Why it’s Dumb to use Cartridge Oil Filters in Your Car


one, two, three, four! Rev up your engines! It’s time for the Scotty Kilmer Channel today I’m going to talk about why I hate
these modern canister oil filters, where you got to take them all apart and replace just the
paper part inside, now my first beef is cost, now why does this filter cost more
than this filter, it’s just paper, this has all kinds of stuff inside it, they’re
just ripping you off on the price, now this is on a Toyota Highlander, and
granted I call up the Toyota dealer, at least they’re fair, they charge five
dollars for the paper one and seven dollars for the metal one, at least
they’re not ripping you off, but about this one on a local auto parts store and
they charged tons more, usually the dealers have the highest prices, so they’re just
ripping you off with these stupid things, I guess they figure, your not going to drive
the whole way to a dealership to save a few bucks, but really, it’s a ripoff that
they charge so much for these stupid paper ones at auto parts stores, and
secondly, look at the difference, these are spaced further apart, these are
closer together, so you actually get worse filtration with these stupid paper
ones, and then of course, comes a problem of getting these stupid things off,
because as you can see here, they’re an oddball shape, and you have to buy a
special wrench just to get the stupid things off, and take my advice, when
you buy one, buy a metal one like this, I tried the plastic ones, but they just
snapped off because they were so cheap too, then when you put the tool on, you
have to take it off, which comes off with a tool, don’t ever try to do it with a
wrench or something because it’ll just strip it all apart, and of course it makes a gigantic mess, because you got to take all this stuff apart, and oil
gets all over the place, now when I was a kid in the sixties starting to work on cars,
they had old cars like this, I thought we were going forward with technology, not
backwards, and then you have to put a new rubber seal on it, lubricate that, and
screw it back on, now with modern engines being so complex with variable
valve timing and other editions to them, why on earth are they going to a cheaper
filter that doesn’t filter as well instead of using a tried and trued metal
canister one that we’ve used for decades, I mean really, they have less filtration
area, they’re a bigger pain to change, why on earth are they putting these things
in modern cars, well the only thing I can think that
they’re thinking is, it’s cheaper to make them, because everything’s plastic,
and since they don’t filter as well, the engines will wear out faster, then they’ll
sell you another one, so there’s planned obsolescence involved too, but if you have one of these stupid oil canisters on your car, take my advice,
when you buy a filter, buy one that’s got synthetic materials, so at least it’s
going to filter as well as it can, and last longer because the synthetic
materials don’t break down as fast as the paper does, I’m just happy that all
my cars are older and they use high-quality extended life oil filters
on them, that are in a can, and remember if you’ve got any car questions just
visit the Scotty Kilmer channel and I’ll answer them as soon as I get back
from the twilight zone.

100 Replies to “Why it’s Dumb to use Cartridge Oil Filters in Your Car”

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  2. I ran into one of these filters on the newer Volkswagon Beetle. Heck my 1959 Cadillac Coupe De Ville has one of these drop in filters in a can. I always wondered why a 1959 Chev had a spin on filter and it took a 1960 Cadillac to finally go to a spin on filter. Usuallyback then, Cadillac got the first of everything. But Volkswagon Beattles like you say are garbage, don't buy them. This really surprised me on such a newer car. And if you cut old oil canisters open and drain them, then recycling the metal that's in the canister. The paper part ends up in my wood stove.

  3. Scotty can I replace my stupid filter like this 2011 Toyota Camry 4 cylinder to real metal filter ? Like Mobile One Filter or K&N

  4. I think its to protect environment and make cars not to live long as old cars which we still use for decades. Their point is to make the costumer buy new cars often. We should not complain dear scotty because “THERE ARE CRAZY ENGINEERS” who are capable of placing oil filters inside engions and say “Hey its a life time filter you dont worry about that” I wish them to live happy and die along with that cars as however they last for LIFETIME😡

  5. One thing you and I better get use to Scotty is, Auto Company's pay engineers and accountants big money to figure out as many ways as possible to SCREW the customer with this planned obsolescence and bad designs (ford spark plugs for a 5.4 Ltr engine) If that's not bad enough you have assholes like DT putting tariffs on steel and aluminum, so the new cartridge filter is the way to go, at least there is no metal in them. So no matter what you do, your getting bent over the work bench and some bastard keeps making life more complicated because of corporate and government greed!.

