How Often Should You Replace The Car’s Air Filter?
Air filters need to be changed whenever they get dirt or debris. Failure to change them could cause serious engine problems. But sometimes car owners don’t know when to replace their car’s air filters. They are lured by a mechanic to change air filters even when they don’t need to. Air filters work by keeping dirt and dust away from the engine cylinders. They affect a car’s engine performance in ways you never imagined possible.
Why you need to change the air filters
Sometimes car owners ignore air filter changes when they are necessary. The air filters end up deteriorating over the years and some parts are even sucked into the car’s engine. When this happens, a hole is left on the filter which means dust and dirt can quickly find its way into the engine cylinders. Any debris close to the engine can shorten its life and significantly undermine performance. Dirty air filters can also undermine a car’s fuel economy.
What does your car owner’s manual say?
Perhaps the best way to determine the best time to change the car’s air filters is by checking the manufacturer’s recommendation. There are some car manuals that do not state the exact period when air filter changes are required. They simply state that the air filter needs to be inspected after a certain duration. But most car manufacturers recommend air filter changes after every 15,000 to 30,000 miles.
Changes done during regular car maintenance
When you’ve taken your car for a tune up or the normal maintenance, the mechanic is likely to inspect the air filters and advice on whether it will require changing. Sometimes the air filters have dust that can be blown away so you will never have to buy new ones.
The condition of where you drive may also determine how often you need to replace air filters. Air filter changes may be required more often if you drive in an area that is very dusty, you often drive on dirty roads or you live at the beach where there’s a lot of sand. If your mechanic also notices buildup of dirt or dust during the regular maintenance, a replacement may be required more often.
How much will you pay?
Replacing air filters can cost you anywhere from $20 including labor. You can shop around for auto shops that offer reasonable rates. The process of replacing air filters is quite simple so it shouldn’t cost you too much. Remember that the model and make of your car will also determine how much you pay to replace an engine filter.
Beware of air filter scams
You may come across a cunning mechanic who recommends air filter changes every time you take the car for maintenance or whenever they are doing an oil change. Filters never have to be changed on every oil change. If you are being forced to replace them every other time, it’s time to shop for a new auto repair shop.