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Oil change

Hello all. I have a 2008 Toyota Highlander. Today I had its oil changed. My mechanic works at a small independent garage. He did not have the proper tool to remove the oil filter so he just changed the oil. I only change the oil twice a year because I do not put too many miles on the car. I am wondering how long I can keep the old filter on the car. Should I wait another six months before I change my oil or only three? Thanks in advance.

The filter should be changed every oil change nop matter what. The filter is holding dirty oil so you just dumper a quart of dirty oil into your new clean oil. It defeats the purpose and wastes money.

Thanks meaneyedcatz

Old filters also get blocked some, and they let less fluid pass through. Long enough, and the blockage will be enough so that the bypass activates, and then you’re pumping whatever the oil pump can pick up in the oil pan…dirt, metal bits and all.

As meaneyedcatz said…change it - every time.

To mrb3990 regarding oil filter changes. I have an 06 Honda CRV & the manual calls for a new filter every other oil change. In the past I had a 92 accord, & also a 2000 accord ,but they did call for new filter with each oil change .So with low mileage I don,t think you have much to worry about. signed Honda

thanks all. Your comments help alot.

Does this car have an unusual oil filter? What kind of a shop would not be able to change the filter?

He should buy the tool and not charge you for it.

Find a new mechanic…This is NOT a difficult filter to replace…and there is no special tool needed to replace it. It’s not your typical canister filter…instead the canister housing is part of the vehicle…all you replace is the paper filter element.

I drive an 06 Matrix about 4000 miles a year. Typically 3 trips a week. I bike to work.
The manual says change oil and filter every 6 months or 5000 miles.
I change the oil every 6 months and the filter once a year,
unless the filter would have over 5000 miles at the next change (the occasional long road trip).
I did this for 13 years with my previous car ('88 Accord) after switching jobs
and it didn’t burn any oil when I sold it at 219,000 miles.

I don’t think 1/2 a quart (small filter) of moderately “dirty” oil will ruin a fresh batch.

I’ll be puttin’ on my asbestos hoodie on now…

Mike in N.H. hit the nail on the head…Your “mechanic” simply did not want to be bothered changing the filter and the shop does not want to be bothered doing oil changes…If you want this job to be done right, pay the dealers price or learn how to do it yourself…

Mike and Caddyman, I agree. I don’t think I will bring this vehicle back to this mechanic. Circuitsmith, thanks for your input. Based on everyone’s feedback, I am going to wait maybe 3 or 4 months and then take my Highlander somewhere else for its next oil change. Once again, thanks all.

I’m going to go against the grain and tell you that your oil filter is probably perfectly fine, and can last a whole year without any worry.

It is true that an oil filter can get clogged with debris over time, but that is on an engine that either has its oil change intervals neglected, and the filter gets caked with sludge, or on an engine having mechanical failure, and metal debris is being trapped in the oil filter.

Other than those two times, the only other time an oil filter can catch any debris is right after initial assembly, and the parts in the engine are breaking in.

If your car has many tens of thousands of miles on it already, and it is in perfect mechanical shape, then it is most likely not producing any amount of debris in the oil that needs to be filtered out by the oil filter. Hence, your oil filter should be more than sufficient to last a whole year in use.


Thanks, BC.

Oil filters are cheap. Engines are expensive. is your goal to prolong the life of your filter or to prolong the life of your engine?