[what's new in:] Oil filters

Sept. 9, 2014
Filters are helping engines meet emissions standards

With today’s diesel engine designs focused on emissions and fuel economy, one focus of oil filtration products is to keep close-tolerance engine components contaminant-free for long life, notes David Cline, oil filtration product manager at Parker Racor.  “All of the technology that is available on the engine to meet the strict regulations on exhaust emissions simply adds more trash to the crankcase,” he says.

“Earlier engines relying on exhaust gas recirculation to control emissions certainly had an impact on the soot load in lube oil,” Cline adds. “Though in-cylinder technology has allowed for some reduction in soot load, higher engine temperatures and a cap on TBN (total base number) due to the use of diesel particulate filters have reduced the life of the oil in some cases. The industry today is looking to filter media development to resolve these conditions.”

Cline relates that Parker Racor has created oil filtration products designed to improve system life, boost efficiency, and meet standards for emissions compliance. “The approach in our ECO cartridge lube filtration products allows for media development coupled with multiple functions in one module,” he explains. “Unlike in the past, where a majority of lube filters were made from pleated cellulose media in a steel spin-on can, our direction is to use engineered media in a top load cartridge to meet today’s lube filtration needs. We also incorporate secondary lube filtration for even finer filtration, and a reduction in moisture, particulate and soot. This approach gives longer life to the engine oil, and reduces the wear particles in the 4-7 micron range that cause engine wear.”

Veli Kalayci, manager-engine liquid products at Donaldson, says that as today’s engines are asked to do more than in the past, today’s lube oils perform multiple tasks of lubricating, cooling, suspending soot, neutralizing acids, cleaning surfaces and controlling corrosion. “Expectations for performance and quality have increased,” he says. “Today’s filters are called on to separate and contain finer levels of contaminant in hotter engine oil for extended periods of operation.

“To provide protection to the engine and maintain today’s higher oil cleanliness standards, lube filters capture wear metals, soot and contaminants from the engine oil,” Kalayci states. “When used in combination with extended life oils and effective maintenance practices, the synthetic media, the type of seal elastomer, and other design choices for these products can add up to longer filter life and better engine protection.”

In order to address the demands of today’s engines, explains Kalayci, Donaldson Blue lube filters keep engine oil clean by capturing contaminants that can cause damage. The extended service filters with the manufacturer’s Synteq media operate longer between service intervals by removing greater amounts of fine contaminant and delivering increased contaminant holding capacity compared to standard cellulose media.

Luber-finer’s newest line of filter solutions includes the Time Release Technology (TRT) oil filter that employs a controlled release of a specially formulated, highly concentrated liquid additive into the oil. The TRT filter helps oil maintain its quality longer, the company says, because the additive is released only when it is needed.

Puradyn’s XD additive oil filtration system, the manufacturer states, removes solid contaminants to below 1 micron as well as water and gaseous contaminants. The filters also replenish base additives in the oil that are depleted through the normal operation of the engine by means of a slow-release process, maintaining the oil’s viscosity level and chemical balance.

“New engines operating under the extreme heat and load conditions necessary to meet emissions standards are more susceptible to oxidizing and tend to generate contaminants that help form acids in the engine oil,” explains Kevin Kroger, president/COO of Puradyn Filter Technologies.  “The oxidation of the oil and the acid buildup increases the depletion rate of the lube’s chemical makeup.  The XD filter offsets the depletion rate of the base additive package and helps maintain the oil’s TBN and viscosity to engine manufacturer specifications.”

Expectations for oil filter performance and quality continue to increase to meet the demands for engine efficiency and longevity.  Oil filter manufacturers tasked with developing products to meet those challenges are working to provide more efficient filtration, resulting in overall lifecycle cost reduction.

For more information, visit these websites:

Castrol, Heavy Duty/BP Lubricants

Cummins Filtration


FRAM Heavy Duty Filters


Parker Racor

Puradyn Filter Technologies

TF Hudgins/Spinner II Products Div

Wix Filters

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