Say your car is showing indications for an oil change. But you think you cannot do it because you don’t have a car jack. Please continue the guide to know the process of changing car oil without jack on a steep driveway.
You can change engine oil without a jack or ramp if you have a slanted driveway. All you need to do is to park your car in a way that the oil drain is located at the lowest spot of the engine.
You don’t have to turn heavy screws to reach the desired height. As long as you chock the wheels, you don’t even have to worry about your and your car’s safety.
See also our related article on: How to Fill a Hydraulic Floor Jack with Oil.
If you know the proper techniques and have the right tools, you can change the oil without a jack.
How to Change Car Oil Without A Jack in Just 10 Steps:
A question may arise, can you change oil without lifting the car? As long as you have a steep driveway, the answer is yes.
- Oil extractor
- Wrench set
- Engine oil
- Oil filter
- Container for drained oil
Step 1: Position the car
Get the car to your driveway and park in a way that the front end of the car is positioned in the uphill part of the slope.
Step 2: Heat up the oil
To ensure that the used engine oil comes out easily, turn on the engine for five minutes. This will cause the oil to heat up and will come out like warm honey. With the drain hole on the downhill side, it will come out smoothly.
Step 3: Chock the tires
Use the parking brake to chock the tires. You can set the emergency brake to prevent the car from rolling down the slant in case the parking brake fails.
Now it is time to drain out the oil. The best way to get the oil out completely is to use a vacuum extractor.
Step 4: Select the vacuum hose
Use the small vacuum hose attachment for best results. Most electric vacuum extractors come with multiple attachments.
Step 5: Remove the dipstick
Open the hood of your car to find and remove the dipstick. Keep it aside so that you can insert the hose inside the tube.
Step 6: Insert the vacuum hose
Insert the vacuum hose into the dipstick tube and go on till you reach the end of the tube.
Step 7: Pump out the oil
Pump out all the oil using the extractor. It may take a bit of manual labor to take out extra oil. No need to worry If a very small amount of oil still remains.
Step 8: Add new oil
Be careful as you may make a mess by spilling some oil when refilling. Make sure to keep a rag or newspapers nearby.
Step 9: Check oil levels
Check the oil levels occasionally by putting the car on level ground. You can also use your dipstick to measure the oil levels.
Dip the dipstick all the way into the tube twice and see how much oil is sticking on the dipstick. Make sure that the level does not cross the max limit.
Always make sure that you don’t fill too much oil as it may put inconsistent pressure on the engine. This will wear the engine down as the lubrication will not be optimized.
Step 10: Seal the oil
Screw the oil cap back on the tube. Congratulations! You have successfully changed your car oil without using a jack.
How to Get Rid of the Oil?
After you have extracted the oil, you cannot just throw it away. These oils are harmful to the environment, and only one pint is enough to create a slick in one acre of water. Store the used oil in buckets or used plastic bottles or jerrycans or the container of the new oil.
Once stored properly, you can do three things to dispose of the oil.
- You can send the motor oil to your local landfill to recycle it. Most landfills have designated areas where they recycle mineral oils.
- You can send the used oil to an oil change shop or your local auto store. Most of them accept used oils for free.
- You can sell the used oil to dealers or agents who then send it to refineries.
You should always deliver your used oil to centers that recycle these products.
Engine oil contains heavy hydrocarbons, so you can distill them. The distilled oil can then be used as fuel for furnaces or marine engines. These engine oils are also reused as lubrication for other parts.
1. Is it safe to go under a car with a jack?
It is generally safe working under a car with a jack, but you need to keep some things in mind.
- Make sure that the jack is kept on solid ground. If that is not possible, keep a plank of wood under the jack.
- Make sure the jack’s weight limit matches that of the car.
- Make sure that the jack is not unbalancing the car in any way.
2. To jack or not to jack a car for an oil change?
The jack may be helpful in inclining the car so that the oil comes out easily. However, make sure that you follow the safety protocols.
If you have a slanted driveway, you do not need the car jack at all.
3. Can I change an oil filter without changing the oil?
Yes, you can change the oil filter without changing the oil. In fact, changing the oil filter does not affect the engine oil at all. Some oil will only come out if it is trapped inside the filter, but that’s a very small amount.
And this is how you can change engine oil without using a jack or ramp. If you look at it, this process is far easier and quicker than using a conventional jack.
Also, it will be far easier to check the oil levels in your engine. You can simply drive to an even surface like your garage instead of turning the screws of the jack.
Don’t forget to change oil of your car regularly as it increases its lifetime. Always remember to dispose of the used engine oil properly.