So what actually is inside your oil filter??? - First Generation Forum

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So what actually is inside your oil filter???
Friday, June 15, 2012 3:22 PM
Many years ago I ran across this website - long before I even knew about J-Body.

Been feeling a little under the weather today, and ran back across this stuff surfing across my computer.

Now I know this probably isn't the best forum to post something like this, and I apologize if it seems outta place. I thought, though, since our 1st gens are nearly all antiques nowadays , ( hard to believe, isn't it! ) , a good filter is more important than ever.
Oil filters, like everything else have their fans and their foes. Still, I think knowledge is power and if people can get a chance to see for themselves, they might be challenged of their convictions. This, said , I wanted to see for myself, and went to the trouble to cut open a few of these myself back then and confirmed what the website stated - from what I saw it is accurate.

I will take the risky chance to mention my personal conclusions after reading and cutting. I only worked with 4 brands myself. I found that Motorcraft and Purolator are identical. I found the Fram and AC Delco are also identical. I was more impressed with the Purolator brand - the unit had more real metal parts and a better designed pressure spring. That spring also doubled as the top seal in the Fram design, which had more paper/cardboard/cork components.

One thing I've learned that I'd like to share is the finer the filter - the harder it is to push the oil through it. Upon engine startup, thick oil simply cannot pass through the filter. The oil is pushed up to the top of the filter and that creates pressure against the bypass spring. When the that spring is mashed, the paper filter is moved away from the base, and unfiltered oil is circulated. It finer the filter, the more time the filter will be bypassed till the oil warms up, and then the spring can push the filter back to the base again. 5W30 oil will be filtered faster than 20W50 - for example.

So here is the site :

http://minimopar.knizefamily.net/oilfilters/index.html




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....and you folks know I like to post photos.



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I was terribly disappointed after inspecting the AC Delco!! At that time I had one on the wagon, and immediately pulled and replaced it with a Purolater brand.

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Re: So what actually is inside your oil filter???
Friday, June 15, 2012 3:33 PM
We use purolator at work. I've never heard anything bad about them.

I personally use a $13 mobile one filter, because it has DOUBLE the capacity. lmao


- Your not-so-local, untrained, uncertified, backyard mechanic. But my @!#$ runs
Re: So what actually is inside your oil filter???
Saturday, June 16, 2012 5:42 AM
You'll notice AC Delco has switched to the Fram manufacturer since these photos were made, also the string around the Purolater is no longer used.









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Re: So what actually is inside your oil filter???
Saturday, June 16, 2012 6:50 AM
Holy crap! Did you cut up all those filters Orlen?


Tony
1987 Sunbird GT turbo convert
Ported intake, Fiero 53 MM TB, 52 lb inj, ported and flowed head, tube header, Mitsu TD06, ARP rod
bolts/head studs, adj cam sprocket, 4" x 12" x 31" FMIC, Paxton AFPR, modified 125 trans/LSD
unit/3.42's, custom chip tuning, Alky Control Methanol injection
13.61 ET at 101.44 mph, 262 WHP/350WTQ

2009 Pontiac Solstice GXP roadster, 2.0 turbo w/GMPP exh, CAI and turbo upgrade, 290 hp/325 ft lbs

1969 Olds 442 convert
400 Eng, 200-4R trans, 3.73 posi, power everything, OAI


Re: So what actually is inside your oil filter???
Saturday, June 16, 2012 8:13 AM
All I cut up were the 3 in the first post about 5-6 years ago. The rest of those were done by the fellow who has the website. I have saved the past couple of Purolater filters I've removed since my last couple of oil changes. Plan on opening them up with my dremel tool and a cutting wheel , see if any changes have been made. Will post a few photos when I do. I think it would be neat for others to cut open their used favorites and share a photo or 2. Be a fun comparison!!



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Re: So what actually is inside your oil filter???
Tuesday, June 19, 2012 9:18 AM
ok, this is something I know very little about. I run wal-mart sythetic in all of my cars and run it for about 5000 miles. I only use AC Delco filters (and a truck filter with extra capacity on my Camaro). I used to run Mobil 1, but the $$$ got away from me.

