Tuesday, April 20, 2010

The Mazda 3 Air Filter

Changing the air filter is one of the easiest car maintenance tasks there is. Even I can do it! Although with Amber's Mazda 3, it was a little more complicated than I expected. Usually, you just pop the trunk hood, see the air filter compartment in plain site, pop the top off the compartment, take out the old air filter, and put the new one in, right? If memory serves me right, that's how it was with my Honda Civic. But the Mazda 3? Nooo...

First off, I would think that "how to change the air filter" would be a good thing to put in the car manual. However, no references to the air filter can be found in either the Civic manual or the Mazda 3 manual. I guess they want you to pay a "qualified technican" at the dealer to do it rather than try it yourself? They must, because the Mazda 3 air filter is well hidden.

I had to consult this YouTube video to figure out how to change the Mazda 3 air filter. Apparently, you have to remove the battery cover and the battery air duct first, and then the air filter compartment is visible...but that doesn't come all the way off, either, so you have to slide the old air filter out and finesse the new one in, all the while hoping that you don't bend one of those car pieces too far and break something important. Amber's car is still running five days later, so I think I did it correctly. But when it comes to air filter replacement, score one for the Honda.

On another car-related note, we also had to replace the windshield on the Mazda 3 recently, due to a crack caused by random road debris. How much does this cost? In some states (Florida, Kentucky, Massachusetts, South Carolina - source), car insurance companies are required by law to replace a cracked windshield at no cost to the insured (zero deductible). The idea is to encourage drivers to replace a cracked windshield, since it is a safety concern. But North Carolina isn't one of those states, so our deductible was $100. On the flip side, auto insurance in North Carolina is a lot cheaper than auto insurance in Florida (at least based on my experience - my premium went down by almost 50% when I moved here), so I guess you can't have it both ways.

2 comments:

James Allen said...

When I pop my trunk, I see this weird round rubber thing under the floor. Now, the hood is a different story...

Chris Allen said...

Hood, trunk, same difference.