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DIY Washable Cabin Air Filter

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Old 05-01-2010, 07:41 PM   #1
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DIY Washable Cabin Air Filter

Since this keeps coming up with 05 Taco owners asking about the cabin air filter (which won't be there for them because it wasn't installed from the factory until the 06 came out)...and because so many of you probably don't like seeing links to other forums where I have this posted, I decided just to add the thread here too.

Here's what I did last summer:

With all the driving on dirt roads (off-roading, cutting firewood, etc), I was getting tired of having to replace my cabin air filter once a month. I was making one from a cheap home filter and the last one went from being white when new to dark brown when I replaced it.

So I got to thinking, why not make one that lasts forever and can be washed? We use one of the washable filters inside our home that never needs to be replaced. So I purchased another one this weekend (The Web Plus washable electrostatic air filter for $19.97 plus tax) and modified it to fit snugly inside the slot for the cabin air filter. Make sure it's the adjustable filter.

BEGIN EDIT:
So many still have questions, so I'll try to answer them right here.

Q: Where did you find this filter?
A: I found mine at Home Depot.

Q: What other parts do I need? (plastic clips, c-channel plastic, etc)
A: Assuming you buy the Adjustable filter like I did, all the parts come in the package. Other than the tools, EVERYTHING you need is in the filter package. The filter is an adjustable 20 x 25 x 1 Electrostatic Furnace Filter. Here's a link to the filter at Home Depot:
http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc1...atalogId=10053

Sandman614 (in post #90) found one at Lowes. Here's the Lowe's link:
http://www.lowes.com/ProductDisplay?...llow&cId=PDIO1
END EDIT

Instructions:

Remove the glovebox, open the filter door, and remove any old filters.

Cut out an 8" x 8" section from the middle of the filter (Use the middle because the center filter material is attached there with a plastic rivet. The squares are each 1" to make it easy.)
NOTE: You may want to measure the inside dimensions of your air box first because some have found that they had to trim this a little more so the finished filter was 8 x 8. My finished filter fits snugly at 8 1/8 x 8 1/8 inches!


Trim up the sides until they fit around the new 8" x 8" center piece. (NOTE: You must use the smaller sides because the height of the larger sides will not fit...the smaller sides are a perfect fit)


To cut the sides, I used a box cutter. Just apply a little forward pressure to slide the blade while putting a lot of pressure downward.


Once both side are trimmed down, use pliers to bend the piece back and then easily cut it with the box cutter.


The areas circled in red are what prevent you from using the larger filter sides.


Put the pieces together tucking in the corners so they overlap. Then try it out to make sure your filter fits.

Next, drill holes in the two unconnected corners to the same size as those already in the filter sides. Use two of the four white plastic rivets to connect it. The finished filter should look like this:


Now just slide it into the slot! You'll want to slide it in with the white rivets on the downward side (toward the floor and fan) because that leaves a very flat side upward which helps complete the seal above.


That's it! When it's dirty, hit it with the hose or just wash it in the sink then let it air dry.
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Old 05-01-2010, 07:58 PM   #2
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I am so doing this.
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Old 05-01-2010, 08:00 PM   #3
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I love it. I know what I'm buying tomorrow.
Thanks 05Moose. That's so simple its scary!
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Old 05-02-2010, 11:25 AM   #4
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That is the best idea I have seen on this forum in a long time.

THANK YOU!!
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Old 05-02-2010, 03:24 PM   #5
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good stuff
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Old 05-02-2010, 09:53 PM   #6
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Yeah, nice mod. I would think that you would have to clean it a little more often, but who cares!!
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Old 05-02-2010, 09:54 PM   #7
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how much is a cabin filter? that's what you're breathing...spend the few dollars.
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Old 05-02-2010, 09:57 PM   #8
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Well I saw this and I decided to take a look at how mine looked, There was a mouse nest on top of my filter. Unfortunately the mouse got to make a new friend with my ka-bar and he had some battle wounds when he ran away
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Old 05-03-2010, 05:54 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beetlejuice2275 View Post
how much is a cabin filter? that's what you're breathing...spend the few dollars.
$25 at the stealership.
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Old 05-03-2010, 05:57 AM   #10
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you change it once a year....buy it off a wholesale store online and just pay the damn 20 bucks.

That thing isn't trapping the small stuff like a stock cabin is.
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Old 05-05-2010, 07:35 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beetlejuice2275 View Post
you change it once a year....buy it off a wholesale store online and just pay the damn 20 bucks.
That thing isn't trapping the small stuff like a stock cabin is.
$20 every 3 to 6 months, plus sending more plastic crap to the landfill each time? I'd rather rinse & reuse. The "small stuff" still comes in anyway when I unroll the window. Not to mention what the dogs bring into the cab. Thanks, Moose.
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Old 05-05-2010, 08:38 AM   #13
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So why don't you just take it out? 'member the old days when air came into the cab unfiltered? :-)
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Old 05-05-2010, 08:59 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lurkin View Post
So why don't you just take it out? 'member the old days when air came into the cab unfiltered? :-)
Then the mouse would be pressed up against the inside of the vent louvers... dead and rotting.
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Old 05-05-2010, 09:01 AM   #15
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I thought I'd make my 1st post something useful....

I bought my in-cabin filter for about $4 from

http://www.logical-source.com/2006-T...COMA-7586.html

.....they fit perfect and are indistiinguishable from the factory part.
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Old 05-05-2010, 09:02 AM   #16
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I bought 10 OEM ones off Ebay in a bulk pack that no one else bid on for $48 shipped.........
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Old 05-05-2010, 09:09 AM   #17
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Great idea. I have those filters in my house and they are awesome. Wash, dry, save money. What's not to like.
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Old 05-05-2010, 09:27 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chiledog View Post
plus sending more plastic crap to the landfill each time?
And what happens to the huge piece of reuseable filter you have left over after you cut the small one out?
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Old 05-06-2010, 08:22 AM   #19
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Okay, for those of you who appreciated the idea, I'm glad I could help. For the rest of you, if it's not your thing no one said you had to go this route. You're welcome to keep on doing it the way you are now. It just amazes me how many people complain about this idea when I did it to save ME money in the long run. I've had my truck for 5 1/2 years now. Find the cheapest filters out there, figure on replacing them 4 times a year (that was my situation in the past and sometimes I even had to replace it after a month of firewood cutting), and calculate how much I was spending over those 5 years (and I was doing it the cheap route of cutting up the disposable home filters into 4 filters). I'm going to save a lot of money over the life of my truck!

And if you do go this route, post it up! I enjoy helping others, so you're giving a little back each time you post. After all, why else are these forums around and being used by so many people?
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Old 05-06-2010, 08:43 AM   #20
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Can you buy these washable filters at a hardware store Like ace home depot or lowes, or are they special order?

Thanks for the awsome write up!
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