Car running without an oil filter or with a filter that’s clogged and worn out won’t be able to achieve its peak performance. Hard substances, dirt, and contaminants in the oil stream can affect your car’s health and cause damages to the engine. That said, how do you find the best oil filter?
We created this guide with a clear goal in mind – to help you find the right unit for your car (although some of these products work with motorcycles and trucks as well). First, go through the reviews section to get more familiar with the offer and then discover more useful info in our buying guide.
Before we move on to the product reviews, here’s a quick view of the products we’ve covered!
The Best Oil Filter in 2021 – Our Top 10 Picks
Down below, you can find 10 oil filters that proved themselves as the best ones in class. We had different requirements, vehicles, and budgets in mind when creating this list so it shouldn’t be a problem to find a filter that will get the job done.
If a strong filtration is what you are looking for, the Bosch 330 Premium FILTECH might give it to you (read – your engine). The low price, high capacity, and ultimate protection it provides make this oil filter the hottest pick on our list.
In fact, it is 30% thicker than similar products available on the market, which makes it more capable of trapping more contaminants and other substances. It has an amazing capacity to gather up to 14 grams of dirt and other particles and prevent these from slipping into the engine.
This German engineered filter product is both neat and efficient. It is leakproof, comes with an easy to fit steel case and high lubricity gasket that secures a tight seal and prevents unwanted leaks.
Bosch used FILTECH media technology when creating this oil filter thanks to which this unit features 42% of the filtering space. With this one, you can rest assured your car will receive clean oil only and perform smoothly as if it is new.
Although the price tag of this oil filter might confuse you at first, FRAM definitely doesn’t compromise the quality of their PH7317 model. Super-affordable, it features superb protection per 5,000 miles.
We guess one of the reasons FRAM named this unit Extra Guard is because their oil filter has an amazing capacity of trapping dirt and preventing it from slipping to the engine. The key to this holding capacity that goes up to 95% is in the unique blend of fibers and resin.
Unlike a bunch of other models on the market, FRAM integrated microscopic synthetic fibers instead of cellulose that increase collecting contaminants and particles and ensure an optimal flow of oil. If you are using your car on a daily basis, which means you have to maintain it frequently to keep it in top shape, the PH7317 might be a perfect filter for you.
The Motorcraft FL-2016 is another great oil filter that can make your car running smoothly like never before. You should definitely keep this product in mind if you have a diesel engine. Even the Ford Motor Company recommends this oil filter, which means this could be a good buy if you have a Ford.
It features a high level of protection as it prevents dirt, debris, sand, and other particles, as well as carbon and bits of metal from mixing with the oil. Thanks to the pressure-relief valves, you can rest assured no contaminated oil will circle back into your engine. Valves also reduce the chances of the filter getting clogged, which ensures a longer life of this unit.
Do you live in a colder area? The Motorcraft FL-2016 can also ensure a proper oil supply even when the temperatures drop far below zero. Easy to fit in, this rust-resistant oil filter is one of the most efficient media on the market with great ability to capture and hold harmful particles within.
One of the most versatile oil filters available, the K&N single filter might be a great choice whether you have a car, motorcycle, or truck. This model features amazing flow rates and it supplies your engine with the optimal and consistent amount of contaminant-free oil.
Another thing that proves how versatile this filter lies in the fact you can use it with any kind of motor oils – synthetic, conventional, and blended. Either way, this model will filter out all the harmful particles and protect your engine from collecting unfiltered oil, dirt, and other particles that can wear out its surfaces.
K&N had their oil filter laboratory tested so they can be sure of the capacity it features. No doubt, it can trap all of the things found in the engine oil for up to 5000 miles.
Made of high-quality materials, this heavy-duty oil filter is durable and easy to install and remove. It is available with black or chrome finish.
Here we have a quite unique oil filter that features an eco-friendly approach but doesn’t cut on performance or design. Mann wanted to create a filter with a large surface so it can trap and hold more dirt than its metal counterparts. Seems like they did a good job here and designed an efficient oil filter than costs less than most high-end units on the market.
On top of that, it comes with a pleated-paper filter media that contributes to catching and holding contaminants on the entire surface instead of just inner channels, which is the case with metal filters. This, again, makes the removal of contaminants more effective and easier.
It is actually fairly robust, packed with seal rings and long-life filter area. Overall, the HU 816 is a great oil filter if you want to ensure your car’s max performance while being thoughtful of the environment.
Ask your mechanic about the oil filter they would recommend, and most of these guys will say – Mobil M1. This brand has been around for years and established itself by producing high-end oils and oil filters. Their M1-110 comes with a spin-on and cartridge filter that boosts its performance and trapping and holding capabilities.
This oil filter boats the highest efficiency rating of 99.6%. The key to this is in the synthetic fiber blend and large capacity. It traps 28 grams of dust, debris, and other contaminants that can spoil the quality of your oil and damage your motor. Packed with a silicone anti-drain back valve, this filter prevents dry starts and internal leakages.
Another great feature that sets this unit apart from the others is that it can withstand up to 615 Pascals/square inch which is impressive and ensures its durability. Obviously, M1-110 would work best with Mobil oils but you can go for any other brand as well and it will perform equally.
ACDelco designed one of the oil filters with the best holding capacity of an amazing 25 to 30 microns, which contributes to an extremely high, almost impeccable efficiency rate of 98%. It’s already clear this little guy traps contaminants in the blink of an eye but what fascinates is that it can recognize and hold onto even the tiniest particles, thinner than a human hair.
Well-built, this media performs well no matter the conditions. Extreme temperatures can’t hinder its efficiency so keep this one in mind if you live in a cold or tropical area.
