Can You Change An Oil Filter Without Draining The Oil?

Can you change an oil filter without draining the oil? Mechanics and drivers asked the question because of the standard and essential use of oil in vehicles.

Many people believe that it’s not best to change the filter when you drain your oil. Though it’s true, there are cases where you should change the filter without changing the oil.

Changing the oil filter only without draining the oil is accessible for everyone. You can save time and money if you can do it yourself. However, here we discuss changing the oil filter without draining the oil. Why do you delay? Let’s start.

Change An Oil Filter Without Draining The Oil

When do I need to change the oil filter?

In most cases, it’s best to change the oil after two oil cycles. But if you see any problem, you will change your oil before the cycle ends. If you drive your car about 3,000 miles, after 6,000 miles, you may need to change your oil filter.

You can change the oil without a filter after a 3,000-mile cycle. But changing the oil filter during every oil change is also the best and most healthy for your car.

Can You Change An Oil Filter Without Draining The Oil?

Yes, you can do that. You can do this job quickly with the right tools and patience. Changing your car’s filter without draining the oil is a simple process. In other words, you don’t have to drain the oil during a filter change, and the procedure only takes a few minutes.

First, you should know that you will lose some oil when changing the filter. All vehicle oil filter location is not the same, and oil filter location depends on your car’s make and model. So it determines how much oil you can lose while replacing the filter.

You can lose half a quart of oil on some vehicles when you change a filter. And the amount will be trapped inside the anti-drain-back gasket. Also, you can lose up to an entire quart in some vehicles.

Fortunately, losing a little oil during a filter change won’t harm your car. Just remember to top up the oil after you’ve completed the replacement!

Changing Oil Filter Between Oil Changes:

Accordingly, if you change your oil regularly, it can keep your engine healthy. Changing the oil filter is also crucial during oil changes. In fact, most experts recommend changing oil filters between oil changes is better. If you do that, it can help any accumulated particles be wholly removed from the system.

It’s also worth noting that all oil filters aren’t created equal. Poorly designed filters may only effectively remove some impurities from the oil. So it can cause long-term damage to your engine. That’s why you should choose high-quality filters from reputable brands when replacing them.

Check: How Often To Change Motorcycle Oil: What You Need To Know

Change the Oil Filter Without Changing The Motorcycle Oil:

Without changing the oil on your motorcycle, you can change your oil filter like a car. Most cars or bikes use regular spin-type oil filters; we hope you also have one. Nevertheless, we recommend priming the new filter first. Place the new oil filter and start your motorcycle to circulate this oil. Then please check your oil level; if you need more oil, you should add it.

Change the Oil Filter Without Changing The Motorcycle Oil

How To Change Oil Filter?

First, you should locate the oil filter on your vehicle. Oil filter location may vary from vehicle to vehicle. Attach a cylinder-shaped metal to the side of the engine. Now you need to loosen the oil filter cap. It’s because it can help in doing your job smoothly.

Take a perfectly sized wrench, or open the oil filter with your bare hands. Get a new oil filter. Then lubricate your gasket with fresh oil. Take some oil and rub the new oil filter base. Usually, it is to ensure no leakage.

Start screwing the oil filter. After screwing, you can feel the oil filter starting to attach to the engine block. Apply some pressure during screwing. When you think it is connected, tighten the filter. Your oil filter has now been changed.

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

Q. How long can you go without changing your oil filter?

Generally, without changing the oil filter, your automobile may travel 5,000 to 7,500 miles. In addition, if your vehicle uses synthetic oil, you can go 10,000 or 15,000 miles between oil changes.

Q. How to change the oil without removing the drain plug?

Basically, it’s not a good idea to change your oil without removing the oil drain plug. But if you want, with a siphon, you can change the oil without removing a drain plug. So, first, take an aquarium tank hose, which is 6-8′ long.

Pull the dipstick and place it with one end of the hose. Suck on the other end. And now, draw oil into the hose until it’s about an inch away from your mouth. Trace that end of the hose and lower it down to the floor. Release the end, and the oil should start dripping. This procedure works but takes a long time to drain the full oil.

Q. How often to change the oil filter with synthetic oil?

Generally, a standard oil filter can provide outstanding filtration for most types of automobiles. And a traditional oil filter’s regular service interval can be up to 5,000 miles. In contrast, synthetic extended-life oil filters can often last nearly twice as long or up to 10,000 miles.

Most importantly, how you use your car is also a factor to consider the replacement interval. If you use your car regularly, your oil and filter changes may last longer distances. But if you use your car for towing or heavy loads purposes, you can only get a short service.

Q. What happens if you change the oil but not the filter?

An oil filter works to filter contaminants from the oil. Due to the oil filter, oil can perform optimally and keep your motor lubricated and protected. Over time, if you don’t change the oil filter, it collects and clogs all the dirt in the engine oil. And it also can’t work efficiently.

Thus you should change your oil filter every time during oil changes. It’s because, in this way, you can ensure your engine health. However, you can use the same filter for two oil changes and change the filter after each alternate oil change.

Final word

On the other hand, can I change an oil filter without draining the oil? Now you may get a clear answer to this question. In summary, though it’s possible to change oil filters without draining oil, it’s recommended to change both for optimal performance.

The reason is that you can ensure your engine’s longevity if you change together simultaneously. Doing this will ensure that both work efficiently and effectively to run your car smoothly for miles.

Read also: When Should I Oil Change Before Or After Storage?


Rio is a car & motorcycle mechanic who is working with different kinds of problems relating to oil and grease. He is also a passionate technical writer.