3 Essential Car Filters and How to Change Them

The engine, cabin air, and fuel filters are essential components of your car. They keep the engine clean and running smoothly, and prevent contaminants from entering the vehicle. The engine air filter prevents dust, debris, pollen, and even insects from entering the engine assembly. The cabin air filter works as a barrier between car passengers and external contaminants.

The oil filter keeps combustion contaminants, dirt, and carbon deposits away from the oil. The fuel filter removes contaminants such as dust, sand, and rust from the fuel supply. Usually, the oil filter is replaced as part of an oil change, a key part of routine maintenance of your vehicle. Your vehicle's owner's manual will give you recommendations on how often you should change your oil and filter.

Your car's ventilation system features the cabin air filter to maintain a constant flow of clean air inside the vehicle so that you and your passengers can breathe easy. If you don't change the cabin air filter, the filter will become more clogged with dirt and debris and the efficiency of your car's filter and heating and air conditioning system will be compromised. Like other parts of your vehicle, your vehicle's fuel injectors rely on a clean flow of fuel to propel your vehicle on the road. If the fuel filter becomes clogged, it can reduce the flow of gasoline to the engine, which can weaken the engine's performance.

A clogged fuel filter makes the fuel pump work harder. Signs of a clogged fuel filter include sharp starts, poor acceleration and stall. An air filter is a very simple component in the air intake that can keep the air entering the engine clean of contaminants. The screen keeps out insects, water, road dirt, pollen, dirt and anything else that gets on your vehicle's grille.

The air filter is one of the easiest parts to change or clean. Long before a new car starts blowing smoke, the check engine light will come on because the air filter has passed its peak. The cabin air filter can be under the hood, behind the glove box or under the dashboard. Depending on your location, cabin air filters may be a little more difficult to replace than the engine air filter.

It is recommended to replace the oil filter every time you change the oil. You may need to change your oil and filter every 3,000 miles, but many new vehicles require less frequent changes up to 10,000 miles. When it's time to change your fuel filter, you may notice that your vehicle is slower than normal or that it suddenly fails for no reason. Most manufacturers recommend changing your fuel filter every two years or 30,000 miles, whichever comes first. There are three common types of air filters: paper, gauze and foam filters. Paper air filters are the most common type in cars today.

One of the reasons for their popularity is their affordable price but they are not suitable for all cars. They are better for small cars and geographical areas where there is not much pollution or dust. The engine is kept clean by filters that can prevent the ingress of contaminants and allow clean air and liquids to pass through. In addition, a dirty or clogged air filter can damage other parts of the engine such as spark plugs.