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Hot Rods K&N Oil Filters Are Junk

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Gman0046, Jul 22, 2017.

  1. KustomKreeps
    Joined: Jan 7, 2016
    Posts: 325


    only time i use paper element filters these days is with a new engine so i can cut em open and take a look inside. I also throw a magnet on the base of the filter as well.

    I normally use new flang dangle washable ones with magnets in the base etc. they look good and work well to. Sure they cost more but in the end its worth it to me.

    one i just picked up for my Buick 401 below:
    Summit link:
    kadillackid and mgtstumpy like this.
  2. Budget36
    Joined: Nov 29, 2014
    Posts: 6,775


    Hastings filters back in the day had a nut on the bottom of them as well...and being 15...I cranked it down.

    Dad brought the truck home later, and I couldn't get the filter off...I resorted to a chain wrench, just twisted the filter into a pretzel.

    Had to give up and call Dad...he tin-snipped off the the housing, and hammer and punched the base till it came loose.

    So, before he let me put the filter on, he told me to read the directions...

    40 years later I still remember:

    " tighten till gasket touches, then 3/4 of a turn"
    cfmvw and Hollywood-East like this.
  3. No one ever taught me anything about cars or bikes. My folks would not ever let me have either, (while I was under their roof). 1st thing I did in college was buy a $100, old 2 stroke street bike, and kept it behind the dorm. Did unintentional wheelies all the time. Wish I still had it. Sophomore year, lived with a girlfriend in the basement apartment of a really nice family's home on the beach. Bought my 1st car. Old beater Olds Omega. God knows when the oil had been changed last. It was black and thick as honey. Tried to change the oil myself, emptied the pan, then proceeded to rip the filter to shreds because I didn't know where I was supposed to grab the filter with the strap wrench. Figured I would just put the oil back in, start it up, and take it to a mechanic, see if he could get what remained of the filter off for me. Didn't really know how a car worked. Realized too late that their driveway (and lower half of their white Mercedes) were now covered in oil. Didn't go well. They did let us stay. Made lots of other similar mistakes. Still make variations of those sorts of mistakes.

    I never use the nut on the K&N filters because I figure, from that experience, you always want to grip the filter at the top, not the bottom. I always use a strap wrench like Beaner.

    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
  4. I haven't read through all three pages of this rant, and I won't. Just seems to me that the reason the nay-sayers refuse to use K&N is based on the nut not functioning due to over tightening the filter during installation. The only oil filters I have had trouble removing are the ones I didn't install.
  5. Gman0046
    Joined: Jul 24, 2005
    Posts: 6,260


    Not all exhaust configurations allow for grabbing oil filters on the top. My friends car who I helped remove the K&N filter you couldn't get the filter strap wrench close to the top due to header interference.

    Last edited: Jul 26, 2017
    milwscruffy and clunker like this.
  6. Right, that would definitely be a problem if it's seized on there.

    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
  7. LOL I had an OT car with a bed of snakes headers on it. The only way to get the filter out was to remove the driver side header. I figured that the filter was not going to get changed much so I installed a remote oil filter. Cheap insurance for me. ;)

    I have removed more then my share of filters with a screw driver over the years. Not something that I sugest that anyone try but sometimes it is your only option.
  8. Jethro
    Joined: Mar 5, 2001
    Posts: 1,582


    When I was a new apprentice I worked on a lube rack for about a year. The only filters that ever really got stuck were chevy's because the gasket was such a large diameter and had more surface area than the others. The first few that were stuck , I did the screwdriver , chisel , pretzel twist and spent way more time than I should to do a LOF service. A wise older mechanic showed me that if you just break the seal between the gasket and block the filter will spin off pretty easy. He showed me to put a long screwdriver under the base and pry just enough to separate the gasket from the block then use a strap wrench or big channel lock pliers to turn it. Pretty much worked every time! Did not seem to matter what brand of filter just V-8 chevy's.
    blowby and mohead1 like this.
  9. Simple Fix ......

    1) Find car dealership with motorized rotating 360 degree vehicle display platform

    2) Remove existing dealership vehicle from said platform

    3) Replace with vehicle that has seized oil filter

    4) Carefully position assistant under vehicle with suitable grasping tool securely fastened to seized oil filter

    5) Rotate motorized platform counter clockwise for filter removal

    Or .....

    Find AssHat who installed oil filter too tightly

    BitchSlap AssHat

    Lil32, tb33anda3rd and Budget36 like this.
  10. Try getting one off a FWD V6 Alfa Romeo. It's hard enough to find/see from underneath let alone get your hand on. Then you have to put a new one back.

    Ever heard the story of the monkey who puts his hand in the jar to grab peanuts?
    cfmvw and mgtstumpy like this.
  11. jcmarz
    Joined: Jan 10, 2010
    Posts: 4,633

    from Chino, Ca

    Why is a nut on a spin on oil filter?! A tool should never be used to install a spin on oil filter. Just spread a little oil on the rubber ring and hand tighten. Simple.
    Lil32 likes this.
  12. The nut is for removal only. On some OT performance muscle cars with headers, there's no room to do it most any other way.
    Nitroholic, lothiandon1940 and jcmarz like this.
  13. slowmotion
    Joined: Nov 21, 2011
    Posts: 3,276


    This sounds like something a quick-lube type joint would do, and (one) reason why I do my own oil changes. Chance screwing up the block mating surface, permanent leak ensues, fuck it, it ain't mine.... Next!!
    That wasn't a wise old mechanic, that was a hack...
    flatheadpete and tb33anda3rd like this.
  14. Here's the Cliff Notes:
    Not all filters were put on by you.
    So not all filters come off like yours.
    The K&N filter "nut" seems to encourage improper installation.

