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Oil Change 101 - What you need

Old 04-12-2003, 06:00 PM
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WayneTN
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Default Oil Change 101 - What you need

If you have not completed your first oil change yet, but plan on doing it yourself and are maybe new at working on your own car, here is what you'll need. It's really pretty easy. If you've changed your oil already, please ignore - you are a veteran.

OK, class. Let's get started.

Oil Change 101 (here) covers the items that you'll need to have for the work. Oil Change 201 (later) covers some tips on actually doing the job.

Stuff that I had on hand for the job:

1. Five quarts of oil - I used 5W-30 Pennzoil (API Service SL) that I bought at Walmart in a 5-qt. jug for $6.88. This is a great value at only $1.38/qt. I've used Pennzoil in all of my vehicles (except motorcycles) for many years - I think it's great oil - or maybe I just like the yellow bottles. I could have used 10W-30 since it's warm in Tennessee, but I bought more than one jug so I just got the same viscosity for all, 5W-30. You can use a synthetic such as Mobil 1 if you like; please do your own research before you decide, though.

2. New oil filter - Based on guidance from Intrepid, I used a K&N Performance Gold oil filter, part #HP-1008. I agree that these are extremely well made and should provide excellent service. Since the Z oil filter isn't very big anyway, don't skimp here. The K&N filters cost me $9.94 each. Not everyone will have these in stock, so ask around; they may need to order them for you or you can get them online for about the same price.

3. Ramps - After reading about ramps on this site, I bought the Rhino Ramps. They have a 17 degree angle-of-rise and are advertised as being suitable for trucks and sportscars. They worked great for me. The Rhino Ramps were $29.84.

4. Creeper - It's easier to scoot around under the car if you have a creeper, but certainly not essential. Inexpensive ones run $20-25.

5. Tools, etc. - One 3/8" drive ratchet (or cordless driver), one 10 mm. socket, one 14 mm. socket, one standard screwdriver, oil drain pan, new oil plug washer.

6. Oil filter wrench - You need to get the original Nissan oil filter off. I used a "cup type" wrench for exact fit. If you get this type, you will need a 65 mm. 14 flute cup. The filter is approx. 2-1/2" in diameter and many wrenches are larger. One that fits makes the job "no hassle".

OK, you get an "A" in "Oil Change 101" just for reading all of this. Look for "Oil Change 201 - Tips" coming to a school near you.

note: I put this under General since several people have inquired about changing their own oil, but Mod can move to Maintenance if desired.

WayneTN

Last edited by WayneTN; 04-12-2003 at 06:07 PM.
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Old 04-12-2003, 06:56 PM
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Default Oil Change 201 - Tips

OK, so you passed Oil Change 101 - What you need, my previous post, and you now want to know some tips on doing the job.

Tips on changing your own oil:

1. Preparing for the job - Get all of the stuff listed in Oil Change 101 plus your Z (duh). (The engine should be warmed up.) Put the car up on the ramps after reading all safety precautions. I had great success with the Rhino ramps. I just made sure the wheels were straight, positioned the ramps straight, and went up very slowly, stopping just as soon as I got to the level area at the top (don't overshoot! ).

2. Remove the underpanel - Using the ratchet (or cordless driver for speed) and 10 mm. socket, remove all 14 of the screws holding the black plastic underpanel, leaving the one rivet-type connector in the center of the panel. Then, as ares has stated previously, remove that connector with the standard screwdriver by prying up on the center (not the outer ring). The center will pop out some and you can then remove the whole connector and panel. This will take 3-5 minutes.

3. Drain the oil - Using the ratchet and 14 mm. socket, remove the drain plug, catching the used oil in the drain pan. (If you don't know where the drain plug is located, you need Oil Change - 001 written by others). Using the oil filter wrench, remove the original Nissan oil filter (some oil will drain from here, also). Remove the oil fill cap on top of the engine.

4. Install new filter & old drain plug - Clean the filter area with a clean rag or paper towel (especially where the new oil filter seal will contact, moisten the rubber filter seal on the new filter with a little fresh oil and screw on the new filter by hand, turning about 3/4 of a rotation after the seal contacts the base (read the instructions for your filter). Using a new drain plug washer and the 14 mm. socket and ratchet, screw in the old drain plug according to torque specs (it should basically be just fairly snug, but not over-tight which would strip the threads).

Note: If you use the K&N filter it will have a 1" hex nut on top of the filter to aid in filter removal. You probably will be able to remove it by hand the next time, but if not, it will be easy to get off using the hex nut. You obviously won't need the cup-type filter wrench that you used for removing the original Nissan filter.)

