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2012 Ford Fusion _ when to check oil

Should I check my oil when it’s cold or wet after the engines been running for a minute or two

Generally check when cold, this way the oil has drained into the crankcase and you eliminate the chance of burning yourself. It is fully acceptable to check it after it has been driven, just give it a few minutes to allow the oil to drain down to the crankcase. When you get gas, check it after you fill the tank.
Your owners manual may have other suggestions.


I check mine while getting gas. The wife’s newer car gets checked every week at home, because she never checks it herself.
My older 2002 Dakota, 306,000 miles…that uses a quart every 2 weeks…gets checked at each fill up.

By the time I exit the vehicle, start the pump, wash the windows, open the hood…The oil has settled enough to check it and get a reliable reading.


you do understand that the oil level is checked on the dipstick with the motor off?
the part about wet after the engines been running for a minute or two is not clear
before you drive anywhere, perhaps in the morning pull out the dipstick. you dont even need to wipe it off. pull it out and look at it. you should be able to easily see the oil clinging to it. especially if the oil is dirty
if you want to impress your friends, wipe it off, put it back in, pull it out and look.
now you are acting like a pro

I think OP meant to type “warm” not “wet”.
But yes, I always wipe the dipstick, then check the level.

Personally, I check the engine oil level after I come home from work, about once a week.

Engine off, as mentioned above

On my Corolla anyway the oil level seems to be the same on the dipstick whether the oil is warm or cold. The engine needs to be off of course. In my experience, there’s no problem checking it when warm; but if checking it warm, give it a couple minutes after turning the engine off for most of the oil to drain into the crankcase. On some vehicles I think the problem with checking soon after turning the engine off is that oil gets splashed on the dipstick as the engine runs, so it makes reading the level more difficult. If in doubt always base your measurement using the side of the dipstick that shows the lower oil level.

I couldn’t agree more . . . better to err on the side of caution

Not only that, but many service manuals and text books even tell you to regard the side of the dipstick with the lower oil level as the correct measurement