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If you have a severe allergy to pollen, the best thing you can do for yourself is to change the cabin air filter. Over time, the filters become dirty from catching all sorts of debris. Excess debris will cause a bad smell when using the A/C or heat and harm the blower motor.

If you're curious how a cabin air filter plays a role in the HVAC system of your car, you can read how it works here, or watch the video below.

 

Be ready for a tedious time when attempting to change this filter. The engineers at Volvo chose to stick the filter behind the dashboard, making it accessible from the driver’s footwell. You may curse the engineers while completing the job, but the relief from a fresh cabin filter will soon make you forget about any struggles. 

 

Volvo models and years applicable: 

  • 2004-2010 Volvo S40
  • 2005-2010 Volvo V50
  • 2006-2013 Volvo C70
  • 2008-2011 Volvo C30
  • 2012-2016 Volvo S60
  • 2015-2016 Volvo V60
  • 2015-2016 Volvo XC60
  • 2015-2016 Volvo V60 Cross Country
  • 2016 Volvo S60 Cross Country
  • 2016 Volvo XC70 

 

Symptoms of a cabin air filter in need of replacement:

  • A musty or moldy smell coming from the air-conditioning 
  • A struggling blower fan
  • Poor window de-fogging

The cabin air filter is designed to protect you from any contaminants pulled in by your HVAC system and blown through your car. Over time, these filters become filled with various debris causing them to lose effectiveness. Any blockage will also cause the blower fan to work harder to pull air through the filter. A significantly blocked filter can cause the fan motor to struggle before burning out. 

Additionally, the filter sits in the dark and is kept at a relatively warm temperature when driving. These conditions, mixed with any water or wet debris, are a perfect starting point for mold formation.

 

How long will it take to replace a Volvo cabin air filter?

When attempting this job for the first time, it’s good to go slowly to make sure nothing gets broken or replaced incorrectly. The total time between disassembly and reassembly should take around 15 minutes. Give yourself extra time just in case you get hung up at any point. 

 

How much will it cost to replace a Volvo cabin air filter?

It’s difficult to pinpoint just how much the job would cost from a dealership as the cabin air filter is normally replaced during a larger service. To do the job yourself, all you’ll need to buy is the cabin air filter. The link below will bring you to the correct cabin filter, which lists for around $27.

 

Tools required to replace a Volvo cabin air filter:

 

Parts required to replace a Volvo cabin air filter:

 

Steps required to replace a Volvo cabin air filter:

Step 1: Remove the gas pedal

Give yourself as much room as you can to work under the dashboard to remove the gas pedal. Remove the floor mat, put the steering wheel in its highest position, and move the seat as far back as possible. Then, use a 10mm socket and an extension to remove the three nuts that secure the throttle pedal to the car. There is a nut on either side of the pedal top and a third on the bottom left side. 

DIY Volvo Cabin Filter throttle pedal nut locations

DIY Volvo Cabin Filter throttle pedal nut locations

DIY Volvo Cabin Filter throttle pedal plug clip location

The pedal will be attached to the wiring harness after the nuts are removed. Push in on the clip on the harness plug and pull it off of the pedal. 

Lastly, remove the circular carpet plug located to the right of the throttle pedal. Removing the plug will give the carpet more room to be moved out of the way. 

DIY Volvo Cabin Filter throttle carpet clip removal

 

Step 2: Replace the cabin filter

The service door for the cabin filter is located to the right of where the throttle pedal sat. Use your hand to feel on the door to locate either the wingnut or 7mm nut that holds the door onto the heater box. Remove whatever is mounting the door and then pull the door off of the heater box. 

DIY Volvo Cabin Filter service door location

DIY Volvo Cabin Filter wingnut location

With the door out of the way, pull out the old and crusty filter. Use a vacuum to clean up the carpet and heater box if any debris comes out with the filter. 

The cabin filters are directional. Look at the top of the new filter before putting it in to check which side goes towards the inside of the car. Then, place the new filter into its slot. Squeeze in on the filter to sneak it past the brake pedal and into the slot. 

DIY Volvo Cabin Filter squeezing the new filter

Place the service door back onto the heater box and secure it with the wingnut. 

Just like that, the cabin filter is replaced. Reverse the throttle pedal removal steps to put it back into the car. If you’re interested in more DIYs for your Volvo, you can visit volvo.fcpeuro.com and subscribe to our YouTube channel.

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Written by :
Christian Schaefer


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