If you’ve ever wanted to do an oil change at home, you’ve wondered what exactly the service entails. While we support do-it-yourselfers who wish to learn more about their car’s maintenance, we also want drivers to seek professional help when it comes to their car’s health. Oil changes are an essential part of your vehicle’s maintenance, and getting the job done right with a professional will ensure your vehicle reaps all the benefits. So what exactly do our technicians do during an oil change? Here’s a look into the process at Auburn Foreign & Domestic in Auburn, Washington.
The first step in any automotive service is preparation. Our technicians collect the supplies they’ll need to perform the oil change and position the vehicle before getting underneath. The car needs to be on a level surface and adequately secured using a lift, jack, and/or blocks.
With a large oil drain pan in place to prevent spills, our technicians remove the oil cap on top of the engine and get under the vehicle to remove the drain plug using a socket or wrench, being careful not to get the hot oil on themselves. The oil should flow out quickly, so it’s critical that do-it-yourselfers don’t spill it all over their hands and arms when loosening the plug. It usually takes just a few minutes for the oil to empty entirely and collect in the drain pan.
The filter assembly under the hood may not look the same in all vehicles. It’s essential to have the right replacement for each specific vehicle. Using an oil filter removal tool, our technicians carefully remove the old filter, positioning the drain pan underneath to prevent any spills, as there’s often oil trapped in the filter.
To prep the replacement filter, we rub a thin layer of the new oil on the gasket. This will lubricate and properly seal the new filter. Failing to prep the filter may make it hard for the car to maintain proper oil pressure. Then, the new filter is ready to be installed, following specific instructions and being careful not to damage the delicate threads.
With the oil drain plug securely back in place, we are ready to add the new oil. There’s a right way to pour from an oil jug to avoid any spillage on the engine. Our technicians follow each vehicle’s factory specifications for the type and amount of motor oil. Finally, the cap is replaced and tightened. We check the drain pan underneath to ensure there is no leakage from the plug and start the engine to inspect the oil pressure. We turn the car off again to visually inspect oil levels with a dipstick before sending the car off with the customer.
Another key step that most do-it-yourselfers don’t consider is disposal. Old oil should be responsibly handled to prevent environmental contamination. We work with recycling centers for safe disposal.
If something goes wrong during any one of these steps, it could spell disaster for the at-home mechanic. Cleaning up spilled oil is a hassle, and any accidents could lead to injury! If this process sounds like more than you can handle, trust the experts at Auburn Foreign & Domestic in Auburn, Washington to perform your car’s oil change. We have the right tools to get the job done quickly and safely!