Purolator has been manufacturing, marketing and distributing filters since 1923. Ernest Sweetland and George H. Greenhalgh patented the first automotive oil filtration system. They called their invention “Purolator”, short for the words “pure oil later”. That same year, James A. Abeles converted a Twelfth Avenue garage in New York City to manufacture the product under a new company name; Motor Improvements, Inc. It was later renamed Purolator Products, Inc. and is now known as Purolator Filters NA LLC.
The original Purolator was an upright series of seven twill weave cloth covered perforated plates encased in a heavy-duty cast container. The product featured a sight feed glass on one side so that the oil flow could be viewed and the filter changed when the flow diminished to a trickle.
In 1937, the Purolator cotton waste oil filter was developed, providing the first filter replacement capability. Nine years later, Purolator introduced a “pleated paper” oil filter and this technology is still being used today.
During World War II, Purolator filters were installed on aircraft, tanks, ships and trucks, keeping the military machines moving through harrowing field conditions.
At that time, Purolator oil filters only filtered about 10% of the oil flowing through the engine. However, during 1943 Purolator developed the first “full flow” filter that was capable of filtering 100% of the engine’s motor oil. This led to the full flow lubrication system that is in use on today’s vehicles.
In 1948, Purolator developed the first original equipment (OE) “Block mounted” oil filter. This was an important milestone in the filter industry because now the oil filter had become a standard part of the automobile engine. Earlier oil filters were typically mounted on the firewall somewhere underneath the hood of the vehicle.
It was also Purolator who developed the first “spin-on” oil filter in 1955. Earlier cartridge filters were used, requiring the filter be placed into a housing or canister.
In the 1960’s and 70’s Purolator developed filtration products for:
Then in 1996 Purolator introduced the PureONE oil filter. In early 2008, the Purolator PureONE oil filter evolved into the product you see on shelves today. Featuring 99.9% efficiency and a textured grip control this product allows for optimum installation and easy removal while protecting your engine. The Purolator PureONE filtration line also carries both oil and air filters offering the best combination of quality and value.
Purolator has introduced more than 40 “firsts” in the automotive filtration industry, now has more than 2,000 filtration part numbers for automotive, light truck and heavy duty applications, and continues to work on product innovation and design. This culture of product innovation, design, and customer service still exists today insuring our customers continue to receive quality filtration products manufactured by the company that invented the business – Purolator.
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