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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I changed the air filter a year ago, since then I drove 7500 miles. So I thought it was time to change it again. But what is really the interval?

Haynes manual: 15000 miles or 12 months, whichever comes first
Purolator home page: 7500 miles, unless your owner's manual says otherwise
Owner's manual: 36 months (if not driven frequently on dirt roads)

I would think that my owner's manual knows the most about my car, however that 36 months is TRIPLE of what other sources suggest. The average american drives 15000 miles in a year, so the difference between what Purolator suggests and what the owner's manual says is 500% (6-fold) for an average driver. Wow.

Just from curiosity, I looked up oil change intervals.
Haynes: 3000 miles or 3 months
Mobil: (I use Mobil 5000 regular oil) 5000 miles or 6 months
Owner's manual: 7500 miles or 6 months (unless driven under severe conditions)

Other maintanance intervals show similar (huge) differences. So far I used Haynes to determine the intervals. Don't you think I overmaintained my car? Who would you trust?
 

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93 240sx SR Hatch
1999 Solara
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^true, just look at the condition and make a decision from there- it wont hurt anything to change it when you dont need it :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Of course I can check the filter, however, I may not be able to determine if it obstructs the air flow (maybe it seems clean but it is full of very small particles). Besides, the question is more general and I'm really wondering if some sources really urge you to overmaintain your car. That is bad for two reasons: you waste money and you generate waste that is not good for the environment.
 

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Got Hardass?
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2,959 Posts
Of course places will urge you to overmaintain your car. They all want your money.

If the airfilter doesn't look bad, bang it on a wall and knock out any small leaves or things that may be on the dirty side and shove it back in.

Dirty filters:



Etc.
7,500miles isn't anything to an air filter. I've seen way too many cars go 45,000miles on one. Change it when it's dirty. Will it hamper performance? A little. Will you notice much in the four cylinder? Probably not. You're seriously making this a larger issue than it is.
http://www.motoringtv.com/quakerstate/airfilters.php

Most companies do that. Oil is another one. 3,000 miles isn't bad for an oil change right? Well, having family that works in oil shops and having done plenty of oil changes myself, I saw no reason why some would get it changed at 3,000. Oil was damn near as clean as the day it went in.
 

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=]
nasa space shuttle
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i just changed the air filter on my gen5..i changed it at 75km...which is roughtly 50000miles...it was the original that came with the car and the filter was a dirty no doubt but not as dirty as the pics above...you could STILL see through it a bit.. im pretty sure the air filter doesnt need to be changed that frequently.. im pretty sure 36months will be fine..or even 24 months but every 7500miles is just a Waste of money.
 

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Toyota-Lexus Fanatic
95 Camry LE
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805 Posts
The rule is check the quality of the filter, if it is dirty replace it. Use the recommended period on the Manual, but the decision to when to replace should be by your inspection result, hence, they indicate to replace them sooner if: you drive in dusty environment, stop and go driving, such as paper delivery, pizza delivery, etc......air filters should last at least 10,000 miles if not 15,000 miles.
 

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09 Camry SE V6
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or u just get a k&n drop in panel filter and clean it maybe every 25,000-35,000 miles like i do :D
 

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Dealer Tech..not Toyota
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540 Posts
change it, or clean it when its dirty...simple right, idiot proof right? oil, synthetic lasts 6, 7, 8 thousand maybe, dyno oil lasts 3, 4, maybe 5 thousnad, depends on motor, wear, age, and how its driven. air filters are the same, when dirty change 'em. just check EVERYTHING under the hood ever time you change your oil, youre already under the hood, go ahead and check all fluids, and filters.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Actually Purolator advises against cleaning/blowing/hitting the air filter. They say it may losen up particles that are in the filter, so when you start your engine, a whole lot of dirt will be sucked in.

Also, there is relly no way to tell if the oil is good unless you analize it. And there is huge difference between 3000 miles and 7500 miles. More than double.

Don't get me wrong, this is not my most serious problem. I am just sort of upset that I feel some companies encourage us to overmaintain our cars. And to a pretty big extent.
 

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98 Camry XLE V6
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^ i believe that to be true...yet i still do it...lol

i change 15000 miles, period. i just bang the dirt loose in between. none of my filters have ever looked as bad as above once they reached 12000 or 15000 miles.

my car has a K&N and i'll clean it in 50K or sooner if it becomes necessary.
 

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Premium Member
'96 Camry XLE
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11,248 Posts
I chanhged the Air filter on my Nana's 1995 Rolla last month, and it was original,haha. Granted, car only had 16k miles. But th filter was still clean.
 

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2002 Camry
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The replacement interval for the air filter can be nothing more than a suggestion, because they can't know where you drive and under what conditions.
I hold the air filter up to the sun. If i can't see through it, or it just looks dirty or has a tear in the paper, it gets replaced.
 

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98 Camry XLE V6
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3,116 Posts
you know what's neat is that i just checked the toyota owners website for service intervals and looking through their stuff, i found that they dont state that my 05 highlander needs to have the engine filter replaced till 30,000 miles 24 months. at 15,000 miles (which is where i'm at right now) it says to just check it if operated under severe conditions. Same with the cabin air filter.

man it seems like everything is being made to last, or can be neglected for longer periods of time.
 

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93 BMW 525i
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395 Posts
Some of the early (as in REAL early) fords called for oil changes every 1000 miles, as did similar cars of the era. One of these days, I'm going to dig up the service interval specs for my mothers 70something Plymoth Sebring Satellite to compare. Yes, modern cars can go far longer without service and are getting better about it - which is nothing something that makes the filter companies happy.

I've often found that the filter and auto parts service suggestions are a good amount over-exaggerated. I once saw an ad that suggested replacing your air filter every 6 months or 6000 miles for normal driving, so I think you have to take all of the recommendations with a grain of salt.

If you don't feel comfortable opening your own hood, I would get it replaced about every 15k. If you're like most of the people on this board, I think the best answer is to bang it out/spray with compressed air every oil change or so and run it for a lot longer.
 
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