How to Change the Oil Pan on Cars

by Contributing Writer; Updated June 12, 2017

A 7.3-liter diesel transmission holds this amount of oil to circulate through the engine. This fluid prevents the engine from overheating and allows the gears to shift smoothly. When the oil pan is cracked, it lowers the level of oil in the engine. This can lead to serious engine damage if the oil pan is left neglected for long periods of time. Fortunately, changing the oil pan for a 7.3L engine requires only a few tools and about an hour's work.

Under The Hood:

 How to Change the Oil Pan in a Chevrolet K2500

Lift the front left side of the Chevy K2500 using your jack. Lower the front end on the jack stand. Place the oil catch pan under the drain nut on the bottom of the oil pan.

Remove the drain nut using a ratchet set. Drain the oil from the oil pan. Replace the drain nut. Remove the oil catch pan from under the truck.

Remove the bolts from around the edge of the oil pan in an X pattern, using a ratchet and socket. After all the bolts have been removed tap the sides of the oil pan with a rubber hammer until the oil pan comes off the engine block.

Place the new oil pan gasket onto the edge of the new oil pan. Place the new oil pan on the bottom of the engine block. Insert the mounting bolts into the holes around the edge of the engine oil pan.

Tighten the mounting bolts to the torque specification for the specific engine model, using a torque wrench in an X pattern. Lower the truck to the ground.

Items you will need

  • Jack, 10 ton

  • Jack stand

  • Oil catch pan

  • Ratchet set

  • Rubber hammer

  • Torque wrench

 How to Change an Oil Pan on a Hyundai Elantra

Raise the Elantra onto jack stands. Place a floor jack underneath the front jack point on the Elantra located behind the radiator. Jack up the Elantra and place a jack stand under each of the front pinch welds located underneath the driver and passenger side doors on the underside of the car. Lower the Elantra onto the stands.

Place the oil catch pan under the engine oil pan.

Remove the oil pan drain bolt with a socket wrench by turning it counterclockwise. Drain all of the oil into the oil catch pan.

Remove the oil pan to engine block mounting bolts and pull the oil pan down.

Clean the mating surface on the engine block with a razor. Be very careful that you do not nick or scratch the mating surface of the engine block while you are cleaning away the old gasket material.

Apply RTV sealant to the mating surface of the engine block and also to the mating surface of the new oil pan.

Set the oil pan gasket onto the mating surface of the oil pan.

Press the oil pan to the engine block.

Tighten the oil pan to engine block mounting bolts.

Thread and tighten the oil pan drain bolt.

Lower the Elantra to the ground.

Open the hood and remove the oil filler cap on the top of the engine. Pour in fresh engine oil (amount may vary according to the year of your Elantra). Turn the engine on and check for oil leaks where the oil pan mates to the engine block.

Items you will need

  • Socket wrench

  • Socket set

  • Jack

  • 2 jack stands

  • Oil catch pan

  • ATV sealant

  • Oil pan gasket

  • Razor blade

  • Engine oil

 How to Change the Oil Pan on a 1998 Ford Escort ZX2 2.0

Jack up the front of the vehicle using a floor jack under the front jack point.

Place jack stands under the front pinch welds of the vehicle and lower the vehicle onto the stands.

Climb under the vehicle, place the catch pan under the oil pan drain bolt and unbolt the drain bolt to allow any remaining oil in the oil pan to drain out into the pan.

Unbolt the Escort's oil pan retaining bolts with a socket wrench. The bolts are positioned around the perimeter of the pan.

Lower the pan down. You will expose the crankshaft. Check for any damage to the crankshaft. If there is damage, you'll need to have the vehicle serviced by a professional mechanic. If not, you can proceed to install the new oil pan.

Wipe off any excess oil from the bottom of the engine block and apply gasket sealer to it as well as the top of the new oil pan.

Press the oil pan gasket onto the top of the oil pan and press the oil pan up to the engine block.

Thread and tighten the oil pan retaining bolts. Use a criss-cross tightening pattern to avoid over-tightening one side of the pan and deforming the gasket. Tighten the bolts to 15 lbs-ft. with a torque wrench. The rest of the installation is the reverse of removal.

