How Long Should Cabin Air Filter Last

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How Long Should Cabin Air Filter Last

Cabin air filters are a necessary part of your car’s engine. They help to keep the air that you breathe clean and free from toxins. But how long should cabin air filter last?

How Long Should Cabin Air Filter Last?

The frequency at which a car’s cabin air filter should be replaced is variable depending on how many miles you put on your vehicle and the type of car. Replacing your vehicle’s cabin and air filters could be necessary every 12,000-15,000 miles. In some cases, the filter may need to be replaced sooner. Or it is typically around 12 months.

Many car manufacturers have maintenance schedules for their vehicles and recommended intervals at which to change out engine air filters.

A big factor when determining the correct time to replace a cabin air filter is how often you drive your vehicle, and what kind of air pollution you are driving in.

The longer a filter is in use, the more it will clog up with dust and pollen, thereby filtering less and letting through more allergens.

Eventually, the air filter will become less effective at preventing excess particles from entering your cabin. If this happens, make sure you consult with a mechanic as soon as possible to see if it is time for a replacement.

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Some signs that your cabin air filter needs changing are:

1. You smell an odor inside the car.

2. You can’t breathe well or feel it when you breathe in and out of your nose.

3. Your vehicle smells like a wet dog – this is usually caused by mold growing in the cabin

Can I Replace a Cabin Air Filter Myself?

You can! It’s simple depending on the vehicle.

STEP 1: Open the Glove Box

Open the glove box and empty it out.

STEP 2: Remove the Limiting Stop Arm

The glove box has a limiting stop arm on the right side. The cabin air filter can be easily removed by sliding it off the pin.

STEP 3: Release the Glove Box

Grab the front and back of the glove box. Squeeze them together until the side clamps pop free. Now, you can let go and drop down the whole glove box so that you can see the faceplate of where to put in cabin air filter.

STEP 4: Remove the Old Cabin Air Filter

Lift the latches on either side of the cabin air screen and slide it out of your way to open up access to the filter. Gently pull out the old filter without disturbing any dust, dirt, or trash particles that may be attached to it. Notice which direction the arrows are facing – they indicate where airflow is coming from (out) and going.

STEP 5: Check That Filter Chamber and Check Gaskets

New cabin air filters should be installed after a thorough rigger-style vacuum and damp cloth. Be sure to change cabin air filter and gaskets, seals as well.

STEP 6: Install the New Cabin Air Filter

Match the new cabin air filter to the original. Notice which direction the arrows are facing – they indicate where airflow is coming from (out) and going.

STEP 7: Place and Secure the Glove Box

Pop it back into the glove box until it snaps into place.

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The Best Time to Check the Cabin Air Filter

Most people agree that the best time to check that the cabin air filter needs replacement is before winter sets in.

The reason behind this is that your vehicle has been cleaning the air in it all season. It’s seen its share of pollen, and you may want to swap out the cabin air filter now to prepare for next year. Ask a mechanic what type of filter would be best for your car when changing it out.


The cabin air filter, when working properly, can keep your car’s interior much cleaner. Allowing outside particles into the passenger compartment is never good for anyone with allergies or sensitivities – especially children who spend more time than adults riding around in cars! So remember: Check your cabin air filters before winter sets in so you’re prepared for next year!

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