Located on the side of the engine block, oil filters are key components in safeguarding a vehicle's engine. How does this device (that dates back since the 1920's) work? As an oil pump circulates the oil through the engine, it circulates engine oil as it passes through the oil filter. Then the oil filter goes to work by protecting the engine by blocking large particles that might cause harm to the engine if left unchecked and allowed to circulate freely.
Automotive oil filters also protect the engine by preserving a tiny fraction of oil when the car engine is turned off. All of these are made possible through a device called the anti-drainback valve. An engine at a standstill enables oil to drain into the bottom of the engine, thus leaving the moving parts at the top of the engine without the proper lubrication it needs when the car has to be started again. Fortunately, proper lubrication is easily restored as the small amount of oil retained by the oil filter will quickly circulate into the top of the engine immediately after the car is started.
There are various kinds of car oil filters available. However, any standard oil filter will do as long as it is replaced within 3,000 miles (4,828 km). As the job of the oil filter is to block large particles and prevent them from damaging the engine, it is likely that after 3,000 miles the oil filter may be getting clogged. Lastly, as long as the oil filter is equipped with the aforementioned anti-drainback valve, your engine stands to get the proper care and protection it deserves.
Oil Filter Buyer's Guide
- The oil filter filters harmful particles from the engine oil, which can potentially harm the engine.
- Modern oil filters now feature different types, including a synthetic filter media to address varying driving demands.
- The oil filter is the small drum-like component that’s sometimes located at the bottom of the engine bay.
- The main reason why you need an oil filter is that particles, even the ones smaller than red blood cells, may cause deterioration inside of your engine in the long run.
- An oil filter indicated with a 15-micron rating can filter out particles of up to 15 microns.
- Oil filter usage is determined by the type of vehicle (gasoline or diesel), as well as the size and type of the engine using it.
- Oil filter replacements on CarParts.com can cost you from $4 to $220.
The biggest foes of your vehicle are the tiniest external particles that could easily slip inside of its components. Just like the human body, your car has internal components that function like organs. The oil filter, being one, works just like how a human liver does. It filters harmful particles from the engine oil, which can potentially harm the engine.
The invention of the oil filter dates back to the early 1920s. The earliest oil filters used twill-weave cloth until the introduction of paper filters in the ‘40s. Modern oil filters now feature different types, including a synthetic filter media to address varying driving demands. Choosing the right oil filter for your car not only saves you money but also keeps your vehicle in its optimal condition.
Why Is Oil Filter Important?
The oil filter is the small drum-like component that’s sometimes located at the bottom of the engine bay. Its size may vary depending on the model of your vehicle but regardless of the size, all oil filters in the market work the same. However, what you need to pay attention to is the varying micron ratings, which could be a factor if you’re planning to find the best oil filter for your vehicle.
Underneath the metal housing is a filter media, which could range from cellulose type to micro-glass type. This filter media filters the oil before allowing it to flow into the engine. Basically, the gist of oil filters is to keep your engine in shape by filtering your motor oil.
The main reason why you need an oil filter is that particles, even the ones smaller than red blood cells, may cause deterioration inside of your engine in the long run. Keep in mind that the damage caused by unfiltered oil is permanent. If it ever gets worse, you could possibly be looking at a costly engine replacement.
Oil Filter Micron Ratings
As mentioned, oil filters come with micron ratings. A micron is a metric unit of measurement that is equivalent to one-millionth of a meter. In short, this is how small particles, including dust, are measured. To give you a clearer mental illustration, the average human hair strand has a measurement of 50-80 microns, while a red blood cell is about 5 microns.
Micron ratings indicate the oil filter’s ability to filter and collect contaminants by their size. For example, an oil filter indicated with a 15-micron rating can filter out particles of up to 15 microns. Any particle that is smaller than this will pass through the filter media. You also need to look at the filter’s efficiency percentage for micron ratings to work best. If it says 90% on 15 microns, your filter media can strain up to 90% of the X number of 15-micron contaminants that enter the filter.
Types of oil filter
To know which oil filter is best for your car, you must become aware of its different variations. Oil filter usage is determined by the type of vehicle (gasoline or diesel), as well as the size and type of the engine using it. Here are the types of oil filter offered to date.
