and support it on jackstands if necessary to gain access to the filter.
- Slide a drain pan of at least 6 quarts capacity under the oil pan.
- Loosen the drain plug. Turn the plug out by hand. By keeping an inward pressure on the plug as you unscrew it, oil won't escape past the threads and you can remove it without being burned by hot oil.
- Allow the oil to drain completely and then install the drain plug. Don't overtighten the plug or you'll be buying a new pan or a trick replacement plug for damaged threads.
- Using a strap wrench, remove the oil filter. Keep in mind that it's holding about one quart of dirty, hot oil.
- Empty the old filter into the drain pan and dispose of the filter and old oil.
One ecologically desirable solution to the used oil disposal problem is to find a cooperative gas station owner who will allow you to dump your used oil into his tank or take the oil to a reclamation center (often at garages and gas stations).
- Using a clean rag, wipe off the filter adapter on the engine block. Be sure that the rag doesn't leave any lint which could clog an oil passage.
- Coat the rubber gasket on the filter with fresh oil. Spin it onto the engine by hand; when the gasket touches the adapter surface give it another 1 / 2 - 3 / 4 turn. No more or you'll squash the gasket and it will leak.
- Refill the engine with the correct amount of fresh oil. See the Capacities chart.
- Crank the engine over several times and then start it. If the oil pressure indicator light doesn't go out or the pressure gauge shows zero, shut the engine down and find out what's wrong.
- If the oil pressure is OK and there are no leaks, shut the engine off and lower the car.