I recently took my car to the Honda dealer for an oil change and tire rotation. The technician informed me that my cabin air filter was very dirty and recommended a replacement. For parts and service, I could get a new air filter installed for $102. Quite a lot of money for something made of paper! Since the technician mentioned it would only take a minute for him to change the filter, I thought, “Hmmm…maybe this is something I can do myself.”

I bought a cabin air filter for my Honda online for less than $10. The filter was identical to the one in my car that was previously installed by the dealer. Using instructions online, I was able to change the filter in less than five minutes. No tools required. The steps involved simply opening the glove compartment box and pressing on the sides of it to pull the glove compartment out. The filter was located directly behind the glove compartment. I took out the old filter and replaced it with a new one. I snapped the filter back in place, closed the glove compartment and voila! I had changed my cabin air filter for $95 less than what I would have paid at the dealer!

Additional information and tips on changing your cabin air filter:

  • The cabin air filter helps purify the air you breathe while in your car. A cabin air filter should be changed every 10,000 miles or every year. Most car dealers and repair shops will charge you an arm and a leg for this service.
  • Changing the filter takes only a few minutes. In most cars, the air filter is located behind the glove compartment box. Check online for instructions on the location and steps needed to change your air filter. The steps will vary somewhat depending on the model of your car.
  • You can also purchase an air filter online. Simply search for “cabin air filter” and the year and model of your car.  Several sites should come up. I have ordered from Logical Source and received great filters at a low price. Each filter comes with installation instructions.  Make sure to order the filter for your specific car model and year. You can also purchase an air filter at your local auto parts store.

This has been a guest post by Christy from Lawrence, KS
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12 thoughts on “Save on Car Maintenance: How to Change an Air Filter Yourself”

  1. Ashley Moore says:

    You can get an oil change and air filter change together at Walmart for around 20-25 bucks, depending on where in the country you live!

  2. Thanks for the info. I do need to change my cabin air filter and I’ve never done that as yet. I have changed my “under the hood” air filter with no problems.

  3. Gayla Gavin says:

    Great information.  Thanks!

  4. Anonymous says:

    You can buy auto air filters at Walmart in the autocare aisle. There’s a huge book you look through to help you find the appropriate model filter you need (by matching year, model, and make of your car). I usually bring a new filter to the mechanic when getting an oil change and he changes it out for free.

  5. Edie Webster says:

    I rather enjoy carcarekiosk.com :) Just type in your car make and model and it will show you videos on how to do oil changes, change windshield wiper fluid, check brake fluids, all that car mumbo jumbo that I personally know nothing about. I love the internet and its frugal ways haha.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Timing of this article is hilarious! My hubby changed both the filters on my Honda CRV only this afternoon! He also changed the transmission oil, a combined saving of around $150.00. Awesome.

  7. Jadda says:

    I think you can even purchase the aftermarket reuseable air filters that you just clean? (so says my husband!) LOL

  8. Ashley Black says:

     wow great tip! Thanks!

  9. uh, $102?!?!? I think maybe you should pick another mechanic…. they do that at the Quick Stop oil change center for like, 10 bucks…. yikes!

    • Gayla Gavin says:

       I think you are getting a great deal!  The last time I had my oil change, they wanted to charge me over $60 + dollars to change my air filter, too. :-)

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