Most car manufacturers state that paper air filters should be changed every year or 15,000 miles, whichever comes first. This is an extremely easy maintenance task that anyone can DIY instead of overpaying the tech at Jiffy Lube.

Here are the basic steps. The video above by YouTube user myridevidoes goes into further detail:

  1. Buy a new air filter. Make sure you buy the correct model for your car.
  2. Locate your air filter. Most modern cars have their air filters in a rectangular housing to the side of the engine.
  3. Remove the old air filter. Depending on your car you may have to remove screws to get the housing open.
  4. Clean the air filter housing with a vacuum or a rag dampened with cleaning solvent.
  5. Place the new air filter in the housing and replace the housing cover.

That's it! Now your car should run a little smoother and get slightly better gas mileage.

As an alternative to paper filters you can also buy a lifetime filter from K&N which is rated for 1,000,000 miles, though it must be cleaned every 15,000 miles. For my 2006 Scion xB the paper filters were between $9.94 and 12.98 while the K&N lifetime filter was $41.31 on partsgeek.com.

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