Items you will need

  • Jack

  • Jack stands

  • Oil catch pan

  • New oil pan

  • Oil pan gasket

  • Gasket sealer

  • Socket wrench

  • Socket set

  • Rag

  • Torque wrench

 How to Change the Oil Pan on an F250

Park the truck in a level place. Activate the parking brake and set blocks behind the rear wheels to prevent the truck from rolling. Make sure the engine is off.

Disconnect the negative battery cable. Jack up the front of the truck and place it on jack stands. Use two jack stands, placing one under each axle.

Place the oil catch pan under the oil pan drain plug. Remove the oil plug with the correct size socket or wrench and allow the oil to drain into the pan for about 10 minutes or until the oil stops dripping.

Move the oil catch pan and place a large piece of cardboard under the oil pan area. This will prevent the oil that is left in the pan from dripping on the ground.

Using the correct size socket and ratchet and remove all the bolts that attach the oil pan to the engine. Set them aside. You will use them to secure the new oil pan.

Pull off the old oil pan. It will probably stay in place when the bolts are removed. You may pry it off with a flat-head screwdriver. It is a good idea to check the inside of the oil pan for debris from the engine. If there is large debris or metal shards, have your truck serviced by a professional mechanic.

Using a wire brush and a flat-head screwdriver, remove the old gasket from the oil pan mating surface on the engine. Use caution not to scrape the surface too hard and cause deep marks. A damaged mating surface will cause oil leaks.

Clean out the inside of the new oil pan. Place the new gasket on the mating surface. Make sure the shape and holes in the oil pan gasket line up exactly with the surface of the oil pan.

Place the oil pan and gasket on the engine mating surface and tighten the bolts. Tighten them evenly and securely in a crisscross pattern but not so tight that the gasket splits. A split gasket will leak oil. If your new oil pan came with a drain plug, install it. If not, you may use the drain plug from the old oil pan.

Refill the engine with fresh oil. Check for leaks with the engine cold first. Then start the engine and let it idle until warm, again checking for leaks.

Items you will need

  • Socket set with ratchet

  • Wire brush

  • Flat-head screwdriver

  • New oil pan

  • New oil pan gasket

  • Funnel

  • Motor oil

  • Oil catch pan

  • Floor jack

  • Jack stands

  • Large piece of cardboard

 How to Replace an Oil Pan in a Neon

Removing the Oil Pan in a Neon

Raise the vehicle and support with jack stands placed underneath the frame or axles.

Drain the oil from the engine. Locate the oil pan drain plug on the lower portion of the oil pan. Place a waste oil collection pan underneath the plug. Using a wrench, remove the plug and allow the oil to drain out.

Using a socket, remove the bolts that connect the oil pan to the engine block.

Carefully lower the oil pan away from the engine block and remove it from the vehicle. If the oil pan does not easily come off you may tap the side of the pan with a rubber mallet to free it. Do not pry between the oil pan and the engine block.

Clean any gasket material from the oil pan mounting surface on the underside of the engine block using a gasket scraper or flat razor blade. If you plan to reuse the oil pan clean any gasket material off the mounting surface.

Installing the Oil Pan in a Neon

Seal the oil pump. Examine the oil pan mounting surface. On the side of the engine block where the oil pump mounts to the block, you will notice two parting lines between the engine block and the oil pump. Seal these lines with a 1/8-inch bead of silicone sealer.

Run a 1/8-inch bead of silicone sealer on the oil pan mounting surface on the engine block.

Lift a new gasket into position on the underside of the engine block.

Raise the oil pan into position on the underside of the engine. Using a socket, reinstall the fasteners that connect the oil pan to the engine block.

Using a socket, reinstall the oil pan drain bolt in the oil pan.

Fill the engine with the correct amount of engine oil. Consult your owner's manual if you are unsure of the amount.

Lower the vehicle.

Run the engine and visually inspect for leaks.

