How to Replace the Cabin Filter in a PT Cruiser

January 31, 2011
More and more manufacturers have been adding cabin air filters to their vehicles since the early 90’s to keep dust, pollen, bacteria, and exhaust gases from entering the passenger compartment through the vent/AC/heat system. Many people don’t even realize these filters are part of their car, so they are usually neglected. Your cabin air filter should be replaced at about 12,000 miles or one year.
Strangely, the Chrysler PT Cruiser sometimes just came with a small plastic plenum where the cabin air-filter goes. If this is the case on your vehicle, you can get the filter and housing at a parts store or Chrysler dealer parts department.
You Will Need
Philips head screwdriver
Step 1
Open the hood and find the passenger side cowl cover. You will see the windshield washer reservoir cap sticking through it. Remove four plastic push-screws holding it on. There are three across the front and one on the side.
Note: These are not regular screws and can be easily damaged. Gently turn them with the appropriate size Philips head screwdriver and carefully pry the base up using a small flat head screwdriver or scraper.
You can buy a special tool to remove the screws from an auto parts stores, but unless you do all of you own repairs, you don’t need to spend the money on it.
Step 2
Remove the 10mm screws holding the windshield washer reservoir in place. Don’t disconnect the fluid hoses, just lift it from the cowl and set it to the side so it’s out of your way.
Step 3
Remove 10mm screws holding the filter housing (or plastic plenum) in the cowl and lift it out. If the vehicle came with the filter housing, remove the old filter from it and install the replacement filter.
Step 4
Put the filter housing in position and secure it in place with the screws. Lower the windshield washer reservoir back in position and secure with the screws. Put the cowl cover back on and replace the push-screws.

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4 Responses to How to Replace the Cabin Filter in a PT Cruiser

  1. John
    August 16, 2011 at 3:52 pm

    My 2002 PT didn’t come with the filter housing. How can I buy one?

    August 16, 2011 at 6:30 pm

    Hi John,

    Here is a link to what you need. You may be able to find it aftermarket if you search around.

  3. Giorgio
    March 29, 2015 at 10:42 am

    I have a same probleme like John’s. What can I do? Wthalia’s link is not working.

      April 10, 2015 at 8:38 am

      Up to 02 there is a plastic piece that surrounds the square opening of the duct, as shown in the picture in step 3. It has an “overhang” on the top. There is a filter kit that replaces this plastic part completely, and has the plastic extended out to the square rectangle to hold the filter element.

      After much searching, I found the kit on this website.

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