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Oil is the lifeblood of your car engine. Or more precisely, clean oil. If you think about it, you need a fresh, quality filter screening out dirt and debris to keep your engine happy. Put bluntly, filtered oil protects and prolongs the life of your motor.

So, you don’t just want a good filter, you need the best oil filter. That is why we did the research and compiled a list of the 10 best oil filters for your review.

No Time to Read the Detailed List?

If you are pressed for time, no problem. In summary:

The Royal Purple Extended Life Premium Oil Filter was our best overall pick. It is designed as a premium filter and the specs along with the in-use performance back that claim up.

This filter is more expensive and you should use it with synthetic oil. But the Royal Purple Extended Life Oil Filter is your choice for superior engine protection.

Many products vied for the best of the rest. But the Mobil 1 M1-110 / M1-110A Oil Filter a good balance of features. Plus it comes with a 12 month/20,000 mile guarantee. It will appeal to a large number of drivers.

For those who want value, the Motorcraft FL-910S Oil Filter is affordable and has decent performance specs. This product happens to be the OEM part for Fords. But this oil filter comes in versions for most makes and models.

10 Best Oil Filters in 2020

The following compilation contains the 10 best oil filters for gasoline street-legal engines.

1. Royal Purple 10-2867 Extended Life Premium Oil Filter Review - Best Overall
  • Micro-glass filter media
  • Filters as small as 25 microns
  • Thick, robust shell
  • Silicone anti-drainback valve
  • Mesh backed filter media
  • Expensive
  • Must use synthetic oil to comply with warranty
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Cost: $$$︱Protection: 15,000 miles︱Efficiency: 99%

Royal Purple designed this extended life “premium” oil filter with synthetic “micro-glass” media. It achieves 99% efficiency at 25 microns or larger.

The outer shell is thicker than the competing oil filters for increased durability. Inside, a metal screen backs up and supports the filter media.

Plus, the center tube design prevents filter element collapse. This configuration lets filtered oil flow unrestricted through your engine.

As with most quality oil filters, you also find a silicone anti-drainback. The material chosen is long lasting and the valve is important to keep dirty oil out of your engine. But it also prevents dry starts.

You can achieve an extended life as the name implies. Royal Purple does not state a dirt holding capacity for this filter. But they do warrant the filter for 15,000 miles when you use synthetic oil.

The gasket is made with a specific nitrile rubber. It has a special lubricity and reduces the force needed during installation for easy on and off. But it also makes for a long lasting, tight seal to your engine block.

To get a “premium” product, you normally have to pay a little more. This product is no exception to that rule. But you do get a well-built filter with a quality filter element inside.

2. Mobil 1 M1-110 / M1-110A Extended Performance Oil Filter Review - Best Reported Dirt Capacity
  • 20,000 miles or 1 year of performance
  • Strong Housing
  • Nitrile gasket
  • High dirt capacity
  • Can use with all oil types and brands
  • Not much information about the internal construction
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Cost: $$︱Protection: 1 year or 20,000 miles︱Efficiency: 99.6%︱Dirt Capacity: 28 grams

When you think of brand names associated with gasoline and oil, Mobile will probably be one of them. So to no one’s surprise, Mobile also makes oil filters.

This particular filter owns some impressive performance stats. A 99.6% efficiency means great oil filtering. Plus, the filter can hold up to 28 grams of filtered dirt and debris. Twice the amount of some competitors.

You can also choose to use synthetic or conventional oil. In fact, Mobile makes a broad statement. They say this extended performance filter works with ALL oil types and brands.

Mobile also notes that the canister can withstand 9X the normal operating pressure. In other words, it has a strong housing.

A nitrile gasket prevents leaks and allows for easy on and off. It is also selected to provide the extended performance needed for a high mileage filter.

With a strong set of performance specs, and a good brand name, you would expect this oil filter to be expensive. But it is competitively priced and you get a lot of oil filter for the money.

3. Purolator Blue Single PurolatorONE Review - Best Gasket
  • 99% dirt removal
  • Use with conventional or synthetic oil
  • Silicone anti back drain valve
  • Metal end caps
  • PTFE coated gasket
  • Mileage rating is lower than some competitors
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Cost: $$︱Protection: 10,000 miles︱Efficiency: 99%︱Dirt Capacity: 15 grams

PurolatorONE’s rugged design makes a good filter for those who push their cars. You can also use conventional or synthetic oil. Plus, it is rated for city and highway driving, as well as towing. (For heavy towing, you want to step up to the PurolatorBOSS filter.)