Items you will need

  • Floor jack

  • Jack stands

  • Wrench set

  • Socket set

  • Rubber mallet

  • Gasket scraper or flat razor blade

  • Replacement oil pan gasket

  • Replacement oil pan

  • Silicone gasket sealer

 How to Change the Oil Pan on a 2000 Buick LeSabre

Removing the Oil Pan

Raise the front of your LeSabre using a floor jack and support it with jack stands.

Apply the parking brake and chock the rear wheels.

Crawl under the vehicle with your safety goggles on and place a large drain pan under the engine oil pan.

Remove the oil-pan drain plug, drain the engine oil, and then replace the drain plug using a wrench.

Slide the drain pan under the oil filter located next to the oil pan (passenger side) using a filter wrench, if you need clearance to remove the oil pan. Allow the oil to drain in the pan.

Take out the drain pan and oil filter from under the vehicle.

Remove the right engine mount bracket (passenger side) using a ratchet and socket, if you need extra clearance to remove the oil pan.

Unplug the electrical connector from the engine oil-level sensor attached to the oil pan and remove the sensor from the pan using an adjustable wrench.

Detach the torque-converter cover located between the transmission and engine block using a ratchet, ratchet extension and socket.

Unfasten the oil pan using a ratchet, ratchet extension and socket and remove the pan from under the engine block. If necessary, use an oil-pan seal cutter to detach the pan from the engine.

Installing the Oil Pan

Scrape all traces of gasket or seal material from the oil pan and engine mating surfaces using a plastic scraper.

Clean the oil pan and engine mating surfaces with solvent and wipe the surfaces with lint-free towels.

Apply a 0.19-inch (3.0 mm) continuous line of RTV sealer to the engine-block mating surface.

Apply a drop of RTV sealer at each corner of the oil-pan flange mating surface.

Clean the oil-pan mounting bolts with solvent and lint-free towels.

Ask a helper to hold the oil pan in position under the engine block.

Apply a drop of thread-locking compound (Permatex Medium Strength Threadlocker Blue or similar) to the thread area of the oil-pan mounting bolts as you install the bolts hand-tight.

Tighten the oil-pan bolts evenly and gradually following a star pattern using the ratchet, ratchet extension and socket. Then torque the bolts to 15-ft-lbs. (20 Nm) using a torque wrench, ratchet extension and socket.

Attach the torque-converter cover using the ratchet, ratchet extension and socket.

Install the oil-level sensor to the oil pan using the adjustable wrench and plug the electrical connector to the sensor.

Install the right engine-mount bracket using the ratchet and socket, if you had to remove it.

Install the oil filter using the filter wrench, if you had to remove it.

Refill the engine with the correct amount and type of new engine oil for your particular model.

Lower your LeSabre and remove the chocks from the rear wheels.

Start the engine, check for oil leaks around the oil pan and turn off the engine.

Items you will need

  • Floor jack

  • 2 jack stands

  • 2 wheel chocks

  • Safety goggles

  • Large drain pan

  • Wrench

  • Filter wrench (optional)

  • Ratchet

  • Socket set

  • Adjustable wrench

  • Ratchet extension

  • Oil-pan seal cutter (optional)

  • Plastic scraper

  • Solvent

  • Lint-free towels

  • RTV sealer

  • Thread-locking compound

  • Torque wrench

  • New engine oil

 How to Replace the Oil Pan on a Mercedes 190e

Lift the front of the Mercedes 190e with a floor jack and place jack stands under the front axle on both sides of the car, then lower the vehicle to rest on the jack stands.

Locate where the exhaust pipe attaches to the engine and detach the pipe from the motor, using a socket wrench to unfasten the bolts.

Remove the air filter canister by undoing the bolt on the top with a socket wrench and taking the canister off the top of the engine.

Disconnect the linkage to the carburetor with a pair of pliers and move the linkage out of the way.

Unfasten the motor mounts of the engine, using a socket wrench to remove the bolts, then lift the engine up with a floor jack about 4 inches.

Place two wood blocks between the engine and the vehicle frame to hold the engine in place then lower the floor jack away from the engine.

Locate the oil pan drain plug on the bottom of the oil pan and place a drip pan underneath the drain plug.

Loosen the drain plug with a socket wrench and allow the oil to drain into the pan until it is completely empty.

