Is Your Car’s Air Filtration System Hurting The Engine?

ASE-certified specialists know how to properly replace an air filter

Did you know your vehicle may have two distinct air filters? The cabin air filter is not standard in every car, but it is responsible for keeping pollen, mold spores and allergens out of the passenger cab and away from your family’s lungs.

The engine air intake filter, on the other hand, sifts out dirt, insect bits, tree sap and other pieces of debris before they have a chance to reach the engine.

To keep your entire vehicle operating efficiently, your entire air filtration system must be running smoothly. For clean airflow, regular air filtration system service is essential.

But, how often should the air filters be replaced? Well, it depends on which filter we’re discussing.

Cabin Air Filter

As the element keeping your family breathing safe and healthy, the cabin air filter should be checked twice a year. However, drivers traveling through dusty terrain or heavy construction on a daily basis may require more frequent filter checks. When your filter becomes congested, your health is affected.

Dust, allergens and bacteria can find their way through the air filter and into the ventilation system. In addition to constricting the AC system’s efficiency, these impurities could impact your breathing.

If you notice heating or cooling issues, smell dirt or a musty odor from the air vents, or regularly notice sinus headaches and breathing problems while driving, call to schedule a cabin air filter check. You should also schedule an appointment with our ASE-certified technicians if it’s been more than a year since your last air filtration system inspection.

Engine Air Intake Filter

If left unchecked, airborne particulates sucked in from outside could damage the engine cylinders, engine walls, pistons and piston rings. While a clogged filter could let in abrasive substances, it also reduces airflow through the engine. When the engine is deprived of clean oxygen, the airflow sensors let the fuel tank know to release less fuel.

A clogged engine filter probably won’t lower your fuel economy, but it could decrease your acceleration power by up to 11%. If you notice your ability to drive the vehicle is impaired, the intake filter may be to blame. Most manufacturers recommend an engine filter change once a year, or every 10,000-30,000 miles.

You should also schedule an air filter check if you notice a loss in engine power, hesitation while accelerating or if the filter is torn, dirty, or showing signs of wear.

While vehicle air filters are seldom discussed, they have a significant impact on the overall life of your vehicle. Call Christian Brothers Automotive in Amarillo, Texas to schedule an air filter inspection. Don’t let clogged air filters damage your engine.