FL820S Cut Open - '08 Lincoln Navigator 5.4

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394
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Texas
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Decided to cut open the FL820S that was in my brother's Navigator with ~215k miles. We do oil changes according to the vehicle's oil monitoring system. The metal end cap fell off of the filter element as soon as I opened it up. The pleating was folded over in one spot and when I pulled one pleat to straighten it out, the media ripped. The media was quite crunchy feeling and I couldn't see past the folded over pleat to show if there was already a small tear present; the big rip happened when I straightened out the pleat, but there was no way to tell what was already there. The material that the metal end cap was adhered to showed signs of falling apart as evidenced by the pieces of it that were caught by the filter media. My dad and I have been using FL820S filters since 2000 when my family purchased an Excursion that was owned until 2013. We've continued to use them until this last oil change on my brother's vehicle. I was hoping the reputation that the FL820S has on here was slightly overblown and that my used filter would be okay...this unfortunately wasn't the case. I switched over to a Tough Guard and I am hoping that when I cut that one open for the next oil change, that it will present better internal construction than the FL820S has.

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394
Location
Texas
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Looking at it closely again, two different pleats were completely torn away from the end cap/base or whatever it is that the filter media attaches to.
 
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Location
Iowa
I stopped using the 820 a few years ago after having low oil pressure warning light flickering. Changed the filter and the light never flickered again. No more 820's in my garage.
 
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6,674
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Katy, Republic of Texas
I have seen a few filters that the metal caps fall off when cut open (don't remember the brands, think it has been a few different ones). I don't really know if it affects the filtering ability though. How many miles was the filter in use for?
 
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394
Location
Texas
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I would have to look back at receipts to see the exact mileage but we change it according to the OLM on the vehicle...I have no clue what the general mileage range for oil service is on Ford vehicles. If I had to guess though, I would say it's somewhere between 5000-6000 miles.
 

dnewton3

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OP - you didn't mention how many miles in use, but looking at the media it wasn't heavily loaded, so probably not obscene miles. what were the IOLM indications here? Metal end cap fell off ... that's not typical, even for an FL820. The adhesion clearly didn't hold up; wonder why? I continue to be disappointed when I see these examples. Makes me wonder if there cutting open a bunch of virgin ones would give us some indication of what exists prior to use; what is the propensity for failure even before the lube hits the pleats? I've used TGs for several years now; been impressed with the build, the efficiency and the price; overall good compromise with positive results.
 
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I don't know why the 820's are the only ones in the Motorcraft line which are so poorly made. FL1A's sure look a lot better. I stopped using 820's on my 4.6L in favor of the Fram Toughguards and no start up rattle either.
 
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Originally Posted by TXCarGeek
The metal end cap fell off of the filter element as soon as I opened it up. The pleating was folded over in one spot and when I pulled one pleat to straighten it out, the media ripped. The media was quite crunchy feeling and I couldn't see past the folded over pleat to show if there was already a small tear present; the big rip happened when I straightened out the pleat, but there was no way to tell what was already there. The material that the metal end cap was adhered to showed signs of falling apart as evidenced by the pieces of it that were caught by the filter media.
An oil filter is designed to work as an assembled unit. Cutting it apart and seeing what you saw, is completely out of context. That's like saying a house under construction with only 2 of the 4 walls already up is a poor design if a windstorm blows down those walls which aren't properly supported buy the other two walls and a roof.
 
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Originally Posted by atikovi
An oil filter is designed to work as an assembled unit. Cutting it apart and seeing what you saw, is completely out of context. That's like saying a house under construction with only 2 of the 4 walls already up is a poor design if a windstorm blows down those walls which aren't properly supported buy the other two walls and a roof.
Yes and no. I agree (and said such above) that I don't know if the failure (and it was a failure) was an issue. The metal end cap is designed to be glued to the media. It did not stay together as designed, which means it is a failure. Did it cause a problem, no idea. Your example is flawed, you are using a incomplete object comparing to a complete object. If the house was complete and the windstorm came, then the walls shifted because the nails used to secure the studs to the foundation did not completely secure it to the foundation, that is more like the filter here. Not a catastrophic failure, but still a failure
 
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Originally Posted by atikovi
An oil filter is designed to work as an assembled unit. Cutting it apart and seeing what you saw, is completely out of context. That's like saying a house under construction with only 2 of the 4 walls already up is a poor design if a windstorm blows down those walls which aren't properly supported buy the other two walls and a roof.
That analogy makes no sense whatsoever. That filter failed to perform its primary function, plain and simple
 
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Originally Posted by kschachn
Originally Posted by atikovi
An oil filter is designed to work as an assembled unit. Cutting it apart and seeing what you saw, is completely out of context. That's like saying a house under construction with only 2 of the 4 walls already up is a poor design if a windstorm blows down those walls which aren't properly supported buy the other two walls and a roof.
That analogy makes no sense whatsoever. That filter failed to perform its primary function, plain and simple
I didn't read anywhere in the OP that they had any issue with the filter before cutting it open. All the issues mentioned were a conclusion based on cutting open the case, which unless you're a filtration engineer, is just speculation.
 
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Originally Posted by atikovi
I didn't read anywhere in the OP that they had any issue with the filter before cutting it open. All the issues mentioned were a conclusion based on cutting open the case, which unless you're a filtration engineer, is just speculation.
You mean the photograph of torn media is speculation?
 
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Originally Posted by kschachn
Originally Posted by atikovi
I didn't read anywhere in the OP that they had any issue with the filter before cutting it open. All the issues mentioned were a conclusion based on cutting open the case, which unless you're a filtration engineer, is just speculation.
You mean the photograph of torn media is speculation?
Well sure, once you take apart the structure of the housing that holds it together and handle it with your fingers, it's bound to tear. Kinda like saying, toilet paper that gets wet and now tears easily is defective.
 
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Originally Posted by atikovi
Well sure, once you take apart the structure of the housing that holds it together and handle it with your fingers, it's bound to tear. Kinda like saying, toilet paper that gets wet and now tears easily is defective.
Ahhh okay, the illustrated failure was induced by the OP. That of course is the only reasonable argument one can make if you wish to somehow relieve the filter manufacturer of any responsibility. The only problem is that you have to make the same argument for all such observations by every individual. On the other hand, why don't we see similar tears on nearly every cut open filter if it's that easy to do?
 
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Originally Posted by kschachn
Originally Posted by atikovi
Well sure, once you take apart the structure of the housing that holds it together and handle it with your fingers, it's bound to tear. Kinda like saying, toilet paper that gets wet and now tears easily is defective.
Ahhh okay, the illustrated failure was induced by the OP. That of course is the only reasonable argument one can make if you wish to somehow relieve the filter manufacturer of any responsibility. The only problem is that you have to make the same argument for all such observations by every individual. On the other hand, why don't we see similar tears on nearly every cut open filter if it's that easy to do?
Who knows? Send it off for forensic examination if you have a few thousand bucks to spare. For all we know, one that tears when taken apart might mean the media is less dense and thus flows better than other filters that wouldn't tear.
 
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So you would make the argument that any defect seen in any filter that has been cut open is to be disregarded since it is just as likely to be induced as it is to be an actual defect which was present before it was opened.
 
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Originally Posted by BlueOvalFitter
Another 15 minutes of fame. smirk coffee
Kind of like that time when you and your friend Duntov283cam were exchanging posts, right? That got you about the same amount of fame. How awkward. I really think you should just come out and accuse TXCarGeek of falsifying his post. That is what you are implying, correct?
 
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