2016 Honda Fit Oil Change, Splash Shield

2016 Honda Fit, after removal of the splash shield, The oil filter is blue, the oil drain plug is more rearward. Toronto, Canada. Photo by Don Tai

2016 Honda Fit, after removal of the splash shield, The oil filter is blue, the oil drain plug is more rearward. Toronto, Canada. Photo by Don Tai

My 2016 Honda Fit told me it needed an oil change. This is my first oil change. In order to do an oil change I needed to remove the splash shield. The splash shield covers the bottom of the engine bay from road debris and dirt. Because the Fit only has 5.5″ of space under the splash shield, I needed to make ramps in order to gain more space under the Fit. Convoluted for the first oil change, yes, but hopefully much easier for the second oil change.

I made DIY wooden ramps from 3 pieces of 2×10. This jacked the car up an additional 4.5″, enough to get underneath the Fit and examine the splash shield.

The splash shield is flimsy and not well attached to the Fit. It is attached using 8 thin metal screws and 2 expansion plastic screws. Other Fit owners have had their oil changed at their Honda dealership only to have their splash shields fall off later, probably due to the dealership damaging the metal screws or the plastic screws.

Removal of the splash shield is relatively easy. The front lip pulls rearward and the splash shield comes loose. This exposes the engine bay, which houses the oil filter (blue) and the oil drain plug.

2016 Honda Fit splash shield. There are 6 metal screws, 3 screws per side, and 2 plastic expansion screws at the rear. Toronto, Canada, Photo by Don Tai

2016 Honda Fit splash shield. There are 6 metal screws, 3 screws per side, and 2 plastic expansion screws at the rear. Toronto, Canada, Photo by Don Tai

As this was my first oil change, with the maintenance minder showing a “1 a”, the oil filter, $10.21CAD need not be replaced until “1 b”. Commander Slug says the XG7317 oil filter from Fram is also great. The head of the oil drain plug faces the rear of the car. It requires a 17mm hex wrench, but comes undone easily.

2016 Honda Fit, after removal of the splash shield, The oil filter is blue, the oil drain plug is more rearward. Toronto, Canada. Photo by Don Tai

2016 Honda Fit, after removal of the splash shield, The oil filter is blue, the oil drain plug is more rearward. Toronto, Canada. Photo by Don Tai

2016 Honda Fit, after removal of the splash shield, Engine Oil is marked on the engine casing. An arrow points to the oil drain plug. Toronto, Canada. Photo by Don Tai

2016 Honda Fit, after removal of the splash shield, Engine Oil is marked on the engine casing. An arrow points to the oil drain plug. Toronto, Canada. Photo by Don Tai

Without changing the oil filter, maintenance “1 a”, the Fit takes 3L of 0w20 synthetic oil. With the filter change the Fit requires 3.3L. I have an oil drain container, so the oil change was really simple and clean. The oil drain plug is supposed to me torqued to 29 ft-lbs but I could not get my torque wrench in there, so I tightened it “enough”. You should also change the oil drain plug washer, only $0.85CAD.

Reinstalling the splash shield was a little harder. The splash shield front lip tucks into the bumper. There is a little tab on the passenger side that also fits under another piece of plastic. After this the 6 metal screws are installed. The 2 plastic expansion screws first need the plastic plug, the part that expands. The plugs are really flimsy plastic. You need to straighten them first before you insert them into the hole. The plastic screw is then installed.

2016 Honda Fit splash shield plastic expansion screw. Toronto, Canada. Photo by Don Tai

2016 Honda Fit splash shield plastic expansion screw. Toronto, Canada. Photo by Don Tai

Because of the low quality of the splash shield screws and the numerous forum owners that have lost or damaged their splash shields, I decided to add 2 zip ties to the shield. The driver side requires one and the passenger side requires 2 daisy chained together. Both attach to metal parts underneath the car.

