Car Won’t Start After Oil Change | 100 % Fix & Causes

Your car won’t start after an oil change?

Changing your car’s oil on a regular basis is one of the most important things you can do to keep it running smoothly. Oil changes are usually simple to perform, but what if you make a mistake? Could an oil change prevent your car from starting?

If your car won’t start after an oil change, it’s likely that you used the wrong engine oil, refilled the engine with the incorrect amount of engine oil, used a low-quality oil filter, or didn’t secure the oil filler cap.

Engine oil is essential for lubrication and helps to keep the engine cool, therefore most automobile engines won’t last very long without it.

If the engine won’t start after you’ve changed the oil, double-check that you’ve used the right amount of oil, that it’s the right viscosity, and that it suits the engine’s unique specifications.

Is it possible for an oil change to prevent your car from starting?

Yes, if you don’t do it correctly or use the wrong engine oil or a low-quality oil filter, an oil change might cause your car to stop starting.

When it comes to protecting the numerous moving parts of an engine, engine oil has always been essential.

It’s much more important these days, as manufacturers try to wring more performance and efficiency out of their engines.

Most modern engines require completely synthetic engine oils with the right constituents to withstand the extreme heat, pressure, and tight tolerances they are subjected to.

If the engine cannot get engine oil to where it is needed for any reason, this can lead to premature wear and damage. As a result, the ECU keeps track of the engine and can prevent it from starting if there is insufficient oil pressure.

The use of the incorrect engine oil, oil filter, or failure to reinstall things that have been removed are the most common causes of problems following an oil change.


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The most common reasons are discussed in further detail below.

1. Incorrect engine oil was utilized.

If you use the improper engine oil, your engine may not start, especially if it’s a newer engine with very rigorous engine oil regulations. Modern synthetic engine oils are complex liquids containing a variety of additives designed to protect the engine under a variety of operating conditions.

To minimize long-term damage, it is critical to use the correct oil specification in the engine. The viscosity of the oil is a highly important part of the oil specification, especially when it is cold.

On a cold engine restart, the majority of the wear and potential damage occurs. The oil pump generally takes a few seconds to transport oil from the crankcase to the engine. When the oil is cold, its weight or thickness can affect how rapidly it goes around the engine and how well it covers the engine’s interior surfaces.

If the engine is started using oil that is thicker than the prescribed viscosity, the engine may not start. Cold, thick engine oil can make it harder to start the engine, and if the oil pressure is insufficient, the ECU may prevent the engine from starting to protect it.

2: Inadequate engine oil supply.

If you do not replace the correct amount of engine oil, the oil pressure within the engine may be affected, and the engine may not start.

Engine oil is moved around the engine by an oil pump that is usually located in or near the oil sump when your automobile is running. The oil pressure sensor and the oil level sensor are the two main types of sensors used by the ECU to keep track of the engine oil.

The oil level sensor is usually located in the oil sump, and if it detects a low oil level, the engine may not start.

Similarly, the oil pressure sensor monitors the oil pressure as it circulates around the engine.

If the ECU detects insufficient oil pressure while the engine is starting up, the engine may be shut down to protect it from injury.

3: Damaged or missing oil filling cap.

If the oil filler cap is cracked, leaking, or not correctly reinstalled, the engine may not restart after an oil change. The oil filler cap is located on the top of the engine and allows access to the engine for changing the oil.

It creates an airtight seal when replaced, allowing oil pressure to build within the cylinder head while the engine is running.

On today’s autos, oil filler caps are made of plastic with a rubber inner seal. A metal cover with a seal may be used on older engines.

Plastic oil filler caps, in general, are fairly sturdy and can last the life of the engine. On older engines, though, the rubber seal may harden and even fracture.

This is due to the high engine temperatures it is subjected to on a regular basis. If the seal completely fails, it might result in engine oil leaks and a drop in oil pressure.

If the filler cap is not reinstalled tightly or at all when changing the oil, the engine may experience a lack of oil pressure or a considerable loss of oil if it starts.

