How to Install a Cabin Air Filter in Vehicles

by Contributing Writer; Updated June 12, 2017

If you've noticed funny odors blowing through the vents on your Vehicles lately, the problem could be that your cabin air filter needs changing. This could also be the culprit if you've noticed that the air blowing through your vents doesn't blow quite as hard as it used to. Replacing this filter on a regular basis can help keep your passenger cabin air smelling fresh, cut down on allergens and even reduce the amount of dust blowing into your car. And best of all, it's quick and easy to replace by yourself without tools.

Under The Hood:

 How to Install a Cabin Air Filter in a Saturn Aura

Open the glove box. Unhook the stopper arm from its hook on the right side of the open glove box.

Press in on the sides of the glove box to unhook it from the dash. Pivot the glove box down toward the floor.

Cut the plastic rectangle that is labeled "cut out for air filter" with the razor blade. Discard the cut out portion.

Slide the cabin air filter into the slot. Make sure the "airflow" arrow printed on the filter is pointing toward the floor of the Saturn Aura.

Raise the glove box to hook it back into the dash. Replace the stopper arm on the right side.

Items you will need

  • Razor blade or box cutter

 How to Install a Cabin Air Filter on a Volvo S80

Locate the two torx bolts underneath the glove compartment. There is one on the left and one on the right. Remove the bolts with a size T-25 torx screwdriver.

Remove the panel the bolts were holding in place by lifting slightly up and pulling away from the front of the vehicle.

Remove the four torx screws on the black lid that is now exposed using a size T-25 torx screwdriver. They are located in the four corners of the black lid.

Pull the old filter away from the front of the vehicle to slide it out.

Insert the new filter by sliding it into the slot the old filter occupied. Be sure the filter is facing the right direction by following the arrow printed on the filter.

Replace the black lid over the filter. Replace the four torx screws using a size T-25 torx screwdriver.

Replace the panel that goes underneath the glove compartment. Install the two torx screws using a size T-25 torx screwdriver.

Items you will need

  • Torx size T-25 screwdriver or ratchet

 How to Install a Cabin Air Filter on a Nissan Altima

Open up the passenger side door. Pull off the rubber molding on the door jam of the door by the glove box. Remove the plastic cap on the right side kick panel, using the flathead screwdriver. Pull away the panel.

Open the glove box and empty out the contents. Remove the bolts holding the latch to the dashboard using the 1/4-inch ratchet and socket. Unbolt the bottom of the glove box using the ratchet and set the glove box to the side.

Pull out the filter located in the center of the glove box cavity, standing vertically and white in color. Set the replacement filter in its place.

Bolt the glove box and glove box latch back into place on the dashboard using the ratchet. Reinstall the kick panel and the plastic nut, then push the rubber molding back onto the door jam.

Items you will need

  • Flathead screwdriver

  • 1/4-inch ratchet and socket set

  • Replacement cabin filter

 How to Install a Cabin Air Filter on a Dodge Caravan

Get down on the floor in front of the front passenger side seat and look underneath the dash. On some Dodge Caravan models, you can look right up into the area beneath the dash from here. On others, there is a piece of molded plastic covering this gap. If there is such a panel on your model, grab one side of it with both hands and gently pull it down. You will hear a snapping sound, which is the plastic clips on the panel disengaging from other plastic clips on the dash. Work your hands around the sides of this panel, pulling it down a little at a time, until you can remove it completely.

Look at the large black plastic unit underneath this section of the dash, which is called the climate block. On the underside of this block there is a long, thin hatch that is just about the same size as the side of your air filter. Squeeze the sides of this hatch together and pull it down to expose the cabin air filter.

Study the old filter for a moment before you remove it. You should see an arrow printed on the edge of the frame. This arrow indicates the direction that air is designed to move through the filter. It's important to note this because you'll need to install the new filter with the arrow pointing in the same direction.

