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How Much Oil Does My Car Need: Finding the Optimum Amount and Refilling It

How Much Oil Does My Car Need: Finding the Optimum Amount and Refilling It

How Much Oil Does My Car Need

Engine oil is a very important thing for the car. It is considered to be the blood of an engine because it is necessary for the engine and other parts of the car to be well lubricated. It also reduces the buildup of heat and any strain or friction between the parts. Likewise, it is necessary to clean any contaminants and deposits from the engine parts. The upsides to regularly using engine oil is many. However, there is one important thing that you should always ask yourself, and that is “How much oil does my car need?”

Changing your oil regularly in your vehicle or according to the maintenance schedule will offer you with optimum performance and reduce the wear and tear that occurs on the engine. However, over time, oil tends to lose its viscosity and dries up; thus, reducing its effectiveness. It is also vital to note that various types of car require different types of oil.

How Much Oil Does My Car Need

What several people are not aware of is the fact that the engine size also affects the amount of oil needed and that gets used up. Typically, engines need about five to eight quarts of oil, depending on its size. If your engine is smaller, then, you need an even lesser amount of oil. To give you an idea about the quantity of oil, a four-cylinder engine will typically need about five quarts of oil while a six-cylinder engine needs roughly six quarts. On the other hand, an eight-cylinder engine roughly needs anywhere between five and eight quarts.

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Nonetheless, the best way to determine the quantity of oil needed is to refer to your car’s user manual. That is because it will be the one that will give you an accurate quantity of oil that is necessary for the type of engine that your car has. If you do not find it in the user manual, the next best bet is to find it on the manufacturer’s website. This is typically found at the bottom of the website. While you are on the site, try also to find the fluid capacity of your vehicle.

How to Check Your Car Engine Oil

Even if you leave your car with your mechanic to service it, it is a good idea to always check your car and the engine every month. Most important of all, you need to always check whether the engine oil is at the appropriate level or not. Some of you might think that this is a complicated process that is why we will guide you through it.

The Things You Will Need:

  • Pair of gloves: It is a given that there will be dirty oil when you check the engine, and these stains don’t come off easily and can remain in your hands for days. So, using a pair of gloves is ideal.
  • Paper towels: These are necessary in order to wipe the dipstick clean.
  • Engine oil: In case the engine oil level is low, you will need to fill it up right at that moment. So, having a bottle of engine oil ready with you makes sense. There are tons of different types of engine oil, so make sure you choose the right one for your vehicle.
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The Technique:

Ensure that the car is parked on even ground. If your car is on uneven ground or on a slope, then your readings will be inaccurate. If you need to relocate the car to even ground, move and then wait for about ten minutes so that the engine oil can settle down and you will get an accurate reading. After which, follow the steps below.

  1. Open the bonnet: Pull the lever located at the driver’s footwell (if elsewhere, refer to your manual to find it). Once it pops up, disengage the latch and open it
  2. Locating the dipstick: Finding the dipstick in most cars is quite easy. You will find a small handle that is very brightly colored. What you should be looking for is a round or a T-shaped handle. This handle will be attached to a spindly looking pipe which runs downwards to the bottom of the engine. There is a possibility that this may be different depending on your car. Again, it is best to refer to the user manual to exactly locate where the dipstick is.
  3. Removing and cleaning the dipstick: Once you have located the dipstick, it is time to pull it out of its sheath. The length of this stick varies from car to car. Once you have pulled it out, you will notice that the end of it is covered in oil. This is not where you read it as it will not be accurate. Take your paper towel and thoroughly clean the dipstick. After cleaning, re-insert the stick back into the sheath and push it down until you hear it click into its place.
  4. Removing the dipstick, then, checking the oil level: Pull the dipstick out again. Now, the reading on the stick will be more accurate.
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When is the Appropriate Time to Top Up the Oil?

You do not need to put the engine oil into the car unless you see the mark right at the lowest spot on the dipstick. This spot means that there is a minimum amount of oil that is safely running the engine. If your oil is extremely low, or worse, the dipstick comes out dry; then you must top up your car’s engine oil up as soon as possible.

However, we do recommend topping up the engine oil if you find the oil slightly below the halfway mark too. This will leave no chance of your oil going low at any point, and your engine will perform well and last longer too.


We are certain that this article has given you enough information on your question “How much oil does my car need?” It is crucial to remember that the engine oil is the blood of your car and needs it to function smoothly and effectively. Whether you go to a mechanic to fill in the engine oil or do it yourself, make sure that you check the dipstick every month to know that it is at its optimum level or not gone too low.