Knowledge for the World

How to change your Honda Element's engine oil

  • by Zach (134)
  • 30 minutes

Changing your Element's oil yourself is quick and easy. I prefer to change it myself rather than taking it to a "quick lube" shop since I know the job is done properly and can ensure that a higher quality oil is used.

1

Engine oil is hot. Let your engine cool properly. To expedite the cooling process, I normally place a box fan on top of the engine compartment, pointing upward, to suck heat off the engine.

2

Chock the back wheels with a few pieces of wood and raise the front of your car using a hydraulic jack or your OEM jack. Place jack stands under the front of the car to support it while you work.

3

Remove oil cap on top of engine. Position oil pan under drain plug, begin loosening drain plug using 17mm socket until it can be turned by hand. Re position oil pan slightly behind oil plug unscrew by hand (so as to keep oil off you tools, CAUTION: oil may be hot if engine not allowed to cool). Allow to drain for several minutes. To put the drain plug back in, set your torque wrench to 33 lb-ft and tighten the plug. If you do not have a torque wrench, be careful not to overtighten the plug and strip the oil pan threads.

4

The oil filter can be accessed in the engine compartment. It is in the back left of the engine (passenger side). Reposition the oil pan directly under the filter. Using your socket wrench and cup-style oil filter wrench attachment, loosen and remove the old oil filter. Place it in your oil pan for recycling. Prior to attaching new oil filter apply a light amount of new oil to the rubber gasket (the thin rubber ring) on filter. Set your torque wrench to 8.7 lbf-ft and tighten your new filter onto the housing.

5

Using your funnel, pour in 4.4-4.6 quarts of oil. Replace the engine oil cap. Lower your car and drive a short distance -- after the oil has warmed up a bit, check its level with the dipstick and add more oil as needed.

6

Using your funnel (and a friend), pour the used oil into your empty oil container. Take it and your old oil filter to your local auto parts store for free recycling. I like to fill buckets up and take the entire bucket to the parts store -- it's faster and cleaner than draining it back into a bottle.