The Best Oil Filter Housing for Your Offroad Truck

We’ve heard that plastic oil filter housings are one of the most common complaints. Whether you take your truck to the dealership where they tend to overtighten everything, or you change your own oil, the first thing you should do is replace that cheap plastic with a metal oil filter housing. Thank us later.

Does A High-Performance Oil Filter Housing Make A Difference?

While you’re shopping around for the correct oil filter housing for your truck, it’s easy to go for the lowest ticket item on the shelf. Taking the time to consider a few points may save you a few bucks down the road. 

As we mentioned, go for a metal oil filter housing. Growing up, I changed my own oil on all my vehicles, so when the free oil changes on my shiny new truck ran out, it was time to do it myself.

I bought a Toyota-shaped oil housing wrench and it fit very snugly. I tried removing it with a ratchet first, but it didn’t work. With a breaker bar, I tried getting some leverage on this bad boy, but I still couldn’t get it off. When I saw the housing, I thought it was metal, so I tried using my impact drill.

My first thought was that everything was fine until I noticed oil pouring out of the housing. One of the tabs broke off of the plastic oil filter housing, exposing the inside.

Consequently, I’ve concluded:

  1. It was way too tight when the dealership installed the housing.
  2. There is nothing good about plastic housing.
  3. My impatience got the best of me.

The bottom line? Order Toyota’s Oil Filter Cap Assembly for $20. It’s made by Toyota, and you’ll never have to worry about it again for the life of your truck.

What Causes an Oil Filter Housing To Break?

Any number of things can cause the housing to break. Between hot summers and cold winters, all plastic truck parts have the potential to wear down and become brittle or crack when you go to work on them. Normal wear and tear can cause a crack in the housing if it’s in the plastic part.

Whenever the oil filter housing unit is damaged, it is likely to crack or warp, allowing oil to leak from the system. Generally, this happens because the housing is over-torqued or because it is old and worn out.

A cracked aluminum housing can also occur during servicing. Incorrectly installed bolts can cause cracks to develop between the oil cooler and filter housing.

How Tight Should Oil Filter Housing Be?

In most cases, hand tight plus an additional quarter turn is FINE. This will ensure that the filter is secure, but not too tight; any more than that and you risk cracks or stripping the threads. Dealerships are notorious for being a little too passionate about torque.

How Do You Loosen Oil Filter Housing?

Trying to get any truck part unstuck is a huge pain in the neck. Obviously, if you’re working on your truck at home, you’re already okay with voiding your warranty. Presuming you cannot get that oil filter off by hand, here are some tips that can be helpful:

  • Good: Use an oil filter wrench (specific to your truck brand if possible). Now, these aren’t always a perfect option, especially if you don’t have the room to unscrew. 
  • Best: Use a filter socket adapter. These are specific to the filter brand and can be the most effective way to get your oil filter housing off. Once you find a brand you like (we’ve suggested some below), then you can confidently go ahead and pickup the corresponding adapter if you’re going to do all your own oil changes anyway. They’re nice because they are small enough to get into the trickiest of spots and lock on to your specific filter. Easy peasy.
  • Destruction: The last option is your last resort. You’ve got your truck torn apart so you can’t run to the auto parts store, and you don’t have the right tool? Well, you’ve likely got a hammer and a large screwdriver right? Yup, you’re going to destroy that oil filter. Just hammer that screwdriver right through it and start turning. It’s going to be messy, but sometimes messy is best when you need to get the job done. Just like tacos!

Oil Change Hack: Dab some motor oil on the gasket when installing a filter on your vehicle’s engine.  As a result, the filter will be easier to remove and will make a better seal.

What Happens If You Don’t Tighten the Oil Filter?

Putting on the filter incorrectly is one of the most common mistakes when changing your own oil. Every oil change requires replacing the oil filter, which keeps the oil clean. Besides not installing the oil filter correctly, you can also install the wrong one. The fact that it threads on does not mean it is the right size. You’ll put your engine at risk if it doesn’t fit properly or leaks oil when it cycles through.

What Happens If You Overtighten Oil Filter?

After hand tightening an oil filter, take a quarter turn with the oil wrench to tighten it up. By doing so, you’ll avoid overtightening it. It is possible to damage the O-ring or strip the threading if you over-tighten the oil filter. Broken O-rings can result in a leaky filter if they don’t provide a proper seal.

How Do I Know If My Oil Filter Housing Is Leaking?

Trucks with loose oil filters leak engine oil surprisingly often. Symptoms of a loose oil filter include:

Filling Up with Oil Frequently Between Oil Changes

Your engine oil may be leaking if you have to top it off more than once or twice between oil changes. You may lose oil faster than usual if your oil filter is loose. If excessive oil consumption is occurring, have your oil filter inspected by a mechanic during your next oil change service.

Oil Pressure is Low

Make sure you pay attention to your engine oil warning light. Losing oil pressure could be caused by a loose and leaking oil filter. The oil pump cannot circulate fluid if the engine oil has been leaked out. The engine suffers from a lack of lubrication and could seize up or be damaged. There are several other causes of low oil pressure warnings, such as lack of engine oil, faulty oil pressure sensors, or faulty oil pumps. 

