How LONG would you leave premium oil filter on with low miles?

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This conversation comes up often but I'd like more data points and input. Assume a premium oils and oil filter (Wix, M1, Denso, Motorcraft, Premium Fram, etc.).
Assume a very small driving miles/hours, say 500-1000 annually, no heavy duty profiles of excessive idling, towing, dirty environment etc., and making sure to at least get the vehicle to operating temps monthly, and changing oil on a 6-12 month basis with around 500 to 1500 miles each OCI.

How long or how many oil changes would you feel comfortable leaving a $10 filter on rather than pointlessly changing it? I'm frugal but not cheap, and want to be smart with my resources. I've noticed the price of many consumer goods is up, including on some of the filters I buy. In the aggregate, with a lot of vehicles, I might needlessly be throwing away $50 to $100 in otherwise good filters every 6 months if I am needlessly replacing them; so I'm asking for opinions.

I think 18 months, replacing it every 3rd oil change or about 1500-3000 miles on this profile is a reasonable action. So, new filter is on at mile 50,000 and OC #1 on 1/2020. OC #2 occurs at 50,600 miles on 6/2020. OC #3 occurs at 51,200 miles on 1/2021. OC #4 with new filter occurs at 51,800 on 6/2021. So the filter would have 1,800 miles and 18 months in service. Is that reasonable?
 
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What is the reason there is a time limit on filters? Does the media start to deteriorate over time? On my Camry there is a cartridge filter in a plastic housing. Seems like it would last a long time. I've done 10,000 miles / 24 months and the cartridge looked fine.
 

CharlesInCharge

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What is the reason there is a time limit on filters? Does the media start to deteriorate over time? On my Camry there is a cartridge filter in a plastic housing. Seems like it would last a long time. I've done 10,000 miles / 24 months and the cartridge looked fine.

That's a good question. My response would be, unscientifically, that over time the media might start breaking down or some rust or a seal problem, as the above poster mentioned. Afterall, these are relatively inexpensive disposable parts meant for ~1 year and ~10k miles (plus or minus). I expect they are over-engineered, but for $10 I wouldn't want to ask too much of them, even if they are over-engineered.

So basically, I'm thinking (again unscientifically but logically) with a >15x (600 miles versus 10,000 as designed) lower miles usage profile, the time could probably be pushed by a factor of 1.5x.
 
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$10 is nothing over the course of a year. I'd change the filter with the oil every time if I'm changing the oil once a year. I have no qualms about throwing the filter out with 1500 miles if it's been a full year. I'd consider leaving it for two years if it was more expensive (say $20 or more for the filter).
 
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I expect the filter medium to physically deteriorate and to weaken structurally over time. Paper certainly deteriorates over time. Synthetic filter medium may fare better. In any case, if a filter disintegrates with the engine running, can you imagine having to clean out the bits and pieces? Two years tops would be my limit.
 
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Cellulose deteriorates, especially in the presence of water; synthetic does not. Unfortunately the Ultra went cellulose (backing), so long term synthetic filters are RP, Fleetguard Stratapore, Donaldson Blue, Amsoil, NAPA Platinum/Wix XP, and Baldwin HPG/MPG.
 
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I expect the filter medium to physically deteriorate and to weaken structurally over time. Paper certainly deteriorates over time. Synthetic filter medium may fare better. In any case, if a filter disintegrates, can you imagine having to clean out the bits and pieces? Two years tops would be my limit.
Filter disintegration almost always means an engine rebuild. It's going to get in so many nooks & crannies that total teardown would be required. That was the issue with the Frams of years ago in Cummins 5.9 B series diesels, the PH3976 (WITHOUT THE 'A')-cellulose disintegrated, plugging piston oil nozzles/squirters-burnt pistons resulted.
 

CharlesInCharge

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Filter disintegration almost always means an engine rebuild. It's going to get in so many nooks & crannies that total teardown would be required. That was the issue with the Frams of years ago in Cummins 5.9 B series diesels, the PH3976 (WITHOUT THE 'A')-cellulose disintegrated, plugging piston oil nozzles/squirters-burnt pistons resulted.
Curious, when you use this phrase it suggests that filter disintegration is common, as are engine rebuilds due to filter disintegration. Is this an issue in modern filters, not Frams of years ago. Otherwise it's an irrelevant data point.
 

ZeeOSix

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I've gone 3 years on the filter in vehicles not used much. Cut open relieved no issues. Outside of can was in new condition as these vehicles remained inside all the time when not used. And when driven they were always ran many miles to ensure the oil and engine was at full operating temperature.
 
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I've been changing the filter on the BMW about every 3 years. I put very few miles on it (probably less than 5,000 in those 3 years). The filters (high quality filter cartridges actually) are coming out oil stained but otherwise pristine.
 
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usually 2 years max, unless the filter is expensive or hard to find, then longer. The Fram Ultra for the 2.0T VW that costs $30, I'd keep that in 5 years :D
 
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No data points to add but I would think about a two year OCI along with a filter change if you are putting that little amount of miles on the car.
 
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I would just change the filter. Unless you are broke or something. Motorcraft FL-1A filters are cheap.
 
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