Replacing the Pollen Filter in Honda Civic 2.2 CTDi

:: Honda Civic, Pollen Filter

The previous owner of our car also owned a dog; which, from how the car smelt when we saw it in the showroom (admittedly before it had spruced up for sale), seemed to travel quite a lot in it.

It’s now autumn... and the car needs heating up. And the windscreen needs demisting. Which involves warming up air that has to go past the cabin pollen filter, which imbues it with a canine whiffiness.

Time to change the Pollen Filter!

So, out with the owner’s manual and according to page 498, replacing the pollen filter is a consumer job. The owners’ manual does a good job of describing the procedure. And if extra gudance is needed, then this video what I found on youtube shows how and where to change the filter:

The filter sits just to the right of the (UK) passenger’s foot well (i.e. low and behind the stereo etc. in the centre console).

So why, if it’s all so wonderfully documented, am I writing this here entry?

Well... the video starts without needing to take off an under cover that is fitted beneath the glove box. If you don’t remove it, you won’t be able to replace the filter, since this uner-cover also covers the last inch or so of the hole.

But the manual doesn’t say how hard to pull the cover (they never do). I hate removing trim without guidance. It says in the manual to “unclip” the panel – but I never know what the nature of the clip is. Need I release a barb?
How hard to pull, gently, or hard enough to pull the engine out?
Will I break the plastic?

So I am writing this is to say... the clips are tight and secure, but the panel can be removed by applying vertical downward pressure at the clip points. I started with the leftmost one towards the aft of the car then the middle then the right. There is a final clip in the forward middle of the panel; this I unclipped last. The drawing in the owner’s manual locates these pretty well... but here is a photo of the panel, and of a clip in detail.

The undercover One of the clips

It has lugs, but no barbs. The lugs squeeze themselves together when the clip is pulled, so you don’t have to do anything but make sure you pull close to the clip. The panel is pretty robust plastic, but I didn’t feel it bend at all when I pulled. If you feel it bend, may I suggest that you are pulling too far from a clip.

Other things to note:

  • The pollen filter also caught its fair share of seeds and leaves. I don’t think I could have removed it without spilling these on the floor... so I had a vacuum cleaner to hand; and then did a job of cleaning the car

  • In fact it’s probably a good idea to wipe the pollen filter cover down as well as what you can on the inside of the hole

  • The cover for the pollen filter itself hinges at the bottom. So get the hinge in place before closing it. Then it needs pushing home at the top. Don’t just assume it’s closed until you get a positive click into place at the top of the cover The filter cover

  • I was listening to The Cure while I was doing this. Pray tell – where does her “head begin” in Why Can’t I Be You? Surely that’s the neck?