What's a Cabin Air Filter?

Source: Tech-Net

You've probably heard of an air filter, oil filter, fuel filter and maybe even a transmission filter. But are you familiar with a cabin air filter? It's also known as a passenger compartment filter, interior ventilation filter, pollen filter or dust filter.

The cabin air filter was designed to remove road dust, soot, gaseous odors, pollutants and other contaminants from entering your ventilation and air conditioning system. Cabin filters remove nearly 100 percent of airborne particles and can dramatically improve the quality of air entering the passenger compartment. Unclean air can also cause allergic reactions, especially with allergy-sensitive people. Cabin air filters are of great benefit to drivers.

Automobile manufacturers started to design vehicles with cabin filters in the mid 80's. More and more vehicles today are being built with cabin filters. Most cabin filters are located either under the dashboard, behind the glove box or in the engine compartment.

How often should cabin filters be replaced? Car manufacturer recommendations vary, but in general the cabin filter should be replaced at least once a year or every 12,000 to 15,000 miles. If you drive in very dusty areas or if you experience an unpleasant odor you may need to replace the cabin filter sooner. If the filter is not changed it becomes saturated with airborne contaminants. This can lead to poor air conditioning performance and restrict airflow through your ventilation system.