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Believe it or Not! Save upto* 75% on TATA AIG Car Insurance

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How to Check and Change Your Car’s Air Filter?

  • Author :
  • TATA AIG Team
  • Last Updated On :
  • 14/05/2024

When it comes to regular car maintenance, replacing spark plugs and changing oil is the first thing in mind. But often, car engine air filters get overlooked. The engine air filter is responsible for entering clean air and protecting the car's other components from debris and dust.

Generally, the car air filter is located inside the car hood. To ensure the proper vehicle functioning, car engine air filters need to be checked and replaced occasionally. If not, it can lead to a visit to the mechanic, burdening your pocket.

This blog will walk you through how to check and change your car's air filter.

What's the Function of a Car Air Filter?

A car air filter is nestled under the cylindrical or rectangular enclosure under the vehicle hood. The primary function of a car air filter is to remove dust and dirt, including other contaminants such as insects, before they enter the mechanical parts of the vehicle. The car air filter helps extend the engine life and enhances performance.

Importance of Air Filters in Car

Having a clean air filter in a car offers various benefits, such as:

It helps get clean air inside the car, maximising the vehicle's performance.

It leads to a better fuel economy because of the vehicle's optimum efficiency.

Further, it helps avoid collecting dirty exhaust smoke due to incomplete combustion.

A clean air filter in a car leads to enhanced horsepower.

Lastly, it prevents the damage caused by restricted and dirty airflow.

Signs to Know That Car Engine Air Filter Needs to Be Changed

Like any other vehicle's component, the car air filter doesn't last forever. They have a car air filter replacement interval. However, some visible signs and symptoms will tell when to get your car air filter checked.

Abnormal or Weird Sound- The first sign to know if your vehicle has an issue is its sound. When something is wrong in the car, it starts making a weird noise. When deprived of clean air, the engine starts popping and gurgling.

Check Engine Light- Another sign to know is that the air filter used in cars gets disrupted when the check engine light turns on. This light generally turns on when there is something wrong with the engine. When the air filter gets blocked or clogged, it leads to poor airflow, which can make the check engine light turn on.

Gasoline Smell or Odour- when the car air filter doesn't work correctly, it produces a gasoline smell from the tailpipe. When the fuel burns appropriately, the car doesn't release any smell. However, when the air filters are blocked, it leads to incomplete fuel combustion, which leads to odour.

Black Smoke from Exhaust- A car engine needs fuel and air to function properly. If the car engine has the proper amount of air and fuel, it is a sign that the fuel is burning correctly. But when the airflow is disrupted, it starts releasing black smoke, which is a way to tell that the vehicle is using more fuel and less air. It means it is time to check the car's air filter.

Reduced Horsepower- Another sign that the air car filter is not working correctly is the reduced horsepower. If you hit the accelerator pedal while driving and it doesn't respond like it once did, it means the car engine is not getting sufficient air.

Misfiring Engine- Lastly, when the fuel is not appropriately burnt in a vehicle, it leads to a misfire. The unburned fuel creates a residue which accumulates on spark plugs and causes the same.

How to Change a Car Air Filter? - Step-by-Step Procedure

Once you have spotted a problem with your car air filter, it is time to change it. You can take your vehicle to a mechanic; do it yourself. Below is the step-by-step procedure to change a car air filter.

Step 1: The very first step is to find or locate the positioning of the car air filter in the vehicle. It is usually housed in a black cylindrical or rectangular box on the engine's side or top. The box has a large air duct connected to it.

Step 2: Once the air filter is located, the next step is to remove the car air filter. Do this process very carefully since wire and electrical components are attached to it. Also, make sure to clean the black box using a clean cloth or rag if there is any dirt or debris in it. Use the appropriate tool to remove the old air car filter.

Step 3: After successfully removing the old air filter, it is time to examine it. It is best to analyse the air car filter properly from inside and outside for dirt and debris. If you notice too much dirt, it is best to replace the air car engine filter since it can damage a vehicle's performance.

Step 4: The next step is to replace the old air car filter with a new one. Buying a branded car engine filter that lasts for a long time is best. Place the new car air filter in the box correctly. Ensure that the rubber rim and air filter position are matched.

Step 5: After placing the air filter, put on the filter housing back and fit it properly.

Step 6: Make sure that everything is fitted correctly.

Step 7: Once it is done, start the car engine and check if it is making any weird noise; if not, then the new car air filter is working correctly.

Car Air Filter Price

When it comes to car air filter prices, a wide variety of versions are available, from cheap to premium ones. But buying a cheap quality car air filter won't do any good to the car. Always prefer to buy premium quality car air filters. The price of a car air filter varies from company to company.

How Does Car Insurance Save Bucks During Regular Car Maintenance?

Every vehicle needs regular maintenance and visits to the garage occasionally. And sometimes, this trip can cause financial stress to individuals since it can derail the whole budgeting. Not to forget, if a vehicle's main components require repairs, such as an engine, then it can be costly.

However, you don't need to worry about this if you have a proper car insurance policy. The car insurance will provide enhanced vehicle protection during any emergency based on the policy condition.

Tata AIG is a renowned insurance provider that offers tailor-made four-wheeler insurance to customers based on their needs. Not just this, we have a range of add-ons like daily allowance, roadside assistance and more to choose from if you need comprehensive vehicle coverage.

Further, getting a car insurance claim with Tata AIG is a hassle-free process.


A car air filter is an essential component of a vehicle; its vitality relies on it. The average lifespan of a car engine filter ranges from 12,000 to 15000 miles. After that, they need to be changed. Other than this, time-to-time maintenance of car engine air filters is also necessary.


How long do car air filters last?

The air filter can last between 12,000 to 15,000 miles, but if proper maintenance is provided, it can last up to 24,000 miles.

Can I change my car's air filter myself?

The car air filter can be changed at home easily. But if you are unfamiliar with the vehicle components' then it is best to consult a professional.

Are conical air filters for cars better?

The conical air filter or cone-type filter allows vehicles to have more air, which puts less stress on the engine and is considered better.

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Your policy is subjected to terms and conditions & inclusions and exclusions mentioned in your policy wording. Please go through the documents carefully.

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