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How to Change the Oil in an F-150 5.4L

by Robert Bayly; Updated November 07, 2017

Items you will need

  • Jack

  • Jack stands

  • Drain pan

  • Ratchet

  • 6-point socket set

  • Shop rags

  • Torque wrench

  • Oil filter

  • 6 quarts 5W-20 motor oil

The Ford F-150 was available with a 4.2-liter V-6, or a 4.6- or 5.4-liter V-8 engine. The 5.4-liter Triton V-8 has single overhead camshafts and sequential fuel injection. Changing the oil is very important to engine life. The recommended service interval for the engine oil on the 5.4-liter engine is 5,000 miles. The 5.4-liter engine uses six quarts of 5W-20 motor oil; the recommended brand is Motorcraft synthetic blend. An oil change is the perfect project for the DIY mechanic.

Park the F-150 on a level, paved surface. Start the F-150 and allow it to reach normal operating temperature, which is about halfway up the temperature gauge, and shut the engine off. Remove the oil filler cap. Raise the front of the F-150 and slide jack stands under its frame rails. Lower the truck onto the jack stands. Wait about 15 minutes so all of the oil returns to the oil pan.

Move under the F-150 and locate the oil filter. It is in front of the engine cross member. Locate the drain plug on the passenger side of the oil pan, behind the cross member. Be careful of hot engine components when moving under the F-150.

Slide a drain pan under the drain plug. Loosen the plug with a ratchet and six-point socket. Finish removing the plug by hand. Be careful not to get scalded by hot engine oil. Catch the oil in the drain pan.

Clean the drain plug with a shop rag. Wipe off the oil pan with a shop rag. Install the plug. Use a torque wrench and socket to torque the plug to 10 foot-pounds.

Move the drain pan under the oil filter. Attach a filter wrench to the oil filter. Turn the filter in a counterclockwise direction to loosen it. Finish removing the filter by hand. Catch any oil that pours from the filter in the drain pan.

Make sure that the rubber gasket on the oil filter is on the filter and not stuck on the engine. Fill the oil filter about three-quarters full with clean motor oil. Wipe a film of clean motor oil on the filter gasket. Clean the filter mounting surface with a shop rag. Install the filter by hand and tighten it an additional three-quarters of a turn after you feel the gasket make contact with the engine.

Raise the F-150, remove the jack stands and lower it to the ground. Fill the engine with the rest of the motor oil. The engine holds six quarts with a new filter. Start the engine and check for leaks.

About the Author

Robert Bayly, based in Apple Valley, California, began writing in 2010, his "how to" articles can be found on eHow. With more than 15 years in the auto industry, Bayly has been an auto and diesel mechanic, service writer and parts manager. He received certificates from Pontiac (parts system), Cat Diesel (engine service), Saab and Fiat (parts- warranty system).

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