Finding the best oil filter for your car is not always an easy task. If you go to an autoparts dealer and tell them your car’s make model and engine they will give you a filter that fits. Great. But it doesn’t necessarily provides an answer to our question:
Is it THE BEST oil filter?
Most likely no. Just the one the car maker chose for that engine.
Ok so If I go to an online store and buy a filter with two thousand 5 star reviews that is from a premium manufacturer, will that be the best?
Could, but… what if it doesn’t fit your car!?
I am here to help you pick the best oil filter for your car, being sure that it fits!
So check my oil filter reviews and buyer’s guide further below to be sure that you don’t spend money in the wrong filter.
I have crafted a step-by-step tutorial to help you. Check it down on the buyer's guide.
Oil Filter Comparison Chart
|TOP PICK!||1. Mobil 1 M1 Extended Performance
||Filtration Efficiency: 99% @25 microns||Capacity: n/a||VIEW ON AMAZON|
|Runner Up||2. Royal Purple Extended Life
||Filtration Efficiency: 99.9% @20 microns||Capacity: 12g||VIEW ON AMAZON|
|Budget Choice||3. Bosch Premium FILTECH
||Filtration Efficiency: 99.6%||Capacity: 28g||VIEW ON AMAZON|
|4. K&N Pro Series
||Filtration Efficiency: n/a||Capacity: 14g||VIEW ON AMAZON|
|5. Motorcraft FL Oil Filters
||Filtration Efficiency: 93%||Capacity: 14g||VIEW ON AMAZON|
Oil Filter Reviews
1. Mobil 1 M1 Extended Performance
If you've read our selection of the best synthetic motor oils, you'll have seen that we don't list any Mobil 1. There are better. However, when it comes to oil filters, Mobil 1 stands out from the crowd and is, no doubts, the best oil filter you can get your hands on.
Let's have a look at its features.
Mobil 1 Extended Performance filters are well built in-and-out.
The shell withstands nine times the normal system operating pressure, up to 615 pascals per square inch, which is crazy.
It incorporates a silicone anti-drain back valve to prevent dry starts by eliminating internal leakage.
The inner filter holds double the contaminants compared with the competition, with a total of 28.0 grams.
The filter is highly efficient, rating 99.6 Multi-Pass Efficiency, thanks the advanced synthetic fiber blend media.
This is a filter that will perform at the highest standards in the industry, ensuring proper lubrication of the engine.
Wanna see what's inside? Check this video out.
- #1 Best Seller
- 99.6% Filtering Efficiency
- Up to 28g of Capacity
- Quality of materials
- None Whatsoever
2. Royal Purple Extended Life Oil Filters
Royal Purple concentrates efforts on producing high-performance oil filters and motor oil. Their Extended Life series is absolutely superb, with the only downside of being more expensive than the Mobil 1. Some people believe is justified. Let's jump into the review.
The Royal Purple incorporates micro-glass media that is 100% synthetic and removes particles at a 99% filtration efficiency. We see that is very very close to the numbers of the Mobil 1. It also incorporates anti drain-back valve to prevent dry starts.
The rubber base gasket is heavy duty made and ensures a leak-free sealing. The housing (outer shell) is ultra strong, made to endure the highest inner presures. This is a filter specially recommended for turbocharged engines
- 99% Filter Efficiency
- Quality of Materials
- Recommended for Turbocharged engines
- More expensive than Mobil 1 or Bosch
3. Bosch Premium FILTECH Oil Filter
Bosch is the world’s largest supplier of automotive components. One will hardly ever go wrong with Bosch (Well, you do can, I hate Bosch Spark Plugs). The FILTECH is their premium line of oil filters and it is high-performance oriented.
This German made filter comes with exclusive FILTECH media technology that filters out more harmful contaminants for greater engine protection. As the other top filters reviewed, it also contains a silicole anti-drain back valve to prevent dry starts. That is a standard in high performance oil filters.
- German Engineering, American Made
- 99% Particle Filtration
- 42% More Media Surface
- Outstanding Price-Quality ratio
- Over 10 different models, covering almost every car made.
- Only 14 Grams of Capacity, 50% less than Mobil1.
4. K&N Pro Series
K&N Pro Series Oil Filters have been specially designed to improve engine performance by reducing oil filter restriction. The Pro Series oil filters provide outstanding filtration and engine protection throughout their service life. Let’s see some features
High flow filter designed to improve performance. This sacrifices the incredible %filtration numbers we've seen in the top 3 filters to get better oilflow. For turbocharged, big engines this may be the smart way to go.
The total capacity is 14 grams which is above average but nothing as high as what Mobil 1 or Royal Purple offer.
- Higher oil flow than the competition.
