Cabin Air Filter Replacement
Almost all vehicles manufactured today come factory equipped with a Cabin Air Filter. Unfortunately most drivers have no idea their vehicle has one. These filters are designed to clean the air coming in through the AC vents that all passengers breathe. Most drivers know that the engine of the car has a filter to catch dirt and particles so they don’t enter the engine and cause damage. Well the Cabin Air Filter works the same way only for the air coming into the passenger compartment.
Have you ever turned on your air condition on a hot summer day only to get a whiff of an odor coming from the vents? Probably time for a new Cabin Air Filter. Most manufactures recommend filter replacement once a year under normal driving conditions. If you live or drive in severe climate conditions such as extreme heat or cold, high congestion areas or continuous stop and go traffic then you may consider changing your filter more often. Dust, dirt, pollen, even leaves and bugs can get sucked into the ventilation system and clog this filter.
Cabin Air Filters come in two verities: Activated charcoal and Paper. Paper filters are more commonly used and catch the solids that come in through the vent system. Usually less expensive then the charcoal activated filter it is typically the choice of most drivers, Charcoal activated filters provide the same filtration for those solid particles in the air but also catch those smelly gases that can make your vehicle smell. Which ever choice you make either filter still needs to be replaced regularly.
Most vehicles have only one Cabin Air Filter. There are some European vehicles that have not only two filers for dust and pollen but a separate charcoal filter just for odors. Mercedes is most common in doing this. Typically you only have to replace the Pollen Filter in the models with both. The owners manual will show you the recommendation for changing your filter and will tell you how many there are and where they are located. Next time you have your vehicle in for service ask your advisor to check these filters to see if you should replace it. A new filter can help with air flow restriction through the vents and keep that clean car smell coming in.