How do you check your engine oil?

I think it’s time for an oil change. However, I want to check my engine oil myself before heading to a shop for a replacement. How do I check my engine oil?

Nick Kunze · Updated on
Reviewed by Shannon Martin, Licensed Insurance Agent.
You can easily check your car’s engine oil by getting under the hood.
First, wait at least five minutes after turning off your engine to check the oil. If the engine is too hot, the oil won’t be settled in the oil pan. This can lead to an inaccurate reading. Plus, if the engine is too hot you could burn yourself!
Once you’re ready, pop the hood and find the dipstick. Remove the dipstick and wipe it clean. Then, reinsert the clean dipstick.
Remove the dipstick again to see how high up the stick the oil is. There will be indicators on the dipstick marking a proper oil level.
If the oil on the dipstick is too low, it’s time for an oil refill. Or, if the oil on the dipstick is very dark or sludgy, it’s likely time for a change.
Oil changes won’t be covered, but plenty of car expenses can be paid for by the right
car insurance
policy. Make sure your car is properly protected by downloading insurance broker Jerry.
is a licensed insurance broker that makes it easy to save on your insurance bill. Just a few minutes on the app is all it takes to find the policy you want at a price you like. Once you’ve chosen a policy, Jerry even helps with your sign-up paperwork!
View full answer 
Jerry partners with more than 50 insurance companies, but our content is independently researched, written, and fact-checked by our team of editors and agents. We aren’t paid for reviews or other content.

Join 4M+ members in lowering their car insurance

Easiest way to compare and buy car insurance

No long forms
No spam or unwanted phone calls
Quotes from top insurance companies
Find insurance savings