How to Change Oil in a Subaru Outback

If you own a Subaru Outback, you know how important it is to maintain it properly. One of the most critical components of maintenance is changing the oil. A regular oil change can help keep your car running smoothly and extend its life. In this article, we will guide you on how to change the oil in your Subaru Outback step-by-step.

Key Takeaways

  • Regular oil changes are essential for maintaining the longevity of your car.
  • Subaru Outbacks require synthetic oil, which is more expensive but provides better performance and protection.
  • You should change your oil every 7,500 miles or every six months, whichever comes first.
  • Changing your oil at home can save you money and give you a better understanding of your car’s maintenance needs.

Step-by-Step Guide to Changing the Oil in a Subaru Outback

Step 1: Gather Your Supplies

Before you begin, be sure to have all the necessary supplies on hand. These include:

  • A new oil filter
  • Synthetic oil
  • A filter wrench
  • A socket wrench
  • A funnel
  • A drain pan
  • A car jack and jack stands, or ramps
  • Gloves and safety glasses
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Step 2: Prepare Your Car

Start by parking your car on a level surface and turning off the engine. Let it cool down for a few minutes before you begin.

Next, locate the oil filter and drain plug. Refer to your owner’s manual if you’re unsure where they are.

Step 3: Drain the Old Oil

Place the drain pan underneath the oil pan to catch the old oil. Use your socket wrench to loosen the drain plug and remove it by hand. Be careful as the oil may be hot. Allow the oil to drain completely.

Step 4: Replace the Oil Filter

Using your filter wrench, remove the old oil filter. Apply a small amount of oil to the gasket of the new filter before screwing it onto the engine. Tighten the filter by hand until it’s snug, then give it another quarter turn.

Step 5: Add the New Oil

Remove the oil cap on the engine and insert your funnel. Pour in the new synthetic oil, using your owner’s manual to determine the correct amount. Once you’ve added the oil, replace the cap and start the engine. Let it run for a minute, then check the oil level and add more if necessary.

Step 6: Dispose of the Old Oil

Be sure to dispose of your old oil properly. Many auto parts stores accept used oil for recycling. Check with your local government for other disposal options.

Congratulations! You’ve successfully changed the oil in your Subaru Outback.

Frequently Asked Questions

How often should I change the oil in my Subaru Outback?

Subaru recommends changing the oil every 7,500 miles or every six months, whichever comes first. If you frequently drive in harsh conditions, such as extreme temperatures or dusty roads, you may need to change it more often.

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Can I use conventional oil instead of synthetic oil?

Subaru Outbacks require synthetic oil due to their high-performance engines. Using conventional oil can cause damage and void your warranty.

How do I know if I need to change my oil?

Check your owner’s manual for the manufacturer’s recommendations. You can also check the oil level and color. If it’s low or dark, it’s time to change it.

Can I change my oil at home?

Yes, changing your oil at home can save you money and give you a better understanding of your car’s maintenance needs. Just be sure to follow the proper steps and dispose of the used oil properly.

What happens if I don’t change my oil?

Over time, old oil can become contaminated and lose its ability to lubricate and protect the engine. This can cause major damage and ultimately shorten the life of your car.


Changing the oil in your Subaru Outback is an essential part of maintaining the longevity of your car. By following these easy steps, you can save money and give yourself the satisfaction of knowing you’re taking care of your car’s needs. Remember to always use synthetic oil and dispose of the old oil properly. With proper maintenance, your Subaru Outback can give you many years of reliable service.

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Alton Brobst

As a longtime Subaru enthusiast, Alton brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to our blog. From his early days of tinkering with engines to his current role as a certified Subaru technician, Alton has seen it all when it comes to Subarus. When he's not working on cars, he enjoys hiking and exploring the great outdoors.

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