- Prices very low
- Made in China
- 50% less capacity compared with the best
5. Motorcraft FL Oil Filters
Motorcraft Silicone Valve Oil Filters are designed and tested to meet OE specifications for durability and reliability under extreme conditions. They are built to maximize performance and are made from high-quality materials. They offer high resistance which ensures lasting durability.
Motorcraft is the OEM for Ford, Lincoln and Mercury. It comes with a pressure reflief valve that prevent cuts in the oil flow when the filter gets clogged, or under extreme cold conditions when the oil viscosity is too high.
The capacity is around 12 grams which is still good figures although not as impressive as we have seen further above on the table.
The outer shell is extremely hard and is meant to withstand heavy duty.
- 93% Filter Efficiency
- Original EOM for Ford Lincoln and Mercury
- Really inexpensive
- Low Filtering Efficency for the smallest particles (55%)
- Less than 50% Capacity vs #1
Oil Filter Buyer's Guide
In the following guide we are going to cover the essential factors to consider when we pick an oil filter for our car, basic recommendations for proper maintenance and extra information on how filters are done, what do they have inside and why some filters are fantastic and some others are a waste of money.
We hope that this guide will answer all your questions and doubts regarding oil filters.
1. What is an oil filter.
A filter is in general terms a device meant to accumulate foreign bodies such as dirt, water or metal particles and prevent them from flowing freely throughout a circuit, potentially causing severe damage to other components such compressors, pipelines or injectors to name a few.
In a car, the oil filter plays an essential role.
Motor oil lubricates the engine, which ensures all moving parts to work nice and smoothly, cooling them down and keeping them lubricated to minimize friction (which ultimately produces metal wear, loss of performance and mechanical failure).
In order to keep the oil clean from harmful agents such as atmospheric dirt, combustion by-products (such as soot, acid, water) and metal particles an oil filter is needed.
2. How are oil filters made and how do they work.
This video covers this in a great way. It's only a couple minutes long so check it out!
For those who are less interested in the specifics of oil filters and more in the actual how-to-buy-the-best-filter, let’s move forward.
3. How to pick the right oil filter for your car.
So at the beginning of this page we’ve reviewed the best oil filters available in the market, sorted by manufacturer.
This however is not enough information.
I’ve you’ve read each filter review you probably have seen that we link to the manufacturer search tool to see what fits your car.
This is essential.
There are few things more frustrating than having your car up in the jack all bled out, oil filter in hand ready to screw it in just to discover that the new filter simply doesn’t fit.
It is a situation that we’ve faced dozens of times and we want to save you the headache.
This is our Step By Step supereasy guide to buy the right filter.
Input your Make, Model, Year and Engine and click at add vehicle. Autozone’s search engine will then display something like this.
Then Click at “Oil Filter” and you will see something like this next image
Those are the filters that fit your car. The circled “Part Number” is the information we are going to use in step 2.
Step 2. Select the BEST brand.
Go back to the top and check our reviews.
Pick your favorite brand from the ones that fit. (we have sorted being #1 the best). In our example, for the Honda Civic we would select Bosch filters.
Step 3. Buy the Best Oil Filter.
Click at your brand of choice and it will bring you its Amazon’s catalog.
With the Part Number from Step 1 (in our example part nº 3323), select the right filter.
Then simply proceed to buy it from Amazon as you would do with any other item.
For a double check, you can always add your car’s data at Amazon’s “My Garage” and Amazon will tell you if it fits.
Autozone IS MORE ACCURATE.
Sometimes amazon will say “it does not fit” and it does indeed.
But as a double check is a good thing to do. Simply input your car’s data (year, make, model, engine, version).
4. How often should you change your oil filter.
Everytime you change your car’s oil, you should change the filter.
Whilst most oil filters will withstand longer miles than conventional oils, new oil would get contaminated by the nasty stuff retained inside an old filter if you don’t change it.
If your car is running conventional oil 3000 miles is the recommended.
However, if you run with synthetic or full synthetic oil, that isn’t the case.
We’ve covered in another post what’s the correct synthetic oil change interval, so check it out.
What Fram oil filter do i need?
None. Fram oil filters are some of the cheapest, lowest quality available filters in the market. They may perhaps do the job for conventional oils with low mileage between oil changes, but definitely not good for synthetic oils. Their capacity is low, and the filter is little less more than a piece of paper. We do not recommend them.
What is the best oil filter for synthetic oil?
You really want to go with a high-quality oil filter if you are using an expensive synthetic oil. Our recommendations are RP, Mobil 1 and Bosch.
What oil filter do I need?
6. Final thoughts
Factors such as the quality of the filter media, the total capacity of the filter, the by-pass pressure, structural integrity and the particle capture efficiency are to consider to pick the best oil filter.
That being said, Gear4wheels recommends Royal Purple, Mobil 1 and Bosch.