2011 Ford Explorer Oil Capacity

The 2011 Ford Explorer capacity is 6 quarts. Ford recommends using API-certified SAE 5W-20 oil.
Written by Thidas Senanayaka
The 2011 Ford Explorer oil capacity is 6 quarts or 5.7 liters. Ford recommends using Motorcraft SAE 5W-20 oil, but generally, any API-certified equivalent will work. 
With a redesign for 2011, the Ford Explorer is a large crossover SUV that sports a roomy, stylish cabin with good fuel economy for the time and an enjoyable riding and handling experience. Ford has also taken the opportunity to replace anything truck-related to inch the Explorer more over to the passenger-friendly side of the segment. 
Whether you’re a lifelong Ford Explorer fan or this is your first one, keeping up with
regular maintenance
is important if you want to make the most out of the SUV. Oil maintenance is no small part of this, as changing your oil and filter can directly affect your performance. Read on to find out the basics of engine oil maintenance in this
car repair
guide—and how you may even be able to save a trip to a technician and do it yourself!
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2011 Ford Explorer oil capacity

The oil capacity on the 2011 Ford Explorer is 6 quarts (or 5.7 liters). This is what you’re going to need for a proper oil and filter change. On top of oil changes, you should also be checking your oil levels frequently and adding more if you’re running low. Ford recommends doing this at least once a month.

What kind of oil does a 2011 Ford Explorer need?

Ford recommends using Motorcraft oils and oil filters in your engine oil changes, though you can get any oil as long as it’s API-certified and has Ford’s specified viscosity rating. Ford says you should use SAE 5W-20 oil. This can provide the most optimum fuel economy and durability performance when it comes to your engine. 
API stands for the American Petroleum Institute. All oil that has an API certification and API service symbol should work with the Ford Explorer. SAE just represents the organization that grades engine oil. The rating represents viscosity, with the number to the left of the W represents how well the oil flows in cold temperatures, and the number on the right how well it flows in hot temperatures
You should not be using any supplemental oil additives, cleaners, or other treatments as these could damage your engine and won’t be covered by your warranty. Ford also notes that while it’s recommended using synthetic or synthetic blend motor oil, conventional oil can work as long as it has the API-certification. 
Ford recommends using Motorcraft Oil.

How often to change the oil on a 2011 Ford Explorer

Ford actually has a neat feature on the 2011 Explorer that tells you when to change your oil. The message center will display an “ENGINE OIL CHANGE SOON” or “OIL CHANGE REQUIRED” message to tell you when an oil change is needed. You need to complete an oil change within two weeks or 500 miles after the “OIL CHANGE REQUIRED” message is displayed. 
Generally, Ford does say that your oil change interval should not be more than one year or 10,000 miles, whichever comes first.
Checking your oil is just as important as changing it to ensure there are no problems. After turning the ignition off, just wait a few minutes. After that, use the dipstick to see if your oil is within the recommended levels. 
You should also watch out for the following signs that you may need an oil change:
  • Your check engine oil light is on
  • A noticeable drop in fuel efficiency (you’re using more gas than usual for routine trips)
  • Consistently stalling or overheating engine

How to change your oil and oil filter

You can do an oil change by yourself if you want to save yourself a trip to (and the cost associated with) a technician. However, it’s a pretty technical job and you should probably get some help if you’re a first-timer. 
You will need several tools:
  • Jack and jack stand to raise your car
  • A drain bolt wrench
  • An oil filter-removal wrench (this is a specialized tool you get from a dealer)
  • A filter and drain pan to catch the old oil
Also, have at least 6 quarts of oil, along with a new oil filter. A funnel and gloves can help the process be less messy. 
Here’s what you need to do: 
  1. Safely park your Explorer on a level surface and start it.  
  2. Let your engine reach a normal operating temperature (usually, this takes about five minutes). Turn it off and wait a few more minutes. 
  3. Using a floor jack and jack stand, raise up the car. 
  4. Open the hood. Take off the oil fill cap.
  5. Place a drain pan under the drain plug, and remove it with the wrench. Let the oil completely drain into the pan. The oil might be hot, so be aware.  
  6. Use the oil filter wrench to loosen the oil filter and remove it with the hand. Keep your drain pan nearby so it can catch the oil under the filter too. 
  7. Screw in the new oil filter and drain plug with the respective wrenches. 
  8. Refill the engine oil through the filler opening and install the cap securely. 
  9. Dispose of the waste oil safely, based on local regulations.
Once you’re finished with all that, lower your car and start the engine again. Make sure to check around if there’s any leakage. After that, make sure you double check the oil levels to see that you didn’t under or over fill. You can fill up any oil if you have less than you need, but if you want to reduce oil levels you will have to visit a dealer. 
Congratulations, you’ve successfully performed an oil change. 
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