2016 Honda Fit splash shield, driver side zip tie to a metal part. Toronto, Canada. Photo by Don Tai

2016 Honda Fit splash shield, driver side zip tie to a metal part. Toronto, Canada. Photo by Don Tai

2016 Honda Fit splash shield, passenger side two daisy chained zip ties through a hole in a metal part. Toronto, Canada. Photo by Don Tai

2016 Honda Fit splash shield, passenger side two daisy chained zip ties through a hole in a metal part. Toronto, Canada. Photo by Don Tai

Once zip tied, the shield should not be dislodged even if the metal and plastic screws are lost. The zip ties are easily removed and replaced for subsequent oil changes. They are strong and inexpensive.

Drive the car down the ramp, check the oil, top up oil if required, and you are done.

As you can tell, most of the time was removing and reinstalling the splash shield. The plastic expansion screws are fiddly. Overall the design is not well done and is prone to dislodging without the zip ties. Thankfully oil changes occur relatively rarely.

Addendum: Your Corner Wrench: Is it plastic or metal? Don’t make assumptions by Brian Turner

Underbody shields. These have to be one of the biggest headaches in modern vehicle ownership. They are constantly being torn or damaged by road debris and parking curbs and can be expensive to replace. Keep a selection of various sizes of zip-ties in your tool kit and after rough drives on particularly snowy days, take a peak under your ride to check for any loose or broken shield mounting points. Zip ties can make for an easy DIY repair. Avoid the temptation to simply toss a loose shield in the garbage. They’re not only for improved under-carriage air flow but can keep deep snow from getting picked up and thrown into the engine drive pulleys by the spinning belts. Pack enough snow between a pulley and its drive belt this way and the belt can easily spin off.

Addendum 2018 Mar 28 Did an oil change today. The ramps were great. The splash shield had all screws attached and the zip ties held on very well. Cutting them off was easy.

One issue was my drip pan. I did not completely remove the hole cover, which slipped down when the pan filled up and blocked the hole. Oil spilled out and onto the driveway. Damn. I did have cardboard down on he driveway, but it was not enough. The initial squirt out also did not get into the oil pan. I need to completely remove the hole cover, and elevate the oil pan so to catch the initial squirt.

The oil filter was on good. Had to use the larger Boa rubber clamp. Skinned my finger. I dropped the oil filter into the oil pan but it did not make it into the pan, dropping more oil onto the driveway. Putting the oil filter on was pretty easy. I did not over tighten it.

Next time maybe put a plastic tarp on the driveway first, for easier cleanup.

2019 Mar 24: Did an oil change, schedule A, and found the back right expansion screw had fallen out and the splash shield rear was a little looser than usual. I added double zip ties to both sides, close to the expansion screws (white in the diagram). The other 6 metal screws, reinforced by zip ties, are holding.

2016 Honda Fit splash shield. There are 6 metal screws, 3 screws per side, and 2 plastic expansion screws at the rear. One expansion screw was lost, so I added double zip ties near to the expansion screw holes. The original design is inferior to zip ties. Added Zip ties in white. Toronto, Canada, Photo by Don Tai

2016 Honda Fit splash shield. There are 6 metal screws, 3 screws per side, and 2 plastic expansion screws at the rear. One expansion screw was lost, so I added double zip ties near to the expansion screw holes. The original design is inferior to zip ties. Added Zip ties in white. Toronto, Canada, Photo by Don Tai

2 thoughts on “2016 Honda Fit Oil Change, Splash Shield

  1. B. Rasmussen

    Don Tai:

    Thank you for the article. I just spent 90 minutes or more trying to get good information on replacing a Honda Fit Splash Shield. I could not even find the name or price on the official Honda parts site. I could not even find out what the part was called. I found “undercar shield”, “undercar engine protector” “skid plate”, “mud protector”, but splash shield seems the most logical.

    I think my splash shield was wrecked by the crew at the last express lube shop. My splash shield lasted 2 days after they changed the oil.

    I am coming up on an oil change. This time I need to go to a experienced mechanic to undo what the quick change artists did. Now, I can buy the right part and print this article to give to the mechanic. He/she may know all about these shields, but the article may help a lot

    Bernhard
    Juneau, Alaska

  2. Andrew

    Bernhard – I know it’s been over a year, but the part on my 2017 is Honda Part 74111-t5a – Cover, Engine (Lower). Hopefully that helps people find it.

    Don Tai – Thanks for the informative write-up!

    Andrew

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