Editor’s Note: This article has been updated as of January 2021.
How often should your vehicle’s air filter be replaced? Every 10,000 miles? Once a year? Is it safe to wait for 3 years? Do you know the last time your air filter was checked? Christian Brothers Automotive sees thousands of customers every day all across the United States, and one of the most common problems we see is the lack of care and maintenance for the car’s air filter.
The short answer to this question is to have it checked with every other oil change – and our experts explain why on today’s blog!
Why Are Car’s Air Filter Replacement Important?
The purpose of the engine air filter is the prevent dust, dirt, and other containments from getting into the engine. Over time, the filter collects dust and other debris and has to be replaced. If it’s not replaced routinely, your vehicle can suffer irreversible damage due to a few key reasons:
1. Debris Will Corrode Your Engine
As your engine air intake filter accumulates more and more environmental pollutants, bits of debris and waste can find their way into the engine. This is a major problem, as these abrasive particles act as disastrous shrapnel. While bug legs and small grains of sand seem insignificant to us, they can have a serious effect on your engine’s moving parts.
These tiny bits of waste tear apart the engine. As more metal is shaved away, more debris accumulates, and the engine continues to degrade more and more over time. At first, this will affect your oil pressure and cause unnecessary corrosion. Over time, if the situation is not resolved, the entire engine could fail.
2. Contaminants Affect the Fuel-Air Mix
To run efficiently, your car requires a specific air to fuel ratio. Every time you drive, your air filter helps regulate this. When foreign substances enter the engine, they contaminate this fuel-air mixture. The fuel is deprived of clean oxygen and puts added strain on the engine. The fuel cannot ignite properly under these conditions, so the engine loses major power.
In fact, the US Department of Energy cites a 6% to 11% loss in acceleration power when a car is running with a dirty air filter. When the engine has to work twice as hard to do its job, your gas mileage and fuel economy decrease. Eventually, the air filter could become so dirty, the engine may stop working altogether. From saving money to the lifespan of your vehicle, it’s important to have your air filter replaced routinely by trained professionals.
Keep Your Air Filters Clean & Healthy
A good rule of thumb is to request an air filter check with every other oil change. Locate and call your nearest Christian Brothers Automotive auto repair shop to request an air filter inspection. We’ll keep your engine breathing easy, and your family on the road.
If you’re ready to schedule your courtesy vehicle inspection for our certified team, find your closest auto care shop by clicking here.
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