Used oil. A large disused washing-up bowl is ideal for catching the old oil when you drain the sump or gearbox. You can buy a purpose made oil drainer that fits under the sump of most popular makes of car. It is plastic, but able to hold about 8 litres of hot engine oil.

It is illegal to put oil in a container that might be recirculated and used for food and drink - such as a milk bottle.

Never tip oil down the drain - it contaminates the water-supply system and is also illegal. The local council will tell you where to dispose of it.

Guides that use

How to remove a car radiator

Radiators on earlier cars were made of copper and brass alloys. They could be repaired by solder...

How to check and change automatic transmission fluid

Let the engine run for two minutes with the selector at park 'P'. Automatic transmission needs l...

How to replace a car thermostat

Locating the thermostat If the engine warms up very slowly, or never reaches normal temperature,...

How to drain engine oil and remove filter

Bolt-on filter bowl An oil-filter bowl of a type found on many early cars. The bowl is secured t...

Air filter change

The circular paper filter is inside a metal or plastic casing. This has an intake for hot or col...

Engine oil pump replacement

Externally mounted pump Multi-lobe rotary pumps are the most common type of oil pump. Externally...

Checking and topping up car antifreeze coolant

Antifreeze in the cooling system The radiator contains piping through which the coolant circulat...

Checking and removing a clutch master cylinder

Clutch master cylinder On most cars the clutch master cylinder is a single unit with its own flu...

Checking the gearbox oil level, draining and refilling

Layout under a transverse-engined front-wheel-drive car The filler plug is on the side of the ge...

Replacing steering-rack gaiters

Removing a gaiter Loosen clip or untwist or cut off wire clips, and throw them away. Replace wit...

Replacing core plugs

Core plugs are also known as expansion plugs, welch plugs and sealing discs - a point to remember...

Draining and refilling a fully sealed cooling system

The sealed system Coolant in a sealed system does not evaporate to the atmosphere, and should ne...

How to flush an engine radiator

Make the hosepipe a tight fit by jamming it in with rags. Flush the water through until it runs...

Changing an oil filter

Fit the sealing ring in the mounting flange. Replace the spring over the central bolt, followed ...