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What's the Difference between an Air Filter and a Filter Element?

Author: Marie

Sep. 09, 2022

73 0 0

Tags: Mechanical Parts & Fabrication Services

Looking for a replacement air filter for your car? You may have encountered the term "air cleaner element" or "air filter element". People can use these terms interchangeably. But for simplicity's sake, we only use the "air cleaner element" in this article.

So what is the air cleaner element, and how is it different from the engine air filter?
The answer is no difference. The air cleaner element is exactly the same as the air filter.


What's the Difference between an Air Filter and a Filter Element?

Air filter element is a fancy term for engine air filter

Technically, the term "air cleaner element" pertains only to the filter material. The material may be cotton, paper, a synthetic material, or foam. The term "engine air filter" pertains to the entire part.

But here's the thing: in some cases, an air filter is only the filter media material. Other air filters come with a frame or a rubber seal, but these parts don't do anything but hold the filter in place. So an air filter is often considered only the filter media material.

Contrary to popular belief, air cleaner elements are not components of an air filter. They are complete replacement parts. In other words, you can use "air filter" and "air cleaner element" interchangeably.


What An Air Cleaner Element Does

Like an engine air filter, an air cleaner element purifies the air that comes into the engine. It sits in the cold air collection box and traps a variety of impurities in the air, including:

● Dirt

● Dust

● Bugs


The air goes through the air cleaner element before entering the engine. It's important for the engine to get clean air only. Your engine sucks in a lot of air, so it would get a lot of dust if there's no air cleaner element in place. It's OK for a little bit of dust to make its way into the engine, but large amounts of dust will ruin the engine.

That's why it's important to replace your air cleaner element every 15,000 miles (or more frequently if you live in a dusty area).


If you're looking for an OEM replacement air filter element, look no further than our company. Contact us today!




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