You just found the useful part of the belly pan. Oil filter protection =oil in your engine not air if you have a rock poke a hole in your filter and piss out all your oil without you knowing it.Changed oil yesterday. Since I've installed a belly pan last summer, I had to remove the front part of it (two screws) to get to the drain plug and the filter.
The front part of the belly pan was really dirty and covered in road gunk so decided to clean it up. Once cleaned, I've noticed a rather large dent on one side (see photo), "earned" who knows when somewhere on the road.
And where is the dent? Of course, right in front of the oil filter. Without a belly pan, I could possibly be stranded somewhere on the road with damaged oil filter and no oil in the engine.
Needless to say, glad I have a belly pan.
(your experience might vary)
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