How Many Miles Can An Oil Filter Last?

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Since it is certain that oil filters don’t last forever when in use, how many miles can they last before you should consider a replacement? Well, it all points down to how frequently you drive the car and how far you drive.

If you’re a high mileage driver, you will definitely have to change your car’s oil filter more often than a driver who doesn’t rack up miles. But some drivers seek to know the exact number of miles they should run before changing the filter.

So, in exact numbers, how many miles can an oil filter last? We can safely say between 5000-10,000 miles, but let’s consider a couple of factors that may decide when you should change the filter.

But why is it important to change the oil filter?

Let’s find out below!

What Happens If You Don’t Change The Oil Filter

Obviously, there is some guy out there who hasn’t changed his car’s filter ever since he started driving the vehicle and he has hit over 20k miles with the car looking strong; does this imply that changing the oil filter is a mere waste of time and some little bucks? Well, the answer to this question is a big NO.

The primary function of an oil filter is to trap particles, dirt, debris, and other things that may have been carried by the oil while flowing to the engine.

This is to ensure that the engine gets nothing but pure oil. When an engine is fed with clean, pure oil, it tends to perform at its finest and last longer.

In contrast, when an oil filter is old, it won’t be able to capture all the particles carried by the oil; thus, these particles will get into the engine and stir serious issues or even a breakdown as they accumulate over time.

Thus, what happens when you do not change the oil filter is this; some impure substances will find their way into the engine and they can cause serious damage that would cost you a lot of money.

There’s no way to monitor what’s going on inside your engine, so you won’t know that something is wrong until a breakdown occurs.

Irrespective of the type of car you drive or its model, it is advisable to change the oil filter at intervals. Now, how long should the filter last before you change it?

How Many Miles Can An Oil Filter Last?

How Many Miles Can An Oil Filter Last

Different people change their oil filter at different intervals; while some rely on their car manufacturer’s recommendation, others stick with what their engine oil manufacturer says. Either way, the estimated mileage you should ride with an oil filter before changing it is 8000 miles.

Some automakers admonish drivers to change their car engine oil every 7000 miles or higher/lower. If that is so, then the oil filter should be best replaced after the second oil change (14000 miles).

Also, there are some “over-careful” drivers that would change their oil filter each time they drive past 5000 miles. All these recommendations are considerable. You just have to choose the most convenient one for your car.

A high mileage driver looking to change the oil filter after every 6000 miles will definitely have to replace his filter more than he changes oil.

With all that we have explained so far, it is safe to say that there is no specific mileage you should attain before changing the oil filter; the best practice is to replace the filter after a second oil change (if it takes long before you change oils) or after the third time.

Can You Use The Same Filter Twice?

You probably removed the filter because you believe it has gone bad, so why attempt to use an “already bad” filter? In every sense, it is not advisable to use an oil filter twice.

More so, oil filters aren’t costly, you can purchase up to five (5) of them at a go, and use them one after another.

When you store the filters in clean dry storage, they can last up to 10 years or more. Oil filters don’t have a shelf life.


In summary, how many miles can an oil filter last? Our analysis left us with 10,000 miles. However, it is safe to run higher miles before changing the filter. There are different types and qualities of filters but the function remains the same.

A good filter guarantees a high-performance engine, and since good stuff are liable to go bad after some time, you should always change oil filters as at when due. Running up to 40k miles with the same filter is a costly risk you should not attempt.

Apparently, the cost of fixing or installing a new engine is far more than what you’ll spend on filter changes for many years.

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