In addition to learning the rules and regulations of the road in driving school, it’s important to master a few basic car maintenance tasks. Knowing how to change your oil ensures your vehicle will run properly and can help you save money on repairs. The following guide explains the steps for this important auto service.
1. Pop the Hood
Driving school instructors typically introduce students to their car’s interior controls, which may help you open the hood. Newer vehicles have a button on or near the dashboard, but older models require a little maneuvering as you slide your hand underneath the middle of the hood to unlatch the mechanism holding it closed. Check your owners manual if you have trouble finding the latch. Use the stick that is attached to the hood to prop it up, so you can work safely.
2. Find the Dipstick
The dipstick is named for the fact that it dips into the oil pan. It is typically located on the right side of the car when you’re facing the open engine compartment. If you can’t find it there, check the area directly above the license plate. The dipstick often has a yellow ring at the top to help you identify it.
3. Check the Oil Levels
Take the dipstick out by gently pulling upwards and wipe the remaining oil from the end with a rag. Reinsert the dipstick and pull it out a second time. Now, look at where the oil stops. The dipstick has markings that show whether the pan is full to the maximum or minimum, as well as whether it’s low or high. As long as the oil is above the minimum mark, you are good to go. If you need to add oil, remove the oil filler cap and pour in a half-quart. Use a funnel to prevent spills. If the dipstick still reads below the minimum, add more until it reaches the high marking.
Always follow your mechanic’s advice on how frequently to get an oil change. If the fluid is lighter in color than usual during a check, you may have a coolant leak that requires professional attention. It’s important to make sure your car is in good working order before using it in driving school.
Responsible car ownership is just one of the topics you will learn about in driving school. Motorists of all ages count on the Morgan School of Driving in Monroe County, NY, for hands-on lessons, road test preparation, and PIRP courses. To learn more about the school’s classes, visit their website. Call the Fairport location at (585) 425-2410, Rochester branch at (585) 288-6290 and the Greece school at (585) 227-9010 to enroll.