Toyota Tacoma: How to Change Engine Oil

Replacing the engine oil in your Toyota Tacoma is one of the most important pieces of maintenance you can do. Read on to learn how to perform it.

By Bassem Girgis - February 3, 2016

This article applies to the Toyota Tacoma (1996-2015).

The inside of your Toyota Tacoma's engine consists of a bunch of metal components, moving at a very fast pace. The engine oil works as a lubricant, and the more you wait to replace it, the less it lubricates. The average interval to replacing your engine oil is between 3,000 to 5,000 miles. If you're constantly towing and hauling heavy loads with your truck, then you should replace the oil at 3,000 miles. If you use it to go back and forth from work, then the standard interval will work fine. Read on if you're ready to replace your engine oil.

Toyota Tacoma How to Change Engine Oil

Materials Needed

  • Drain pan
  • Wrench
  • Oil filter wrench
  • Engine oil

Step 1 – Drain engine oil

Remove the engine oil filler cap from the engine. Then go under the truck and place the drain pan under the oil pan's drain plug. Slowly loosen the drain plug, then let the oil drain.

Toyota Tacoma engine oil drain plug location
Figure 1. Oil drain plug.

Step 2 – Replace oil filter

The oil filter is located under the hood, on the left side of the engine. Toyota made it very easy to access it, so remove it, then rub some oil on the new oil filter's rubber gasket, and place it in place.

Toyota Tundra oil filter
Figure 2. Replace oil filter.

Step 3 – Fill engine with oil

Be sure the engine drain plug is tight, then fill the engine with oil through the filler hole on the left side of the engine. The Tacoma takes roughly 5.5 quarts of oil. Check your engine's dipstick to make sure it is filled properly.

Toyota Tacoma engine oil filler
Figure 3. Engine filler.

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