I have decided to start putting some basic maintenance articles here for you – I know I found it hard to find good simple instruction when I first started doing things with my Beetle (less than a year ago). I’ll start with the real basics and as I learn new things I’ll get them down in writing.
So firstly, one thing you should do at least once a week is to check the oil level on your aircooled engine – I probably check it more often than that and certainly add to that before any long trips. Aircooled engines are actually designed to use a bit of oil when they are running and oil is not only for lubrication but is one of the main cooling systems of the aircooled engine – more on that in another article but remember how important the oil system is in your aircooled engine. So, here’s how to check your oil.
- Run the engine til hot, maybe a quick drive round the block, then turn it off.
- Wait about 10 minutes after turning the engine off to allow most of the oil to drain down to the crankcase
- Pull out the dipstick and wipe with a rag
- Re-insert the dipstick and make sure it’s properly in
- Remove again and look at the level – there are marks, the level should be in between the 2.
- If the oil level is less than halfway then add a little oil – try not to spill any but if you do wipe it up after.
If you check this as regularly as I mentioned earlier then it should never get lower than the lowest mark – if it does then you probably have an oil leak that needs investigating. Always make sure you replace the dipstick and the oil filler cap. I keep the can of oil with me at all times just in case.