Truck Oil Puddles

You will most likely see oil on the ground underneath your truck if there is an engine oil leak. Check your oil level immediately if you see a leak, and consult a mechanic if necessary. Engine damage may result from driving a vehicle with no oil or low oil.

What Happens If You Double Gasket An Oil Filter?

Installing a new filter on top of an old seal creates a “double gasket” situation, compromising oil security 100%. Either the oil will leak out completely when the engine starts, or, worse, it won’t leak until after the truck has traveled a few miles.

How Much Does It Cost To Replace Engine Oil Filter Housing?

When your oil filter housing is damaged, you should have it replaced as soon as possible when it leaks. This can cause extensive engine damage. Depending on your truck’s make, model, and age, replacing the oil filter housing can cost anywhere from $150 to $700.

A Buyer’s Guide and Review of the Best Oil Filters for 2022

Overall Best: Royal Purple Extended Life Oil Filter
727 Reviews
Overall Best: Royal Purple Extended Life Oil Filter
  • Product type : Auto Part
  • Country Of Origin : United States
  • This Oil Filter Has 15,000-Mile Protection When Used With Full Synthetic Oil
  • Premium Oil Filter Using All-Synthetic Micro-Glass Media To Achieve 99% Filtration Efficiency At 25 Microns Or Larger

The 100% synthetic micro-glass media in this filter offers 99% efficiency at 25 microns.  Due to their compact and fine nature, synthetic fibers prevent almost all contaminants from passing through.

Each component exudes excellence.  Nitrile rubber base gaskets and silicone anti-drain back valves prevent leaks and dry starts.  End caps, center tube, and bypass valve are all made of metal and will last well over 10,000 miles.  A number like that makes this filter well worth its relatively high price. The thick shell protects the internal components of the filtration system are protected from things like road debris.

Highest Premium: AMSOIL Ea Oil Filter
56 Reviews
Highest Premium: AMSOIL Ea Oil Filter
  • Removes 5 times more dust than traditional cellulose filter media alone and 50 times more dust than wet gauze filter media
  • No oil needed for quick, easy setup and maintenance
  • Built-in velocity stack to help speed up air through intake pipe
  • Predetermined pleat size and quantity to ensure proper filtration and airflow rate
  • Measures 2.75” opening, 5” base diameter, 5” height and 4” top diameter, 40 pleats

When it comes to oil filters, AMSOIL uses nothing but the best materials.  A wire-backed synthetic media with 98.7% filtration efficiency at 20 microns was used along with metal and silicone components.  It’s the right filter for you if you’re looking for squeaky clean oil.

Best Value: Purolator PurolatorOne Premium Oil Filter
3,587 Reviews
Best Value: Purolator PurolatorOne Premium Oil Filter
  • Optimizes engine life for up to 10,000 miles (when used with a full synthetic oil)
  • 99% dirt removal power
  • High-density synthetic blend media
  • Silicone anti-drainback valve that lasts longer than traditional nitrile to protect against dry starts and oil leaks
  • Metal end caps and center tube provide stability and integrity for greater wear resistance

With a high-density synthetic blend media that results in 99% + efficiency and up to 10,000 miles of usage when used with full synthetic oil and a modest asking price, this filter is top-notch.

The silicone anti-drain back valve, metal bypass valve, metal center tube, and end caps are all made from premium materials. The high density of the media will reduce the maximum oil flow rate.

Designed for Engines with a High Oil Flow Rate: K&N Performance Wrench-Off Oil Filter
2,061 Reviews
Designed for Engines with a High Oil Flow Rate: K&N Performance Wrench-Off Oil Filter
  • HIGH FLOW RATES: Designed to provide exceptional flow rates and a consistent flow of oil to your engine
  • VERSATILE COMPATIBILITY: Designed to operate with all synthetic, conventional, and blended motor oils
  • PROTECT YOUR ENGINE: Pleated synthetic-blend filtration media removes most harmful contaminants
  • EXTENSIVELY TESTED: Laboratory tested to ensure excellent capacity and burst strength
  • EASY TO REMOVE: Fast and easy Wrench-Off removal

The oil filter is designed for engines that require a lot of oil – like race cars and trucks. K&N media has a lower filtration capacity than fully synthetic media but proves capable in allowing heavier oils to flow more freely.

An anti-drain back silicone valve and a spring metal bypass valve are used in the premium construction.

Affordable Quality: Bosch Premium FILTECH Oil Filter
3,672 Reviews
Affordable Quality: Bosch Premium FILTECH Oil Filter
  • Bosch Recommends The Use Of Castrol Motor Oil
  • Exclusive Filtech Media Technology Screens Out More Harmful Contaminants For Greater Engine Protection
  • Strong Steel Base Plates And Housings Prevent Warpage, Leaks, And Poor Fit
  • Silicone Anti-Drainback Valve Ensures A Supply Of Clean Oil When The Vehicle Is Started

Premium FILTECH oil filters from Bosch are known for their 99.9% filtration efficiency. A blend of cellulose and glass will capture particles as small as 20 microns. Bosch’s media is 42% larger and 30% thicker than that of its competitors.

