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DIY Washable Cabin Air Filter

Discussion in '2nd Gen. Tacomas' started by 05Moose, May 1, 2010.

  1. May 1, 2010 at 7:41 PM
    #1
    05Moose

    05Moose [OP] Middle-Aged Member

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    '05 4x4 DC LB SR5 (LSD & Tow Pkg), Timbrens, AAL, 5100s (.85), Owned: 12/3/04 Mods: Fog, Map/Dome Light, Illuminated 4wd Switch, 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-5yc...splay?langId=-1&storeId=10051&catalogId=10053

    Sandman614 (in post #90) found one at Lowes. Here's the Lowe's link:
    http://www.lowes.com/ProductDisplay...gId=10051&cmRelshp=rel&rel=nofollow&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!
    [​IMG]

    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)
    [​IMG]

    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.
    [​IMG]

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

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

    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:
    [​IMG]

    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.
    [​IMG]

    That's it! When it's dirty, hit it with the hose or just wash it in the sink then let it air dry.
     
  2. May 1, 2010 at 7:58 PM
    #2
    MxRacer190

    MxRacer190 Well-Known Member

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    I am so doing this. :)
     
  3. May 1, 2010 at 8:00 PM
    #3
    Fireguy67

    Fireguy67 Rebecca and Willow's Opa

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    I love it. I know what I'm buying tomorrow.
    Thanks 05Moose. That's so simple its scary!
     
  4. May 2, 2010 at 11:25 AM
    #4
    Crooked Beat

    Crooked Beat Well-Known Member

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    That is the best idea I have seen on this forum in a long time.

    THANK YOU!!
     
  5. May 2, 2010 at 3:24 PM
    #5
    TACOMA TRD

    TACOMA TRD Well-Known Member

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    good stuff
     
  6. May 2, 2010 at 9:53 PM
    #6
    Rocko

    Rocko Active Member

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    Yeah, nice mod. I would think that you would have to clean it a little more often, but who cares!!
     
  7. May 2, 2010 at 9:54 PM
    #7
    beetlejuice2275

    beetlejuice2275 Well-Known Member

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    how much is a cabin filter? that's what you're breathing...spend the few dollars.
     
  8. May 2, 2010 at 9:57 PM
    #8
    ktmrider

    ktmrider Senior Member

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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. :facepalm: Unfortunately the mouse got to make a new friend with my ka-bar and he had some battle wounds when he ran away
     
  9. May 3, 2010 at 5:54 AM
    #9
    Waikoloa Tacoma

    Waikoloa Tacoma Well-Known Member

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    $25 at the stealership.
     
  10. May 3, 2010 at 5:57 AM
    #10
    beetlejuice2275

    beetlejuice2275 Well-Known Member

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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.
     
  11. May 3, 2010 at 6:00 AM
    #11
    JM76

    JM76 Ride On

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  12. May 5, 2010 at 7:35 AM
    #12
    chiledog

    chiledog New Member

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    $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.
     
  13. May 5, 2010 at 8:38 AM
    #13
    Lurkin

    Lurkin Well-Known Member

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    So why don't you just take it out? 'member the old days when air came into the cab unfiltered? :)
     
  14. May 5, 2010 at 8:59 AM
    #14
    chiledog

    chiledog New Member

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    Then the mouse would be pressed up against the inside of the vent louvers... dead and rotting.
     
  15. May 5, 2010 at 9:01 AM
    #15
    Memphis

    Memphis Member

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  16. May 5, 2010 at 9:02 AM
    #16
    lembowski

    lembowski Rompin Around

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  17. May 5, 2010 at 9:09 AM
    #17
    NAAC3TACO

    NAAC3TACO Well-Known Member

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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.
     
  18. May 5, 2010 at 9:27 AM
    #18
    xJuice

    xJuice My spoon is too Big!

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    And what happens to the huge piece of reuseable filter you have left over after you cut the small one out?
     
  19. May 6, 2010 at 8:22 AM
    #19
    05Moose

    05Moose [OP] Middle-Aged Member

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    '05 4x4 DC LB SR5 (LSD & Tow Pkg), Timbrens, AAL, 5100s (.85), Owned: 12/3/04 Mods: Fog, Map/Dome Light, Illuminated 4wd Switch, Washable Cabin Air Filter
    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.:cheers: After all, why else are these forums around and being used by so many people?
     
  20. May 6, 2010 at 8:43 AM
    #20
    senor taco

    senor taco ROLLIN ON RUST

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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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