Of all the many car parts that work together to make your vehicle run, the cabin air filter may be the most mysterious and least understood. You may not have even been aware that your vehicle has a cabin filter, but if it was manufactured after the year 2000, chances are good that it does.
The cabin air filter has nothing to do with the operation of your vehicle itself. Rather, it works to improve the interior air quality by filtering out contaminants. If the cabin filter is clogged up, it can reduce the flow of air from the air conditioning, causing the cabin to feel hotter. The air conditioner has to work harder as a result of the reduced airflow. This puts a strain on the system that can eventually cause the blower motor to fail altogether.
How To Change a Cabin Filter
You may not even know where the filter is, let alone how to change your cabin air filter. The cabin filter is located between the dashboard and the glove compartment. You may have to remove the latter to reach the filter. It takes several steps to get to the point where you can remove the cabin filter. When you get to this point, you may be exposed to dust and debris. To protect your eyes and skin, you should consider wearing safety goggles and protective gloves. You may also want to protect your passenger side mat from falling debris by putting a covering over it.
Your owner’s manual should have detailed instructions for accessing your cabin filter. The procedure varies by make and model. Sometimes you can access it by merely opening the glove compartment, while other times you may have to remove it altogether. This may be a simple matter of pressing down on a few tabs, or you may need a screwdriver. Whether you need to remove the glove box or simply open it, you should remove all the contents before attempting to reach your cabin filter. After removing the old filter but before installing the new one, you may want to vacuum the space to remove any remaining debris.
How To Buy the Best Cabin Filter
The type of cabin air filter you need depends on the type of vehicle you have. The best filter is compatible with your make and model of vehicle. If the filter is not a good fit, do not use it. It probably won’t work the way it is supposed to, and you may inadvertently damage your car’s HVAC system as a result. You should also pay attention to the size of particles that the filter catches. These are measured in microns, and the fewer microns, the smaller particles the filter will catch. Be sure you understand the relationship between the size of the particles and the airflow, as these two factors can influence one another.
If you wish, you have the option of having a professional change your cabin filter instead of doing it yourself. When purchasing a replacement, you can get help choosing the right one from a knowledgeable auto parts retailer.