How to Dispose of Car Air Filters in the Trash

by Allen Moore

To run at peak performance a car's engine requires clean fuel and air. The fuel system uses a fuel filter to trap deposits, cleansing the fuel before it arrives in the combustion chamber. Likewise, the engine air intake system uses an air filter to trap airborne dirt and debris, preventing it from fouling the combustion chamber. While no manufacturer has a set mileage or time interval for replacing an engine air filter, it's a good idea to inspect it at every oil change and replace it if you can no longer see light through the filter medium.

Step 1

Open your vehicle's hood. Open the air cleaner assembly. Depending on the year, make and model of vehicle, this might require unlatching the air cleaner top, removing a wing nut that holds the air cleaner lid in place or removing air cleaner retaining screws to take the top off the air box.

Step 2

Lift the old filter out of the air cleaner assembly. Raise the air cleaner up so it blocks your view of a strong light source such as the sun or a shop light. If you cannot see light passing through the filter, replace it.

Step 3

Put the air cleaner into a plastic bag and seal the bag to prevent the dirt inside the air filter from ejecting from the filter medium.

Step 4

Place the bag-wrapped air filter in a trash can.

Step 5

Install the new air filter in reverse of how you removed the old one. Close the air cleaner assembly and shut the car's hood.

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