5. New oil - Pour in exactly 5 quarts of new oil. Trust me. It will take exactly 5 quarts. Attach oil fill cap.

6. Test and finish - Start the engine and check for leaks at the oil filter and drain plug. If OK, shut off and reattach underpanel by pushing in the rivet-type connector first then installing all 14 of the 10 mm. screws last. Slowly back off of ramp (so nose won't scrape), clean up, put up, and recycle the old oil.

That's it. Now wasn't that easy? You get another "A".

Thanks for reading, and drive safely! (OK, so I didn't have anything to do on a Saturday night. So what. )

WayneTN
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Old 04-12-2003, 07:03 PM
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DumbGenius
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Good job! The only thing missing is the oil filter size for the different brands of filter.
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Old 04-13-2003, 01:03 PM
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julian
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don't forget to change the oil only when it's warm.

14 screws for the underbody shield?!
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Old 04-14-2003, 05:56 AM
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my z just hit about 3500..so i changed it w/ full syn mobile..man what a ***** to do it for the first time..took me nearly 40+ minutes!!!..now i know next time and it will only take me 20 minutes or less
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Old 04-14-2003, 10:20 AM
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zxsaint
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I've heard its better to fill up the new oil filter before attaching it... its been standard practice for me for a while.

Anyone know if this is really necessary?
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Old 04-14-2003, 11:05 AM
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zxsaint, You can try that method, but since the oil filter on the Z is installed sideways and not straight up I am thinking that would be a big messy mistake. I might be wrong, so you try it and get back to us and tell us how that went.
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Old 04-14-2003, 12:45 PM
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julian
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filling the filter will prevent those couple seconds of oil starvation where the oil pump has to pump the oil through the filter then back to the engine. it'll be pretty messy though.
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Old 04-14-2003, 01:10 PM
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zxsaint
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I already did this on my first oilchange... I didn't fill it to the top, but I gave it a good amt and had no spillage at all while I screwed it on.
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Old 04-14-2003, 08:00 PM
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Rhino Ramps do work. Got it up on them today to install my smoked reflectors and took a look under the car. Everything should be easy. I'm going to let the dealership do the first one tomorrow, but I'll be taking over after that.

Here's a pic (I have a very slight slope to the driveway and no suspension mods):
Attached Thumbnails Oil Change 101 - What you need-smoke3-resize.jpg  
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Old 04-23-2003, 06:00 PM
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danotto
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Wayne, great info about the oil change. I can't wait to give it a shot, but with only 300 miles on the car, lookl like I will have to wait.

One addition to your info. Make sure to unscrew and remove the oil cap on the top of the engine before draining the oil. This will help the draining process.
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Old 04-23-2003, 06:20 PM
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Does having the car up on ramps, rather than level as on a lift at the dealership affect your ability to drain all of the old oil? Seems like it might be limiting the draining by having that nose up angle.
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Old 04-23-2003, 06:43 PM
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Sunset, I believe that the drainbolt faces the rear of the car.
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Old 04-23-2003, 06:56 PM
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jplvr,

I just got done changing the engine oil and differential oil. I replaced the factory drain plug with the Fram Sure drain model #SD3 I believe. It fits perfectly. I also used Rhino ramps.

My Z just turned 2905 miles and was surprise to see how black the diff oil was. Good thing I change it. The dealer service people were telling me to waite till 30k.

Vance
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Old 04-24-2003, 09:04 AM
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I just checked the packaging and it's definitely an SD3.

Vance
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Old 04-28-2003, 05:31 PM
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I went out to the stores today and bought 5 qt. of Mobil One 10W-30. I wanted to put 10W-40 since I live in Houston, TX, but they (Target) didn't seem to have it in stock. I also bought a FRAM SureGRIP filter. The ID code for it is PH6607. I'm not sure how well this one performs, but I asked the guy at O'Reily's Auto Parts and he said it will fit and that he uses these on his vehicles too. Does the brand/type of oil filter make a significant difference in performance?
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Old 05-21-2003, 07:27 PM
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Does anyone use the original nissan oil filters they sell at the courtesy nissan site? they're about 5 bucks. I plan on doing my 2nd oil change at 4K, and thinking about going synthetic.
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Old 05-21-2003, 08:01 PM
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Default Filters

Here are 350Z Oil Filters :
K&N = HP-1008
Mobil1 = M1-108
Bosch Premium = 3300

I use 4 pieces of 2x8 lumber to drive up on, provides enough clearance to get under, inexpensive. 5 qt jug of Mobil 1 at Walmart for $18. Mobil 1 filter about $11.

Thanks Wayne, JMS in TX
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Old 08-17-2003, 08:22 PM
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Did my first oil change today, 2960 miles, just want to add another oil filter to the list...
Penzoil, PZ-37
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Old 08-19-2003, 05:43 PM
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Originally posted by ijnyu
Did my first oil change today, 2960 miles, just want to add another oil filter to the list...
Penzoil, PZ-37

penzoil filters are made by fram
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