Damage to other engine components such as the alternator, timing belt, or ignition coils caused by leaking oil might also prevent the engine from starting.

4. Oil Filter

The oil filter has not been replaced or the wrong type of oil filter has been fitted. Installing the incorrect oil filter or failing to replace an old, worn oil filter can disrupt the flow of oil within the engine, making it impossible for the engine to start.

In general, an engine will use an oil filter of a specific kind, shape, and size. Some engines have a spin-on filter that attaches to the engine’s exterior near the sump, while others have a filter element that fits into an oil filter housing.

To reduce leaks and improve the filter’s filtering function, it’s critical to choose the right size filter. It’s also critical to invest in a good filter that can remove and retain contaminants from the oil.

The incorrect oil filter might potentially restrict oil circulation within the engine, resulting in a significant drop in oil pressure, preventing the engine from running properly.

If the oil filter becomes completely blocked, most engines have a safety bypass, however this results in unfiltered oil running throughout the engine. Similarly, a blocked oil filter that hasn’t been updated when it’s due can obstruct oil flow and ineffectively filter particles from engine oil.

5. Damage to wiring or a sensor is the fifth cause.

If an engine component, such as a sensor or sensor wire, breaks during the oil change procedure, the check engine light will on and the engine will not start.

To get access to the oil filter or the oil sump drain bung on modern automobiles, certain plastic covers must be removed, and some hoses or cables may need to be pushed aside.

When doing an oil change, it is simple to inflict injury if you are not careful. The oil filler cap and drain bung are usually straightforward to reach, requiring simply the removal of a plastic cover.

On some engines, removing the oil filter may be more difficult. Reaching down into the engine compartment to hold the oil filter or removing the filter housing cover may be necessary while removing the oil filter.

If you have a check engine light on the dash and the engine won’t start after the oil has been changed, double-check that there is no loose or damaged wiring near the oil filter.

When you reattach the plastic covers, make sure that no sensor wires or coolant hoses are snagged under them.


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Car Won’t Start
Car Won’t Start

What Should You Do If Your Car Won’t Start After An Oil Change?

If your car won’t start after an oil change, there are a few things you can check right away that will usually help you solve the problem, depending on the symptoms.

The presence of a check engine light on the dashboard indicates that the ECU has detected a malfunction in the engine, which may be preventing the engine from starting. A loose connection or a disconnected hose might sometimes be the source of the problem.

1. Just find for your engine problem codes in the ECU.

If at all possible, begin any troubleshooting by performing a diagnostic readout of any error codes. This will aid in determining the source of the issue.

P0522 and P0524 are engine fault codes related to low oil pressure after a recent oil change. Engine misfire codes P0300 through P0306 may also be present.

2. Look for any oil leaks.

An engine that has a large oil leak may be unable to start. After an oil change, oil might leak from the oil sump or the oil filter housing if they have not been replaced properly.

If you drained the old oil via the oil sump rather than sucking it out of the engine, double check that the sump nut has been retightened to the recommended torque.

Make sure that a brass washer has been fitted in certain sump nuts, since it must be replaced at every oil change. If it’s an oil filter element, look for oil leaks around the oil filter where it meets the engine block or from the oil filter housing cover.

3. Examine the amount of oil and the type of oil.

Verify that the engine has enough oil by using the dip stick. Some automobiles have a digital guide on the dashboard instead of dip sticks, but you’ll need to let the engine run for a while for it to give you an accurate oil level reading. If there isn’t a dipsitck, double-check that you used the correct amount of oil and that the oil specifications and viscosity are correct.

Most of the time, as long as the oil does not go too much from the required weight, you can get away with it having an incorrect viscosity.

4. Check the engine for any damage.

Damage to a sensor, wire, or hose may prevent the engine from starting. If the engine diagnostic did not return any engine fault codes, start by searching around the area of the engine you were working on.

Look for damaged wiring and vacuum hoses, as well as loose sensors or wiring. Check that the hoses are not stuck beneath the reinstalled plastic covers.

Make that the oil filler cap is firmly attached and the rubber seal is in good condition.


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