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Kia Optima 2.4L I4 Engine Oil Change Guide
How to replace the motor oil and filter in a 3rd generation 2011-2015 Kia Optima with the Theta II 2.4L I4 engine.

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Paul B. Michaels
Author & Photographer
Auto Mechanic Since 1989

2013 Optima 2.4L GDI I4
Twist Off Oil Filler Cap
Pull Up Yellow Dipstick
This automotive maintenance tutorial was specifically written to assist owners of the third generation (2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 & 2015) Kia Optima sedan equipped with the Theta II 2.4 liter inline four cylinder GDI engine in changing the motor oil and replacing the oil filter.

Owners of other Hyundai or Kia vehicles with the Theta II 2.4L GDI I4 or 2.0L turbocharged engines such as the Sonata, Tucson, Santa Fe, Rondo, Cadenza, Sportage, Sorento, Genesis Coupe and ix35 may also find these DIY instructions to be helpful.

The items needed to complete this procedure include a floor jack, two jack stands, a 17mm socket, a 3/8" drive ratcheting wrench, a used oil catch container, an automotive funnel, a new oil filter and 6 quarts of new SAE 5W-20 oil.

A few compatible replacement canister oil filters with their part numbers are as follows: Purolator PL14459, Bosch 3312, K&N HP-1004, Royal Purple 10-2808, Mobil 1 M1-104, Wix # 51334, Fram TG9688 or PH9688, Mahle OC 707, Pennzoil HPZ-37, ACDelco PF1127, and Mann-Filter ML 1002.

Raise With Floor Jack
Access Covers Removed
Oil Drain Bolt Opening
The first three steps are to warm up the engine for a few minutes, park the vehicle on a level surface and then shut off the engine.

Warming up the engine will help suspend any contaminants within the old oil and also help it drain out more quickly.

Then raise the front passenger side of the car with the floor jack and securely support it with at least two jack stands.

On the underside of the black plastic engine skid plate, you should see a round access cover for the oil filter and a rounded triangular shaped cover for the oil drain bolt.

I'm guessing that the two plastic covers were never replaced after one of the previous oil changes by the first owner of the vehicle.

Squeeze together the release tabs for the access covers and pull them out of the under engine splash shield.

Old Oil Filter
Used Oil Catch Basin
Loosen 17mm Drain Bolt
Slide under the car with the 17mm socket, 3/8" drive ratcheting wrench and the used oil catch container.

Position the used oil catch container to just below the oil drain bolt.

Be careful when removing the oil drain bolt since the old oil may be hot enough to burn your skin depending on how long you warmed up the engine in the first step.

Loosen the oil drain bolt by turning it in the counter clockwise direction with the 17mm socket and ratcheting wrench.


Spin Out Counter Clockwise
Drain Out Old Oil
Tighten - Clockwise
Spin out the oil drain bolt and set it aside in a safe place.

Allow the old oil to drain out for at least a few minutes or until the flow slows to an occasional drip.

If the oil drain bolt on your car is equipped with a crush washer, you can either replace it or re-use the washer if it is still in good condition. Here are a few compatible drain plug gaskets.

Clean the area around the oil drain bolt socket with a rag or paper towels and re-insert the oil drain bolt by hand a few turns in the clockwise direction to prevent it from becoming cross threaded.

Tighten the oil drain bolt in the clockwise direction with the 17mm socket and ratcheting wrench to just past hand tight or about 20 to 25 ft-lbs of torque.

Move Basin Forward
Twist Off Counter Clockwise
Dip Pinky Finger In New Oil
Slide the used oil catch container forward to just below the old oil filter.

Twist off the old oil filter in the counter clockwise direction and allow the old oil to drain out for a few minutes.

If you have trouble removing the old oil filter, you may need to use a Lisle 63600 oil filter wrench to loosen it.

Lubricate Rubber O-Ring
Twist On New Filter Clockwise
Lower Vehicle From Stands
I recommend buying the Mobil 1 M1-104 oil filter since it has excellent reviews on Amazon.

Dip your pinky finger in to some new SAE 5W-20 oil and lubricate the rubber o-ring gasket on the new oil filter.

Lubricating the o-ring will help it form a better seal and make it easier to remove during the next oil change.

Make sure that the rubber o-ring from the old oil filter is not still attached to the engine.

Clean off the oil filter receptacle with a clean rag or some paper towels.

Twist on the new oil filter in the clockwise direction to about 1/4 to 1/3 turn past hand tight.

Double check that the oil drain bolt and new oil filter are tight before moving on to the next steps.

If equipped, replace the plastic oil drain bolt and/or oil filter access covers.

Lower the car from the jack stands using the floor jack.

Insert Automotive Funnel
Pour In New 5W-20 Oil
Check Dipstick Oil Level

Insert the automotive funnel into the oil filler hole and carefully pour in about 4.5 to 5 quarts of the 2.4L I4 engine's 5.28 U.S. quarts (5.0L) total engine oil capacity for an oil change with filter replacement.

Try to avoid overfilling the engine with oil. It is far better to have slightly less oil in an engine than to have too much oil in the engine. Running an engine that has been overfilled with oil may cause damage to the gaskets, seals or other internal components.

(2.0L Turbo Owners - The oil capacity for the Kia Optima with the 2.0L Turbo "T-GDI" engine is the same 5.28 U.S. Qts.)

Replace the oil filler cap in the clockwise direction, push down the oil dipstick, run the engine for a few minutes, shut off the engine and let it rest for 5 to 10 minutes.

Pull out the yellow handled oil level dipstick, wipe it clean, re-insert the dipstick, and pull it out again to check the oil level.

Twist On Oil Filler Cap
Replace Dipstick
Oil Change Complete
If necessary, slowly pour in more oil in to the oil filler hole while repeatedly checking the dipstick until the level reaches the "F" (full) mark indicated by the upper hole in the metal.

When the oil level is correct, twist on the oil filler cap in the clockwise direction and re-insert the dipstick.

You may not need to use the entire 5.28 U.S. quarts of new SAE 5W-20 oil depending on how long you allowed the old oil to drain out.

Be sure to check the oil level on the dipstick several times over the next few days and watch your driveway for oil spots that may indicate a leak from the oil drain bolt or oil filter. Record the mileage and oil change details in your service record book.

For more, check out my other Kia Optima Repair & Maintenance Guides.

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