Onsite Truck & Equipment Repair Blog

Truck Repair DIY Blog Series: How to change truck engine oil?


Oil is essential to every engine, and large pickup trucks are no different. While their enormous size might be scary, they're almost identical to a vehicle when it comes to routine maintenance like oil changes. Since they have a larger oil capacity, you may save money on an oil change if you do it yourself. When doing an oil drain, filter change, and refill on a big vehicle, there are some changes. To avoid struggling with an overflowing, sloshing bottle of oil, for example, be sure the drain pan you're planning to use has appropriate capacity.

Tools needed for a truck engine oil change 

There are a few tools that will help the work go more smoothly. Depending on the clearance below your truck, you may be able to crawl under or, better still, roll under with the use of a creeper to get to everything you need—something that is usually never the case with an oil change on a car or smaller vehicle. You may use a jack, jack stands, or wheel ramps to get better clearance. Ensure your jacks or ramps are heavy-duty and rated for your truck's weight. Follow all of the jacks and ramps' safety measures.

Set the parking brake and utilize chock blocks, whatever way you use, to guarantee nothing moves. A filter wrench may be necessary to remove the oil filter, depending on how tight it is. Filter wrenches are available in several styles, and filter cap wrenches are custom-made for each filter. Using a metal band, rubber strap, or chain to cinch down on the filter, pliers and gear-type wrenches tighten down to accommodate various size filters. They all have unique applications that perform effectively but consider the amount of space available to access the filter.

If you're in a hurry, you may push a screwdriver through the filter's walls towards the bottom to obtain a mechanical advantage and spin it off. This procedure is virtually always dirty, so if you plan on doing your oil changes in the future, investing in an oil-filter wrench is worth it.

Steps to do an oil change 

You must get an oil filter with the correct fit for your truck. It doesn't imply a filter is proper just because it screws on. Make sure the filter you choose is made specifically for your vehicle. Other thread pitches and sizes are near enough that the filter will thread on and seem snug but may come free once the engine's full oil pressure is applied, particularly when paired with the heat and vibration of a running engine.

A funnel is an excellent item to add to your shopping basket when you're at the supermarket picking up supplies. I have threads into the filler neck, where the cap goes. It also features a rubber seal to prevent oil from leaking out of the funnel while you're replenishing it.

Remove the drain stopper and tighten it.

You can begin by removing the oil fill lid to allow the oil to drain more quickly. Begin by releasing the oil pan's drain cap with a wrench while you're beneath the truck.

Disconnect the drain plug.

Once the drain cap is free, you may manually screw it out the rest of the way, exerting upward pressure to prevent oil leaks.

Remove oil 

To prevent an oily mess down your arm, remove the plug as soon as it's unthreaded. Allow as much oil to drain as possible after it's been removed.

Lubricate the oil filter

You may shift your oil drain pan to cover the drainage from both the oil pan and the filter at the same time if it is big enough. Using a filter wrench, loosen the oil filter.

Dealing with a clogged oil filter 

Because the oil filter is full of oil, carefully pour it into the oil pan, which is the messiest aspect of the procedure.

Inspect the rubber O-ring seal

After removing the oil filter, you can see where it attaches to the engine. You can clean it and double-check that the O-ring/rubber seal on the top of the oil filter isn't still attached to the engine; if it's doubled up by mistake, you're virtually sure to have a terrible oil leak.

Fill up the air filter with oil. 

Before installing oil filters in a vertical layout like this one, prefer to add some oil to the filter itself. Before inserting the filter, put some oil to the O-ring/rubber seal on the O-ring/rubber seal.

Replace the oil filter if needed 

You may replace the filter once you've prepared it and cleaned up the area and hand-tighten them as much as possible.

Screw the drain plug back into the engine oil pan after replacing the crush washer. Make sure it threads in smoothly and that the plug is not cross-threaded. The substance of the washer is of lesser importance than how well it fits the thread.

Taking off the oil filter

Tighten the drain plug to the point where it smashes the washer for a good seal, but don't overdo it unless you want to start all over with the oil pan threads.

To prevent spillage, use a funnel.

This handy thread-in-funnel was created to prevent spillage when refilling.

Pouring in oil 

See your owner's handbook for information on the capacity and quality of oil to use. Use a high-quality synthetic oil, which is pricier but provides more protection for my diesel engine. The larger gallon or 5-quart oil containers are useful for motors with a considerable oil capacity.

To prevent overfilling the engine, you can check the level with the dipstick once it's near capacity. The refill capacities aren't accurate because you nearly never get all of the oil out while draining it. Once it's close, run the engine for a few minutes and recheck to achieve an accurate oil level. If necessary, add extra. To obtain a proper reading, if the front of the car is raised, you may need to drop it back down to level.

Replacing the oil filter cap 

Make sure your oil filler cap is replaced and tightened. Ensure the rubber seal is in place and not damaged if it has one. The oil filler drains into the crankcase, linked to the vehicle's pollution control systems.

Final words

Now you have a firm idea of doing an oil change in your truck. Adhere to these tips, and you will end up extending the lifetime of your truck conveniently and take good care of it. 

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