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Lube Oil & Filter – Pro Mechanic Tips & Tricks

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Alright today on Repairs101 I’m going to go over some tips and tricks I’ve learned over the years about performing lube oil and filter maintenance.

What kind of oil should I use?

Always use the oil recommended by your machine’s manufacturer. Clues can be found in owner’s manuals, service manuals and even on the oil filler cap itself.Look under the hood for clues as to what oil to use

Record data

Be sure to write the date and engine hours or vehicle mileage on any filters you install with a paint pen or a Sharpie.

If your air filter is fairly recent and your vehicle hasn’t seen any severe service. You can usually reuse the filter – once – by banging it out like this. Or by using some compressed air to clean it.

Avoid problems

To avoid difficulties the next time you change your oil filter be sure to lubricate the gasket before you install it. Flag your engine when you’re doing oil changes. By pulling the dipstick nearly all the way out and taking off the oil cap and putting it somewhere where everyone will understand that the oil has been dropped.

Sometimes it’s hard to reach the oil filler tube so keep the right size and shape funnel in your kit. And these valve pouring nozzles are a great deal at about five bucks. And they come with an adapter for standard one litre and four litre size jugs.


It can be challenging pouring from a four litre bottle and keeping it from splashing everywhere. So here’s something I learned from a master mechanic I used to work for. Turn the bottle around to make the pouring more controlled and less likely to spill.

Grease guns

Keep your grease guns in a leak-proof box. As the grease ages, oil settles out of it and ends up leaking all over your stuff. I use white lithium grease for most assembling and marine applications. Moly for regular service like auto steering linkages. And this waterproof grease in this lever action gun is for extreme duty applications. Like the mast rollers on a forklift. My favourite to use is my pistol grip grease gun. And when the hose failed on it I bought some wire braided hydraulic hose. Plus this one eighth inch National Pipe Thread coupler. To allow this grease gun easy access to even the hardest to reach zerks.

If you don’t know what kind of oil to use in your engine. Have a look at my video from 2011 “Choosing Engine Oil”.

And for all the basic oil and filter change procedures, see my 2011 video “Changing Engine Oil”.

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