6 Types of Oil Filters (For 2021)

Oil is considered the blood of your vehicle. This oil will circulate into your engine and lubricate your engine’s parts, mainly because your engine is in constant friction and heat. 

The oil will reduce the heat and friction so that your car’s engine will not wear and tear in the long run. So this oil will travel through your engine’s moving parts and do its magic. However, the oil is not immune to contaminants. In simple words, the oil can get dirty. 

One thing you should know is that the oil must remain free of dirt and other contaminants. If your oil gets dirty, this will cause some issues with your engine and your car’s performance. Over time, your car will soon get damaged. 

This is where the oil filter comes in. The oil will circulate in your engine and can get contaminants. These contaminants will accumulate in your oil and will affect your engine and its performance. 

The oil filter will remove these contaminants from your motor oil. The oil must remain clean and free of any contaminants. This is why motor oil must never be dirty. 

Oil must be filtered because, over time, it can get filthy and can do significant damages to your engine. Simply speaking, the job of the oil filter will filter the oil to remove any contaminants. 

So if you are here because you want to know the types of oil filters, keep reading because you will surely know which oil filter to buy at the end of this article. Let us get started.

Types of Oil Filters

What Are Types of Oil Filters?

You should know by now what an oil filter does. Now, there are a lot of different types of the oil filter. You might be overwhelmed by your choices in the market, especially if you are not an expert on oil filters. 

Though there are many types of oil filters out there, they serve only one purpose. All these filters will filter the oil and remove any contaminants in them. These oil filters will keep your oil clean while it does its job of lubricating your car’s engine. 

If you are not into oil filters, you will get a hard time choosing between oil filters. Of course, choosing oil filters is not done. You also have some things that you should consider. 

Your engine type will have to be considered. Here are the types of oil filters that you can choose from. 

  • Magnetic Oil Filter
  • Full-Flow Oil Filter
  • Secondary Oil Filter
  • Spinner Oil Filter
  • Cartridge Oil Filter
  • Spin-On Oil Filter

You can choose any of these oil filters, but you have to know many things first. This ensures that you will pick the right oil filter that is best suited for your car. Let us discuss further each type of oil filter. 

Magnetic Oil Filter

The magnetic oil filter is equipped with secondary support to a full-flow filter. This magnetic oil filter will successfully clean your oil and remove any metallic contaminants. However, this magnetic oil filter is not so good at removing any dust and filth. 

But what is good with this magnetic oil filter is that it does not need any replacements. This is good because you can save time and money with this oil filter. Over time, some oil filters must be replaced because they will lose their quality. 

But this magnetic oil filter will last and does need to be replaced. What you can do is you only have to clean this oil filter regularly to keep its quality and do its purpose. This magnetic oil filter can remove metallic impurities in your motor oil. 

If you only want to change one oil filter, then this magnetic oil filter is for you. You will not have to change this oil filter now and then. 

You only have to change it once, but you need to make sure that you clean this magnetic oil filter every once in a while.

Magnetic Oil Filter

Full-Flow Oil Filter

This is mainly known as the primary oil filter. This oil filter is named primary oil filter because this is the one that many car makers used. This full-flow oil filter is more valuable, especially in cold temperatures. 

You must know that cold weather will make the oil thicken. If the oil filter is a little bit limiting, the engine will not receive the right amount of oil to do its job of lubricating the engine’s moving parts. 

Some oil filters can only clean a few contaminants on the oil, but this full-flow oil filter is equipped to remove all contaminants in your oil. This full-flow oil filter can make the oil run its course freely and with no distraction. This is not the same with other oil filters.

Full-Flow Oil Filter

Secondary Oil Filter

Some automakers will put a secondary oil filter. This secondary oil filter is put to support the car’s full-flow filter. The one responsible for cleaning less than ten percent of the oil that is being used by the car’s engine is the secondary filter. 

The full-flow filter might have missed some contaminants when it filtered the oil. So the purpose now of the secondary oil filter is to filter some more contaminants. This secondary oil filter will increase your oil’s life and purity and give more protection to your engine. 

This secondary oil filter works independently with the primary oil filters. As a result, they can effectively clean your motor oil. They can also effectively remove any contaminants that are in your motor oil. 

This is also a perfect effect because you will not have to change yours very frequently. Some people would ask if they can install this in their car since they do not have any secondary oil filter. The answer is yes. 

You can install your secondary oil filter even if you already have your primary oil filter. This way, you can ensure that your motor oil will remain free of any contaminants and dirt. This is a good oil filter to have.

Secondary Oil Filter

Spinner Oil Filter

This spinner oil filter is a type of secondary oil filter. This spinner oil filter uses a centrifugal force to trap the contaminants in the motor oil of your car. This spinner oil filter can be able to remove even the smallest contaminant that is in your car’s motor oil. 

This spinner oil filter can be able to generate a force that is two thousand times greater. This spinner oil filter has its name because these oil filters use a spinning motion. 

This oil filter will spin in a round motion, trap the contaminants in the motor oil. This oil filter is equipped with two chambers. We have the housing chamber and the membrane.

Spinner Oil Filter

Cartridge Oil Filter 

This cartridge oil filter is a type of full-flow oil filter. This cartridge oil filter is effortless to use. If you put it in an upright position, you will not remove the oil to inspect it. 

This cartridge oil filter also has no metal. But the absence of this metal is the reason why it is easy to use. If you want a simple oil filter that you can use effortlessly, you can try this cartridge oil filter.

Cartridge Oil Filter

Spin-On Oil Filter

The same as the cartridge filter, this spin-on oil filter is also a full-flow oil filter. This spin-on oil filter has a steel canister. Aside from the sleet side canister, it is also paired with a paper element. 

This spin-on oil filter is effortless to install and use. That is why this oil filter is very famous for those who want to do things independently. This spin-on oil filter does its best in filtering contaminants that will mix in with your oil.

Spin-On Oil Filter


In summary, your oil is the blood of your vehicle. Your vehicle is running smoothly if you have oil that is free of any dirt and filth. Over time, your motor oil will accumulate contaminants, and these contaminants will make you dirty. 

As a result, your oil will not effectively do its job because your oil is now dirty. This is why it is important to have oil filters. Oil filters will filter your oil, and they will remove any contaminants in your motor oil. 

There are a lot of types of oil filters. You might be confused about what type of oil filter to use. This guide above will be able to help you choose which oil filter is suitable for your engine. 

Each oil filter has its uniqueness. They all do the same job. They clean and filter your oil to keep it free of any dirt and filth. You have to choose wisely in picking which oil filter is suitable for your car.

Choosing the right oil filter is essential because your oil filter will determine the cleanliness and effectiveness of your motor oil. Without an oil filter, your motor oil will get dirty and filthy. As a result, you will have to change your motor oil as frequently as you can because your motor oil is a very important part of your engine.

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My name is Hank, and I've been in the automotive industry for 27 years. I've been working in my own auto repair shop for the last 13 years, and now I want to help you here, on my blog. Let me know if you have any questions. Read more