Move the drain pan out of the way and unfasten the bolts on the oil pan with a socket wrench.

Pry the oil pan from the engine block with a screwdriver, moving the oil pan out from under the engine then use a putty knife to scrape off any excess gasket material from under the engine.

Place the new oil pan gasket on the lip of the new oil pan and slide the pan into position, attaching it with bolts to the bottom of the engine.

Lift the engine up with the floor jack, remove the wood blocks then lower the engine back into position over the engine mounts.

Secure the engine to the engine mounts, using a socket wrench to tighten the nuts then reattach the carburetor linkage.

Secure the air filter canister back into place and reattach the exhaust pipe to the engine.

Raise the vehicle up off the jack stands and remove the stands, lowering the car back onto the ground.

Locate the oil cap on the top of the intake manifold and take the cap off.

Fill the engine with five quarts of oil then place the cap back on the intake manifold.

Items you will need

  • Floor jack

  • Jack stands

  • Socket wrench set

  • Pliers

  • 4x4 inch wood blocks (2)

  • Drain pan

  • Putty knife

  • 5 quarts motor oil

 How to Change the Oil Pan on a 7.3L Diesel

Park the truck on a flat surface and raise it with a jack onto jack stands to access the underside of the engine more easily. Make sure the engine has cooled for at least 30 minutes before proceeding.

Locate the oil pan underneath the engine in the center, just off to the driver's side. This is a large, black metal tank surrounded by bolts. Place a collection pan underneath the oil pan.

Remove all but one of the bolts surrounding the oil pan with a 1/2-inch socket wrench. Wait 15 to 20 minutes while the fluid drains into the collection pan. Remove the final bolt and pour the remaining oil into the collection pan. Wash off the bolts.

Place the new oil pan onto the engine. Line up the holes on the pan with the bolt holes. Fasten the bolts into place. Lower the truck from the jack stands with the jack.

Open the hood and locate the oil fill port. The location varies by vehicle, but it's generally found above the drain pan. Open the lid and insert a funnel into the port. Pour in 7.8 quarts of oil. Close the hood.

Items you will need

  • Front jack stands

  • 1/2-inch socket wrench

  • 10-liter collection pan

  • Funnel

  • 8 quarts of oil

 How to Change the Oil Pan on a Suzuki Grand Vitara

Park the vehicle on level ground, engage the parking brake and disconnect the negative battery cable. Lifting the vehicle is optional; the Suzuki Grand Vitara has ample clearance for most, however, if you have difficulty accessing underneath the vehicle, lift it and place it on jack stands for extra clearance.

Make sure the engine has been off for 30 minutes, to cool. Drain the engine oil into the drain pan by removing the oil pan drain plug.

Remove the 21 bolts securing the oil pan to the vehicle. The bolts are placed along the outer edge of the oil pan. Set the old pan to the side; keep the bolts in a safe place. Remove the old o-ring from the oil pan pickup tube. Discard the o-ring; you will be using a new one.

Prepare the oil pan for installation by applying a layer of silicone sealant in the indentation around the opening of the oil pan.

Install the new o-ring in the pickup tube. Attach the new oil pan to the vehicle and tighten all of the bolts enough to secure it.

Use the torque wrench to adjust the 21 bolts. Every bolt should be tightened to 97 foot-pounds with the exception of the two at each corner of the front of the pan. These should be tightened to 20 foot-pounds.

Refill the engine crankcase with oil. Use new oil if the oil is dirty; if it has been recently changed, it is acceptable to use the old oil. Reconnect the negative battery cable and start the engine to check for leaks.

Items you will need

  • Pliers

  • Socket wrench set

  • Drain pan

  • Torque wrench

  • Oil pan pickup tube o-ring

  • Replacement oil pan

  • Silicone sealant

  • Funnel

  • New engine oil (optional)

 How to Replace the Oil Pan on a 2000 VW Beetle

Oil Pan Removal

Block the rear wheels and make sure the parking brake is on, then raise the car's front end and support it on jack stands.

Take off the splash shields from underneath the engine by unscrewing their fasteners.

