How to Use an Oil Filter Wrench

An oil filter wrench is an essential piece of equipment that can be used during any maintenance or service procedure. Because oil filters tend to accumulate grease and grime, it is almost impossible to remove one without the correct tool. However, there are three different types that can be used.

Socket-Style Wrench

The socket-style wrench looks like an oversized hand wrench but it has a loose metal fitting that helps to promote a solid grip on the filter itself. The ring of the wrench is passed over the oil filter and the handle is lifted until it creates a firm hold. By lifting the handle of the wrench further, the oil filter will begin to unthread.

Strap-Style Wrench

A strap-style wrench works in a similar fashion to the socket-style wrench but instead of having a metal ring, a fabric strap is used to provide the grip. The strap has to be passed over the top of the filter and once it has been pulled tight, the handle can be lifted to consolidate the grip. As pressure is applied, the oil filter should start to loosen.

Specialist Wrench

Some models are specifically design to maximize space within the engine compartment and this makes the oil filter inaccessible with socket-style or strap wrenches. Under these circumstances, a specialist tool will be needed and these vary greatly from model to model. It is advisable to speak to a main dealer who specializes in your type of car to see where the correct tool can be purchased.