The Blue PuroltorONE filter gives you 10,000 miles of protection. Purolator also claims a 99% dirt removal efficiency.

The construction incorporates high density media to remove contaminants. It also features a silicone anti-backflow valve to prevent oil leaks and dry starts. For a tight seal to the engine, a PTFE gasket makes for easy on and off and lasts a long time, too.

The internal end caps are metal. These are stable and solid to provide improved durability.

For the price, you get a well-designed and rugged filter built to protect your engine. The mileage rating is lower than some other filters and you may need to change this filter more often.

4. ACDelco PF2232 Professional Engine Oil Filter Review - Best Warranty
  • OEM oil filter in GM vehicles
  • Nylon core in lieu of the more common steel core
  • End caps are welded to core, eliminating blocking by adhesives
  • Filter down to 25 microns
  • Strong warranty
  • There are less expensive oil filters
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Cost: $$︱Protection: 24 month︱Efficiency: 98%

ACDelco is the OEM oil filter found on GM cars. But they also make oil filters for all makes and models.

They start with a strong shell designed to be burst resistant. Even after the oil reaches operating temperature.

The filter media traps particles down to 25 microns. That is about ⅓ the thickness of a human hair.

A nylon center tube is welded to the end plates. This arrangement supports and protects the filter media. This also eliminates the adhesive blocking of filter media found in competing oil filters. That means more filter area.

ACDelco did not publish a dirt capacity. But they do warrant this oil filter for 24 months, with an unlimited mileage. That is a strong guarantee.

So, if you want a solid filter with a long warranty, this product may be your best choice.

5. Motorcraft FL-910S Oil Filter Review - Best Value
  • Affordable
  • OEM for Ford, Lincoln, and Mercury
  • Silicone anti-drainback valve
  • Pressure relief valve
  • Perforated steel center tube
  • Consumer grade, not for heavy duty use
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Cost: $︱Efficiency: 93%︱Dirt Capacity: 12 grams

Motorcraft is another well-known brand name, and for good reason. They are the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) for Ford, Lincoln, and Mercury. So, the filters must filter out carbon, sand, dust, and metal to meet performance standards.

But they also make filters for all makes of cars. And that starts with a steel case machined for a proper fit. The end is also fluted for a good grip during installation and removal. Plus, a coating provides corrosion protection to the housing.

Inside, there is more than just the filter media with well-bonded end caps. There is also a pressure relief valve. This maintains oil flow in extreme cold, or when the filter gets clogged. Plus, it keeps dirty oil from draining back into your engine.

All the materials used have superior heat resistance. Engines do get hot, and this extends the life of the filter. The silicone anti-drainback valve is a good example of this feature.

While this is not the most efficient filter on our list, it is inexpensive. You get a well-built, affordable filter that will definitely qualify as a best buy for many drivers.

6. Bosch Premium FILTECH Review - Best Reported Efficiency
  • Steel plates and housing
  • Silicone anti-drainback valve
  • Filtech filter is large and thick
  • Nitrile gasket
  • No recommended mileage or time between changes
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Cost: $$︱Efficiency: 99.8%︱Dirt Capacity: 14 grams

Bosch is a well-known brand for auto parts, including oil filters. Their Filtech filter media is made from natural and synthetic materials. This provides improved oil filtering and that means better mileage with less engine wear.

One of the most noticeable features is the available filter media area. It is 42 percent larger in size compared to conventional filters and 30 percent thicker. That means better filtering.

Bosch recommends the use of Castrol motor oil. However, they also note you should use the oil recommended by your car manufacturer.

The steel housing and base plate make for a solid, warp resistant design. It also helps to prevent oil leaks.

A silicone anti-backdrain valve makes sure you have plenty of clean oil for your engine on startups. It also is durable.

The nitrile gasket allows for easy on and off. It also provides a long lasting, tight seal to the engine housing.

If you buy this filter, you get a quality filter from a reputable manufacturer. And at a reasonable price.

