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Replacing the cabin air filter is an often-overlooked maintenance item that can directly impact the quality of air coming through your vehicle’s vents. Regular cabin air filter replacement is especially important for drivers in Arizona, as our dry, dusty climate can quickly clog and reduce their effectiveness.

 Our goal at Borst Automotive is to provide quality repairs that ensure safety. Replacing a cabin air filter may not ensure safety in the same way as brake service or alignment, but it can have a direct impact on your health, particularly if you spend a lot of time behind the wheel.

Read on to learn about the importance of regular cabin air filter replacements!

What Does a Cabin Air Filter Do?

Cabin air filters are a component of your vehicle’s HVAC system. Air entering the cabin must first pass through the cabin air filter. They are typically made from cotton or paper-based fibers, although some may use different engineered materials.

The fibers in the filter trap dust particles, pollen, mold, and other pollutants before they enter the vehicle. The filter keeps the air you breathe while driving clean and fresh.

How Often Does the Cabin air filter need to be replaced?  

For the most part, cabin air filters should be changed every 15,000 to 30,000 miles. This interval is highly variable by the vehicle manufacturer, so be sure to check your owner’s manual.

In states with dusty, dry climates, more frequent cabin air filter changes are beneficial. The excessive dust particles can quickly clog a cabin air filter and reduce its effectiveness.

We recommend more frequent replacements to our customers in Arizona. Our dusty, desert climate will clog cabin air filters quickly.  

How do I know when it’s time to replace my cabin air filter?

Out of sight, out of mind. Despite directly impacting the quality of the air coming into your car, it’s easy to forget about your cabin air filter. When an old filter is removed, it’s not uncommon to see leaves, bugs, and other large debris in addition to dirt, dust, and pollen.

If you haven’t been paying attention to the mileage, there are a few ways to tell when it’s time for a filter replacement.

dirty cabin air filter

Smell

When the cabin air filter is due for replacement, you may notice a musty, bad-smelling odor coming from the vents when the air or heat is turned on

Sound

Often you will hear a whistling or whining noise coming from the air conditioning when it’s time to replace your cabin air filter.

Weak Airflow

As your cabin air filter becomes clogged with debris, it can start to impact airflow. A clogged filter will not allow air to move through the HVAC system as easily, resulting in weak airflow even on high fan settings.

Allergy Symptoms

A dirty cabin air filter can cause noticeable symptoms, especially if you suffer from seasonal allergies. If you suffer from severe allergies, this can become a real issue, especially on longer drives.

Where Is the Filter Located?

On some vehicles, the cabin air filter can be found behind the glove box and is relatively quick and easy to replace on your own. It can also be located in the dash or under the hood, which may make it more difficult or impossible to replace on your own. If you want to replace the filter yourself, make sure you check the owner’s manual to see what’s required on your car.

Get your cabin air filter replaced at Borst Automotive!

Getting your cabin air filter replaced is part of regular vehicle maintenance. If it’s time for a new one talk to our advisors about getting it replaced during your next visit. Give us a call or schedule an appointment today!