Pull the old filter directly downward. Be careful if it's very dirty; if you shake it too much, it could knock some dust and dirt loose onto the carpet of the car.

Slide the new air filter up into place. When you do this, make sure that the air flow directional arrow is facing out through the hole and is pointing in the same direction as the old one. You should also note that the filter slides into a plastic frame, and if it does not go in smoothly, it is likely slightly off the tracks of the frame. Pull it out and reinsert it if this happens.

Put the removable hatch back on the climate block. If your Caravan had the removable plastic panel, put it back on by gently pressing it upward and back into place. Every time one of the plastic clips reengages, you should hear an audible click.

Items you will need

  • Replacement cabin air filter

 How to Install a Cabin Air Filter in a Ford Fusion

Pull the hood release latch in front of the driver's seat to release the hood. Lift the hood and lift the support arm to prop it up.

Look at the area just in front of the passenger side windshield wiper. You will see a rectangular, black plastic case with a removable lid. Unfasten and remove the lid to expose the cabin air filter.

Note the direction of the arrow printed on the outside edge of the cabin air filter. This indicates the direction of the air flow. You must install the new filter with the air flow going in the same direction.

Remove the old air filter. If you're not sure if it needs replacement, examine it closely. If it is more than 3 months old and visibly dirty, it's time for replacement.

Put the new air filter in the compartment with the air flow direction arrow pointing in the direction you noted in Step 3. Replace the lid on the compartment, and push it down until it snaps snugly into place.

Lower the support arm on the hood and close the hood.

 How to Install a Cabin Air Filter in a Suburban

Open the passenger door.

Locate and remove the black plastic panel underneath the glove box using the ratchet and a small socket to extract the four screws.

Remove the single screw with a screwdriver to the cabin air filter door which is located under the panel you just removed. Unhinge the door and set it aside.

Pull the front filter downward and out of the cabin air filter cavity.

Reach in and pull the rear filter forward, then downward and out of the cabin air filter cavity.

Insert the new (two-part) cabin air filter making sure to install correctly according to the air flow direction marked on the filters. Place the rear filter in first and slide it away from you, then insert the front filter.

Replace the cabin air filter door by hinging it first then replacing and tightening the screw.

Replace the panel and four screws.

Items you will need

  • Screwdriver

  • Ratchet and socket set

 How to Install a Cabin Air Filter in a Nissan Sentra

Locate the trim panel directly to the right of the accelerator pedal.

Pry the trim panel toward the accelerator pedal to remove it. Apply even pressure around the entire trim panel to avoid damaging it.

Pull down on the filter cover clip to unlock it. Remove the filter cover.

Pull the old filter straight out of the filter compartment to remove it.

Slide the new filter into the filter compartment.

Replace the filter cover. Press on the filter cover clip to snap it into place.

Replace the trim panel. Press on the panel around the edges to snap it into place.

 How to Install the Cabin Air Filter on a 2000 Ford Expedition

Open the hood of your vehicle to locate your cabin's air filter. The air filter on a 2000 Ford Expedition has a black cover and is located next to the heater fan on the passenger side of the engine.

Raise the filter's cover using a flat head screwdriver to pry it upward. The cover will easily pop off and can be set aside.

Remove the cabin air filter by gently pulling it out of the rectangular slot. If the filter is particularly old or dirty, particles may fall so be sure to move it away from the engine as quickly as possible.

Wipe the inside of the air filter housing with a shop rag and clean up any dirt and dust that may have spilled elsewhere from the old filter.

Slide the new filter into the container, making sure that the filter is facing the same way as the original filter.

Replace the plastic cover over the air filter container. You will hear a click when the lid snaps back onto the container.

Items you will need

  • Flat head screwdriver

  • Shop rag

  • Replacement cabin air filter

About the Author

This article was written by the It Still Runs team, copy edited and fact checked through a multi-point auditing system, in efforts to ensure our readers only receive the best information. To submit your questions or ideas, or to simply learn more about It Still Runs, contact us.