Keeping your vehicle's engine lubricated is important to ensure its optimum performance. This not only protects its components from wearing out due to metal-to-metal contact, but it also prevents overheating by keeping these moving parts cool at all times. The oil that's used by the engine to lubricate and cool down its components is stored in the oil pan when it's not in use. The pan can become extremely dirty after years of continued use, so it's a must to clean it up every once in a while. It can also wear out due to its constant exposure to extreme conditions, which may cause it to leak and give you problems while you drive. Given its vital role in your vehicle, you need to maintain this component by making sure that it's clean and leak-free at all times. Here's a 10-step guide on how you can keep the pan free of sludge.
Note: Oil pans accumulate sludge or thickened engine oil over time. When this happens, the pan can malfunction and bring you inconveniences. To prevent this, it's important to flush the sludge out from time to time. Here's how:
Step 1: Before you begin, park the car in flat-level surface and engage the parking brakes. After that, jack the front side of your vehicle up and support it with jack stands.
Step 2: Next, go under the vehicle and position yourself beneath the oil pan. Place a drain pan right beneath it and remove the drain plug to allow the oil to come out.
Step 3: Once the oil has been completely drained, use a ratchet and socket to reattach the drain plug.
Step 4: After that, use the ratchet and socket to remove all the bolts that secure the pan in place. And once the bolts are out, remove the pan from your vehicle and place it in a well-ventilated area where you can clean it.
Step 5: Once you're all set, put some cleaning solvent into the oil pan and leave it for about 2 minutes.
Step 6: After that, use a rag that's been saturated with cleaning solvent to wipe out the sludge that usually accumulates at the bottom and sides of the pan. Keep on repeating this step until you've completely removed all the sludge.
Step 7: Next, use a metal scraper or wire brush to clean the gasket of the pan. After that, you also need to use a rag to wipe the gasket clean and to apply some red silicone to the area where the oil pan gasket is mounted.
Step 8: Then, use a rag to wipe the pan clean and make sure it is completely dry before mounting it back to your ride.
Step 9: Once it's clean and dry, reattach the oil pan by bolting it in place. Then, lower your vehicle to refill the engine oil using the dipstick to monitor its volume.
Step 10: When it's full, start the engine and leave it for about a minute before checking for any leaks.