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DIY: Spin on filter conversion (2.3 L I4)

74657 Views 84 Replies 43 Participants Last post by  calvariae
Another credit to 6tech for this one.

Frustrated at changing your oil on the 6i? The 6i's standard cartridge filter requires several gaskets and a Mazda-sourced filter be replaced at every oil change. It's expensive, and you are left with no aftermarket filter choices. That means visiting the dealer prior to every oil change for the parts, or- worse yet- having the dealer do the change. But wait- there's hope! You too can have great filtration options! Convert the lame cartridge system to a geniune happy #1 fun Spin-on filter*.
*=Now With Japanese Kanji!
How-to Convert the 6i Cartridge Oil Filter to a Spin-on Type
By Crossbow and Stretch

The 6i uses an old style cartridge based filter. Replacing the filter is a multi-prong process, which involves replacing 2 O-rings and one main cartridge all "usually" only available from your dealer, for a price around 10-15 USD. The primary disadvantage of this is the reliance on the dealer for parts (inconvient and expensive), and having to worry about proper fitment of o-ring seals at every oil change.

The Mazda 3i uses a spin-on based system which fits flawlessly on a Mazda 6i. By purchasing the replacement filter assembly, gasket, and filter, you can convert the 6i to a spin-on filter, allowing for a reduction in cost (2-3 dollars a filter instead of 10) and making oil changes extremely easy and simplistic.

Spin-On Filter Mount [Part # L301-14-310]* (Recent part# update to L301-14-311)
Spin-On Filter Gasket [Part # LF01-14-342]*
Spin-On Filter [Part # LF10-14-302]*
Oil Drain Pan
Phillips Screwdriver
6.5mm Allen Wrench
10mm Socket
15mm Socket
76mm Oil Filter Socket Wrench (Or Strap Wrench)
Socket Wrench (3/8)
Socket Wrench Extension (6 inch)
1 Inch Wrench or Adjustable Wrench
5 Quarts of your favorite oil. (0w-20 mobil1 in this article)
Brake Parts Cleaner
Paper Towels (Galore)
Latex Gloves
Razor Blade/Flat Chisel or Paint Scrapper
Protective Eye Wear (From Revenge of Cartriage Filter)
*=Ordered from your local Mazda parts department.


Step 1: Put your car up on ramps/jackstands. Remove the undercover (one plastic screw, five 10mm bolts). Drain your oil (15mm socket). Remove the old cartridge filter/o-rings.

Step 2: Ok so here's the part where we make a little confession. We couldn't get the old cartridge filter out. It KNEW we were going to replace it, so it put up one hell of a fight. It attacked me viciously without remorse, and prevented all manner of tools (including dog power) from removing the cover. So here, for everyone's enjoyment is a singular photo of the pure evil which stood before us, filled with hatred and anger. This my friends, is a Mazda 6i Cartridge Oil Filter. May whatever gods you believe in have mercy upon your soul.

Step 3: There are four 10mm bolts holding the cartridge assembly in place. Two on one side, and two on the other. First I'll point out the passenger side bolts (photo'ed here) and the driver side bolts in the next step. Each photo has a secondary zoomed in variant, for those that are lost and confused.

Step 4: Here are the locations of the two driver side bolts. Additionally the Oil pressure connector and sensor assembly is pictured. This will have to be eventually removed to transfer to the new assembly.

Step 5: Before continuing further, make sure to remove the oil pressure sensor plug. Its got a tab which sits on top of the sensor assembly. (Where the large 1 inch nut is). Press down on the tab and pull it out. Failure to do this step could result in the plug being jarred and possibly damaging sensitive electronic gizmo thingys. After the plug is removed, if you have a wrench to remove the sensor assembly, remove it now to make the next step easier. You can remove the main assembly with the pressure sensor still attached, if you have the proper extensions to your socket wrench.

Step 6: Start loosining the four 10mm bolts on the main assembly. WARNING!: The filter will defend itself. Crap will fall. Crap will get in your eyes. Your children's children will get crap in their eyes. Either dodge like a ninja, or wear some sort of eyeprotection during this step. The filters defenses are far greater then anything concievable by human imaginiation. Do not turn your back to it! You may find it helpful to have another human present to take photos and laugh at you when you get stuff in your eyes.