  6. Do you actually know the micron rating of the filter or are you just giving it the eyeball test? Having the pleats slightly more spread apart doesn’t mean it doesn’t filter as well. If your gonna review a filters filtering capabilities, you should research the facts first and use actual data.

  7. For environmental reason obviously. And now you know why German cars are not as durable/reliable as they used to be – if they have their way fully, ecomentalists in Europe will ensure new cars are completely recyclable!

  8. I just had my first encounter with this on my wife's 2015 4Runner. The free dealership oil changes just expired. I am not a professional mechanic, but am very experienced…I've been working on vehicles as a hobby for over 20 years…..frame off restorations, drag cars, jeeps, vw buses, etc. I should be able to change the oil in anything in 20 minutes. I bought the Toyota replacement element and filter cap wrench ahead of time and was ready to change things out as soon as my wife neared the mileage.

    4Runner gets within 500 miles of oil change time and it was also time for front and rear brakes. I swapped out the front and rear pads and rotated the tires in about 2 hours.
    Next onto the oil change. It took me 5 minutes just to locate the damn filter. Behind the skid plate, not cut out or anything. I have to remove two plates just to get at it!? I do that and all the bolts brake loose pretty hard….now i'm wondering when the last time the skid plates where removed and how did the dealer access this filter without removing them? Now I a put my Toyota filter cap wrench on it and it will not budge. I pulled hard enough to surprise myself because I know better…and pulling that hard, zero movement. I had looked up the torque spec and it is 18-22ft/lb……not much. I probably just pulled hard enough to remove 70 or 80 ft/lb. Next i take a metal punch and dead blow hammer and hit on a tab to try to shock it loose…no. I keep doing that and nothing. Again, I am hitting it too hard and still nothing. Now its been about 2 hours….literally the amount of time it took me to do all four brakes and rotate tires!

    Long story short, I end up snapping it off with a friggen breaker bar. That is what it took. I don't know who the hell smoked that on or if it has even been being replaced. Called the dealer, "yes, we have replacement caps, they are $128.00". Found an aluminum replacement cap made by Dorman on Amazon for $20. Got that the next day, put that on with new O ring and it developed a small leak after 3 days! Skid plates back off, filter cap back off….this time much easier. Lubed and replaced O ring and reinstalled. Its been 4 or 5 days and no signs of leaking so I guess I'll put the skid plates back on. Really, this whole thing is unbelievable.

  9. They have adapters now for these!!! I also detest these cartridge things 😉 And I am looking into getting one of the adapters. I drive my car extensively for work and change my own oil. Thousands of miles per month. So it will be worth it to me. I have a late model Camry that should run a good long while yet, or longer.

  10. Reason some company's switch to the canister is because they are eco friendly…too many spin on filters are thrown away at landfills with oil still left in them.

    I agree with them on that part but I prefer spin on filters…it gets the job done quicker.

  11. My citroën has a plastic oil filter housing and paper filter inside. Unbolt the lid and lift out the old one and put in new. The old alley ones are paper inside so not much has changed

  12. They do this because modern engines have more specific requirements for the bypass and anti-drain back valves in the filters. Instead of trusting idiots to buy oil filters with the correct specs, they built the valves into the engine, so you only replace the filter element itself.

    As for the “paper” being cheaper with less filtration, if you cut open an OEM Denso Toyota filter, you’ll find that exact filter element. Toyota seems to generally favor flow rate over micron rating and filtration efficiency.

    I will agree, however, that they are more of a pain to change, especially when you access them from underneath. I wish they would put them all on top. But the Toyota filter housing has a drain valve so you can empty the housing before you remove it. It’s less of a mess that way.

  13. they do it so people can't change their oil anymore and have to bring it to a professional or even worst stop changing their filter and eventually get another car….

  14. Finally someone who shares my disgust for these 1950's style cannistser oil filters, duh, And plastic housings to boot. Junk!

  15. It's the Mercedes school of auto parts. No matter what we make you gonna pay. Now Mercedes swears their filter is better, they say that about anything with the tristar on it. Most just swear at them.

  16. My 2014 VW came with a cartridge filter and a "composite" (plastic) filter cover. I like it though because it's upside down under the hood so it drains out so there's no mess when I screw it off to change it.

