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Why it’s Important to Change your Vehicle Filters

Why it’s Important to Change your Vehicle Filters

Let’s face it, many of us love our cars; they help get us from A to B quickly and on time, they save us from the rain and the cold, they look cool (at least most do), and they save us from taking public transportation, whether it’s the metro, taxi or bus. What’s not to love.

Here’s a question: Despite the endless affection you have for your vehicle, how often do you neglect checking your vehicles filters?

I know i do this quite frequently.

Sometimes I feel as if my vehicle will continue to run forever without any maintenance ( I wish). However, this is not the reality with any vehicle, every vehicle needs to be well- maintained. In this article we will be focusing on why it’s important to change your vehicle filters - it might sound boring, but it’s necessary boring, simply because a lot of drivers on the road underestimate how important it is to regularly maintain their vehicle filters. Here is everything you need to know about the different vehicle filters inside your vehicle and why they should ALWAYS be properly maintained.

Read on.

Cabin Air Filter

What is a cabin air filter? Why do you need one? Well, for those who didn’t know nearly all vehicles these days are equipped with a cabin air filter. A cabin air filter is specifically designed to filter the air you inhale inside your vehicle; they filter pollen and dust from the incoming air, which can be really important for those who have allergies or suffer from hay fever.

Over time, cabin air filters can fill up with harmful contaminants and when that happens they can no longer serve their purpose. If you begin to notice any bad smells coming from your ventilation system, this is probably a good sign that it’s time to replace your cabin air filter.

Reasons to change your cabin air filter;

A cabin air filter that isn’t well maintained can make your driving experience unpleasant, and sometimes, unhealthy for both you and your passengers. Here are some benefits to properly maintaining your cabin air filter;

Better comfort and less odor

When you replace your cabin air filter, you’ll immediately notice a difference in your driving comfort and efficiency of your defrosting, heating and cooling systems. A new cabin air filter will also keep the interior clean and remove any odor.

A quieter AC

If your cabin air filter is filled up with harmful debris, then this normally means that your AC will work harder when pushing out warm or cool air. As a result, leading to excess noise, making your journey more stressful and far less comfortable.

Significantly reduces safety and visibility problems

As mentioned above in the first point, cleaning out your air cabin filters can really improve your vehicle when it comes to defrosting any fog from your windows. This is especially important because every driver needs to see clearly and accurately from their windscreen and center and rear mirrors before setting off on their journey hence why it is absolutely crucial to unclog your air cabin filters.

How often should you change your cabin air filter

Most manufacturers recommend replacing the air cabin filter every 12,000 to 15,000 miles or at least once a year. However, drivers are advised to replace their cabin air filter more regularly if they drive on dirty roads or in highly polluted areas/cities. Thankfully every vehicle comes with an owner’s manual, so that’s another way to learn more about how often you should change your cabin air filter.

Improves your vehicle's HVAC ( heating, ventilation and air conditioning system)

Regularly changing your cabin air filters will effectively allow you to run your vehicle more efficiently as it helps to extend the life of your HVAC system - meaning more money and time saved.

What is the difference between a cabin air filter vs an air filter

FYI: There isn’t a huge difference between the two vehicle filters - as covered above, the cabin air filter prevents any dirty air from entering the vehicle which, in turn, protects you and your passengers from pollutants and allergens. Whereas, air filters are specifically designed to keep dirty air from making its way into the engine.

Reasons to change your air filter;

Better car performance

Proper air filtration is crucial to the power of the overall vehicle. Fuel coupled with clean air means you can burn more fuel, or burn it more efficiently, therefore generating more power.

Saves fuel

A clean air filter can improve fuel consumption by as much as 14% and can increase acceleration by up to 11% depending on the make and model of your vehicle.

Prevents black smoke from appearing

Usually when the engine is blocked, it means the vehicle isn’t receiving enough clean air into the cylinder, causing a rich mixture. As a result, black smoke from the exhaust pipes is likely to appear. If you find black smoke coming from the rear pipes, it means it’s time to visit the mechanic as you’re burning more and more fuel each time you accelerate. Take note speed demons.

What is an oil filter?

Moving onto the fluids section of the vehicle, the oil filter plays an important role in providing purified oil for the engine at all times. If your oil is dirty, oil sludge or black sludge starts to form inside the engine, eventually starving the engine of lubrication and cooling. Internal parts of the engine will begin to get much hotter and gradually wear down, for example between the pistons and piston walls, which can seriously damage your vehicle in the long term.

Reasons to change your oil filter;

Minimizing engine wear

If you don’t change the oil filter, you may slow down the arrival of oil going to the engine. In turn, this can lead to an abundance of issues such as early engine wear, poor performance on the road and maybe even a breakdown.

To prevent spoiling your new oil

It is recommended by car manufacturers to change your oil filter every other time you have your oil changed. The reason for this is to avoid reducing the current life of your new oil.

What is a fuel filter?

It is quite straightforward: Much like the other vehicle filters, a fuel filter removes any impurities that came with the fuel that you put into your vehicle, for example dirt, rust, insects or any other unwanted particles. As a result, these particles can cause significant damage to an engine.

Reasons to change your air filter;

Enhanced performance

If there are little to no contaminants in your vehicle, the fuel will burn more efficiently, allowing your vehicle to drive better - and faster - on the road.

To keep your vehicle in good condition

If any harmful substances are not removed before the fuel enters your vehicle, they will cause rapid wear and the failure of the fuel pump and injectors, resulting in the vehicle getting seriously damaged and most likely breaking down.

Further reading

Read more: Service Secrets... What to do if you misfuel
Read more: Service Secrets ... If you have a newer diesel vehicle - you should know about AdBlue
Read more: Service Secrets ... Everything You Need to Know About Air Con

How often do you get your vehicle filters checked?

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The comments above do not necessarily reflect Rivervale's views unless clearly stated.

Driver advice
29 November 2018
Written by Ismael Soliman
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