Fram Ultra FAILURE

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Car: BMW X3 Oil: Mobil 1 0w-40 Miles: ~3000 This is my wife's car. We just purchased it this spring with about 77,000 miles on it. When I brought it home, I promptly dumped what was in it and dropped in a Fram Ultra filter and the Mobil 1 European formula oil. Car ran like a top. About a month ago my wife started complaining that her engine was making a ticking sound. It is odd that she would comment on any sound her car was making, but the next time I hopped in, sure enough I heard it as well. I hopped on the internet and found this particular 3 liter is known for ticking, and a redesigned head is the solution (UGH!). The good news is that the ticking in large seems to not effect life or longevity...so we decided to just live with it. Well, it kept getting worse and worse. For some reason I had a gut feeling to grab a new filter (this time I just got a normal Fram orange box) and just replace it to see if a filter restriction was limiting oil flow. Well, I pulled the housing and found this... I replaced the filter and gave it an Italian tune up - I am guessing some gunk has gotten past the filter and clogged up a lifter. Anyways, the tick appears to be gone for now...we will see. Any suggestions? I am also sending this to Fram.
 
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That's pretty gross at 3000 miles. At least seeing nothing is perfect is interesting. There will probably be less of an uprising that against purolator.
 

DriveHard

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Originally Posted By: gtmaster303
Did you remove the end caps or did they separate on their own?
That is exactly how I found it when I opened the filter housing...it had totally come apart on its own.
 
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Originally Posted By: DriveHard
Any suggestions?
Yes. Stop using FRAM. The OEM filters are fairly inexpensive, so I really don't see any reason why someone would consider the alternatives. Of course this is no excuse for a poor performing FRAM, regardless. What year is your X3?
 

DriveHard

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Originally Posted By: Quattro Pete
Originally Posted By: DriveHard
Any suggestions?
Yes. Stop using FRAM. The OEM filters are fairly inexpensive, so I really don't see any reason why someone would consider the alternatives. Of course this is no excuse for a poor performing FRAM, regardless. What year is your X3?
It is a 2008 (the one in my signature). I've used Fram in all my past Audi's and VW's and Chevy's with open elements and never had this problem. With the perceived "step up" in quality in their Ultra line, I have even started using their closed filters on my truck...now I am wondering. Seriously just considering going back to OEM filters from now on and just forgetting the whole darn thing. Seems like you can't trust any aftermarket oil filters anymore.
 
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Originally Posted By: DriveHard
Originally Posted By: gtmaster303
Did you remove the end caps or did they separate on their own?
That is exactly how I found it when I opened the filter housing...it had totally come apart on its own.
That's bad. I'll definitely cut apart the FU from my Camaro on the next oil change.
 
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Good thing my car uses the spin on...because those are excellent. This is too bad, you know, Fram says that they use metal end caps on the Ultra (spin on) because of this reason....that the glass fiber media does not want to stick to other materials, well here is the proof. Glad you are choosing to send it to Fram. Contact Jay (Motorking), he will take good care of you.
 
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Yep, the spin on ones are a completely different animal. Love them on my K24 so far.
 
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I won't be using any more Ultras after this: http://www.bobistheoilguy.com/forums/ubb...ia_#Post3367488 I didn't mention it in that thread but, when I took the filter apart to get better pictures of the hole, I was able to pop the end caps off with my thumb with about as much effort as flipping a coin. I didn't think it was significant at the time but maybe it was.
 
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OVERKILL

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Originally Posted By: DriveHard
Originally Posted By: Quattro Pete
Originally Posted By: DriveHard
Any suggestions?
Yes. Stop using FRAM. The OEM filters are fairly inexpensive, so I really don't see any reason why someone would consider the alternatives. Of course this is no excuse for a poor performing FRAM, regardless. What year is your X3?
It is a 2008 (the one in my signature). I've used Fram in all my past Audi's and VW's and Chevy's with open elements and never had this problem. With the perceived "step up" in quality in their Ultra line, I have even started using their closed filters on my truck...now I am wondering. Seriously just considering going back to OEM filters from now on and just forgetting the whole darn thing. Seems like you can't trust any aftermarket oil filters anymore.
The OEM BMW filters are excellent quality and relatively inexpensive. I see no reason not to use them. And it seems you can't trust a lot of aftermarket stuff anymore unfortunately frown
 
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The speculation that this happened because it's an Ultra with wire backed media which uses metal endcaps in the spin on application, doesn't apply to or explain the other non wire backed media cartridge application linked in my previous post, also having what looks to be the same issue. Or to the poster above with a link that had a different Ultra media issue.
 
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Ahh, nuts. Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water. I guess I'll keep cutting my filters open, although I've never used an Ultra. In all the filters I've cut open, the only failure I've found so far was a Napa ProSelect, which was pretty old. I currently have some Microguards (low-end Wix) from oil change deals, we'll see how they look after 5000 miles or so.
 

DriveHard

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This is the response I have received from Fram already. Mr. Lingenfelter, We are sorry to hear that you experienced difficulties with one of our products. We have established file number XXX for your concern and have sent you a claim form along with a prepaid shipper for return of the product in question. This has been sent via UPS and you should receive it next week.. Thank you, Fram Filtration Product Evaluation Team
 
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