  17. Dang near an impossible oil change on the Toyota cartridge-style filter setup. I have a Highlander V6 with that same filter setup and spent two days trying to loosen the metal oil filter housing in order to change the filter — all to no avail. I ended up having to take the car to a shop where, no kidding, it took two men with a 5-FOOT BREAKER BAR to loosen the filter housing once they had the vehicle up on the lift. Even they had to work at it a long time. This is a new level of oil change insanity. I like Toyotas, but that's the worst oil filter design ever. It's almost like Toyota made it intentionally difficult for the home mechanic to change the oil . . . .

  18. have to disagree with you on this scotty. My corolla is a pleasure to change, and my tundra is only a little bit messier. They actually make less mess than some cannisters i've used… I am used to them from bikes and fourwheelers…. they seem to work fine and aren't that messy for me… but HEY…

  19. Its claimed to be a environmental thing. Less waste product to deal with, and no crushing required if you work at a shop and are required to stay in line with EPA laws. At the end of the day, crushing 30 some oil filters in the crusher is a monotonous and annoying task.

    that set aside… these canisters are a pain for techs. They simply require more time and attention, more risk of breaking parts and the higher risk for comebacks because the ring starts to leak. A number of other vehicles use these as well. In different shapes and sizes. GMs, german vehicles, some hyundais….. just to name a few…

    Just my 2 cents.

  20. Scotty, they have a tool to drain the cap so it doesn't make a mess like that. Use a ratchet and take out the center piece, screw in the drain tool/hose and drain the cap. Once its drained then take it off.

  21. Oil filters do nothing, unless its a toilet paper filter from Amsoil or Franz. Scotty you should know you must change your oil to filter it. Thats why your generation cars didn't oil filters – bcs they understood cars.

  22. Scotty –
    I thought Planned Obsolescence and Toyota were enemies. Now you tell me that you have caught them together, well past the point of chance meeting or dalliance. The end has come. Toyota has crossed over to the Dark Side.

  23. My car requires replacement of the oil filter (paper with the metal for screwing in on top and for inserting into the filter cover, and a new o-ring), which is an odd design, and the Chevys on my driveway have the full 9 yards for the filter.

  24. Ya, as a Toyota owner, I don't get this either. I thought oil filters that you replace from the top of the engine was strange. BINGO! Murphy's Law!

  25. Sorry but those paper filters are less messy, so I am convinced and you could use any 1/2 wrench to open that filter.

  26. Are you retarded or something. On the bottom of that oil filter in the toyota, there is LITERALLY a square there so you can use a ratchet without a socket on it.

  27. Ecological sensitivity was the reason for the change from metal external cartridges to internal paper filters.

    Car manufacturers being "eco" friendly is absurd in the extreme.
    Darwinian theory suggests that we let all car drivers gas the environment, pollute the environment, cause death to millions through cancers, brain disease,and accidents, and transfer vast wealth to the middle east.

    Eventually normal and sane people will retake the streets, previously stolen by the car, and in Europe, we can enjoy peace, quiet
    and the art of pleasant conversation while walking to the shops.

  28. paper cartridges are more environmentally friendly and easier to recycle. Just about all the vehicle manufacturers are doing it now days on one model or another. The main problem with the paper cartridge design is whoever's changing the oil Could easily contaminate the filter housing. Good bye engine Scotty!

  29. Those kind of filters can make any sense when they are accesible from above. Most modern cars come with a plastic cover underneath (for noise isolation I guess) and they usually are meant to have the oil extracted by vacuum from above too. But for those that sit under the car, the "canned" model is way better.

  30. My local auto store sells the cartridge filters that are as good as cans, and they are also not all plastic, and they cost less than can filters…

  31. Hey Scotty; At the bottom of those idiotic canisters is a drain plug. All oil elements come with the plastic drain valve, and both O rings. I do hate those canisters. I have a  2015 Toyota 4Runner with a plastic housing that cracked. Purchased a replacement aluminum housing. If someone could tell me how to change the canister filter housing to a regular screw-in filter, please let me know.Also can someone tell me where is the oil pressure sending unit located on a 2015 Toyota 4runner engine. Thank you.

  32. Not to mention Scotty, many of the Toyotas come with the canister oil filters have a plastic filter cap

  33. My god what a rant! Scotty, Do you honestly think a washed up old 70+year old American red neck mechanic knows more then a highly educated tree hugging engineer from a company like Toyota! No fucken way! Toyota is the company that has put GM, FORD and CHRYSLER to shame! The Japanese sharpened their pencils 50 years ago and you sorry losers are busting your balls trying to catch up! Christ even Hyundai is out doing you guys! HANG YOU HEAD AND SHAME!

