Oil filters are a very important part of the engine lubrication system. They keep dirt, deposits, and debris out of the engines moving parts. This debris can work like sandpaper rubbing down metal components and causing premature wear on an engine. Before oil filters were used in motor vehicles, oil changes were required every 500 miles. It is a must that you replace your engine oil filter every time an oil change is done. Thee are two types of engine oil filters. One type is the spin-on filter that comes in a prepackaged tin housing. Just as it is called it “spins-on” to a hollow bolt on the side or bottom of the engine. The second style is a canister insert. This insert fits down into a housing that is usually part or can also be attached to the engine.
The Spin-On oil filter was first used in 1955 in production vehicles. Prior to this oil filtration was not standardized and most of the time was added to a vehicle after production by an independent shop. The original oil filters were called Purolater’s. Pure Oil Later.They were made of a variety of things such as steel wool, cotton waste and cloth. The spin-on technology helped to standardize the industry and oil filter production became less expensive over time. Now a-days, you can get a spin on oil filter for less than a dollar. Compare this to tuna fish in a can. You have seen the advertisements for tuna in a zip lock style bag, which seems great, only to find out that it cost you twice as much for the tuna in a bag than in a tin can. Just doesn’t seem right but this is the world we live in.
Similar to the example above, purchasing a oil filter insert is much much more expensive than getting it in a spin-on can. The insert filter however are worth every penny, at least most of the time. When an automobile manufacturer like BMW uses an oil filter size, they tend to put it in as many vehicles as possible, thus reducing their inventory sku’s. Because of this efficiency, many many of the same oil filters can be produced, lowering production costs. Audi on the other hand, has a tendency to use one size oil filter on only one car making the cost of production extremely high and limiting the number of suppliers. You could spend as much as $27.00 on some models just for the oil filter. Insert oil filters are more efficient, they allow more oil to pass through them, and they are better for the environment.
The German manufacturers requirement for oil filter is that they will last through three oil changes with out breaking down and are biodegradable. There are only two manufacturers that are authorized by BMW, Mercedes Benz, and Volkswagen/Audi: MANN and Mahle Original. Recently Asian and US manufacturers have been switching to the insert style oil filters in order to keep the oil cleaner, thus reduce engine wear. The inserts appear to be the same but these manufacturers do not have the same standard of manufacturing as the German automobile manufacturers. At Peak Auto located right next to the Cary Auto Mall at 833 US 64 W., we are committed to the quality of the oil filters we use in your vehicle no matter the country of origin.