Step 7: If you haven't already drained the filter (like us) this is what happens the second you loosen a single bolt. Oil goes EVERYWHERE. (Yes into your eyes too in you don't dodge like a ninja). As the oil falls, reflect upon the steps you should have followed (ie: Draining filter and removing it, wearing eye protection). Eventually the oil will stop spraying/draining everywhere, and you will be able to continue removing the four 10mm bolts. As the last bolt comes off, try and hold the assembly upright and lower it into the oil drain pan. You do have an oil drain pan right? Failure to do so will result in more crap in your face, limbs, shirts, and hair. Many bothan spies died to bring us this information.

Step 8: Finally the source of evil has been removed. Note the "oil passages" (ooooh neat) and the "oil pressure sensor" (ooooh even neater). If you haven't yet removed the oil pressure sensor, do so now because....

Step 9: Its time to screw it in the NEW assembly. (Part # L301-14-310) Huzzah! Hurray! Death to the Cartridge system! Kittens and Puppies for all! um back to install. If you have some thread tape, you can use it to replace any lost during the inital removal of the sensor. Otherwise you might find it useful to turn an extra revolution (when reinstalling the pressure sensor) to ensure that the remaining thread tape is securely in place. Next its time to prepare the old mounting surface....

Step 10: Clean the matting surface of the old gasket as best as possible. When you remove the old filter assembly, some of the gasket may be left behind. Using a combination of parts cleaner and a razorblade/paint chisel scape off and remove any remaining material. Use paper towels to ensure no cleaning chemicals get in the oil passage ways.

Step 11: Apply a thin film of "NEW oil" on the gasket surface of the new spin-on filter assembly. This will help to hold the gasket in place while you mount the assembly.

Step 12: Put the new gasket in place (Part# LF01-14-342). Make sure the tab's are pointing down as indicated. (Like the original gasket was setup).

Optional Step: Laugh at the old cartridge filter assembly by showing it its faster and shinier replacement.

Step 13: Attach the new assembly/gasket. Hold the unit in place and lightly hand tighten the four 10mm bolts in (Note that the oil pressure sensor is already connected before the assembly is in place). Hand tighten all the bolts down. Then torque the bolts down in an X pattern, left-right, right to left.

Step 14: Reconnect the Oil Pressure Sensor Plug.

Step 15: Lubricate the Spin-On Filter (Part# LF10-14-302) and pre-fill it with oil. This allows for the car to reach oil pressure faster on startup (as oil no longer as to fill 0.5 quarts of filter space before pressurizing).

Step 16: Install the spin-on filter onto the new assembly you just installed. Bask in the glory of the simplicity of such a system, and hand tighten the filter to 11-14 ft/lbs.

Step 17: Refill the car with oil. Remember that the 6i takes 4.5 Quarts of 5w-20 or equivilant oil. For oil recommendations check...

Step 18: After refilling the car with oil, check for any obvious leaks by the new assembly or drain plug. If there aren't any, start the car and let it run for a few minutes. Check for leaks. (The car is obviously still up on ramps). If you don't have any leaks after a few minutes, you might want to consider giving it a short drive around the neighborhood, then going back up the ramp and checking again. If everything checks out fine, then put the dust shield back on, and your good to go! Congratulations on a successful install.

Special thanks to Stretch for being the guinea pig for this conversion!

----Filter Oversizing Info----
Thanks to Otaking for the info on oversizing the 6i filter after the conversion is complete.

Purolator Info-
PL20195/L20195 = oversized
PL10241/L10241 = stock

The filter that works is from a 94 Mustang V6 and has the same pressure valving, etc.
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i just so happen to need an oil change, and just so happen to be driving past the dealership (50 miles away) tomorrow morning! im tired of tapping on the metal oil filter socket-that doesnt fit properly- on that slippery piece of plastic! and the worst part is is that since only certain manufacturers make replacement oil filters, were not able to get those handy oil change specials from our friendly auto parts stores because they dont carry it in stock in that brand!!!!!!! but now i can go with the full full synthetic every time and save 10$ everytime, this thing will pay itself off even faster!
thats why i changed mine. back when i did it, mazda was the only place you could get filters at. and when im doing oil changes is usually after 6pm, or on the weekend when they were closed.
mazda dealership today part and gasket costs about 50$ will be here tuesday! apparently its the same mount as used on the 2010 6.
:::removed quote of entire writeup:::

Wow this mod is really cheap and will save a lot of time and money in the long run. I just called my Mazda parts dept and got the prices for this mod and i was shocked at how cheap it is to do.

