Air Filter Cleaning

Car maintenance doesn’t always have to be a costly proposition. Some people believe that all services must be performed by a trained mechanic. However, this is not true. There are plenty of preventive maintenance tasks you can do on your own!

An oil change, topping off fluids, and rotating tires are things you can tend to in a short period of time. Can you clean an air filter also? Yes, you can!

A dirty air filter impacts the operation of the engine. It should be cleaned according to the recommendations of the car owner’s maintenance guide.

Are you dealing with a dirty filter? Keep reading to learn how and why you should clean your car’s air filter yourself.

Can You Clean an Air Filter Yourself?

Locating the air filter is the hardest part of the cleaning process. If you don’t have the owner’s manual, do a quick search online. The manual will let you know the location of the filter and how to remove it.

You’ll need water, a hand-held vacuum, and air filter cleaner.

When Does The Filter Need to Be Replaced?

Aside from suggested maintenance, there are signs that you have a dirty air filter. One is that your car is getting fewer miles to the gallon. The car may also stall when accelerating, and the engine’s overall performance may suffer. 

Simple Instructions

Here are some easy instructions for changing a dirty air filter.

The air filter is usually located to the left of the engine. Remove the protective cover and take out the filter. There could be clips holding it in place.

Shake the dirt out of the filter. Spray on the cleaning solution. Wash and rinse the filter by hand.

Next, wash off the cover to remove oil and other debris. Clean out the filter holder. 

Dry the filter and return to the holder. Finish-up by screwing the cover back on.

That’s all there is to the process. You’re done from start to finish in five minutes or less.

If a Service Tech or New Filter is Needed

There may be circumstances that prevent you from cleaning the car’s air filter. These can range from the inability to access the filter to damage caused to the filter. In these instances, take the car to a certified auto technician.

Another issue a car owner may face is an air filter that has deteriorated. This will require the purchase of a new filter. Visit a local auto parts store and give them your cars make, model, and year.

Go Ahead and Give It a Try

If you’ve ever asked the question: “Can you clean an air filter on your own?” now you know! These simple steps make it easy and you’re done in a matter of minutes. Give it a try, you’ll be surprised how easy it is. 

Once you’re comfortable cleaning the air filter, you may want to try other DIY maintenance. We have the guides and reviews for the tools you’ll need. Check back often for new reviews.