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How to Change the Engine Oil in a 2001 Buick LeSabre

by Tim Petruccio

The Buick LeSabre was first introduced in 1959. The 2001 Buick LeSabre came equipped with a 3.8-liter V-6 engine capable of producing 205 horsepower. The 2001 LeSabre was available as a Custom or as a Limited four-door sedan. The oil and oil filter in the 2001 LeSabre require changing once about every 3,000 miles, or every three months. Changing the oil will remove excess dirt from the car's engine, which can increase the temperature at which the engine runs. Changing the oil can also affect the fuel mileage of a vehicle.

Raise the hood of the LeSabre. Lift the front of the LeSabre using a jack. Place jack stands on either side of the engine, underneath the front frame rails. Lower the car onto the stands.

Lie beneath the car toward the driver's side. Slide your body beneath the car to access the rear of the oil pan. Place a drain pan beneath the oil pan, and leave the bulk of the pan toward the rear of the car. Loosen the oil drain plug with an open-end wrench. Remove the plug with your fingers, pulling it away quickly so as not to get oil all over your hands. Allow the car to drain for no less than seven minutes.

Insert the oil drain plug into the oil pan. Tighten the drain plug to 25 foot-pounds with a torque wrench and socket.

Visually inspect and locate the oil filter. Find the oil filter on the front lower portion of the engine, or directly over the passenger-side control arm. If the filter is found on the front of the engine, disengage the lower plastic cowl under the engine. Pull the rear lip of the cowl downward to remove it from the front chassis rail, and then access the oil filter.

Set the drain pan directly beneath the oil filter. Loosen the oil filter using a 3/8-inch drive ratchet and a 3/8-inch drive filter claw. Add a 3-inch extension between the ratchet and filter claw, if the filter is over the control arm. Turn the filter counterclockwise to loosen it. Remove the filter by hand and look for the black rubber O-ring gasket attached to the old filter. If the gasket is not on the filter, remove the gasket from the filter-mounting surface on the engine.

Open a fresh jug of oil and dip your finger into the new oil. Lubricate the O-ring gasket on the new oil filter. Install the oil filter onto the engine and tighten it as far as you can by hand. Grab the filter again with a rag in your hand, and turn the filter even farther. The rag will assist you in turning the filter, as the filter is smooth, and can be slippery in your fingers. Wipe any oil from your hands with the rag. Reinsert the front cowl if previously removed.

Raise the car off the jack stands, and then remove the stands from beneath the car. Lower the LeSabre to the ground and remove the jack from beneath the car.

Remove the oil fill cap from the front valve cover of the LeSabre. Insert a 2 qt. or larger funnel into the opening in the valve cover. Add 4-1/2 qts. of 10w30 motor oil to the car. Install the oil fill cap when you are finished, ensuring it is tightened properly.

Start the LeSabre. Kneel next to the car and look beneath the car for any leaks. If you hear a sudden hissing noise or see any oil leaking, immediately shut the car off. Recheck your drain plug and filter to verify both are secured properly. Top off oil if necessary.

Tip

  • Deciding which type of oil to use in your car can be a tough decision. Standard motor oil may be the best for your budget. If the vehicle is burning oil, or you notice any slight leaks in the oil system, switch to high mileage oil. High mileage oil is for vehicles with over 75,000 miles, and it contains extra detergents to clean the engine, as well as built-in gasket swelling agents to help reseal the engine.

Warning

  • Prolonged exposure to used motor oil has been known to cause certain types of cancer. Wash your hands with warm water and regular dish soap if you come in contact with used motor oil.

Items you will need

About the Author

Tim Petruccio is a professional writer and automotive mechanic. His writing combines more than 20 years of mechanical experience in automotive service, service management, automotive education and business ownership. He assisted in the automotive beta, which launched March 2011.

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