Drain the engine oil by removing the oil pan drain plug with a box-end or flare-nut wrench and letting the oil drain into an appropriate pan. Remove the oil dipstick.

Remove the three bolts connecting the oil pan to the transaxle bellhousing, using a wrench.

Disconnect the oil return tube from the oil pan and turbocharger (if the car has a 1.8 liter engine) by removing its bolts.

Unbolt and remove the oil pan from the engine. If the pan is stuck, gently pry it loose with a putty knife of small screwdriver.

Oil Pan Installation

Scrape away all traces of the old sealant from the engine block with a scraper, making sure you don't damage the engine block surface. Clean off the surface with acetone or lacquer thinner.

Apply RTV sealant to the flange of the new oil pan. The sealant should be 3/16 inch wide and should not be applied more than five minutes before installing the pan.

Place the oil pan onto the engine block and install the mounting bolts for the block loosely. Install the bolts for the transaxle bellhousing and tighten them to just more than finger tight.

Tighten the pan-to-engine block bolts to 132 inch-pounds. Start at the center bolts and work your way outward, tightening the bolts evenly in three to four steps each. Tighten the pan-to-bellhousing bolts to 33 foot-pounds.

Re-connect the splash shields and oil dipstick, then lower the car.

Wait an hour for the sealant to cure, then add four quarts of API engine oil.

Items you will need

  • Jack

  • Jack stands

  • Wrenches

  • Oil drain pan

  • Scraper

  • Acetone or lacquer thinner

  • RTV sealant

  • Engine oil

 How to Change the Oil Pan of a Volkswagen Jetta

Remove the Oil Pan

Park your Jetta in a level surface.

Raise the front of your Jetta using a floor jack and support it on two jack stands. Then chock the rear wheels and apply the parking brake.

Remove the insulation tray from underneath the oil pan using a wrench or ratchet and socket, if you have a 1.8L engine model. On 2.0L and 2.8L engine models, remove the right and center sound insulation or damping pans from under the oil pan using a ratchet and socket.

Place a catch pan under the drain bolt of the oil pan and remove the bolt using a wrench or ratchet and socket. Loosen the oil fill cap and let the engine oil drain completely. Replace the drain bolt.

Unscrew all the oil pan mounting bolts using a ratchet, ratchet extension and socket.

Detach the oil pan from the engine block. If the pan seems stuck, tap the pan with a rubber mallet. Remove the pan from the vehicle.

Remove all traces of sealant from the bottom of the engine mounting surface using a plastic scraper to avoid damage to the surface.

Clean the engine mating surface with solvent and a clean shop rag to remove any oil and grease.

Install the Oil Pan

Make sure the mounting flange of the new oil pan is perfectly clean.

Apply a continuous strip of sealant all the way around the mating surface of the oil pan, about an eighth of an inch in diameter. Cover the inside of the bolt holes with sealant as well.

Position the oil pan against the mounting surface under the engine and start the mounting bolts by hand.

Start tightening the mounting bolts gradually and following a crisscross pattern to clamp the pan evenly against the engine block. Be careful not to over tighten the bolts to avoid warping the oil pan flange, which can lead to oil leaks.

Install the insulation tray using the ratchet and socket, if you have a 1.8L engine model. On 2.0L and 2.8L engine models, install the right and center sound insulation or damping pans using the ratchet and socket.

Wait for 30 minutes or more to let the sealant harden or follow the manufacturer's instructions on the sealant package, if necessary.

Lower the vehicle and remove the chocks from the rear wheels.

Add the correct amount and type of engine oil to the engine. Check for leaks around the oil pan flange.

Items you will need

  • Floor jack

  • 2 jack stands

  • 2 chocks

  • Wrench

  • Ratchet and socket

  • Catch pan

  • Ratchet extension

  • Rubber mallet (optional)

  • Plastic scraper

  • Solvent (optional)

  • Clean shop rag

  • Sealant

  • Engine oil

About the Author

This article was written by the It Still Runs team, copy edited and fact checked through a multi-point auditing system, in efforts to ensure our readers only receive the best information. To submit your questions or ideas, or to simply learn more about It Still Runs, contact us.