A pollen filter is an easy thing to neglect. After all, it’s hidden away out of sight and isn’t something you’re likely to inspect on a regular basis, if at all. However, in these days of increased air pollution it’s important to make sure their air inside your car is as clean as possible, so change your filter at the recommended intervals.
A car’s pollen filter, stops particles from entering the passenger cabin. It catches dust, pollen and other fine pollutants. A pollen filter can be made from several different materials, but most feature cotton/paper fibers that coat the ribbed or pleated surface. Some filters contain carbon, which helps to reduce odours from traffic pollution entering the vehicle.
Pollen filters can be located in the vehicle - usually in or near the glovebox - or below windscreen wipers.
This requires little or no experience, using basic tools, depending on where your filter is installed, and will take a few minutes to half an hour to complete.
A musty smell in the cabin could be a sign that the pollen filter needs to be changed
“Poor air flow from the vents can be caused by a clogged filter”
Car manufacturers tend to recommended that cabin filters are changed every 12,000-15,000 miles or around once a year. If you don’t know when yours was last changed there are a couple of things to look for that tell you it’s time to renew it. First, air flow from the vents may be poor. This reduces over time, so it’s difficult to spot but it’s caused by a clogged filter.
Another sign that it may be time to change your pollen filter is a musty smell in the cabin. This can also be caused by a build-up of bacteria in the air conditioning system, and can be cured by turning the fan speed and temperature up to max for 10 minutes or so, but it’s a sign that the pollen filter needs to be replaced.