  34. Love it when Scotty goes off.. but he is right we are going backwards in technology. And thats just stupid

  35. Modern VW TSI canisters are great. Super easy and way cleaner than any spin on. Toyota V6 Tacoma’s up near the oil fill cap spin on’s are fantastic though… those Toyota V6 canisters are the worst..

  36. Let`s see….Mr. Kilmer
    Preaches about those "stupid" filters but keeps a Fram branded one for comparison (Fram filters are notorious for their bad quality).
    Suspends the SUV without safety support (safety should come first!) – but has a nice hydraulic system unused right beside the car…
    Implies that the engineers are good enough to design complex engines but are also stupid enough to put bad filters on them…

    Scotty, those 51 years of automotive work should have been also teach you something about decency.

  37. if you don't want the mess you could screw a drain plug in the middle of the canister… but I do hate this kind of filter also

  38. Okay Scotty, My 2009 RAV4 has one of these filters. So what is the difference between a regular WIX filter and a WIX-XP filter. Which one is closer to the OEM Toyota filter?

    Oh and aren't you supposed to drain the oil out of the filter housing before you remove it so it doesn't make such a mess?

  39. Toyota uses these filters so most customers will bring their vehicles in for service and charge them a boatload because the owners don't know how to do it themselves

  40. i thought i was the only one hating those miserable things… the oily mess is absolute… i buy mine in bulk 20 pcs for 3bucks each

  41. Don't buy a POS Toyota and buy American where the filter housing is on the top of the engine where it should be!

  42. It might be an ecology thing, the waste would be much less than the metal, silicone and rubber you get from a canister oil filter. If that would be the case then I agree with this filters. If Toyota,, BMW and other brands are using them then they must be good enough.

  43. Well. You were shitting on the design, yet you offer no remedy for your complaint. These cars are putting serious miles and I really doubt these filters you hate will effect the life span of these cars equipped with these lubrication system type. I have a 1.8 2010 corolla with over 250,000 miles with no issues. Use it to haul my Sportbike’s across state lines! These filters are a breeze to install. It must have been a slow week for uploading videos for this channel. 👎

  44. There are a couple of things wrong with your video: 1. I bought a couple of cases of these from a dealer and paid under $3/filter, so that makes them cheaper. 2, if you buy an OEM filter, it comes with a plastic tool to drain the filter before you take the canister off which keeps you from making a mess. If you do that, it's even neater than a metal filter. Other than that, I do agree that metal filters are easier to deal with. I currently have two Toyotas that use those, but I bit the bullet and bought the tool years ago for $25. Not a bit deal over 200K or more miles.

  45. Costed 7.89 for a paper filter for a Chevy cruze and I got a standard oil filter for a kia forte for 3.56!

  46. We live in an age that people are willing to be stupid and spend $80,000 for a car or truck. Then pay $150 for an oil change. As long as people want to be stupid and pay exhorbant high prices for everything, the manufactures will oblige these people.

  47. I have to disagree with you!

    VW TDIs, of which we have three, all with upside down cartridge filters (cap at the top), are no bother at all. My sister got 100k out her old Vento TDI, with a total of 200k when it was scrapped due to other mechanical failures.

    My local VW garage reckons the local VW TDI taxis clock up 400k. As far as know all VW TDIs use cartridge filters.

    Regarding the filtering medium, its dependent on the filter manufacturer. We use Mann brand because they're OE to VW.

    The only faulty filter I've ever had bother with was a canister type where a hole had rusted through causing an oil leak.

    Have you written letters to the likes of the SAE to voice your concerns?

  48. Hey Scot ty! I had one of these on my '09 G5 2-dr.; but didn't make a mess because it was located on top of the engine. HOWEVER every time I changed it the PAPER media, IT was ALWAYS COLLAPSED (caved in) in a spot. Probably though did not affect the filtration quality. Guess couldn't take the pressures inside the oil system! ANYONE else run into that with cartridge type of filer??–TTDRon!

  49. Are you able to switch from this type filter to the old cool canister one ? Went to do the oil change on a 2012 Prius I just got and 🤯 wtf !!!

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