Oil Change Inquiry

Pretty late in the game to be asking but as I get older and continue to do self maintenance it does matter to ask the following: How much tolerance is there for a vehicle to be considered “Level” when performing an oil and filter change. I ask because, 1.I have to put my Hyundai on blocks to be able to access the engine block drain plug and oil filter and 2. My garage floor has a very slight drop from the common wall with the house to the driveway so any water on the vehicle drains away from and not towards the house. I have been putting the same height blocks under all four wheels but am wondering if i can still get an acceptable drain of old oil if I raise the front wheels only to allow me clearance for accessing the drain plug and filter?
Thanks for all replies.

You are over thinking this . Just raise the front to allow you to reach the drain plug and filter . And the slope of the garage floor is not enough to make a big difference when checking the oil level .

Notice that your oil pan drain plug is towards the rear. If you only lift the front wheels… which is what I do, it actually drains better and more completely.

Refill 1/2 quart short. Start it, check for leaks, drop it down and then check the oil level, likely add another 3/4 to 1 quart… Done. The slight slope of your garage floor matters not.

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Why do they sell 5 qt jugs and car takes 4.5 qts?
Maybe they will sell 4.5 qt jugs soon.

Why do they sell 5 quart jugs and car takes 8 quarts? But the truck takes 6?

Because most cars take 5… or take 4.5 and you have another 1/2 to add 2500 miles later when it has used a little bit… OR just to tick you off!


Yeah, don’t worry. It’s not like a little of the old oil left in the engine causes a problem. The goal is to replace the great majority of the oil.


Better than selling in 4 quart bottles and making you buy 8 quarts to get that last half quart in.

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Yep. My garage floor tilts a little too for drainage. I just put in the 4 or 4.5 quarts and check the level afterward. On one car I don’t need to do anything to get under it. On the other I just use a scissor jack to raise the front end slightly so I can crawl under. No need for blocks or ramps. Now if you are a big guy . . .

When I was a kid our neighbor had a pit in his garage. I always thought that was useful but a little tacky. I have to admit I thought about doing that myself but glad I didn’t bother. Better ways now to raise a car a little.

My 8 quart car would LOVE to buy oil in the gallon size… but the stuff I like isn’t sold that way. It is either 5 quarts or 1.

My truck takes 6 quarts.

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My ridiculous Honda CRV takes 2.7 quarts.

I used to buy Rotella in a gallon jug for my 7 quart capacity. Then the case in the box of Mobil was 6 quarts for my 4 or 4.5 quart capacity. So the 5 quart jugs suit me just fine. I keep some empty quart bottles just to make it easy. I can actually fit more oil on my shelf now too.

that does not sound right.

Honda CR-V Engine OIL Capacity (USA) For All Models (engineoiil-capacity.com)

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Probably transfer case or something. Although I think the book could be wrong. When I first had the trans, transfer case, and rear end fluid changed at the dealer, they indicated at least a quart more than what the book said for both the transfer case and rear end. I questioned them on it since it was pretty expensive stuff but he just said that’s what it took. Same thing the next time so gotta believe someone hit the wrong key when writing the manual.

4.5l Jug, thats not a bad idea. I just put the full 5 in my van. Figure it has half a liter to burn. lol

It’s not a good idea to overfill an engine but like I said I keep a few quart bottles so either pour out 1/2 or 1 quart from the jug. Even though I’m kind of a rebel and contrarian, I tend to follow the book.

Truly appreciate every reply. In reading them I see that I am not the only one who questions the decision by oil manufacturers to package in 5 qt jugs when most new vehicles, at least cars, have capacities that are less than 5 qts. and not full qt. amounts. For example, my Elantra specifies 4.2 qts… I am all for efficiency, conservation etc. but laugh everytime I transfer the remaining oil into a correctly labeled qt size container.

You can’t blame the oil manufacturers here. There are so many different oil capacities that they can’t make a perfect size jug for every model vehicle. The vehicle manufacturers could settle on a standard oil pan or oil capacity, but that could end up stuffuling innovation.


Worry about 5 quarts of oil in a container, forget it I have more important things to think about .

So you can collect enough leftovers to get every 10th change “free” (filter not included).
I have just such a jug (8 years old!) waiting for my next change.

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