Spin-On Filter Mount part # (L301-14-311) $36.45
Spin-On Filter Gasket part # (LF01-14-342) $4.34
Fram Spin-On Oil Filter part # (PH9566) $4.99
Really Cheap fun mod to do that makes oil changes a heck of a-lot easier and faster to do!!!
please don't quote long as posts with threads....kill load times

....glad it worked out though, it's a great mod for the DIY owner for sure
Is there a torque specification for the (4) 10mm bolts that hold the new assembly on?
works great. i did think on the 08', worked perfectly.
don't see one in the tech manual, just make sure it feels tight w/out breaking it. it's been done hundreds of times on here and no issues yet, so just play it safe and use your judgement.
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Thanks Mr. Tea, should have the car in the next couple of days and this will be the VERY first thing I do... I hate cartage filters. Thanks again sir

it was my 1st real mod also on my 6 when i got it. consider it cheap insurance. lol
Had mine done for around 8k miles and works great.
Does WIX/Purolator/Motorcraft make filter for this spin-on bracket? What part numbers? Just acquired a 04 M6i and planning on this mod on the next oil change.
pretty much every oil filter maker makes a filter for the spin on oil filter.
it was my 1st real mod also on my 6 when i got it. consider it cheap insurance. lol

me too...i used K&N oil filter..P/N 2010 (don't quote me on that) it fits the mazda 3 2.0L engine...
Conversion complete

Great write-up (and enjoyable commentary :lol:). Completed the job in a couple of hours including oil change, air filter change, driverside parking light change (a bit of a pain), and front end inspection. Thanks!!
driverside parking light change (a bit of a pain)
You think the drivers side was a pain... wait till you do the passenger side! :huh: I had my bumper off already so I dropped the wwf reservoir to access the light cover as the filler neck was in the way... 'interesting' design to say the least.
I just did this last night for my 2008 6i. I had to use a 4" extension as the 6" proved too long. Anyone with a 2008 looking to do this mod, I would advise you to remove the mounting bracket first then remove the clip holding the sensor plug. I also had the damnedest time trying to get the pressure sensor plug off, so I removed the bolts, let the piece hang down (while supporting it so I didn't break the wire), and unclipped it that way.

I bought the car pre-owned and I'm 100% sure the previous owner never changed the oil filter. The oil was supposedly 5w-20 semi-syn but holy god it was black as night when it came out. They always took the car to a nameless big chain for oil changes, so atleast some of the oil moved.

Thank you for reposting this here! I'm thankful 2009+ Mazdas moved on to the spin type filter.

Here are some the oil filter types you can use (these follow the 2008 3i 2.0L Engine)-

K&N HP1002
Fram - PH9566/PH3614
Motorcraft FL793
NAPA 1348

Good luck!

(PS, the bolts which hold the filter on, are very easy to strip. Be very, very careful that you don't over tighten them!)
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I stopped by my local Mazda dealer today to get a price on the spin-on filter mount.
I was told that the filter mount p/n L301-14-311 has been updated to 1F20-14-310B.
Also, he said that the corresponding Ford p/n for the filter mount is BS4Z6881A.
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I stopped by my local Mazda dealer today to get a price on the spin-on filter mount.
I was told that the filter mount p/n L301-14-311 has been updated to 1F20-14-310B.
Also, he said that the corresponding Ford p/n for the filter mount is BS4Z6881A.
I feel this question is going to be retarded, but I have to ask it to clarify. Is it just a name change? Or is the item updated to the point where the "spin on filter" is no longer doable?

I am assuming it is not changed in such a way to prevent it from being installed on our cars because that would mean it would have been changed from being installed on what it originally goes on.......right? :confused:
so will the filter hang to low with a sandwich plate
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