Oil FIlters

Engine Oil Filters

Engine oil is essential for lubricating engine parts and components that are constantly in contact which results in friction. Engine oil is added to the engine to act as a lubricant for these moving parts and without engine oil, the engine would quickly deteriorate, with parts breaking and seizing.... During the lubrication process the engine is combusting and as a result of this impurities will accumulate in the oil, which if not filtered, will significantly degrade the oil's performance. An engine oil filter is required to filter the engine oil and keep the oil clean playing a vital part in engine protection by eliminating harmful pollutants from the oil. The quality of the oil filter should be given the same consideration as the quality of the oil. Oil and oil filter development has been significantly influenced by improved high-performance engines and new pollution rules. New oil classes will be developed as engine manufacturers continue to produce more advanced engine along with types of oil filters and oil filter technology.

Oil filters trap contaminants in oil in two ways.

• 1. As the oil runs through the filter, certain particles attach to the filter medium. These particles adhere to the surface of the media without clogging the pores.
• 2. As the oil passes through the filter, it creates a pressure that forces other particles to become lodged in the filter medium.

Bearing this in mind it is absolutely critical for the efficient long term running and protection of an engine to have an appropriate oil filter for the particular application installed and quality engine oil that are both regularly maintained.  There are many different types of oil filters and when you have made the decision to purchase an aftermarket filter, it is vital that you are selecting an oil filter that is manufactured to meet the relevant OEM standard for that engine and not just fit for purpose. FCP Solutions can assist with making this selection from our comprehensive range of filters. We ensure that we only supply filters that meet or exceed OEM specification from reputable worldwide manufacturers. When advising a suitable aftermarket filter we consider things like:

• Micron Rating - Micron ratings express the size of particle that the filter media is able to remove from the fluid. We ensure that our full range of filters meets the micron rating of the filter we are replacing.
• Bypass Valve - A bypass valve is a safety implement used in oil filters that opens when oil pressure reaches a certain level to allow unfiltered oil to quickly flow back into the engine. This is to prevent oil starvation. Under ideal conditions, the bypass valve should remain closed, but in the event of it needing to operate you want to ensure the settings are correct. When replacing oil filters for aftermarket we ensure that the replacement matches the OEM, so if it requires a bypass valve the replacement filter not only has one, but matches the pressure of the bypass valve setting of the original.
• Anti Drain-back Valve - The anti drain-back valve is used to prevent oil from draining out of the filter when the engine is off. We ensure that every we filter we supply contains an anti drain-back valve if it is required as per the OEM specification for that filter.
• Filtration Media - The entire range of filters from FCP Solutions contain only the highest grade of media and match the OEM specification. Many generic filters cut costs by using lower grade cellulose media when the OEM contains synthetic media. We only supply filters that meet or exceed he relevant OEM specification meaning that if the OEM has synthetic media, so to will our replacement. On some filter part numbers we can also offer upgraded media to the OEM for extended drain intervals if the client is sampling the oil and using the data to safely extend the drain intervals.

When To Change Oil Filters?

As a general rule, Oil filters should be changed in the following applications:

• Automotive - every 5,000 to 10,000 kilometers with some newer models having 15,000 kiolmeter intervals or as per the recommended interval in the owners manual. 
• Trucks - Local fleet smal truck every 10,000, with on road prime movers up to 25,000 kilometers or as per the recommended interval in the service or owners manual and if oil sampling extended service intervals may be attained based on the test data.
• Machinery - every 250 hours or as per the maintenance manual and if oil sampling extended service intervals may be attained based on the test data.

The above recommendations are merely a guide and is very dependant on the driver or operator paying attention to the performance of the engine. Oil filters can become clogged and the oil may be passing by the filter media through the bypass valve unfiltered. An engine exhibiting the following performance issues should have the oil and oil filter inspected as part of other checks when performance isn't as expected:

1. Degraded Performance: While poor engine performance can be a number of things the engine oil filter should be checked as part of diagnostics as a blocked oil filter can lead to engine lag.
2. Engine Splutter: If the faster you go the more the engines performance suffers this can be caused by a blocked oil filter.
3. Detectable Metallic Noises: As described above engine parts are in constant friction and moving against each other. If there isn't enough lubrication the engine may emit audible grinding noises which should be attended to immediately and signs the oil filter could be blocked.
4. Low Oil Pressure: While driving your oil pressure should never drop.  This can indicate that the oil filter is blocked or there is an oil leak. 
5. Dirty Exhaust: If the engine is emitting brown or black smoke from the exhaust this is a sign that it is burning oil. As part of diagnostics the oil filter should be checked and replaced.

Oil filters maintenance and replacement shouldn't be overlooked as they play a major role in preventing your engine from catastrophic failure. When it comes time to replacing your dirty oil filter, FCP Solutions can offer the absolute best protection on the market from our range of filters and expert advice.

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