DIY Oil Change

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Before I lost my job I would go to one of those quick oil change joints. In an effort to try and save a little money, I decided to change the oil on my 2010 Honda Accord myself. First, I purchased 5 quarts of oil, an oil filter, and a filter wrench from Amazon for $36.46. When I tried to jack the car up to get under it, I found that my old floor jack wouldn’t get the car high enough to use my old jack stands. I didn’t want to take a chance getting under the car if it wasn’t safe. So, after watching a few Youtube videos, I decided to build myself a set of car ramps out of wood. I went to the home center and bought 2 – 2x10x8′ boards and a box of 2-1/2″ exterior wood screws for $33.69. The ramps are 36″ long and 6″ high. Each board is cut into 4 pieces (36″, 28″, 20″, 12″). One end of each board is cut to a 45 degree angle. The boards are stacked up in that order with 4 screws in each board. A 2 x 10 is actually 1 1/2″ x 9″ wide. This was just wide enough for the tires on the Accord. I put one of the 45 degree scraps on the top 12″ board to act as a safety stop. I put a few pieces of duct tape on the bottom to protect the floor and help prevent the ramps from moving. I may add a rubber mat in the future, but I didn’t want to spend any more on this project. The ramps worked better than I expected. As you drive up you feel 4 “bumps” before you get to the top. Now I was ready to change the oil! But wait, I couldn’t find my old oil drain pan. I found a nice size 11 quart rectangular pan at Auto Zone for $9.65 with tax. With the final piece of the puzzle I was able to get the job done. Final cost: $79.80. Now that I have the tools, next time it will only cost $29 (Castrol High Mileage Synthetic Oil + Purolator One Filter). This same oil change would cost over $60 at Jiffy Lube (if you have their $15 off coupon).

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