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Fuel and Emission Filters

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Give Your Engine The Clean Air It Needs

The air your engine uses, pulled from the outside, must be free of airborne contaminants like pollen, dust, soot and even insects or leaves. Engine air filters come in a variety of filter materials, but normally they use cotton, synthetic foam or paper mounted in a frame made of plastic or rubber, designed for an airtight fit. Without this filter, particles would get into your engine's system, and cause wear that decreases engine performance. Over time, the air filter will become clogged with debris, which starves the engine of air and reduces airflow. This diminishes your engine's output and slows you down.

With a little NAPA Know How, you can locate and replace the engine air filter on your Chevy Silverado with only a few simple tools like a screwdriver, wrench and pliers. Most air filters can be found close to the firewall at the top of the engine compartment. Using a screwdriver, remove the screws or clamps then take out the old air filter. Once you've carefully cleaned any debris from the filter housing, you can install the new filter. NAPA AUTO PARTS carries a wide range of engine air filters in trusted brands like NAPA GOLD, K&N and Mann+Hummel.

Symptoms Of A Bad Fuel Filter

If you're wondering what the symptoms of a bad fuel filter are, consider how your car is starting and running. Buildup of contaminants from fuel can cause your engine to start, run and handle poorly, as well as decrease fuel efficiency. Check for these symptoms:

      • Difficult to start or the engine won't start at all
      • Engine dying while driving
      • Engine running rough
      • Struggling at lower speeds or while idling

Be sure to replace your fuel filter before these problems get worse. If you prefer to let someone else handle the job, check out any of our 17,000 nationwide NAPA AutoCare locations. If you want to take on the job yourself, swing by your closest NAPA AUTO PARTS location for parts, tools and a little Know How.

Keep Your Fuel System Running Clean

The process of transporting, storing and pumping fuel introduces foreign particles like corroded metal, dirt and water-contaminating it. The fuel filter traps these materials, and keeps them from damaging your fuel system. If the filter goes too long without being replaced, these contaminants build up and clog the fuel injectors or carburetor.

The type of fuel filter you need depends on how your vehicle delivers fuel to the engine. If your vehicle is older, it may use a carburetor. The carburetor is the duct through which the fuel and air mixture enters the engine. Fuel filters for engines with carburetors are easy to locate (normally at the end of the fuel line, if you trace it back from the carburetor), and easy to remove without any specialty tools.

Most modern vehicles use fuel injection, which sprays pressurized fuel directly into the combustion chamber. Locating and replacing the fuel filter for this kind of system is more involved, and may require specialized tools and checking the owner's manual. Once the clamps on either end of the filter are removed, the fuel pump fuse should be extracted to ensure the pump stays shut off. From there you can start your vehicle, but be aware that it will cut off when the fuel is out and the line loses pressure. Turn off the vehicle to continue replacing the filter. Before removing the old filter, make a note of the direction the fuel flows in and out, so that you can reinstall correctly.

Diesel Engines: A Class Of Their Own

If you drive a vehicle that uses diesel fuel like a Ford F150 Turbo Diesel, replacing the fuel filter can present a unique set of challenges that you can overcome with the right NAPA Know How. Due to more severe driving conditions, diesel drivers normally change filters every 10,000 miles or less. Many diesel engines use a two-filter system consisting of a primary fuel filter and a secondary fuel filter. The primary filter is located somewhere on the fuel line between the fuel tank and the engine, and it removes most of the contaminants. The secondary fuel filter is normally located closer to the engine, and features finer media to extract finer particulates from the fuel.

To change the primary fuel filter, locate it under the vehicle on the fuel line. Using an Allen wrench, remove the fuel filter housing plug, and allow the fuel to drain into a drain pan. Return the drain plug, remove the filter, and dispose of the old O-ring (the new fuel filter will have a new O-ring). Wipe down the housing and seals with a clean cloth, and install the new filter. Replace and tighten the bolts with a torque wrench. Repeat this with the secondary filter, located down the fuel line closer to the engine. Be sure to properly dispose of both the used fuel and filters at the correct processing centers, and update any maintenance records accordingly.

You may also need a diesel particulate filter (DPF). A DPF is an EPA-required part of the emission system for all Class 5 vehicles or above made after 2007. The DPF typically features porous ceramic or metallic material to trap particulates before they can be expelled into the environment via the exhaust system.

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