    Personally I don't buy K&N oil filters by extension because I don't buy K&N air filters. I'm allergic to paying big bucks for a box half full of filter and half full of hype.
    egads and 57 HEAP like this.
  15. Quit paying premium price for K&N oil filters when WIX quit supplying them.............this was 'bout same period WIX started making NAPA's Gold Standard oil filters, which I now buy and use...........removal problems/issues with over-tightened oil filters are the same, no matter who's brand name...........
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2017
    HemiDeuce and Gman0046 like this.
  16. Jethro
    Joined: Mar 5, 2001
    Posts: 1,582


    Well, I can assure you this was no "quicky lube"and the mechanic was first rate in my book! I'm not talking about prying the filter off , just breaking the seal between the block and gasket.....but you've already made up your mind about this.
    The shop was "top shelf" and was the kind of place that the dealerships would bring their problems to when they couldn't figure them out. They were a Sun test equipment dealer and always had the newest equipment . A chassis dyno , speedometer recalibration and rebuild shop , AC Delco distributor , Bear alignment sales and service , Alemite lubrication equipment and service.
    Anyway, NOT A HACK!
  17. Well I Never :rolleyes: :D :D

    cfmvw likes this.
  18. slowmotion
    Joined: Nov 21, 2011
    Posts: 3,276


    Well jeez, since ya put it that way....sounds like a first rate operation. No disrespect meant.
    That said, I still ain't on board poking something between the block & the filter (gasket). Just too much chance of compromising the mating surface, especially for an old hack like me. I will guarantee you had I tried something like that when I was learning the lube rack at the station in my high school years, I'd have been kicked squarely in the ass by the station owner. Who knew it was accepted practice? :eek:
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2017
  19. upspirate
    Joined: Apr 15, 2012
    Posts: 2,277


    I have one of these on any size filter,hugs tight to side, and you can either use an open end wrench, or a 1/2 drive wrench/extension if you need it.Works on very low clearance places very well oil filter wrench.jpg
    Lil32 and blowby like this.
  20. mohead1
    Joined: Jan 18, 2013
    Posts: 592


    I use one of those for the big stuff, like 7.3 Powerstroke.....variety of sizes of typical oil filter wrenches for small lawn mower up to standard car/ light truck. Then some socket type specialty for things like motorcycle ( Harley)

    Sent from my Venue 8 3830 using Tapatalk
  21. Mike VV
    Joined: Sep 28, 2010
    Posts: 2,396

    Mike VV
    from SoCal

    Sounds like someone (G and friend), need to go back to pedaling three wheeler s around..!
    Actually their oil filters work well when used correctly.

    hotroddon likes this.
    Joined: Jul 20, 2006
    Posts: 2,422


    What’s wrong with removing the filter with a good old fashioned filter wrench?
    Dean Lowe and lothiandon1940 like this.
  23. This has never let me down....... thumbnail (3).jpg thumbnail (5).jpg
    chevy57dude, Lil32 and kadillackid like this.
  24. sunbeam
    Joined: Oct 22, 2010
    Posts: 5,278


    K&N air filters are not a dry filter like a paper filter they require service they are more like a foam filter. No service poor results that's why I like paper
  25. 5window
    Joined: Jan 29, 2005
    Posts: 8,241


    I've done the strap wrench, the wrench that fits on all the ridges on the filter base, the screwdriver and occasionally the right way. I change my own oil, but sometimes that's not possible. Some manufacturers seem to spend a lot of money designing a location for the oil filter that makes removal almost impossible.

    On the other hand, my O/T Subaru Forester has the filter on the top of the engine at the front. Open the hood and the filter is right there. However, it would appear that this clever thought used up the engineering budget as Subaru ended up giving me a new short block and rebuilding the engine due to excessive oil consumption from the factory. Nice to get a free rebuild at 55k miles, though. :)
  26. Blues4U
    Joined: Oct 1, 2015
    Posts: 5,701

    from So Cal

    Nice comparison video here, the K&N looks like a quality filter overall, though the media is cellulose vs synthetic in the others. It looks like they've designed it to handle a high flow rate, maybe at the sacrifice of some filtration; which would not be a stretch considering that's the same thing they've done with their air filters as well.
    Truckdoctor Andy likes this.
  27. hemihotrod66
    Joined: May 5, 2019
    Posts: 401


    Never had any issues with KandN oil filters....I prefer Baldwin filters myself but hard to find anymore...
    Truckdoctor Andy likes this.
    Joined: Jul 20, 2006
    Posts: 2,422


    Now Baldwin is another story, absolute JUNK!
  29. I have used them on my OT car three times so far (change filter + oil each year) and never had a problem. I chose K&N just because of that nut, it's really hard to get to the filter with a regular oil filter tool. Used two of them on my bike, not a problem there either.

    How hard do you guys torque your oil filters? I put a light coating of oil on the seal and spin it on by hand. Can't remember I've ever had big problems removing a filter, K&N or other.

    I use a K&N air filter on my bike, and can't say I've noticed lots of junk past the filter, or experienced excessive wear during the 14 years I've owned the bike. I do however clean and re-oil the filter regularly.
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2020
    loudbang and firstinsteele like this.
  30. harpo1313
    Joined: Jan 4, 2008
    Posts: 2,261

    from wareham,ma

    101943136_3279801135384643_3663094739659390976_o.jpg Could of gone worst.
    rusty valley, cfmvw and kadillackid like this.

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