How to Drain the Oil on a 04 Ford Taurus

by Robert Moore

    Replacing the engine oil and filter is an important aspect of properly maintaining your 2004 Ford Taurus. The Taurus' 3.0-liter, six-cylinder engine requires 4.5 quarts of 5W-20 engine oil and has a canister-type oil filter. Ford recommends changing the engine oil and filter every three months or 3,000 miles, whichever comes first.

    Items you will need

    • Floor jack
    • Jack stands
    • Socket set
    • Ratchet
    • Oil-filter wrench
    • Drain pan
    • Drain plug gasket
    • Brake cleaner
    • New oil filter
    • Torque wrench
    Step 1

    Park the vehicle and open the hood. Remove the oil fill cap. Lift the Taurus' front end with a floor jack and place jack stands under the subframe rail pinch welds. Lower the floor jack until the front end sits securely on the jack stands.

    Step 2

    Place a drain pan under the oil drain plug, located at the bottom of the oil pan under the engine. Loosen the drain plug with a socket and ratchet. Remove the drain plug and allow the engine oil to drain. Remove the gasket from the base of the drain plug. Wipe the drain plug threads clean and install a new drain plug gasket.

    Step 3

    Install the oil drain plug and tighten it to 13 foot-pounds with a torque wrench. Slide the drain pan under the oil filter. Rotate the oil filter counterclockwise with an oil filter wrench. Allow the oil to drain, then remove the filter. Pour any remaining oil from the filter into the drain pan.

    Step 4

    Inspect the filter mating surface on the engine and remove the rubber gasket, if necessary. Apply a coat of fresh engine oil to the new oil filter's gasket. Install the filter and tighten it until the gasket makes contact with the filter housing, then tighten it an additional three-quarters of a turn.

    Step 5

    Clean any spilled oil off of the engine with brake cleaner and a shop rag. Remove the drain pan and take the old oil to a recycling facility.

    Step 6

    Lift the front end off the jack stands and remove them. Lower the vehicle to the ground. Pour 4 quarts of fresh 5W-20 engine oil into the engine. Wait three minutes and check the engine oil level. Add oil as necessary until the oil level reads “Full” on the dipstick. Install the oil cap.

    Step 7

    Start the engine and allow it to run for 30 seconds, or until the oil pressure light goes out. Shut the engine off. Wait three minutes, then check the oil level and add oil as needed to bring the level to the "Full" mark on the dipstick.


    • Do not attempt to start or drive the vehicle without adding the required amount of oil.


    • 2004 Ford Taurus; Engine; Torque Specifications
    • 2004 Ford Taurus; Fluid Capacities