We all hate to overpay for a service and oil changes are one area that you can save some money doing it yourself. Armed with good information and the right tools almost anyone can perform their own oil change. In this post, I’ll show you a quick and easy way to change your engine oil without having to jack up or get under your car.
Aside from the few tools and parts needed, there are only 2 requirements you need to make sure before you can do this without jacking up your car. A car with a top mount oil filter and an oil dipstick tube. There are many cars/trucks/SUVs that are suitable for this including ones from popular brands like Toyota, Scion, Honda, Subaru, Mini, VW, Mercedes, BMW and more.
Watch the video here!
What we’re going to do is use a fluid extractor/evacuator like this to suck the oil out from the dipstick tube and change the oil and oil filter without creating a mess. It’s great because you don’t need to jack up your car, get under it, remove many bolts or clips to remove splash shields or deal with dripping or splashing oil.
Demo vehicle: Mercedes-Benz C450 / C43 AMG.
Check further below for links to the tools needed for this easy oil change.
Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. As associates of Amazon, Ebay and others we may earn a small #CommissionsEarned, at no cost to you, if you click through to make a qualifying purchase. This helps support our work and allows us to continue to provide great content to our viewers and followers. We link to products we use, are similar or better based on their quality and usefulness. We are not sponsored by anyone to endorse these products. The decision to purchase is yours and using any of our links does not affect the price you pay.
Step 1 - Getting ready
Your car should be on level ground for checking the oil level later.
Make sure your car is not hot. If it’s been running then it needs to cool down before you start. If it’s cold you may want to start you engine for a few minutes to get the oil flowing and warm.
Get all your tools and parts ready and don’t forget the safety glasses and nitrile gloves.
Open the hood and remove engine cover if there is one.
Step 2 - Pump out old Oil
Locate and remove the oil dipstick then put the fluid extractor hose in. Note that in my case, the extractor hose is not long enough so I had to purchase an extension hose (¼” inner diameter transparent hose) and attached it to lengthen.
Note how much oil you need to extract out for an oil change and mark that on the extractor. You will need to keep track of this while you vacuum the oil out. Check your owners manual for oil change capacity and figure out where to mark on the fluid extractor using any available measurements on the side.
When pushing the hose in, you will need to push the hose until it bottoms. Mark this point for future oil change use.
Undo the Oil filler cap to make it easier to suck out the oil.
Pump about 10 – 30 times (depending on size/type of your extractor) to get the oil flowing. If you hear air sucking noises, then you may not have put the hose in enough so adjust as necessary. Every now and then give it a few more pumps as needed.
Stop anytime by releasing the vacuum release valve when the desired amount of oil is removed.
Find additional tips at the end!
Step 3 - Remove old Oil Filter
While the oil is pumping out, you can start this step. Use your oil filter wrench or removal tool to remove the oil filter cap or old oil canister. Slowly take it out and use a shop towel to prevent oil dripping in the engine bay if needed. To remove a replaceable filter element, give it a tug to remove from the plastic cap.
Remember to check below for links to the products.
Clean inside the oil filter cap and assembly if necessary. Make sure not to drop or leave anything inside.
If you need any tools or parts for this DIY maintenance then consider using our affiliate links below to purchase:
Step 4 - Install new Oil Filter
If you have a replaceable metal filter, then replace with a new one. Make sure to put a little new engine oil on the gasket before installing it.
Otherwise, replace the filter element with a new one. With this type, you will get a new gasket with the filter so make sure to replace that using a flathead screwdriver or pick. Lube it with new oil before you put the new one on.
To screw on, I like to start by lightly pressing down and turning counter-clockwise, as if I’m removing the filter. I continue turning until I hear a click or feel the filter engage. This let’s me know the threads are lined up. Then turn clockwise to screw on the new filter and hand tighten first.
Step 5 - Add new Oil
Once the old oil is removed you can remove the extractor hose. Use a shop towel to prevent drips.
Pour in slightly less than the required amount of the new oil. Wait a few minutes to ensure the new oil has drained down properly then check the oil level with the dipstick. If it’s between the Low and High indicator you are good for now. We still need to start the car to get the new oil flowing before we do the final oil level check.
Clean the oil filler cap and port then reinstall the oil filler cap and dipstick. Be careful not to push debris or dirt inside.
Step 6 - Fuel system cleaner
Now is a good time to add Fuel system or Fuel injector cleaner to the fuel tank. Follow the recommendations of the fuel system cleaner you use. The difference between Fuel system and Fuel injector cleaners is that Fuel system cleaners typically have higher concentrations of solvent and are meant to deep clean a fuel system including the injectors and manifold ports in the air intake chamber (on port injector vehicles) and combustion chamber.
Also, cleaners containing PEA work the best so look for those as they do a better job in cleaning deposits from the intake tracts and combustion chambers.
Step 7 - Safety check
Start the car to look for any leaks or listen for unusual sounds. Make sure there is no check engine light lit up and no warnings on the dash indicating any problems.
After a minute or so, stop the car, let it rest for a minute then check the oil level and top up as necessary.
Put the engine cover back on.
If you have a Check Engine Light (CEL) or Malfunction Indicator Light (MIL) lit on, then you might want to scan for the fault codes to see what the problem could be. Checkout out post on how to do that easily and inexpensively here.
Step 8 - Cleanup
Reset your cars service reminder if any (Check manual or find online).
Old oil can be carefully poured into empty jugs. Both the old oil filter and old oil can be disposed of properly at a nearby ECO station.
A quick tip with these tall fluid extractors is that the fluid can rush out fast as you pour so pay attention and pour slowly and use a funnel.
Motor Oil → Make sure to use approved oil for your car (Check owners manual) and do this months ahead before you need to do an oil change because you can buy when it’s on sale. Sales will happen throughout the year so look out for them in the flyers or the Flipp app. Make sure to have more than you need for one oil change before you start, in case you need a little more
Oil Filter → Same thing applies for the oil filter. Buy when on sale if possible, and get a quality one from a good name brand or just buy an OEM filter
Fluid extractor → Get one big enough for the amount of oil you will be extracting (Check owners manual)
Oil filter wrench → Get one that fits your oil filter. Quality metal ones will be better than cheap stamped metal or molded plastic ones.
Socket wrench / socket set
Torque wrench that can do 15 N⋅m (Newton-meters) and up
Gloves/Safety glasses and shop towels are a must
Hope you found this post helpful. If you give it a try, then let us know how it goes!
This method can be used on many makes and models of cars as mentioned before so check if this will work for you. Also, there are other applications this can be used for as well including transmission fluid (ATF) change, snowblower, lawnmower oil changes and more.
Help us grow our channel and website… share this with at least one person you think it will help!