While the blended media isn’t as efficient as a full synthetic media, more surface area ensures industry-leading filtration.

With a silicone anti-drain back valve and metal bypass spring, build quality is excellent. Bosch has built the bypass spring into the end cap, as opposed to other models where the spring can be detached.  It’s a nice touch at this price point, and it will greatly enhance durability and performance.  Lastly, the gasket is pre-lubricated to ensure a tight and smooth fit to the engine.

High Performance: Mobil 1 Extended Performance Oil Filter
4,533 Reviews
High Performance: Mobil 1 Extended Performance Oil Filter
  • Product Type : Auto Accessory
  • Package Dimensions : 8.6"L X 9.6"Wx7.5"H
  • Package Quantity :1
  • Country Of Origin: United States

Due to the synthetic media material, the filter has a 99.6 efficiency at 25 microns.  The best feature is the impressive 28-gram capacity of the media, double that of many competing products.

Additionally, a silicone anti-drain back valve prevents oil from pouring back into the filter when the engine stops.  As long as the engine is always lubricated, there will be no dry starts.

Truckers #1 Choice: Baldwin Heavy Duty Lube Spin-On Filter
854 Reviews
Truckers #1 Choice: Baldwin Heavy Duty Lube Spin-On Filter
  • Pack of 3
  • Keep contaminants causing damage, away from the sensitive parts of the engine
  • Gaskets provide exterior seal between the filter and engine
  • Highly durable and reliable
  • Improves engine life

The metal bypass valve allows oil to pass through the filter after it has reached capacity, making this a favorite among truckers.  After all, dirty oil is better than none, right?  Dry engines are not a good thing, especially in expensive engines, as in trucks or larger vehicles.

Apart from this, you also get the standard components like a steel end cap and nitrile rubber back valve. There are 44 pleats in the media. In comparison to other oil filters, it is pretty average and allows the oil to flow at a high rate, which is suitable for larger engines, such as those found in trucks.

The Baldwin brand continues to be a favorite among many customers, especially truckers. This design is highly durable and can withstand any terrain and environment.

Best for Long-Idle Trucks: WIX Spin-On Lube Filter
767 Reviews
Best for Long-Idle Trucks: WIX Spin-On Lube Filter
  • Includes gasket, mounting plate, center tube and inner element tube
  • Increased dirt-holding capacity
  • High particle size retention
  • Low oil flow restriction
  • Highly durable and reliable

Especially popular with highway drivers and those who have long idle times, WIX is a great choice. A nitrile sealing gasket improves durability in high temperatures. Steel baseplates, metal end caps, and metal center tubes are also premium features. A coiled spring is used instead of plastic for the bypass material. Lastly, the anti-drain back valve is made of silicone, which is far more durable than rubber and will keep its shape under extreme temperatures.

Its construction is superb, and so is its media. It offers an efficiency of 99% or more and is made from a synthetic material that provides a 55.5 square inch surface area. Also, the back is wired, which serves as a sort of ‘scaffold’ that keeps it all together.

Most Durable: ACDelco Professional Fuel Filter
28 Reviews
Most Durable: ACDelco Professional Fuel Filter
  • Protects your vehicle’s fuel system from contaminants, such as: dirt, rust, and paint particles
  • Traps contaminants before they enter the fuel delivery system for improved engine performance
  • Provides the performance and dependability you expect from ACDelco
  • Manufactured to meet expectations for fit, form, and function

Professional fuel filters from ACDelco are built to last. With a filtration efficiency of 98% at 25-30 microns, this wired-backed cellulose media is very effective. The warranty covers at least 12,000 miles. The design is extremely durable.

One of the filters that uses synthetic media would be a better choice if filtration efficiency is your priority. A quality silicone anti-drain back valve and metal end caps complete this product.

Once the filter casing’s temperature reaches a certain level, a thermosetting adhesive seal holds the filter media in place permanently.  The result is an oil filter with a burst strength that is five times greater than most engine oil operating pressures.  As long as your engine oil is thicker or the weather is warm or cold, you won’t experience pressure spikes.

Most Affordable: Motorcraft Oil Filter
7,354 Reviews
Most Affordable: Motorcraft Oil Filter
  • Fit Type: Vehicle Specific
  • Part number: FL-820-S
  • Included components: FL-820-S
  • Oem equivalent part number: FL820S

A steel case is the first feature of the filter’s construction.  Compared to some other filters, this one is thinner where it should be and has a better fit.  A paint coating prevents rust buildup and corrosion.  You can easily remove the fluted case end when changing the oil or filter.

This filter only achieves a 93% efficiency as a pure filter and with a 12-gram capacity, it is respectable but still falls short of other brands.


Finding the right oil filter and taking care of your oil filter housing doesn’t have to be rocket science. Hopefully, some of our tips helped you get more confident in your garage. Hit us up with any questions you have about offroad trucks, and we’d be happy to put together a guide for you!