The thermosetting adhesive seal is what makes it so durable and prevents the filter from underperforming even when clogged. This also makes it very resistant to bursting. The ACDelco features an amazing burst strength and can withstand a lot of pressure.
Although the fact it is all shiny and attractive makes it a bit trickier to remove, a wrench will come to the rescue. Trustable, efficient, and sleek – this oil filter might be a good buy for almost any car owner.
Looking for an oil filter that can go further? The Purolator PL14610 can go for 10,000 miles if you use synthetic oils, which is quite impressive, especially when we take a look at the price it is sold at. This baby will remove 99% of dirt, other particles, and other contaminants so your engine is supplied with a clean, high-quality oil.
Although some people prefer cellulose media, this high-density synthetic blend might be a better choice as it boasts better trapping and holding capacities. A silicone anti-drain back valve is a rather basic feature when it comes to oil filters but still a very useful one. It prevents oil leaks and dry starts.
Designed to last, the 14610 comes with metal end caps that make it resistant to wear and other factors such as temperatures. Coated in PTFE, it is super-convenient to install and remove, which comes as a cherry to the top to this filter’s great performance.
Some people tend to trust OEMs more. One of products that fall into this category is the amazing Subaru 15208AA15A oil filter that can remove unwanted particles and substances from your oil and prevent them from circulating into the engine. The biggest con is that it is compatible with Subaru models only but that can be a major pro for Subaru owners looking for a specialty product.
If your Subaru performs at a lower capacity than before, one of the basic things to do is to replace your oil filter. Unwanted impurities can cause a number of problems, including overheating.
As expected, because it was developed for a specific brand, the Subaru oil filter comes at a higher price than other, one-size-fits-all oil filters on the market. The 15208AA15A will fit flawlessly and ensure a smooth ride for the next 5,000 when you should replace it with a new one.
Last but not least, the Royal Purple oil filter is a high-performance media that can make your engine run smoothly by trapping contaminants. In fact, this baby filtrates particles and other contaminants with a success rate of 99%. It can trap things as small as 25 microns – it’s crazy!
Royal Purple designed a filter that traps substances and prevents them from flowing into your engine. Yet, all this wouldn’t be possible if it didn’t come with a thick and strong shell that can cope with bigger particles of debris.
There are no leakages with the 10-2867, as metal end caps make a strong and tight seal that prevents any unwanted situations. All this ensures great filtration and the optimum flow of your oil. The silicone anti-drain back valve makes this oil-resistant to extreme temperatures and prevents dry starts.
As a cherry to the top, the 10-2867 comes with a nitrile rubber gasket that makes it super-easy to remove it when the time comes.
Oil Filters – Benefits
Here, we are about to sum up the top 3 benefits of using oil filters although this list can go on and on.
- Prevent contaminants from entering the engine
Dust, debris, and various different particles are always trying to find their way to get inside your engine. Some of these particles are as thin as human hair, which makes them almost invisible. Still, these particles can create a buildup over time and damage your engine. Oil filters trap all of these contaminants and block their way for 5, 7, or 10,000 miles, after which you should replace it.
On the other hand, oils tend to oxidize with time. It doesn’t matter whether you are driving on highways or off-road, this chemical reaction occurs naturally. Once it starts happening, your oil will become even more contaminated. A high-quality oil filter can prevent contaminants found in oxidized oil from reaching your engine.
- Prevent engine overheating
Impurities and particles can reduce the quality of your oil – big time! If you haven’t replaced the oil recently or if your oil filter is clogged with contaminants, it is highly likely you will experience engine overheating. If you want to ensure your engine parts are properly lubricated, an oil filter can take you there while saving you from heat spikes as well.
- Make your engine run smoothly
When nothing but clean and healthy oil is flowing into your engine, your engine will perform at its top performance. Yet, you can’t get there without a good air filter. By keeping the dirt away, this unit can extend your engine life and power.
Oil Filters – Buying Guide
If you want to ensure you are getting the best filter, stick to these basic but very important features beforehand making a purchase.
As you can guess already, the capacity of an oil filter defines this unit’s ability to trap and block further moving of the contaminants. The better the capacity, the longer the life of a filter. You can find units that boast 90 to 99.6% of efficiency.
Once an oil filter reaches its max capacity, it can’t prevent as much unfiltered oil and impurities as it used to. That is why you should pay attention to the recommended mileage and replace your oil filter accordingly.
2. Media type
Each oil filter comes with one of the following media types (materials in charge of filtering the oil) – synthetic, cellulose, or a blend. If you are a bit tight on the budget, you can go for a filter with cellulose media. Yet, synthetic media features better filtration capacity. It is made of tightly woven nylon, glass, and polyester so that it traps everything comings its way. Most importantly – it doesn’t reduce the oil flow rate. Blended media is the middle ground between the price and quality.
3. Ease of Use
It might take some time to find a filter that fits the right way in your car. This unit should be easy to install and remove. Usually, you will need a wrench to take it out. If you don’t want to run to a mechanic every time you need to replace your oil filter, find one that fits well and that is easy to remove.
Replacement of an oil, dirty oil filter with a new one can affect your car performance. It will run smoother and your mileage will increase as well. If you are ready for that massive improvement in your car performance, you should definitely get a new filter.
Out of all the oil filters we saw – the 3300 Premium FILTECH Oil Filter by Bosch seems like a great purchase. It can supply your engine with clean oil and preserve its integrity for the next couple of thousands of miles. Yet, we leave the final choice on the best oil filter for your car to you, as, after all – you know your four-wheeler and its needs best.