Your vehicle has a filter to keep dust and debris from entering your engine. When the filter is clean, the engine gets an efficient amount of air needed to operate. A dirty filter can cause a decrease in performance. You may notice your vehicle has less power and struggles to accelerate. Engine filters typically need to be replaced every 12,000 to 15,000 miles or about once a month. Some drivers may need to replace their engine filters sooner if they're in dusty rural areas. Below are three telltale signs that the engine filter is clogged.
The filter is dirty.
If you don't have time to have a professional check the filter, check your vehicle's owner's manual for your specific engine filter's exact location. Give the engine filter a visual inspection. A clean filter should be white and free of pollutants. Over time, dirt and debris can accumulate and prevent airflow. If you flash a light through the filter and can't see the light through the other side, it's time for a replacement.
There's a decrease in engine power.
When clean air can adequately flow through the filter, gas mileage can improve significantly. If you need to slam on the gas pedal to get your car to accelerate, it may be time to check the engine filter. A dirty engine filter may cause jerk movements due to a decrease in engine power.
The engine is sputtering.
If the engine isn't getting enough air, it may excessively vibrate when you try to turn over the engine. It will produce a sputtering or coughing sound loud enough to hear from your car cabin. The moment your engine starts to sputter, check the engine filter.
Kamphaus Auto Care is a Napa AutoCare Center with expert automotive technicians who specialize in all vehicle repairs and services. If you're noticing any of the above signs, our advisors are here to help.
Feel free to give us a call at 630-504-7702 or click here to schedule an appointment. We'd be happy to help!