Cabin filter – what is it? What does it do? How often and when should it be replaced?

Often called the anti-pollen filter, it ensures that we breathe the cleanest air in the cabin. Unfortunately, when ordering service work in the workshop, we often focus on the consumable parts in the engine, forgetting about this element. And that’s a mistake.

The cabin filter, as the name suggests, is used to purify the air that enters the car interior through the ventilation system. We often realize its role only when we see how contaminated it was after replacing it. If our car is equipped with air conditioning, the filter also improves its operation, e.g. drying the air. The poor condition of the parts is often evidenced by frequent fogging of the windshield.

The filters consist of several layers of fibers with different structures, and their quality is evidenced by the materials used or the specificity of the connections. In addition, we can list the following types of filters:

  • solid particles (standard),
  • carbon,
  • anti-smog.

The task of the first one is primarily to capture basic impurities, dust and spores. The second, in turn, neutralizes harmful gases and unpleasant odors. In addition, it also has anti-allergic properties. The latter is becoming more and more popular due to the increasingly poor air quality in cities. It can even stop pollen with a diameter of 2.5 μm. In the future, it will be possible to catch even smaller pollen, thanks to the development of nanofibers.


The cabin filter is best replaced at least once a year. However, if we are allergic, we often travel on gravel and unpaved roads or densely built-up cities with a high concentration of harmful substances, it is best to double the frequency of replacement.

A good time to install a new filter is the beginning of spring, just before the flora blooms, when there is the most pollen in the air. If we are forced to change it more often, the second replacement is best done in the fall.


It is not a rule that the older the car, the easier it is to replace the filter, although often in older cars access to this part is slightly better due to the smaller number of covers and less built-up components. Often, however, the complicated access to the filter makes it difficult to remove it efficiently and insert a fresh one.

However, before we decide to give our car to a garage, which can charge up to several hundred zlotys for the service, it is worth finding out where the filter is located and what is the access to it, seeking advice on online forums or guide services. The whole process may turn out to be a matter of minutes.


The purchase of a cabin filter, in the case of popular cars, should not burden our budget – often 20 Euro is enough to buy a decent quality part.

It happens, however, especially in the case of new cars, that we will be doomed to buy parts at the Dealership, and there the prices can make you dizzy – 100 euro for a filter in this case is nothing extraordinary, and the amount may be even higher. If we add the cost of the service to this, we can see up to 200 euro on the bill. In this case, it is good to look for replacements directly from filter manufacturers, which can be twice as cheap.

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