Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

How to Replace an Air Injection Pump Filter

overheating engine with person next to it

The air injection system introduces oxygen into the exhaust to reduce emissions. The system consists of a pump (either electric or belt driven), pump filter, and valves. Intake air enters the pump through a centrifugal filter located behind the drive pulley. When the engine is cold, the powertrain control module (PCM) controls the diverter valve to send pumped air to the exhaust manifolds. After the engine has reached operating temperature, it diverts air to the catalytic converter.

Your air pump filter may be failing when the engine is functioning sluggishly and there is a noticeable dip in performance. You may also notice poorer fuel economy and a rougher idle overall, since the air pump filter cannot adequately provide airflow to the engine. If these symptoms appear, you may need a new air pump filter.

Part 1 of 2: Remove the old filter

Materials Needed

  • Needle-nose pliers
  • Protective gloves
  • Ratchet
  • Repair manuals
  • Safety glasses
  • Wrench

  • Note: Be sure to put on safety glasses and protective gloves to keep from injuring yourself during the replacement process.

loosening the smog pump pulley bolt with a wrench

Step 1: Loosen the air pump pulley. Loosen the smog pump pulley retaining bolts with a socket or wrench.

removing the serpentine belt

Step 2: Remove the serpentine belt. Make sure there is a belt routing diagram under the hood of your car or take a picture of the belt with your phone prior to removal.

This way, you will know how to reinstall the belt. Remove the serpentine belt by inserting a ratchet end into the square slot on the tensioner or by placing a socket on the pulley bolt head. Push the tensioner away from the belt and slide the belt off the pulleys.

  • Note: Some vehicles use a v-belt instead of a serpentine belt. With this set up, you will need to loosen the pump mounting bolts and adjustment bracket. Then, move the pump inward until the belt can be removed.

removing the smog pump pulley by hand

Step 3: Remove the air pump pulley. Remove the pulley retaining bolts completely and slide the pump pulley off the mounting shaft.

removing smog pump filter with needle nose pliers

Step 4: Remove the air pump filter. Remove the air pump filter by grasping it with needle-nose pliers.

Do not pry on it from behind as the pump may be damaged.

Part 2 of 2: Install the new filter

Materials Needed

  • Needle-nose pliers
  • Ratchet
  • Repair manuals
  • Wrench

Step 1: Install the new air pump filter. Place the new pump filter in position on the pump shaft in the reverse of the way you removed it.

Put the pump pulley back on and tighten down the bolts evenly to properly seat the filter.

Step 2: Reinstall the serpentine belt. Reinstall the serpentine by moving the tensioner so that the belt can be slid back on.

Once the belt is in place, let go of the tensioner. Double check belt routing against the diagram you obtained in the first step.

  • Note: If you have a vehicle with a v-belt, move the pump inward so the belt can be installed. Then, tighten down the pump mounting bolts and adjustment bracket.

Step 3: Tighten the pump pulley bolts. With the belt in place, tighten down the pump pulley bolts completely.

You now have a new, properly functioning air pump filter installed which will be a huge boost to your engine’s performance. If this seems like a job you’d rather leave to professionals, contact one of YourMechanic’s certified technicians, who can come to your home or place of business and perform a replacement.

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,...
Veteran and Military Driver Laws and Benefits in Idaho
The state of Idaho offers a number of benefits and perks for those Americans who have either served in an Armed Forces branch in the...


Related questions

Q: Filter housing blew off the engine and leaks

What may have happened is that, the last time you had your oil changed, the filter may have been installed improperly causing an increase in oil pressure. This increase in oil pressure may have been what caused the filter housing...

Q: High pitched whining noise on startup

The secondary air injection pump is well known for making noises such as this on all cars that use them. It only runs when the motor is below a preset temperature. So the longer you let the car sit, the...

Q: Car shuts off, smoke and black water from muffler

The color of the smoke can point us in the right direction of the problem. Blue or purple smoke indicates oil burning in the combustion chamber and can be caused my weak piston rings, worn valve seals or a malfunctioning...