Purolator filter problems

I’ve recently come across a few threads on some boards with people complaining that Purolator filters are experiencing problems with holes in the media which severely compromises their ability to filter the oil. Has anyone had this experience with them? I’ve used them for years and thought their quality was not in question.

I used them for years too. I personally had a problem with my 09 Camry at 25k miles. The Camry uses a replaceable filter cartridge. When I changed it out after 5k miles, the filter was collapsed. I installed a new Puralator. I changed it out at 1k miles and it was collapsed too. I compared it to a OEM and Napa and a new Puralator was physically smaller in diameter. I installed the NAPA and after 5k miles it was not collapsed. The next change I installed the Toyota OEM and it did not collapse. Needless to say, I don’t buy Puralator any more.

“The Camry uses a replaceable filter cartridge.”

Purolator specifies a spin-on type filter:


Based on your link, knfenimore has the 6 cylinder Camry.

Good catch, Joe. It is a cartridge type.

Yup, cartridge is what I said. My 10 Corolla uses a cartridge too.


I believe the napa house brand filters are generally made by Affinia, which also sells under the wix name

Over the years, I’ve had one problem with napa house brand filters. But it was a fuel filter. The regulator portion of the filter failed, sending all the fuel back to the tank, causing a no start condition

I’ve had no problems with napa house brand oil filters or air filters

Generally, I believe Affinia makes good products. But I have no hard evidence to provide. In any case, I’ve heard far less complaints about the Wix or Affinia name, versus some other brand names

I don’t know what the concern is? Most oil filters used in vehicles today are by-pass valve type oil filters which means not 100% of the oil passes thru the filter media.

There must be a by-pass valve for a few reasons.

When it’s extremely cold out, the oil is too thick to pass thru the filter media. So the by-pass valve prevents the engine from being starved of oil during these cold starts.

Driving at high speed, all the oil isn’t capable to pass thru the filter media so the by-pass valve allows what can’t pass thru to prevent oil starvation to the engine.

And if the filter media gets totally plugged up, the by-pass valve prevents oil starvation to the engine.

Even at idle when the engine is warm, the by-pass valve allows some oil past the media. Only not as much.


All true, but from what I can gather the problem would be that, with holes in the filter media, none of the oil would ever get filtered at any time. That would presumably lead to a build up of contaminants in the oil that would hasten engine wear. There have been some lengthy discussions on Bob Is the Oil Guy. I have no personal experience with a Purulator failure, but evidently other people seem to have run into problems.

I only use OEM, Honda and AC filters, but in Car and Driver today, one of the letters referenced two engine failures and two different Z7 (I think) Corvettes being tested. The problem evidently was traced to faulty filters. And these were straight from Chev from the factory. Got me a little concerned. I’m not renewing but once in a while they have some relevant information but seems to me there should have been a whole article on why the filters failed this month. Guess I just don’t fit their target market since I’m more interested in filter performance than $100,000 cars.

I have no problem with Purolator but I do have a lot of problems with internet boards. I put about “0” trust in them for accuracy. People like to complain and, for the most part, they have no idea what they are talking about.

Well I for one trust BITOG for accuracy. Those guys know oil forwards and backwards; heck, they probably eat and drink the stuff!

That said, many of their board members are into stretching oil as far they possibly can, using oil analysis and the like to find the “sweet spot.” That sort of schefule will load up a filter, maximizing the pressure differential, and increase the odds of failure.

This may or may not be relevant to the “out by 4,000” oil changer.

And next week it will be Fram filters, then Bosch, then AC Delco etc, etc, etc… At any given time some one will have something bad to say about one brand or another, and all the naysayers band together. People are generally quick and loud while condemning, and slow and quiet while praising. Just my 2 cents worth.

I agree that the complaints will change next week…if not before.
I once broke off a AC delco spark plug in a head. It was not AC DElco’s fault, but whoever tightened them down last time around.

Then we could blame that last blown engine on the new exhaust gasket we replaced last week.


+1 missileman…of course, WE are an internet board…hmmmmm…DOH!

There’s not an auto part, an auto parts store, a car make or model, or brand of oil or gasoline that does not have internet complaints registered against it.

Once in a great while I peruse some of those complaints mostly for the chuckle factor.
An example could be someone carping about the transmission in their 10 years old/ 140k miles Nissan going belly up after never changing the fluid.
The owner of this car was accusing Nissan of building shoddy cars with shoddy transmissions and if they were any kind of a reputable car company at all they would have provided a new trans under warranty…

Or the Toyota Tundra that snapped a ball joint at 110k miles. According to the complainee it was a shoddy truck with shoddy suspension and Toyota should be sued into oblivion…
The owner felt that “Toyota obviously doesn’t care whether someone lives or dies…”.

As for that Toyota Tundra . . .

that is why you need to have your vehicle inspected regularly at a competent and trusted shop

Since that ball joint snapped at 110K, a decent mechanic probably would have detected the sloppy ball joint a t 80K or 90K, if not sooner

Blame it on the cheapskate customer, who probably didn’t go for the ball joint upsell at 90K

Or blame it on the guy who didn’t catch it, when it was in the shop for a major inspection at 90K

But do NOT blame Toyota

That Tundra probably never saw a scheduled maintenance in its entire life.

Folks at BITOG have been fretting over Purolator for 'bout 6 months.
There’s a sub-forum where people cut open filters of every major brand, inspect them and post photos.

I view these disections of oil filters with extreme skepticism

For example, my brother’s Toyota uses an oil filter cartridge

The Toyota brand cartridge has no end cap whatsoever

Yet many of the aftermarket filters have

So some guys might think the Toyota brand cartridge is inferior, because it’s lacking something the other ones have

Yet I’m having a hard time believing that a guy would be doing the engine an injustice by using the seemingly “inferior” Toyota cartridge