How to Change the Fuel Filter on a Dodge 3500

by Grace MclainUpdated November 07, 2017

Items you will need

  • Adjustable wrench

  • Tire tool

  • Jack

  • Jack stands

  • Gas catch pan

  • 1/2-inch drive ratchet

  • 1-inch extension

  • 1/2-inch socket

  • Diesel

  • New diesel fuel filter

The Dodge 3500 model trucks came equipped with diesel engines. The diesel engine has a fuel filter that keeps contaminants from getting into the injectors and the engine. The diesel fuel filter is a large canister that has a fiber-type filter inside. The inner filter is what catches the contaminants and traps them. Once the filter gets full of contaminants, it will have to be replaced before the contaminants start getting into the engine. Replace the diesel fuel filter between 50,000 and 75,000 miles.

Park the Dodge 3500 in a safe, ventilated area such as outside or inside of a garage with all of the windows and doors open. Open the hood.

Remove the negative battery cable from the battery with the adjustable wrench.

Loosen all of the lug nuts from the front driver-side wheel with the tire tool

Jack the front of the Dodge 3500 up in the air and place a jack stand under each designated front jacking point on both sides of the truck. Slowly lower the truck onto the stands and leave the jack in the upright position.

Finish removing the front driver-side wheel and pull it off. Place the wheel down flat near where you are working. Look through the wheel well and you will be able to see the fuel filter.

Slide the catch pan directly under the area of the fuel filter. Then, unhook the wiring harness connector from the fuel filter.

Turn the 1/2-inch nut on the bottom of the fuel filter counterclockwise with the 1/2-inch drive ratchet, extension and 1/2-inch socket. Once the filter is loosened, turn the drain valve on the bottom of the fuel filter on so that the fuel from inside of the fuel filter can drain into the catch pan.

Finish unscrewing the fuel filter and pull it out through the wheel well.

Fill the new fuel filter all the way up with fresh diesel. Take your finger and spread a generous amount of the fresh diesel onto the rubber O-ring that is on top of the fuel filter.

Put the new fuel filter through the wheel well and up to the threads on the fuel filter housing. Hold the fuel filter up to the threads and start screwing the fuel filter clockwise until it starts on the threads. Finish tightening the fuel filter with your hands. Once the fuel filter begins to get tight, watch the yellow mark at the top of the fuel filter. Once this yellow mark is no longer visible, the fuel filter will be tight.

Hook the electrical connector up to the new fuel filter. Get in on the driver side of the truck and turn the key on for at least 30 seconds. This will finish filling the new fuel filter up with diesel and remove any air from the filter. Then, crank the engine.

Inspect the new fuel filter for any leaks with the motor running. Then, turn the engine off . Put the wheel back on and tighten the wheel with the tire tool. Jack the truck back up and remove the stands. Lower the Dodge 3500 back to the surface and remove the jack.


If the fuel filter is not completely filled with diesel when installing, this will cause the diesel engine to suck air and the result will be vapor lock.


Never smoke or have any open flames around any kind of fuel. Wear safety glasses around fuel. Use protective gloves when working with fuel.

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