I especially did not like the part about purging and allowing all the old oil to bypass the filter... How do you keep that from happening?




Re: So what actually is inside your oil filter???
Tuesday, June 19, 2012 9:42 AM
ok, helps if you actually read everything... Please do not respond to the "how do you keep that from happening" above. Thats what I get for multi-tasking.




Re: So what actually is inside your oil filter???
Thursday, July 19, 2012 8:01 AM
I know quite a bit about this subject because of my job, and while the designs of filters change from time to time (mostly for the worse unfortunately), from my experience, here is my list of best to worse oil filters:

Best: Purolator Gold, K&N, Mobil One, Royal Purple, Napa Platinum & Amsoil

Good: Wix, Purolator (regular), Napa Gold & Silver, Bosch, & Mann

Worst: FRAM, AC Delco, Motorcraft and most OE filters (Except for most OE Honda filters)

I would not use any of the "worst" filters under any circumstances (it just isn't worth it). I've seen those filters fail time and time again. It's always the same manufacturers when it comes to filter failure.
I believe that most OE filters are no good because car manufacturers don't want you to drive their cars forever, so what would be their motivation to provide you with a top quality filter ? Just like most OE parts in cars, they are only designed to get your car out of warranty - and that's it.
Also, you really want to avoid most store brand filters (IE: Walmart, K-Mart, Carquest, Etc.) because they (like most OEM filters) change suppliers more often than I change my underwear (probably a little too much information there at the end...)




~ Mike ~


Re: So what actually is inside your oil filter???
Thursday, July 19, 2012 6:58 PM
...this reminds me - I was suppose to take a few photos of a couple of recent purolater filters I had used, and cut open...

I'll see about that this weekend if I happen a chance!!

I just try to buy purolater regular filters and use the cheapo wal-mart oil , but I change it often - around 1500 miles - this practice has yielded good results over the years.




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Re: So what actually is inside your oil filter???
Thursday, July 19, 2012 7:29 PM
Got a 98 Saturn SL2 with 410,000 miles on it. I've been running Walmart oil and Walmart or Fram filters in it since 108,000 miles and it's still going. Had 3 new Saturns back in the mid to late 90's and used to run Mobil one or Wolfs Head in those (kept them for about 200k miles), but like Paul said the cost just keeps going up. Guess I've been lucky , but I do change it once a month and for me that's about 3 to 4k miles.













Re: So what actually is inside your oil filter???
Thursday, July 19, 2012 7:43 PM
I think just changing your oil on a good schedule regardless of brand of filter and maintaining your car to the letter can alter the less quality filters failure and be fine.I have used mostly fram on my 87 trk and bought new and with 198,000 it is fine.The old cav is same mostly fram and 205,000 and burns ZERO oil.I am not discounting a good/bad filter bc I know some do a better job just doing good up keep goes along with the program to prevent said problems.My $1 worth




Re: So what actually is inside your oil filter???
Friday, July 20, 2012 2:23 AM
John Masson (84conv) wrote:

Got a 98 Saturn SL2 with 410,000 miles on it.

Saturns rock We recently switched from Fram, after watching a youtube video of one being cut open, to AC Delco before AC Delco switched to another supplier so We'll be switching to another filter brand most likely Wix or NAPA. We use Castrol Syntec in our '02 Saturn sl1 and change the oil 3x a year. My dad's '99 Saturn has over 250,000mi on it, been thru hell and back but still runs.









Re: So what actually is inside your oil filter???
Friday, July 20, 2012 12:37 PM
Bought a 2002 Saturn S series brand new--worst car I ever drove/owned.

Thing felt very unstable on the highway, and as soon as the 36K warranty was up, car was nothing but problems. #1 cyl even crapped out at less than 50K miles.
Re: So what actually is inside your oil filter???
Friday, July 20, 2012 2:11 PM
well i hope oil
Re: So what actually is inside your oil filter???
Friday, July 20, 2012 6:51 PM
Wayne Schiff wrote:

Bought a 2002 Saturn S series brand new--worst car I ever drove/owned.