7. K&N Premium Oil Filter HP-1010 Review - Best for Racing Fans
  • Fast and easy wrench removal
  • Accepts safety wire needed by racers
  • Heavy duty shell
  • Silicone anti-drainback valve
  • Sufficient capacity for longer service intervals
  • High flow rate
  • Extensive test data
  • Not the cheapest option
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Cost: $$︱Protection: 12 month︱Efficiency: 99%

K&N built a strong brand name and is well-known by automotive racers. This oil filter comes with that pedigree at a reasonable price. And it is available in versions to fit just about any street car.

For starters, the filter media is designed for high oil flow rates. Keeping plenty of fresh, clean oil coursing through your engine prolongs its life.

This filter will work with synthetic, conventional, and blended motor oils. Plus, automobile manufacturers have upped the time between oil changes for newer cars. But not a problem for this filter, it handles the longer stretches between oil changes.

Some of the racing heritage shows in the heavy duty shell. You will also notice a “lug” on the top that allows you to install and remove the filter with an open-ended wrench. No oil filter wrench needed.

Also, you will see a hole in the side of the lug. That is for a safety wire, required when you are racing.

With a 12 month warranty, this is a good choice for those who want performance at a reasonable price. Or maybe, you just want to feel connected to your favorite race driver.

8. WIX Filters - 51348 Spin-On Lube Filter Review - Best Small Particle Filtering
  • Good flow rate
  • Nominal 21 micron filter rating
  • 275 psi burst pressure
  • Affordable
  • You need odd sized cap wrench to remove/install
  • Not much information on efficiency and warranty
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Cost: $︱Protection: Change per engine manufacturer’s recommendation

You will spot a Wix decal on many race cars. But if you are not logging laps on the track, they also make a fine filter for your over-the-road vehicles.

This particular spin-on filter touts increased dirt capacity. But they did not publish an actual dirt hold capacity like some of the other manufacturers.

Wix did publish the amount of oil flow and it comes in at 7-9 gallons per minute (“gpm”). Also, the filter media catches particles down to 21 microns.

A rugged shell boasts a 275 psi burst pressure. The specifications did also note that the bypass valve kicks in around 8-11 psi.

They recommend you change your Wix filters per the auto manufacturer recommendations. They do not state a recommended mileage, or months, for their filter.

While WIX touts the test data, users also like this filter for its no nonsense performance. It does its job consistently and has earned a number of fans.

One special note, you may need a special cap wrench to install and remove this product. The top is domed and makes it difficult for some to remove.

9. FRAM TG7317 Tough Guard Passenger Car Spin-On Oil Filter Review - Best for Tough Driving Conditions
  • Silicone anti-drainback valve
  • Anti-slip texture for easy changes
  • Intended for difficult driving and towing
  • Handles extreme weather conditions
  • Affordable
  • Filter is mostly paper
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Cost: $︱Protection: 10,000︱Efficiency: 99%

Fram has manufactured filters since 1932. It is a well-known name and has a good reputation for making consistent quality oil filters.

This Tough Guard filter continues the company’s heritage. You get 10,000 miles of coverage when using conventional or semi-synthetic oil.

Plus, Fram clearly states that the filter is intended for drivers who push their vehicles. Stop and go driving or towing, no problem. This filter is also meant for use in extreme weather.

A silicone anti-drainback valve prevents dry starts. It does so by keeping a reserve of fresh oil in the filter for when you crank the starter.

The black anti-slip texture on the shell makes for the most unique aspect of this filter. It allows you to securely grip it and makes for quick and easy oil filter changes.

In summary, this is a choice from a manufacturer that only makes filters at a competitive price. If you live in areas with extreme weather or drive aggressively, this oil filter may fit your needs.

10. Mann-Filter HU 925/4 X Metal-Free Oil Filter Review - Best Optimization
  • “Custom” PTFE bypass valve
  • Silicone anti-drainback valve
  • Rugged housing
  • Large filter media with high dirt capacity
  • OEM for Volkswagen vehicles
  • No data to back up claims
  • Not as widely available
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Cost: $$︱Protection: per engine manufacturer’s instructions︱Efficiency: “Efficient”︱Dirt Capacity: “High”

You may not have heard of Mann filters before. But if you have a German car the odds are better that you do know them. Mann produced filters for the past 65 years and are used by many German auto manufacturers, such as Volkswagen.

To state the obvious, Germans are known for their solid designs and attention to detail. These Deutschland filters are no exception.

The housing is robust and protected against corrosion. Plus, the shell design provides pressure stability and high pulsation.

