For most vehicles, changing these components when needed can save hundreds of dollars per year and maximize gas mileage.

What does the air filter and PCV (positive crankcase ventilation) valve actually do?

Having your air filter replaced at normal maintenance intervals allows for greater fuel efficiency and reduces the amount of particles that can enter the engine, possibly shortening the engine’s life. Air filters help the engine breathe, keeping contaminants out of your engine, providing clean air to the engine, and increasing horsepower and acceleration while improving fuel efficiency.

Poor engine performance and increased exhaust emissions are the result of a dirty air filter or PCV valve. An improperly operating PCV system fails to remove contaminants and water vapor from the crankcase.

When the filter is held up to the light and you can’t see through it, that’s a sign that it needs to be replaced so that harmful contaminants don’t get into your engine.

Most filters over time will become clogged with road grime, restricting air flow to your engine. If the engine is starved for air, it becomes significantly less fuel-efficient, costing you as much as 15 percent more money at the pump.

A new filter (shown above) ensures fresh, clean air is flowing cleanly and smoothly into the fuel intake or carburetor, providing a smoother running engine which helps increase gas mileage.

Recommended Service Interval: As needed based on condition, every 15,000 miles or when the filter is oil-soaked and/or dirty.

Note: If you drive in dusty or other extreme conditions, it may be necessary for these components to be changed more frequently.