Oil Filters are one of the most critical maintenance items in your vehicle. Motor oil is the “life blood” of your vehicle’s engine. It primary purpose is to lubricate the engine and carry or suspend contaminant through the oil filter in order remove them from the oil. The oil filter works with the engine oil to block contaminants from entering your vehicle’s engine.
What is it?
The oil filter is a replaceable car part that removes dirt and contaminants from the engine’s oil. They come in two primary style: cannister and cartridge.
The most common oil filter is a steel canister construction.
Depending on your vehicle’s application, you might use a canister filter that is fitted into a housing attached to the engine.
How Does It Work?
- An oil filter is attached to an outlet on the engine. Canister filters are spun-screwed on while cartridge filers are inserted into the filter housing.
- The oil is pushed through the engine by the oil pump. That pump allows the oil to flow through one side of the pleated media inside the filter that removes the damaging dirt and contaminants.
How Is It Made?
- Canister filters are formed with metal can, media and a base plate to allow installation on the engine.
- Cartridge filters are primarily media and additional components to ensure proper fit into the housing.
Why Does It Fail?
- Severe duty driving.
- Lack of oil changes.
- Sludged-up engines.
What are Symptoms of Failure?
- Leaks from the filter or filter housing.
- Engaged check engine light.
- For some applications, when an oil filter is clogged, it will go into bypass mode by allowing the oil to circulate without entering the filter. This prevents engine oil starvation.
What Are the Consequences of Failure?
- Poor performing or low grade filters can allow dirt and harmful contaminants into the engine.
- Non-performing filters can lead to severe damage to engine walls and pistons, causing oil blow by or oil smoke coming through the tail pipe
- Ultimately, a failed oil filter robs your engine of trouble free miles.