Information About Lycoming Approved Full-Flow Oil Filters

Although Textron Lycoming publication SSP-885-1 covers the latest information concerning full-flow oil filters for our engines, we feel it is also important to emphasize and explain key aspects of the publication to help people in the field. SSP-885-1 is concerned with full-flow oil filters in our direct drive engines, but does include one exception, the geared TIGO-541 which powers the Piper Pressurized Navajo.

Operators and mechanics must carefully read SSP-885-1 before handling the various types of Lycoming approved filters. Special note should be made of the differences of installing the AC vs. Champion filters. The AC is installed with the housing not turned, but with an attaching bolt through the center of the housing, torqued to 20-25 foot pounds.

The Champion spin-on filter calls for a different installation in that the filter housing itself is turned to a torque of 18-20 foot pounds. Never exceed the maximum torque limit. Maintenance people in the field using both types of filters must be very careful during installation of this part.

SSP-885-1 data includes the new Champion Full-flow Spin-On Filter. The latter is an added improvement over older methods of filtration, and is installed as optional equipment on all direct drive Textron Lycoming aircraft engines. Some of the advantages of the Champion Spin-On Filter include a resin impregnated paper that constitutes the filter element, which is heat cured, acid resistant, and capable of removing contaminants that would be injurious to the engine. The spin-on was designed to save weight and also shorten maintenance time, and is available in long and short sizes. There is no need to replace elements, O-rings, and various nuts and bolts and washers, or to clean the filtering units.

All models of Textron Lycoming direct drive engines can be converted to use the Lycoming approved full-flow filter element or full-flow spin-on oil filter; however, before installing, check the distance between the firewall and the mounting pad on the accessory housing. Do not over-torque the filter at installation. After installation of the full-flow filter, always ground run the engine before flight and get oil temperature into the bottom of the green arc on the gage. After a good runup, shut engine down and inspect the filter area for oil leaks. Also check engine oil level; addition of the filter assembly will require adding approximately one quart of oil.

Along with the filter and converter (a simple converter kit is required with some engines), Champion has developed a new "can opener" service tool for the aviation mechanic. The tool easily cuts open the filter without contaminating it so the element can be examined for any signs of metal chips indicating engine deterioration.

Before discarding the filter elements of the AC or the Champion filters, an examination of the filter element should be made by unfolding the pleated element and examining the material trapped for evidence of internal engine damage. In new or newly overhauled engines, some small particles of metallic shaving might be found; these are generally caused during manufacture and should not be cause for alarm. However, positive evidence of internal engine damage found in the filter element justifies further examination to determine the cause.

To examine the AC filter element, remove the outer perforated paper cover, and using a sharp knife, cut through the folds of the element at both ends close to the metal caps. For examination of the Champion spin-on filter, Tool CT-470 must be used to cut the top of the can.

Clean engine oil is essential to long engine life. Consequently, the quest for better ways to keep the lubricating oil free from contaminants is endless.