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Fuel filters

Car Talk

I have a 2002 Toyota Tundra V8 & a 2005 4 cyc Camry. Should I replace the fuel filter? At What frequency. I have 130K & 115K miles on them.

You should. It is easy (sort of) and inexpensive. The frequency depends on your filling habits. If you are the kind of driver who fills the tank when it is nearly empty, first of all you should stop doing that, but secondly, the filter will get dirty faster. When it gets dirty, your flow is diminished and fuel pressure could drop off.
If you decide to replace the filter yourself, you need to relieve the fuel pressure, which procedure should be described in your owner’s manual.
If you fill your tank when it is around half-full, your engine is getting gas from a larger volume of gas, and it does not need to draw the gas from a sediment rich bottom 1/4 tank.

I like using the 60K mile/5 year plan. It was stated in a former car’s owner’s manual and I’ve stuck with it ever since. The cars and trucks since then haven’t mentioned the fuel filter change intervals, but why wait until the dirty filter kills the pump to change it out?

About every 15-20k miles and even more often if any contamination is suspected. It’s entirely possible for a car to run fine with a partially clogged filter. However, the downside is that it’s causing the fuel pump to work much harder and this means a shorter pump life.

I change my filters about every 15k miles and recently decided to pop the one off of my Lincoln to discover that it was half clogged. That filter only had about 6k miles on it and the car ran fine.