Car ?'s- How Many Filters are there in my Car?

July 17th, 2014 by

Dirty Air Filter
This is a question that comes up all of the time, consumers want to be more familiar with their vehicles and have heard all about filter but want to know what they do and how many there are. Here’s a quick rundown of the filters in your car and what they do. Note, not all cars have all of these features, generally vehicles have 2 to 4 filters. You will have to refer to your individual Owner’s Manual to check your specific vehicle.
The first type of filter, which every vehicle with an engine has, is an engine air filter. It works hard to make sure the air that goes into the engine for combustion is clear of debris which can complicate its inner workings. Because this component filters the air going into the engine, if it is clogged with dirt and debris , the optimal amount of air isn’t making it into the combustion chamber. This can cost you engine performance, efficiency, and cause wear on the engine over time. It’s important to keep up with the replacement  of the engine air filter to prevent costly engine repairs down the road. A general rule of thumb is to change the engine air filter every 12,000 miles.
The second type, fuel filters, are also crucial to proper function and maintenance of most vehicles. Some new vehicles feature maintenance-free pump systems. The fuel filter prevents any debris from getting into the fuel tank. Generally speaking, this filter should be replaced about every 20,000 to 30,000 miles but refer to your owner’s manual for vehicle specific recommendations.
The next type of filter is the cabin air filter. This is a feature of most, but not every, vehicle. As you have probably guessed, this filter takes care of the air that is being pumped through the ventilation system of the vehicle into the passenger cabin. It filters out dust, allergens and anything else small enough to make it into the system. Replacement of these varies heavily based on the conditions you drive in (how dusty it is, etc.) and so replacement conditions vary tremendously between rarely and regularly, but you can pretty easily check them yourself.
The fourth possibility is a transmission filter although most cars have moved away from transmission systems that require these. The rule for these is generally that they should be replaced every 25,000 to 30,000 miles.
Remember that this is just a brief overview to give you some familiarity with the systems in place in your vehicle. Refer to your owner’s manual for recommendations from the manufacturer for your specific vehicle. We hope this helps you build a foundation of information about your vehicle, feel free to reply with any comments below!