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How to Change the Oil and Filter on an 06 Chevy Cobalt SS

by Justin Cupler

In 2005, Chevrolet offered two compact, entry-level vehicles: the Cavalier and Cobalt. In 2006, the Cobalt took over Chevrolet's entry-level slot, as the maker discontinued the aging Cavalier. The 2006 Cobalt SS came in a two- and four-door body style. The 2006 Cobalt SS also had two engine options available: a 2.4-liter four-cylinder and a supercharged, 2.0-liter four-cylinder. These engines have almost identical processes to change their oil, except that the supercharger interferes with removing the oil filter on the 2.0-liter engine.

Open the Cobalt's hood and remove the oil filler cap to provide ventilation while draining the oil.

Raise the front of the Cobalt with a floor jack and slide jack stands under the vehicle's subframe. Lower the Cobalt onto the jack stands.

Crawl under the Cobalt and locate the drain pan on the base of the engine. Position the drain pan under the plug on the drain pan.

Loosen the drain plug with a combination wrench, and remove the drain plug by hand. Allow the oil to flow from the drain hole.

Wipe the drain plug off with a clean, lint-free cloth and hand-thread the drain plug into the drain hole. Tighten the drain plug to 18 foot-pounds with a torque wrench and six-point socket.

Raise the Cobalt from the jack stands, using a floor jack, and remove the jack stands from under the vehicle. Lower the car to the ground.

Locate the oil filter cap, the plastic cap nearly 4 inches in diameter. The 2.4-liter engine's oil filter cap is in plain view on the front driver's side of the engine. The 2.0-liter engine's oil filter cap is on the front driver's side of the engine as well, but underneath the supercharger.

Loosen the oil filter cap using ratchet and a 32 mm socket, on the 2.4-liter engine. On the 2.0-liter engine, loosen the oil filter cap using a 32 mm socket and a flex-handle ratchet.

Remove the tools from the oil filter cap and pull the cap from the oil filter housing. The oil filter remains attached to the cap when you removed it.

Pull the old filter from the oil filter cap. Press a new oil filter onto the oil filter cap and hand-tighten the cap onto the oil filter housing. Tighten the oil filter cap to 18 foot-pounds, using a torque wrench and 32 mm socket on the 2.4-liter engine. Substitute the torque wrench for a flex-head torque wrench on the 2.0-liter engine.

Insert a funnel into the oil filler hole and pour in 6 quarts of 5W30 conventional engine oil in the 2.4-liter engine or 5 quarts of 5W30 synthetic oil in the 2.0-liter engine.

Wait about two minutes and pull the dipstick from the engine. Wipe the dipstick off with a clean, lint-free cloth. Reinsert the dipstick into the engine and pull it from the engine. Check that the oil level is showing on the dipstick.

Remove the funnel from the filler hole and tighten the oil filler cap onto the engine.

Start the Cobalt's engine and allow it to run for about two minutes. Shut the engine down and wait another two minutes. Check the oil level again. The level should be at the "Max" mark on the dipstick. Add more oil, if needed.

Insert the funnel in an empty oil bottle and pour the old oil from the drain pan into the bottle. Close the bottle once it is full. Repeat this step until you transfer all of the old oil from the drain pan to the bottles. Take the old oil and filter to a used oil recycling center, many auto parts stores take old oil free of charge.

Items you will need

About the Author

Justin Cupler is a professional writer who has been published on several websites including CarsDirect and Autos.com. Cupler has worked in the professional automotive repair field as a technician and a manager since 2000. He has a certificate in broadcast journalism from the Connecticut School of Broadcasting. Cupler is currently studying mechanical engineering at Saint Petersburg College.

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