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Cabin Air Filter 101: All You Need to Know About Cabin Air Filters

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This article serves as the cabin air filter 101 course. It provides all you need to know about the cabin air filter background, main role, signs of time to change it, what could go wrong when it is clogged, and more!

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Your vehicle contains a list of different filters responsible for preventing contaminants or debris from getting to certain elements. The cabin air filter is one of the most critical ones because it directly affects your health. The cabin air filter is responsible for cleaning and filtering the air before breathing it in.

Think about the cabin air filter as a specific large mask that removes any smoke, pollutants, or other hazardous elements from reaching your lungs. The cabin air filter becomes a critical element, especially if you have respiratory problems or drive people with respiratory problems.

Understanding one or two things about your cabin and filter help you maintain a healthy ride and prevents negative consequences that you never want to deal with.

This article provides all you need to know about the cabin air filter. It highlights the main role of this filter, differentiates between this filter and the engine air filter, highlights the main symptoms of dirty air filter, and more. Read on for more details about the cabin air filter 101 course!

Cabin Air Filter 101

What is the cabin air filter, and what does it do?

The first and most important element in our cabin air filter 101 article is to highlight the main role of this filter. You probably know that the air filter cleans any air and removes any contaminants from reaching your once. First, however, there are some details that you'll need to let yourself with to understand the importance of this filter in your vehicle.

The air filter is a small rectangular element that looks very similar to the filter you have in your household for your AC system. It is designed to allow air to go through it to leave contaminants back and clean this air, so it gets to you healthy.

According to most companies that come under cabin air filters can filter out about 99.995 percent of airborne contaminants. So, this is a very high standard for air quality that gets into the passengers’ lungs.

This filter does not only remove small, but also it removes pollutants, wildfire heavy smoke, and other bad smells from getting inside the car. Therefore, with a healthy and clean air filter, you'll enjoy a comfortable and nice ride.

Is the cabin air filter the same as the engine air filter? 

There is a very common misconception that the cabin air filter is the same as the engine air filter. However, that's not the case. Instead, there are two different components.

As we indicated before, the cabin air filter is responsible for cleaning the air getting inside your vehicle. However, the engine air filter is responsible for clearing out any contaminants from the air inside the engine's combustion system. Therefore, the cabin air filter is important, but it's not as critical for your vehicle’s performance as the engineer filter.

However, this does not mean that you don't want to take care of the cabin air filter, but it means that if you run with that dirty cabin air filter, you won't deal with as negative consequences as driving with a dirty engineer filter.

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What are the common symptoms of a dirty cabin air filter?

At this point, you have a good understanding of the importance of having a clean and healthy cabin air filter. Unfortunately, this air filter is expected to get dirtier over time of use, and that's when you have to replace it. Continuing to drive with a dirty air filter is not good because it impacts your health.

Therefore, it is critical for you as a driver to understand the common symptoms of majority cabin air filters, so you detect the problem as early as possible. Sometimes these symptoms might not be obvious, but if you learn about them and pay more attention, you'll be able to detect them before they get more complicated and before the cabin air filter gets completely clogged.

1.    Bad orders

The first and most important symptom indicating that you're dealing with a dirty cabin air filter is when you start smelling bad smells from out there. For example, if you started to smell the smoke from a wildfire or probably things from an outside barn, it means that your air filter is not working properly, and you should replace it or clean it up as soon as possible.

2.    Visible smoke particulates

In difficult situations, when your air filter is extremely clogged, you'll start noticing some particulates in the air around you. These particulates are signs of smoke coming from the outside or any dirt not cleaned up as it passes through the air filter.

3.    Restricted airflow

Another thing that you might notice when the air filter is dirty is that very low flow is coming inside the vehicle. For example, you've probably turned on the AC system and realized that it's not blowing as much air as it should. That could be a clear indication that the air filter is clogged.

Of course, the problem might be linked to another issue, which means that your mechanic needs to look at the whole system to confirm that there is nothing else wrong that is causing the AC problem.

4.    Strange noises

Finally, when the cabin air filter is clogged, you'll start hearing loud noises every time this filter tries to allow air to pass through it. This is because there is not enough room for this air to run smoothly as it should, and that's why every time you turn on the AC system, you'll hear these noises.

