Taking a cue from the airlines, which have been wrestling with in-flight air pollutants for years, carmakers have joined the movement to give passengers and drivers better breathing space by installin...
Taking a cue from the airlines, which have been wrestling with in-flight air pollutants for years, carmakers have joined the movement to give passengers and drivers better breathing space by installing cabin-air filters.
According to Wix Filtration, one of the industry leaders in all types of automotive filters, this is not a passing trend and automotive manufacturers need to get on board. And with statistics indicating that at least one in three people suffers from some type of allergies, the automotive aftermarket takes this as a call to action.
“We are concerned about air quality and see cabin-air filters as a remedy to what could be a critical problem in the automotive industry,” said Bill Stamey, Product Engineering Manager for WIX Filters. “Recent studies have shown in-car air quality to be 10 times worse than outside. That means significant amounts of pollen, dust, soot, mold and other allergy triggering pollutants are being sucked into the car and re-circulated.”
Auto cabin-air filters got their start in Europe more than 10 years ago and have been highly popular in cars like Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Audi and other imports. An impressive number of domestic car manufacturers are following the trend of installing these filters in their popular models.
But just how does a cabin-air filter work? One manufacturer, Wix Filtration, a division of Dana Corporation, has patented an electromagnetic system of air filtering that removes particles as small as 0.3 microns. “Think of the human hair as about 60 microns, or the tip of a pen as 200 microns. We’re talking about filtering out particles that are literally invisible,” said Stamey. “Cabin air filters can get rid of up to 95 percent of the outdoor pollutants.”
Many people don’t realize their cars have cabin-air filters, or if they do don’t realize that they have to be changed. Clogged air filters not only affect the air quality inside a car but also can cause both the air conditioner and the heater core to work harder, which could lead to damage. WIX recommends cabin-air filters be changed about 15,000 miles just like any other routine car maintenance.