Oil Filters Decoded:
No matter what generation Corvette you have, you want it to run like it just rolled off the assembly line. Making large upgrades or repairs take careful consideration, and routine maintenance is no different. There are endless options for oil filters – arm yourself with a few quick tips to ensure that you make the right decisions.
When it comes to Corvette oil filters, you can’t go wrong with a name brand. Which name brand depends on your preferences and how much you want to spend.
Mobil 1 is the brand that GM uses when your Corvette leaves the assembly plant. If you want all your parts and pieces to remain original, stick with Mobil 1 for your filter. Extended performance filters store 2 times the capacity of leading brands, allowing for longer service intervals. High efficiency filters are designed with synthetic materials to remove and trap more contaminants than conventional filters.
ACDelco is a commonly used direct replacement. If you want your Corvette to run well for shows, cruises and Club meetings, this filter will keep you on the road. For the environmentally-conscious enthusiasts, ACDelco also offers an E style filter (52E for example). This filter is designed to be lighter weight than other filters, reducing the impact on landfills.
If you’ve ever changed oil, you know that the filters can be tough to hold onto. Oil filter removal tools are available to help you secure a grip on the filter. However, the team at K&N designed their filters with a built-in nut to make oil changes easy. Simply use your wrench to remove the filter and replace it with a new one.
Reusable Oil Filter
The latest option in oil filters comes in the form of reusable oil filters. These high performance stainless steel oil filters are unaffected by heat and pressure and stand up to the possible dents and dings that come with high performance driving. The filter design allows more air flow to keep oil cooler and the best part is, during cleaning you can see exactly what is passing through your oil – and your engine.
Don’t Forget The Extras
Improve your oil filter’s function even more with the help of a few additional parts. Magnetic plugs and an oil filter magnet can be used separately or together to draw metal particles out of the oil and away from your engine.
An oil drain valve is an easy addition that saves time on service checks. A simple quarter turn locks the valve open or closed to make analysis and engine treatment a breeze. It also cuts down on mess when removing the oil filter. As you unthread the final threads, use the valve to drain the oil and eliminate the oil that drips down your arm.
Selecting Oil – Conventional or Synthetic
Now that you’ve selected your filter, the next step is choosing an oil. There are two types of oil: conventional and synthetic. For late year Corvettes, conventional oil is the standard option. It’s also the best choice for breaking in a replacement engine for late model Corvettes. Conventional oil is also a little less expensive than synthetic.
Synthetic oil is procured through the same process. The difference is that synthetic oil is distilled, purified and broken down into basic molecules to remove impurities from crude oil. This process enables the tailoring of individual molecules to meet the demands of modern engines.
Synthetic oil comes with several benefits over conventional oil, including:
Keeps the engine cleaner
Offers greater wear protection
Provides better flow in low temperatures
Provides better protection in high temperatures
Protects critical Turbocharger parts
No matter which oil you choose, it’s important to follow the American Petroleum Institute standards. The API “service standard donut” appears on the label of every bottle of oil manufactured in the U.S. Remember that it’s ok to use an oil that meets or exceeds your recommended oil specifications, but for the life of your engine, never use an oil that falls below recommended specifications.
Paul Koerner reviews the basics of selecting oil filters and oil to keep your Corvette running smooth. Watch the Video