How-To Guide: Changing the Oil in Your Mustang Last Updated August 19, 2020
Mustang Oil Change
Changing your car’s oil is imperative to the life and longevity of the engine. This especially goes for Mustangs. Because, let’s be honest, nobody buys their Mustang to putt-putt around. With all of that high-performance and high-RPM driving, many contaminants can work their way in the oil along with the oil breaking down over time. When this happens, the oil doesn’t lubricate your engine as well causing excessive wear and other potential major engine issues.
You should change your oil on average every 3,000-5,000 miles. With many of the high-tech synthetic oils out there, some may even last to 10,000 miles. But an average rule of thumb would be 5,000 for most newer Mustangs.
For this particular How-To Guide, we’ll be performing an oil change on Bill’s 2015 Mustang GT.
CJ Oil Change Video
- Lift or Jack and Jack Stands
- Drain Pan
- 1/4" Ratchet
- 7mm Socket
- 3/8" Socket
- 15mm Socket
- 15mm Wrench
Time: 20-30 minutes
- Before you start, you don’t want the oil too hot as if you just got off the highway otherwise you could burn yourself. At the same time, you don’t want the oil too cool because it will be thicker and not flow out as easy. Ideally, you want the oil warm for easy draining.
- Get the front end up in the air enough to fit the drain pan underneath the oil pan on your Mustang. You can do this by using a lift, ramps or a jack and jack stands. In this guide, we’ll be using a lift.
Once you have the car secure, grab your socket wrench and begin loosening the oil pan drain plug. After the initial twist, you should be able to loosen the plug by hand.
As you loosen the drain plug, apply upward force to keep oil from coming out of the pan before you’re ready. Once you have all the threads out, quickly pull the plug from the pan so your used oil can drain out of the car.
After the drain plug is removed, take a look at the plug to make sure the seal around the head of the bolt is not damaged or missing. If it is, the plug should be replaced. In our case, everything looks good, so we’re ready to screw the plug back into the oil pan.
Be sure to first thread the drain plug back in by hand. You do not want to cross-thread your oil pan! Then, snug it up with a wrench.
Now we’ll move on to the oil filter. For 2015-2017 Mustangs, there is an access panel that needs to be removed so you can access the oil filter.
Depending on who changed your oil last, you may need an oil filter wrench to get your filter off. In our case, we were able to get it off by hand.
Tech Tip: To prevent oil from going everywhere, take a large Ziploc bag and place it around the filter. That way, the bag will catch the oil as you remove the filter. Once removed, drain the filter in the drain pan. Remember to clean up any spilled oil before moving on.
Grab your new filter and oil, and put a bit of oil on the o-ring of the new filter.
Next, you’re ready to put the new oil filter back on the car. First, you’ll want to make sure that the o-ring from your old oil filter still isn’t on the car, otherwise your new filter will not seal properly. Tighten the oil filter by hand. Remember, you don’t want it too tight otherwise you may not be able to get it off next time.
For 2015-2017 Mustang Owners, you can now reinstall the oil filter access panel.
You are now ready to fill the engine with your new oil. Remove the oil cap in your engine bay.
To keep from making a mess, grab a funnel and begin pouring the oil inside your engine. Remember to be as exact as possible when it comes to adhering to the proper oil capacities in your Owner’s Manual.
Once you’re finished filling your engine with oil, grab a rag and remove the funnel. Clean up any mess and reinstall the oil cap.
Even though you followed the directions and filled your engine with the proper oil capacity, be sure to check the oil level using the dipstick to be sure. Once checked, you can reinstall the dipstick back into the engine.
For 2015+ Mustangs, you’ll now want to reset your oil change light. This is done from the gauge cluster inside the car. First, turn the car on, but don’t start it.
Navigate to the main menu in the center screen of your gauge cluster. Then scroll down to Settings -> Vehicle -> Oil Life Reset. Then hold the “OK” button to reset to 100%.
Then, you’ll want to start the car for a minute or two, get under it and make sure there are no leaks.
Lastly, shut the car off and check the oil one more time. From there, your oil change is complete!