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Pelican Technical Article:

The Simple Oil Change

Tom Morr

Time:

1 hour1 hr

Tab:

$60

Talent:

*

Tools:

Oil filter removal tool, 8mm, 13mm wrench,

Applicable Models:

Mercedes-Benz SLK230 (1998-04)

Parts Required:

Oil and Filter

Hot Tip:

Get the engine warm before you drain the oil

Performance Gain:

Longer engine life

Complementary Modification:

Flush your cooling system and replace your radiator hoses

One of the most common tasks to perform is replacing your engine oil. Frequent oil changes are perhaps the most important procedure you can do to maintain and prolong the life of your engine. With the better oils that are available today, the requirement for frequent changes is diminishing. Even though Mercedes Benz recommends oil change intervals that are much further apart than in the past, I usually recommend that you keep the changes under the 5,000-mile limit. If you don't drive your car too often, you should change the oil at least once a year to keep things fresh.

The first thing you need to do is to make sure that you have everything that is required for the job. Nothing is more frustrating than emptying your oil, only to find out that you don't have a replacement filter or enough oil. You will need an oil filter kit, a 13mm wrench, an oil filter removal tool, a new drain plug gasket, a roll of paper towels, a very large oil pan or bucket, and 6 liters of oil. Start by driving the car around, and let it heat up to operating temperature. You'll want to empty your oil when it's hot, because the heat makes the oil flow a lot easier, and more particles of metal and dirt will come out when the oil is emptied.

Next safely jack up and support your car. With the car safely off the ground you will need to remove the engine tray. There are four 8mm screws holding the tray on.

On the left side of the oil pan you will find the 13mm drain plug use a socket and remove it. Remember the oil is going to be hot coming out of the motor so make sure you don't burn yourself and try not to drop the drain plug in the container you are using to catch the oil. Always dispose used motor oil according to the regulations where you live. Most oil change shops or your neighborhood parts store will take your old oil and filter to be recycled properly. Once the oil has emptied reinstall the drain plug with a new crush washer. I always like to make sure I reinstall the drain plug before I start working on the top of the engine, just so I don't forget it later. Reinstall the engine tray.

Move to the engine compartment where you will find the oil filter housing as well as the oil filler cap.

You are going to be removing the oil filter housing so if you are worried about how tight to tighten the filter housing you can use a little white out or other marking source to mark the housing and filter, then just tighten it up until they line up again.

Place your oil filter socket over the filter and remove it.

With the filter loose you can pull it straight up and out of the housing. Be careful as it will be covered in oil and has a tendency to drip.

Slide the old filter off and inspect it for any metal. Slide the new one on. Install your new gasket and use a little of your new clean oil to help get the new o-ring in place.

Remove the oil filler cap and carefully add 5 quarts of oil. Give the oil a minute or two to get down into the pan and then check your dip stick. Run the motor for a few minutes to let the oil circulate, stop the motor and add additional oil as necessary until showing full. If you have changed the oil and filter the motor should take 6 quarts.

Begin by safely jacking up and support your car.
Figure 1

Begin by safely jacking up and support your car. With the car safely off the ground you will need to remove the engine tray. There are four 8mm screws (red arrows) holding the tray on.

Figure 2

Use an 8mm socket (red arrow) and remove the screws

On the left side of the oil pan you will find the 13mm drain plug use a socket and remove it.
Figure 3

On the left side of the oil pan you will find the 13mm drain plug use a socket and remove it.

Remember the oil is going to be hot coming out of the motor so make sure you don't burn yourself and try not to drop the drain plug in the container you are using to catch the oil.
Figure 4

Remember the oil is going to be hot coming out of the motor so make sure you don't burn yourself and try not to drop the drain plug in the container you are using to catch the oil. Always dispose used motor oil according to the regulations where you live. Most oil change shops or your neighborhood parts store will take your old oil and filter to be recycled properly.

The SLK230 has one of the longest drain plugs I have ever seen.
Figure 5

The SLK230 has one of the longest drain plugs I have ever seen. Make sure you install your new washer (red arrow) and then the drain plug. I always like to make sure I reinstall the drain plug before I start working on the top of the engine, just so I don't forget it later. Reinstall the engine tray.

Move to the engine compartment where you will find the oil filter housing (yellow arrow) as well as the oil filler cap (red arrow).
Figure 6

Move to the engine compartment where you will find the oil filter housing (yellow arrow) as well as the oil filler cap (red arrow).

Place your oil filter socket (red arrow) over the filter and remove it.
Figure 7

Place your oil filter socket (red arrow) over the filter and remove it.

With the filter loose you can pull it straight up and out of the housing (red arrow).
Figure 8

With the filter loose you can pull it straight up and out of the housing (red arrow). Be careful as it will be covered in oil and has a tendency to drip.

Slide the old filter (yellow arrow) off and inspect it for any metal.
Figure 9

Slide the old filter (yellow arrow) off and inspect it for any metal. Slide your new filter (red arrow) on. Install your new gasket (yellow arrow) and use a little of your new clean oil to help get the new o-ring in place.

Remove the oil filler cap and carefully add 5 quarts of oil.
Figure 10

Remove the oil filler cap and carefully add 5 quarts of oil. Give the oil a minute or two to get down into the pan and then check your dip stick. Run the motor for a few minutes to let the oil circulate, stop the motor and add additional oil as necessary until showing full. If you have changed the oil and filter the motor should take 6 quarts

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Comments and Suggestions:
maestro-82 Comments: I have same issue, drain plug is almost impossible to remove. Before stripping, any suggestions on removing?
October 9, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Use Flat-jawed Vise GRips to free it. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Gar Comments: Why don't you have the capacities and such for a 320 V6?
September 24, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: What year? - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Slk230 London Comments: My sump plug seems to be too tight. Any suggestions on how to loosen it? Also, the space is quite tight to use a bigger wrench. Any help would be approximated.
January 9, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Sump plug? Can you share a photo of it? - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Bill Comments: Send e mail
December 3, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: In regards to? - Nick at Pelican Parts  

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