Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls
  1. Home
  2. Articles
  3. How Long Does an Air Filter Last?

How Long Does an Air Filter Last?

air filter

Every internal combustion engine needs air in order to work. Without it, fuel does not burn and provide the force needed to deliver power to the engine. Additionally, the air has to be clean. Otherwise, dust and debris will foul the engine, reducing performance, wearing down metal components, and shortening the life of your car. When the engine fails to get enough air, more strain is placed upon it.

This is where your car’s air filter comes in. From the time you start your car until the moment you turn it off, your air filter is always working. It delivers the correct amount of air to the engine, and traps the dirt that can harm the engine. However, even the finest air filter is only going to do its job for so long. So, how do you know when you should change the air filter?

It depends a great deal on your driving conditions. If you do a lot of “stop and go” city driving, or if you spend a lot of time exploring dirt roads, you will probably have to replace the air filter more frequently than someone who drives infrequently, and usually on pavement.

Your air filter should be changed about every 6,000 to 10,000 miles, and ideally at the same time you change your oil. At the very least, you should have it inspected. Simply stated, it doesn’t cost anything to take a look, and you could avoid expensive repairs later on.

Regardless of these guidelines, given that air filters can wear out at different rates, you should be aware of symptoms that indicate the air filter is coming to the end of its life. Signs that your air filter needs to be replaced include:

  • A significant decrease in gas mileage
  • Ignition problems, slow starting or failure to start
  • Engine misfiring
  • Engine idles rough
  • Service Engine Light is on

If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, you should look to have your air filter replaced.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
Icon-warranty_badge-02

Skip the repair shop, our top-rated mechanics come to you.

At your home or office

Choose from 600+ repair, maintenance & diagnostic services. Our top-rated mechanics bring all parts & tools to your location.

Fair & transparent pricing

See labor & parts costs upfront, so you can book with confidence.

12-month, 12,000-mile warranty

Our services are backed by a 12-month, 12,000-mile warranty for your peace of mind.

Get A Quote

Need Help With Your Car?

Our certified mobile mechanics make house calls in over 2,000 U.S. cities. Fast, free online quotes for your car repair.

GET A QUOTE

More related articles

P0052 OBD-II Trouble Code: HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1)
P0052 code definition HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1) What the...
How to Buy Fuel Treatments
Adding a fuel additive to your gas tank when you fill up is one way to clean vital engine parts of deposits, improve the performance of your engine,...
Insurance Requirements for Car Registration in Kentucky
The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet requires that all drivers in Kentucky carry liability automotive insurance, or “financial responsibility” in order to operate a vehicle legally and maintain vehicle...

Related questions

Q: What kind of modification/performance can I do to my car?

Hello - the best way to keep your Altima running like new is "attentive maintenance". Keep fluids (oil, transmission fluid, coolant) topped off and changed at recommended intervals. If your timing chain and associated components (tensioner, idler, chain guides, etc.)...

Q: How much would it cost to replace front struts for a 2008 Honda Accord?

Billing question sent to CS for the cost to replace the front struts.

Q: How many miles you need change differential oil

Hello, thanks for writing in about your 2001 Toyota Sequoia. The fluid change intervals should be listed in the owners manual for the vehicle. As a rule of thumb, the differential fluid should be changed every 30,000-50,000 miles. If you'd...