Cartridge-type oil filters - why

… do they make it look like you can just slap a 3/8" ratchet extension in there to remove the reusable canister? I presume there is high risk of fracturing the plastic or separating the metal center from the plastic housing if you don’t use one of the canister filter adapters? Anyone ever try this and succeed?

I’m just really surprised that if you’re not supposed to do it, they wouldn’t design it so that you can’t just slap a standard tool into what looks exactly like it belongs there - particularly for one of the most common DIY maintenance items.

p.s. no, I did not try it myself
p.p.s. the car in question is a Scion tC, it shares its engine with Toyota Camry and Rav4

I will assume you’ve never watched one of these videos. If you can’t find the answer to your question by watching it, maybe you should have a shop do your oil changes.

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You’re right I had a gross conceptual error about what that component of the oil filter cartridge is for.

Thanks to your video, I’ve now also learned that I’m missing one of my splash guards. Darn it!

You need a special tool to remove the cartridge filters from Toyota made vehicules…You can buy it at most autoparts stores.I bought one for my 2012 Corolla

I can see the need for a special tool.

The plug would seem to only be there as a drain.

Seems to be a more complicated solution than a simple spin on filter. Anyone know why Toyota did this?

Maybe to reduce the amount of oil going in landfills? Some credit for that in the EU?


Lots of European cars have them. Mercedes and bmw. My opel has a metal canister that has a 7/8” hex and a square drive. Take your pic. I bought a cast alum socket for my Toyota. They do make a cast steel one for more money. The stamped versions are junk.

Dorman sells an aluminum filter canister for about $20 and having 2 makes it much quicker to get out from under the car. When the dirty one drops off wipe off the block housing and screw on the fresh filter/housing, install the plug and get on with it. Repeatedly getting down then up can be annoyingly painful and time consuming.

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