C2 Corvette: How to change the oil

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Changing the oil on your C2 Corvette is relatively easy. All you need are the items listed below, plus about an hour’s time and a little patience, especially if you haven’t done the job before.

Equipment You Will Need

a 13mm wrench

an oil filter wrench (sometimes called a strap wrench)

a jack to lift up the car

ramps or jack stands

an oil drain pan

wood blocks or bricks (for blocking the rear wheels)


newspaper or cat litter (for small spills)

receptacle for used oil

5 quarts of oil (check manual for preferred type)

oil filter (check manual for filter type)


1) Gather all of your equipment together in your garage or on your driveway.

2) Use your floor jack or tire jack to jack up the front of the Corvette. Place jack stands in secure places — see owner’s manual. (If you don’t have jack stands, you can use ramps. Have a friend guide you as you slowly drive the Corvette up the ramp.) Whether you used jack stands or a ramp, block the rear tires with the bricks or wood blocks.

Caution: Make sure you set the parking brake and place the transmission in Park. Alternatively, if you have the manual transmission, put the car in first gear.

3) After you have secured the Corvette, place the oil drain pan underneath the Corvette’s oil pan. Then crawl underneath the vehicle with the 13mm wrench in hand. Use the wrench to carefully and slowly unfasten the oil pan nut. The oil will start to flow out of the pan, so make sure your oil drain pan is underneath to catch it. Allow the oil to drain for 10 to 15 minutes.

4) In the meantime, grab the new oil filter and remove it from the carton. Open one of the new quarts of oil. With your index finger, dab a small amount of oil and place it on the gasket of the new filter to lubricate it. Place enough on the gasket so it is noticeable. After you have done this, place the oil filter, gasket side up, and the oil filter wrench underneath the Corvette so when you are underneath the vehicle can reach it.

5) After waiting for 10 or 15 minutes for the oil to drain out (you will know when the oil is out of the oil pan when there is just a trickle of oil coming out of the drain hole), crawl under the Corvette and re-install the oil nut. Tighten with the 13mm wrench. (Caution: Do not over-tighten. Doing so can strip the threads on the drain pan, leading to a costly oil pan replacement.)

6) Grab the oil filter wrench and loosen the oil filter. Move the oil drain pan underneath the oil filter. Next, completely remove the oil filter from the Corvette. With filter in hand and the oil drain pan next to you, turn the filter over and allow the oil in the filter to drain out of it into the oil drain pan. (Some pans have a special holder that helps retain the filter in the pan.)

7) Grab the new oil filter and turn it onto the vehicle snuggly. Try to turn it one-quarter turn beyond ‘snug? with your hand. If you cannot do this by hand, use your oil filter wrench.

8) After the oil pan nut and new filter are installed, open the Corvette’s hood and begin to pour the new oil into the engine (refer to manual for location of oil fill tube). Pour all five quarts into the engine.

9) Use your jack to remove the Corvette from the jack stands and lower it to the ground. (Alternatively, unblock the wheels and drive the Corvette off the ramps.)

10) When the car is safely on the ground, start the engine and check for leaks. (The most likely area for a leak is around the oil filter ? a kinked oil filter gasket will cause a leak.)

11) When you are sure there are no leaks, remove the oil drain pan and dispose of the old oil and filter properly.

That’s all there’s to it!

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