Full-Flow Oil Filter
Full-flow oil filters are considered to be the primary oil filters in cars. They can filter 100% of your motor oil and have lower flow restrictions due to the varying viscosity of oil with relevance to weather. Since oil has the tendency to clog along the membrane when the temperature is cold, manufacturers integrated a bypass valve to allow unfiltered oil flow through because unfiltered engine oil is better than none at all.
Bypass Oil Filter
A bypass oil filter is what other people call a secondary oil filter. Some vehicles are equipped with this, while others aren’t. It works independently and deals with a small portion of oil as compared to the primary oil filter. In short, you are more likely to replace the primary filter often than the secondary one.
Conventional Oil Filter
The conventional oil filter is a variant of the full-flow and bypass oil filters. It uses cellulose membrane filter media to filter smaller particles. This is among the types of secondary filters that demand frequent replacements.
Centrifugal Oil Filter
Also known as the spinner oil filter, this type of filter uses a spinning motion to strain the engine oil. The most common layout of centrifugal oil filters consists of the housing chamber and the membrane. If you have this kind of filter in your car, you are recommended to have it checked at least every 3,000 miles. This is to make sure your oil is not leaking through the base gasket, as it is known to be flimsy.
Thermal Chamber Oil Filter
This type of oil filter is the multitasking type. Aside from filtering unwanted particles off the engine oil, it also burns them by raising its temperature. And since it produces heat, it needs power for it to do so. This type of filter isn’t something to go for if you’re after optimum fuel economy.
Magnetic Oil Filter
As the name hints, magnetic oil filters use magnetic force to strain out the ferromagnetic contaminants that have infiltrated your oil. Since it only works on metallic compounds, this type of filter is weak against dust and other non-metallic contaminants. However, this filter does not necessarily need to be replaced. All you need to do is clean it every once in a while to maintain its condition.
How Much Is An Oil Filter?
Oil filter replacements on CarParts.com can cost you from $4 to $220. The oil filter’s brand, type, series, and quality all contribute to its price. You can find the perfect oil filter for your car by tagging its year, make, and model in the filter tab under the search menu. You may customize the list by selecting from the categories listed under the Refine By section on the left corner of the site. You can buy it individually or in sets of up to 10 pieces, which is ideal if you’re trying to stock up.
Important Facts You Need to Know About Oil Filter
Ensure pure and clean oil for your car's engine by installing a reliable engine oil filter. You can also consider an oil filter kit.
None of us would eat dirty food. Not only is it disgusting, it's also unhealthy. And since oil is the food of your engine, the same principle applies. If your engine happens to use contaminated oil, it will definitely compromise engine performance. That's why it's important to keep your engine oil clean with a high-quality Oil Filter.
The Oil Filter is a filtration device that can be found at side of the engine block near the oil pump. Most of the time, this component resembles an ordinary looking can. But unlike a can, it plays a big role in keeping your car oil clean. This car oil filter prevents large abrasive particles from contaminating your engine oil and your engine. The filter does this task by straining your engine oil before it enters the engine. Aside from ensuring that the oil you're using is clean, this automotive oil filter helps increase your engine's longevity by ensuring clean lubrication.
Having clean oil guarantees good performance. Not only that, it also reduces the chances of many car problems like overheating and engine grinding. So you should invest in a high-quality and long lasting filter. That way, you get to drive a well-oiled machine.
Oil Filter: Just the Facts
During those times when vehicles didn't have oil filters, car owners had to have oil change often to avoid early engine damage. Today, the oil filter is a standard part of every vehicle. Found at the lower, bigger part of the engine block, the oil filter protects the engine from contaminants that the engine oil might bring. By catching foreign particles contained in the oil, the oil filter prevents premature engine wear and tear. Not only that! Many aren't aware that the oil filter can also help lubricate some moving parts of the engine. The oil actually drains into the bottom of the engine, so moving engine parts on top are left without sufficient lubrication. Now, the oil filter is very useful in the sense that the oil left in the filter circulates back to the top of the engine when you start-up your vehicle. This leaves all engine parts fully lubricated as soon as the engine starts up. Useful, huh? If you need to replace your stock oil filter, you can get the best replacement here at CarParts.com.
• Available in stock are oil filters designed specifically for your vehicle
• Made from the finest materials, our oil filters guarantee superior function and long service life.
• Our products are always ready for immediate shipping, and we deliver right to your doorstep!