Thing felt very unstable on the highway, and as soon as the 36K warranty was up, car was nothing but problems. #1 cyl even crapped out at less than 50K miles.

hmmm only major trouble we had was an intake manifold gasket, other than that we just change the oil regularly. You must have just gotten a bad one









Re: So what actually is inside your oil filter???
Friday, July 20, 2012 7:54 PM
Wayne Schiff wrote:

Bought a 2002 Saturn S series brand new--worst car I ever drove/owned.

Thing felt very unstable on the highway, and as soon as the 36K warranty was up, car was nothing but problems. #1 cyl even crapped out at less than 50K miles.


just replaced the upper engine mount on my fathers 93 sc2. lemme say this about early saturns: gm missed the trick. they had a line of commuter cars. coupe, sedan, and wagon. those ealy saturns you still see running around? its because those early 1.9s were awesome. sure the timing chain was from a huffy and the bodies were plastic. who cares? you can get a new timing kit for $75 and the body would never rust! then gm decide that saturn should be rebadged daewoos and the cheap chevys. when they could have turned saturn into their civic/corrola/sentra/escort killer. but why do that when you can just rebadge?

basically, if the cavalier ever dies on me, you can bet i'll be buying a pre ODB2 saturn.



JBO Stickers! Get yours today!
Re: So what actually is inside your oil filter???
Sunday, July 22, 2012 7:51 AM
Sorry - I will hop on the Saturn thing... I was considering purchasing a 96 SC2 back in Jnauary of 96. I drove my Sunbird in and they said they would give me $600 for trade (this was pre-restoration). The SC2 was nice, but my Sunbird killed it in acceleration. I ended up buying my 94 Z28 instead

The parts yards by me are filled with later saturns. I agree, the earlier ones were better. I would have loved me an SC2 convertible with a big six




Re: So what actually is inside your oil filter???
Monday, July 23, 2012 4:29 PM
Did the same back in Dec of 93, Test drove a 94 SC2 and a 94 Sunbird. Ordered a black 94 Sunbird SE, worst car I ever had and only owned it for about 1 year and traded it for the new 96 SLY2 . I had two new Saturns and three used ones. Pretty reliable if you just change the oil.\\










Re: So what actually is inside your oil filter???
Monday, July 23, 2012 4:59 PM
To add to the OP's thread... Napa filters are manufacturered by Wix...

It's all I'll use.



Buildin' n' Boostin for 08' - Alex Richards
Re: So what actually is inside your oil filter???
Thursday, December 12, 2013 2:15 PM
Not to bring a thread back from the dead but Orlen was wondering if you checked any newer Fram filters, heard they have been upgraded with metal endcaps now and was just wondering if it's true.








Re: So what actually is inside your oil filter???
Friday, December 13, 2013 12:49 PM
No Spike, all I buy these days are the Purolater Brand. I used them in the GM's and also my Ford. I seriously doubt I'll ever buy a Fram. I do split open one of my used Purolaters from time to time to make sure they haven't starting cutting corners - and I can say so far the materials have not changed in them.

I have to say the marketing dept. for Fram hit a home run - the Fram Filter always has looked like it ought to have been a great product!!

No one was more surprised than yours truly to discover what what was inside back then!


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Re: So what actually is inside your oil filter???
Friday, December 13, 2013 2:21 PM
I have no clue why Fram filters have such a good reputation. They are without a doubt, the WORST FILTER MADE. Cheap materials, bad design, worse performance.
We have a running joke at my shop that when anything is describe as poor quality, we call it "FRAM BAD".
Anyone who uses a Fram and hasn't had a problem yet, has only been lucky. EVERY Fram filter we get in our shop we cut open just to see how they have failed, and most of them have already failed.






~ Mike ~


Re: So what actually is inside your oil filter???
Saturday, December 14, 2013 5:46 PM
yea I try and always get a wix or car quest brand (Made by wix, same as Napa.)
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