5 Signs That Your Oil Filter Is Clogged

Your vehicle is a complex combination of intersecting parts. When one part of the system isn’t performing properly, the rest of the system suffers. You might ask, for instance, what does an oil filter do? The short answer is that it removes contaminants from the engine oil. The longer answer is that if it isn’t able to do its job, black and dirty oil is going to flow through the engine and into the exhaust system, damaging both the exhaust system and essential parts of the engine, possibly permanently.

Sometimes when something is not working properly in your vehicle, it can be hard to pinpoint the issue. For instance, if your car won’t start, you could have a dead battery or problems with your starter or alternator, among other things. The good news is that there are pretty clear signs that will manifest themselves when your oil filter is clogged.

1. Dirty Exhaust

When oil filters are clogged, evidence will be appearing in the exhaust system. Dirty smoke will begin pouring from it, resulting from the burning off of the impurities that hadn’t been removed from the clogged filter. You may also notice oil leaking onto the ground, as the filter retains some of the thick liquid that it cannot process.

2. Low Oil Pressure

A drop in oil pressure is usually indicative of a clogged oil filter, whereas an increase in oil pressure is more likely a broken pressure relief valve. Both are bad because a vehicle needs to operate at a consistent pressure to maintain proper cooling and lubrication of all moving parts. Signs of low oil pressure include an overheating engine, a burnt oil smell and diminishing engine performance.

3. Poor Engine Performance

The oil filter regulates the clean oil that is going through the vehicle’s engine and without it, you’ll likely hear and feel your engine sputtering. That clean oil is responsible for providing the appropriate lubrication for the moveable parts at play. When you have any oil issues, you risk an untenable situation as the parts grind together, eventually seizing, resulting in a ruined engine.

4. Overheating Engine

A dirty or clogged oil filter can lead to overheating. As low oil pressure takes hold, not only lubrication is affected, but so is the engine’s cooling capabilities. The oil is a cooling agent and when it is cut back, parts grind, which causes friction and heat, contributing to the engine’s increasing temperature. Eventually, your check engine light will come on and shortly thereafter, the car will stop running.

5. Metallic Noises in the Engine

When the amount of oil circulating through the engine is insufficient, the moveable parts may begin grinding to the point that you can hear them. When friction replaces seamless functioning capability, you’ll hear it and you’ll know that the next step will be those moveable parts breaking.

Driving with a clogged oil filter can lead to a damaged engine. It’s easy to identify, once you are aware of the signs, and it’s a rather simple fix. Each of the filters for car serves an important purpose regarding airflow and clean fluids. Visit an online auto parts store today to check out the latest in parts and accessories to address your oil filter needs and more.

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