Cabin Air Filter: A Good DIY Project

June 20, 2010

There’s an easy and clean auto part replacement that can produce cleaner cabin air in your vehicle. Your car’s cabin air filter recommended change interval is anywhere from 15,000 miles to 30,000 miles, depending on what you’re driving. If you are frequently on construction sites that are extremely dusty or travel dirt roads in the course of your job, the life of the filter could be greatly reduced.

Its replacement can be very easy to challenging, but there's help available for those adventurous enough to try. If you are willing to do a little research and are aware of your mechanical limitations, it’s a job that’s worth tackling without much chance of injury or failure.

The air blowing through your car’s HVAC system is filtered through the cabin air filter. This device captures dust and particles that otherwise would end up in your nostrils. To find out if your car is so equipped go to, click on filter look up and enter your vehicle information. Note the filter location code and click on the Cabin Air and Fuel Filter Location Key. This will tell you where the filter is located; “Behind the Glove Box” is a common nesting place for this part.

Depending on the type of filter you buy you may also be able to rid your car of odors. Some of the filters have an activated charcoal component which can eliminate smells. The other filter type uses pleated paper and is effective for removing pollen and particulate matter the consistency of black pepper. If your cabin air filter is badly clogged it can drastically restrict air flow and reduce the efficiency of you heater and air conditioner.

Now things get a bit hairy as you decide if your skill set is compatible with the removal and replacement of the cabin air filter. My personal advice is to stay away from anything that requires the replacement of gaskets as well as any removal procedures that happen to caution you about the deployment of the air bag system. An air bag going off in the middle of a repair is not a good thing.

How do you know how involved your replacement is? Try getting your hands on NAPA catalog number NA-CAFFL aptly named the Cabin Air and Fuel Filter Location and Replacement Guide. A recent check for this publication on-line was not fruitful.

Once you have the location and replacement procedure nailed down, you’re on your way to an easy DIY project that can prove rewarding as well. You might say it’s like a breath of fresh air.

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