What could happen when the cabin air filter is not clean?

If you left the air filter clogged for a long time, as we indicated before, you'd start noticing the bad smells coming from the outside. It's going to be uncomfortable for you to drive your car and for the other passengers with you.

The cabin air filter becomes more critical if one of your passengers has respiratory problems. Imagine what could happen if the filter does not clean toxic pollutants from the city’s emissions?!

Even if the cabin air filter doesn't have much to do with the way your vehicle operates except for the AC and heating system, you should take it seriously because it impacts your health. If you're not enjoying good health while driving, it can be a critical issue.

Cabin Air Filter 101

How to replace the cabin air filter?

The good news is that replacing or cleaning up the cabin air filter is not complicated. Therefore, you can easily replace the cabin air filter by following these simple steps:

1.    Prepare the necessary tools

Replacing the air filter is not a complicated job that requires a lot of tools. Instead, you need to have a simple wrench or a screwdriver to remove the old air filter. First, of course, you'll need the right air filter replacement, and it's something you can check with your vehicle's owner’s manual to purchase the right one.

Note that there might be some higher-quality air filters out there in the market. Therefore, we highly encourage you to review the different types of cabin air filters in the market and familiarize yourself with the different pros and cons of each one of them so you invest in a really good one. However, you want also to consider not breaking your budget unless you're 100% convinced.

Other than that, you need yourself in that set!

2.    Locate the old air filter

Once you have your tools ready, the next step is to locate the air filter and remove the old one. Typically, the air filter is located under your glove box, and you'll have to know how to remove the glove box and reach the air filter.

You can always consult your vehicle owner’s manual to get detailed guidance on where this thing is sitting.

3.    Remove the old filter

Once you get to the air filter, look at it, and you'll see that it's very dirty. If that's the case; you'll need to remove it without inhaling any of The Dirty air safely. Remember, this is concentrated dirt from the lifetime of your air filter, and it can be extremely harmful to your health.

Once you remove the old air filter, you'll need to dispose of it properly and secure it, so no one gets impacted by the toxic or contaminating air particles.

4.    Compare the old and new air filters

A good protest in replacing the cabin air filter is to compare the old and new one. Typically, this is a way to confirm that you bought the right one, so you don't deal with the wrong sizes or use the new one when it's not compatible and designed specifically for your car.

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5.    Insert the new filter

After looking at how the old filter was installed, you should easily insert the new air filter in the right direction.

6.    Reattach the glove box

Once you're done, you will need to follow the steps in reverse order to reattach the glovebox and give the new air filter a test drive. You'll notice immediately that your vehicle's airflow is much better, and no more bad smells inside the car!

How much does it cost to replace a cabin air filter?

Since replacing the cabin air filter is not complicated, the replacement costs would not be very high. Typically, it should cost you between $15 and $30. You'll save a ton by replacing the air filter yourself rather than going to a dealership or an independent shop where labor cost will be a component.

How often should I replace the cabin air filter?

Typically, you'll need to replace a cabin air filter once you hit close to 15,000 to 30,000 miles. However, depending on your driving environment, you might need to replace it more often, but at the same time, you might not need to replace it if you're driving in a clean environment and if the air filter looks good.

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Tesla vehicles are equipped with an innovative system that cleans the air thousands of times more than the typical air filters. Instead, it relies on an air scrubbing technology that takes care of any bacteria, pollen, or food and gets inside the car.

According to the company, this air filtering technology provides passengers and drivers with the best air quality possible in their environment.

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Cabin Air Filter 101: Final thoughts

The cabin air filter is a critical component that plays a major role in your health and the health of passengers driving with you. It cleans out all the air and prevents contaminants or bad smells from entering your car.

Over time of views, the cabin air filter is expected to get dirtier, and that's when you have to replace it if you're this article provided deal with detailed Kevin air filter 101 course. Highlighted the mean role of this filter, I provided you with general symptoms to help you no winter list air filter and more details.

While paying attention to minor components like the air filter is similarly important, if your car has major problems, you'd better focus on fixing these problems as soon as possible. However, sometimes repair costs might pile up and get close to your vehicle's value, and that's when you need to evaluate whether it's worth selling your car rather than fixing it. Cash cars buyer is always ready to buy your car despite its type or condition!

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