Oil Filter: What Every Car Owner Should Know
As one of the most important fluids running through your vehicle, oil keeps engine operations safe and extends the service life of various engine parts. Once the engine gets to work, its moving parts create a large amount of heat through friction. To keep engine parts from heat-related damage, oil moves through the engine block. Oil prevents excessive friction, keeping engine heat at a manageable level. But you have to make sure, though, that the oil used for cooling the engine is clean and debris-free. This is where a reliable oil filter kit comes in. An oil filter kit comes with a filter and the necessary hardware needed to install the filter. Once in place, the oil filter traps any debris that might be present in your vehicle's engine oil. This way, you're assured that oil in the engine stays pure and clean. For maximum efficiency, oil filters need to be replaced on a regular basis. CarParts.com offers the best deals on oil filter kits.
• Helps prevent friction to keep engine temperature manageable
• Efficiently lubricates moving engine parts for seamless operation
• Filters out contaminants to ensure a dirt-free engine
Buying Tips: What's the Best Oil Filter?
Called the "lifeblood" of the engine, engine oil serves as lubrication for various moving parts. It also cleans the engine and helps maintain ideal engine temperature. Eventually, engine oil becomes contaminated with debris and combustion by-products. To prevent these contaminants from reaching the engine, your car is equipped with a filtering device-the oil filter.
The oil filter is responsible for protecting your car's engine and oil. A damaged oil filter won' filter contaminants, so engine performance will be impaired. If your car's oil filter is damaged, replace it immediately. However, looking for the right replacement oil filter can be a taxing job. This guide will give you tips on choosing the perfect oil filter.
Types of oil filter
If you're in the market for a new oil filter, you should know which type will suit your car's engine and your driving style. Below is a list of the common oil filters sold today.
- Mechanical: By using a fibrous material in a pleated design, mechanical oil filters trap oil contaminants. But over time, mechanical oil filters get clogged by debris and other particles, so they need to be cleaned often.
- Magnetic: This kind of oil filter prevents oil contamination by using small electromagnets. Though they don't have to be cleaned and removed periodically, magnetic oil filters can't filter much dirt unlike the other types.
- Centrifugal: By spinning, a centrifugal oil filter induces centrifugal force which traps contaminants. This kind of filter has two parts: the fiber material that filters debris, and the housing chamber that spins.
The perfect brand
Because of the importance of oil filters, many car parts manufacturers develop and sell oil filters. Typically, oil filters range from less than 50 USD to 200 USD. Take note that price influences oil filter quality, but this doesn't mean that the most expensive oil filter is the best. Always buy from a trustworthy brand and never buy just because of price. If you want to perfect oil filter, consider the kind of car that you have and your driving style.
OE or Aftermarket
When buying car parts, you may have to choose between original equipment (OE) replacement and aftermarket. OE replacement oil filters are made based on OEM specifications. On the other hand, aftermarket oil filters are specialized oil filters and preferred by car enthusiasts because they can filter contaminants very well. If you're having a hard time choosing between the two, remember this: aftermarket oil filters are more expensive than OE ones, but they last longer.
How to Install a New Oil Filter
Every 3,000 miles or so, oil filters need to be replaced to maximize engine protection and prevent engine degradation. If you want to replace your car's old oil filter, this guide will teach you how you can do it at home.
Difficulty level: Medium
- New oil filter
- Oil filter wrench
- New oil
- Never change your car's oil filter within two hours of driving your car. If you do, you may get scalded by the hot oil, and the dipstick will not show accurate reading.
- It's a good idea to run your car's engine at low revs for two or three minutes beforehand to thin the oil and aid draining.
Step 1: Locate your car's oil filter. It's usually located at an angle below the engine or on the side of the engine block.
Step 2: Remove the oil filter using an oil filter wrench. In some cars, the oil filter can be reached from the top. But in most cases, you have to go under the car to reach it. Be careful because it still contains old oil.
Step 3: Clean the oil filter area, so its surface and the new oil filter will fit properly. Check the area again to make sure that the seal from the old oil filter is not stuck to the engine.
Step 4: Now that the old oil filter is out of the way, you can now prepare the new oil filter. Do this by lubricating the new filter's rubber gasket with some new oil. Then, fill it with about 2/3 amount of oil.
Step 5: Screw the new oil filter in place clockwise. Don't forget that it has oil, so hold it upright. Screw it on as tightly as possible with your hand. Make sure that it's not screwed on too tight to avoid stripping its threads.