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BMW Cabin Microfilter Replacement
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Pelican Technical Article:

BMW Cabin Microfilter Replacement

Nick Czerula


30 minutes30 mins






Lint free rag, 8mm socket and ratchet

Applicable Models:

BMW E90 3-Series (2006-11)
BMW E91 3-Series (2006-12)
BMW E92 3-Series (2007-13)
BMW E93 3-Series (2007-13)

Parts Required:

Cabin microfilter

Hot Tip:

Thoroughly clean microfilter housing

Performance Gain:

Good air flow through HVAC system

Complementary Modification:

Install charcoal activated filter

BMW E90 models utilize a HVAC fresh air cabin microfilter. The microfilter helps eliminate dirt and dust particles from entering the vehicle interior. It also protects HVAC system components from contamination. A dirty heater core would not provide sufficient heat and a dirty evaporator would not provide sufficient cooling. The microfilter is located in the wiper cowl area beneath a lid.

BMW recommends replacing the fresh air cabin microfilter every 10,000 miles or every other oil change.

In this article, I'll go over the steps involved with changing the cabin microfilter. It is quite easy and can be done in a few minutes.

Remove six 8mm cabin microfilter lid fasteners (green arrows).
Figure 1

Open engine hood. Remove six 8mm cabin microfilter lid fasteners (green arrows).

Lift lid up and remove from cowl.
Figure 2

Lift lid up and remove from cowl.

With lid removed from vehicle, unclip microfilter from lid and remove.
Figure 3

With lid removed from vehicle, unclip microfilter from lid and remove. (green arrows) There are three clips you have to unclip. Next, snap new microfilter into place, then install lid and fasteners. Be sure to properly align microfilter lid. If misaligned, water can leak into your vehicle.

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Comments and Suggestions:
Jon Comments: Same issue as above. The part is different - the replacement is shorter, wider, and torx not hex. Should I just force in the replacement screw?
February 18, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Don't force anything. Be sure you have the right part. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
jiminy Comments: One of the three plastic clips one on the right was broken off when I bought the car. When I changed the filter recently, I could get the new one filter installed without a problem. Does it matter if the right side clip is missing even though the filter cowl seems to fit well with the six 8mm hex screws?
June 13, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: As long as it is sealed and doesn't rattle around. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Mike Comments: Is there a trick to aligning the upper housing that holds the cabin filter back to the lower housing? Does one get secured first? I can't get the upper housing to fit without forcing it to where it feels like something is going to snap and even then as soon as I release pressure, it pops back up.
April 12, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The cover that attaches to the cowl? No trick, just align it with the lip, keep it almost level to engine when sliding it on. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
alex Comments: hello, one of my 8mm cabin microfilter lid fastener is lost so I bought a new one but it's not 8mm, it's 10mm.....Is it because the standard changed? Can I use it?
December 7, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I don't know of a change. If it secures the lid and doesn't interfere with other components, you will be fine. - Nick at Pelican Parts  

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Page last updated: Mon 10/24/2016 02:19:37 AM