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How To: Oil change on 2016+ MX-5 Miata

So it's time to change the oil on your 2016+ MX-5 Miata and you don't know where to start? Well we were changing the oil on our ND shop car and we figured we would put together a detailed guide for you guys. Let's get to it!

Tools Required:

  • 12mm socket
  • 8mm allen socket
  • Socket wrench/rachet

Materials Required:

  • Oil - Mazda recommends 0w20 Synthetic. We recommend most ND owners stick with 0w20 was developed for better mpg and emissions and daily drivers will benefit from it. Since our shop car sees lots of track time and high oil temperatures, we decided to use Motul 8100 X-Clean 5w30 Full Synthetic. The 5w30 will give the motor better protection under extreme temperatures. 
  • Oil Filter - We used the K&N HP-1008 Gold Filter
  • Oil Filter Wrench (optional but helpful)


  1. Pop you hood. Unscrew the oil cap. This can help with draining of oil.
  2. Safely lift the car - You can do this with a floor jack and jack stands or with a pair of ramps.
  3. Remove the aero panel covering the bottom of the engine. This will expose the oil filter and oil pan which we will be working with. You will need a 12mm socket to remove the 9 bolts in order to drop the pan.
  4. Place your oil drain pan under the drain plug. Be sure to position the pan such that you can catch the oil as it shoots out towards the passenger side of the car.
  5. Using the 8mm Allen key socket, remove the drain plug and washer. Do not lose the washer if you intend to reuse it later. 
  6. Remove the oil filter using your hands, a filter wrench, or a set of large pliers.
  7. Wait for everything to drain, then replace the drain plug and just snug it down. It just needs to be tight enough to squish against the aluminum washer. If you want to be exact, use a small torque wrench (not the one you use for your wheels!!!) and torque to 25ft-lb. Do not crank on it!
  8. Wipe down the oil filter pedestal and make sure there is no rubber gasket stuck to it! This is important because if you put the new filter on with two gaskets, you will have a bad time.
  9. Dip a clean finger or gloved finger in some fresh oil and spread it around on the gasket of the new oil filter. This will prevent the gasket from binding on the pedestal as you install it.
  10. Spin the filter on to the pedestal. The filter should spin very freely on the pedestal until it touches the mating surface of the pedestal. If you feel resistance you are probably cross threading. After it touches the mating surface, give the filter another 1 full turn to snug it down and seal.
  11. Fill the oil through the oil filler on top of the motor. The oil capacity of the ND miata is 4.2L or about 4.5 Quarts. We suggest that you put in 3.5L (~4 qt) first. We will check the levels and top it off to its final capacity later.
  12. Start it, check for any leaks. If everything looks good, shut it off.
  13. Re-install the metal cover.
  14. Drop the car- drive off your ramps or lift your car, remove your jack stands, and let the car down.
  15. If you did not do so already, start the car and let it idle for 30s to 1 min. This will allow oil to get picked up and distributed in various parts of the motor so that you can accurately check the oil levels
  16. Turn off the car and check the oil level. Top off as needed and you are done!
  17. Grab a beer and pat yourself on the back for a job well done!


Product Links:

Motul 8100 Eco-Lite 0w20 Full Synthetic Oil
Motul 8100 X-Clean 5w30 Full Synthetic Oil

K&N HP-1008 Gold Performance Oil Filter
Motul + K&N Oil Change Combo Deal - Save $5!

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  • bruce

    Nice write up got me through the first Oil change problem free … G R E A T!!

  • bruce

    Add link to reset the wrench maintenance icon. Also neat trick from walking the dog and picking up poop. Get two plastic shopping bags that you get from grocery story. Turn one inside out to protect your hand and use to unscrew drain plug and keep hand clean, use the other to unscrew the oil filter after loose. These two bags will minimize the slop. Yes also use latex gloves to really protect hands.

    The allen key is good….. if you have allen keys!

  • Billy Bob Norton

    Thanks! Much appreciated the clear details and pix!!!

  • MiataSpeed

    Mazda started doing it in the RX-8 and NC. =)

  • Kevin Kelly

    Odd they use an allen key for the drain plug.

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