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To oil or not oil OPE foam pre-filters #5135207 06/15/19 06:54 PM
Joined: Mar 2004
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92saturnsl2 Offline OP
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Most of my OPE has a air filter with a foam pre-filter element that goes around or on top of it. This includes my Echo trimmer, two Kohler Command V-twins, Briggs 900-series on my tiller, and a couple others.

In the past I have always squeezed some oil into the filter (usually using MMO or something light viscosity that spreads evenly) before installing it. But I've also noticed that when doing this, the pre-filters get gummed up with crap quickly, I can't even get a mowing season out of them before having to replace or clean the pre-filter. Hard to clean all the gunk out and for the price they usually just get replaced.

Is there any benefit to oiling the pre-filter, or should I just let it be? What do you guys do?


96 Grand Prix SE (project car)
04 Odyssey EX 200k Philips Shield Choice 10w-30
96 Maxima GLE 275k Shell Rotella T5 10w-30
07 Chrysler Pacifica Limited 4.0L 145k Mobil1 EP 0w-20
Re: To oil or not oil OPE foam pre-filters [Re: 92saturnsl2] #5135265 06/15/19 07:56 PM
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Chris142 Offline
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Afik foam filters are oiled.


02 Wrangler Napa high milage 10w40
87 F250 Valvoline 15w40
07 fjcruiser Car lube plus 10w30
Z400 castrol T 10w40
Can am Maveric edge 5w40
57 case tractor Chevron sae30
Re: To oil or not oil OPE foam pre-filters [Re: 92saturnsl2] #5135272 06/15/19 07:59 PM
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oldhp Offline
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Isn't that the purpose of the pre-filter? I would just keep it oiled as you have been doing. Otherwise your regular filters are going to get dirty faster. I put the filter under water and squeeze Dawn into it. I keep squeezing and rinsing until it rinses clean water. When dry, I've used everything from engine oil to WD-40, doesn't seem to make a difference.


"None of us are getting out here alive.....drink that beer.....eat that pizza......drive that Hot Rod"
"When others cut you down, remember where they came from."
"I don't run...........I just wait"
Re: To oil or not oil OPE foam pre-filters [Re: 92saturnsl2] #5135275 06/15/19 08:01 PM
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Dinoburner Offline
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Leaving the pre filter dry allows for better air flow longer but of coarse fills the secondary quicker with the finer particles. We keep the pre clean and change both yearly.


77 Chev stepside 454 Casteroil syn
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2016 Equinox LTZ V6 dealer
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Re: To oil or not oil OPE foam pre-filters [Re: 92saturnsl2] #5135424 06/16/19 03:06 AM
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Linctex Offline
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I always oil mine very lightly... a little goes a long way

Just dawn dish soap and water cleans them up fine. Don't try to get it 100% clean again - that's fruitless.


"The evidence demands a verdict".
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Re: To oil or not oil OPE foam pre-filters [Re: 92saturnsl2] #5135555 06/16/19 07:54 AM
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AnthemBassMan Offline
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My Mother-in-law’s John Deere x475 tractor manual says NOT to oil the foam ore-filter. But I do oil the don filters on my Lawn Boys and weed eater. Also on the usual Briggs vertical mower engines.

L8R,
Matt


2010 Chrysler Sebring Touring 191kmiles
Harvest King 5w30 full synthetic/Prime Guard POF2222 filter

2017 Hyundai Elantra SE 41.6k miles
Pennzoil Platinum 5w30/Fram Ultra XG9688 filter
Re: To oil or not oil OPE foam pre-filters [Re: 92saturnsl2] #5135561 06/16/19 08:01 AM
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Kira Offline
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Running water and repeatedly squeezing Dawn dishwashing liquid through it.....

DON'T DO IT IF YOU HAVE A SEPTIC SYSTEM.

For the waste made, it mightn't be a good idea for municipal sewage systems either. Why tax the devil out of them?

Re: To oil or not oil OPE foam pre-filters [Re: AnthemBassMan] #5135644 06/16/19 10:12 AM
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ragtoplvr Offline
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Originally Posted by AnthemBassMan
My Mother-in-law’s John Deere x475 tractor manual says NOT to oil the foam ore-filter. But I do oil the don filters on my Lawn Boys and weed eater. Also on the usual Briggs vertical mower engines.

L8R,
Matt

There is enough spit back before the reeds close that a lawboy filter is automatically oiled.

Rod

Re: To oil or not oil OPE foam pre-filters [Re: 92saturnsl2] #5135685 06/16/19 11:05 AM
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dwendt44 Online Content
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Quote
My Mother-in-law’s John Deere x475 tractor manual says NOT to oil the foam ore-filter.


Perhaps because some folks overdo the oil and it drips onto the paper filter element below, causing
it to deteriorate.

I lightly spray the foam with WD-40 let it air dry for a bit before re-installing the foam pre-filter.


My 2¢


There's no such thing as:
Too big of a battery,
Too large of a gas tank,
or too loud of a horn,
or too bright headlights.
Re: To oil or not oil OPE foam pre-filters [Re: 92saturnsl2] #5136226 06/16/19 11:02 PM
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HM12460 Offline
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I oil mine lightly and squeeze out the excess. They clean well with some hot water and Dawn dish soap.


2019 Toyota Tacoma



Re: To oil or not oil OPE foam pre-filters [Re: 92saturnsl2] #5136386 06/17/19 07:41 AM
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meep Offline
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I'd oil it unless the manual says not to. If I didn't have a manual, I'd oil it but would take extra care to make sure it was light and not heavy.


2018 F150
2015 crv (wifey!)
Re: To oil or not oil OPE foam pre-filters [Re: 92saturnsl2] #5136851 06/17/19 04:27 PM
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bchannell Offline
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I used to oil the pre-filter on my JD 425, but lately have been just cleaning and using it dry. It still catches the boulders headed into the filter, and doesn't clog up so fast. I have to clean it out a little bit sooner, but it's a whole lot easier. I've had some trouble with the filter clogging up and the tractor running rich, so I made the switch. I also hear that JD and Kubota has changed their minds on the issue and now recommend not oiling so I'm ok with that.

Re: To oil or not oil OPE foam pre-filters [Re: 92saturnsl2] #5138405 06/19/19 11:44 AM
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Clayslayer Offline
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I always oil foam filters. I bought a quart of TwinAir filter oil several years ago for the UNI filter in my ATV. I don't think my grandchildren will ever finish off that quart of oil.... little goes a long way. For what it's worth: I put the filter in a zip lock bag, pour in a little oil, then squish the filter around until it's all the same color and adding oil if needed. Filter oil is....sticky. Very sticky. K&N filter oil works well too. Same stuff really...just red instead of blue.

Re: To oil or not oil OPE foam pre-filters [Re: 92saturnsl2] #5140950 06/22/19 12:38 PM
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nomas Offline
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My Kohler engine on my Bad Boy mower has a foam prefilter . I never even checked the manual , I just wash and oil it every couple of mowings . It's pretty dirty which shows it's doing it's job .

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