Inside, they use a durable filter media and seal rings. Mann is a bit secretive and only says the filter is long lasting and has a large dirt capacity. While there are no test results to back this up, this filter does have many loyal customers.

Also, they do say the filter media is “efficient” and the dirt capacity is “high.” They also claim to filter finer particles than other filters with minimal pressure drop. It would be nice to have data to back that up.

But they do tailor each filter for individual cars/engines to auto the manufacturer specifications. So, every filter model has unique performance data.

Also, they do go out of their way to mention you need to follow your car manufacturer instructions on oil and filter changes.

A silicone anti-drainback valve is used to prevent dry starts. In addition, a PTFE coated bypass valve is included. Interestingly, Mann states that each bypass valve is optimized to the engine/vehicle model it is made for; no one size fits all bypass in their products.

The German engineering and attention to detail show in the customized nature of each filter they make. You will pay a little more for this filter, but it is competitively priced for a well-designed import that is made to meet your car’s specifications.

Oil Filter Anatomy, Performance Specifications, and When to Change

When you are ready to change your oil, you should install a new oil filter, too. There are a few particulars you may want to know when shopping for one. We have list summarized these below.

Oil Filter Construction



The most obvious component of an oil filter is the outer shell or casing. It should be robust and stand up to the pressure and heat of your oil circulation system. If the manufacturer added a form of corrosion protection, that is a plus.

You may also see products where the housing has features to allow for easy installation. Items like anti-slip coatings, special flutes, or lug nuts to simplify the on and off.

Filter Media

Inside the shell, you have the all important filter media. It should be fine enough to filter out dirt and debris down to the range of 20 to 25 microns. Paper, or cellulose, is often used, but it is not that durable. Glass and other synthetic materials are a better choice.

Many manufacturers now blend cellulose, or paper, with synthetic fibers. These do provide better filtering and a longer life compared to the old paper filters.

End Caps

At each end of the filter media, you have end caps that support the filter and help it to keep its shape. Steel end caps are durable and help prevent warping of the filter.

Also, end caps installed without adhesive avoid blocking. In other words, none of the available filter media gets clogged with excess glue or squeeze out.

Bypass Valve

If the filter media fills up or gets clogged, no oil can pass. But your oil pump keeps pumping as it has no way of knowing the filter is blocked. You can even build up enough pressure to explode the oil filter.

That is where the bypass valve comes into play. It allows the oil to flow around the blocked filter. By doing so, it prevents damage to the engine, oil pump, and other critical engine parts.

The oil filter manufacturer should note details about their bypass valve. Many manufacturers will publish the pressure at which the bypass valve engages. They also often will note which materials they used to make the bypass.

Anti-Backdrain Valve

When you turn your engine off, the oil pump stops operating. That means the oil up in your engine can drain back down into the oil pan on the bottom of your motor.

But this creates an issue when you want to start the car. There is no oil high in the engine to lubricate the parts.

The anti-backdrain valve prevents clean oil from draining out of the filter. This keeps oil in the filter so you have some when you turn the key on. No dry starts means a longer life for your engine.

Most quality filters use a silicone anti-backdrain valve to prevent dry starts.

Performance Specifications

There are a few pieces of data that can help you identify the best oil filters. We have summarized these in the table below.

Property Desired Value
Oil Flow Rate At least 7 gallons per minute
Burst Pressure Over 250 psi
Filter Efficiency 93% good, 98% very good
Particle Size 25 microns or smaller
Dirt Holding Capacity Min. of 12 grams
Bypass engagement 8 to 17 psi

When Should You Change the Oil Filter?

The basic answer is every time you change your oil. That is even more true today for two reasons.

First, synthetic oils now can last for 10,000 miles, maybe more. Second, newer cars have reduced the frequent oil changes once needed for older cars. The overall reduction in the number of oil changes means less opportunities to change your filter.

Reusing an old oil filter means you are adding about one quart of dirty oil into the clean replacement oil. So, you contaminate the replacement oil right off the bat.

Also, if you fail to change the filter, it could become blocked. The bypass valve will then kick in. You are then circulating unfiltered, dirty oil through your engine. The damage this can cause is far more expensive than the price of an oil filter.

So, play it safe. Change the oil filter every time you change the oil.

Is Recycling Oil Filters Possible?

Yes, you can recycle oil filters. So, don’t throw them in the trash. Visit your collection center and recycle your used oil AND your old oil filter.