Want Your Car to Run Efficiently? Don’t Forget to Change Your Cabin Air Filter!

Dear Mike,

I have been hearing a lot about the importance of changing a car’s cabin filter regularly. Is it really necessary? What benefits can I expect if I do it? I want to make sure I am taking care of my car properly.


Dear Marlowe,

You’ve certainly come to the right place if you want to take care of your car properly! Changing your cabin air filter is absolutely necessary if you want to keep your car running smoothly and efficiently. Here are some of the benefits you can expect if you start regularly changing this oft-overlooked component:

Pollution: As you drive down the road, you’re surrounded by exhaust fumes, smog, and other nasty pollutants. Your cabin air filter is your car’s defense against all this yuckiness, blocking it from entering your car’s cabin. By regularly changing your filter, you can ensure that your car’s interior stays cleaner and healthier.

Debris: Just because twigs and leaves seem unlikely to end up in your filter, that doesn’t mean they won’t. If you park your car under trees or in other debris-heavy environments, you may find all sorts of natural materials clogging up your filter. By changing your filter regularly, you can avoid this annoying and potentially costly problem.

Allergens: If you’re an allergy sufferer, you know how miserable it can be to have pollen and other airborne allergens getting in your car. Your cabin air filter can help reduce the amount of allergens that make their way into your vehicle. Since different areas have different allergen levels, it’s a good idea to talk to your mechanic about how often you should change your filter to suit your particular needs.

Reduced Efficacy: Your air conditioning and heating systems rely on the cabin air filter to work effectively. If your filter is dirty and clogged, these systems will have to work harder to push air through, which can result in noisy and ineffective performance. Nobody wants to be stuck in a hot car during the summer, so make sure you change your filter regularly to keep your systems running smoothly.

Engine Strain: As if all the other problems weren’t enough, a dirty cabin air filter can actually cause your engine to work harder than it needs to. This can result in decreased fuel efficiency, which means you’ll be spending more money at the pump. By changing your filter regularly, you can keep your engine working efficiently and save some cash in the process.

Ultimately, it’s best to consult your car’s manual to determine how often you should change your cabin air filter. However, as a general rule of thumb, you should aim to change it every 20,000 km. Of course, if you notice any of the above problems cropping up before then, it’s a good idea to bring your car in to the shop to have the filter changed out.

I hope this advice helps you take care of your car properly, Marlowe. If you ever have any other questions about car maintenance, don’t hesitate to reach out!


Mike Urban, Founder of Urban Automotive