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DIY: Changing Engine Air Filter

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Old 03-12-2010, 12:50 PM   #1
haole kama'a-ina
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DIY: Changing Engine Air Filter

The engine air filter change is called for by the MID sub-number 2, as in "B2".

However if your RDX hesitates or stumbles during wide open throttle acceleration there is a good chance the air filter is clogged starving the engine/turbo of inlet air.

To access and examine the filter: (click the pics for larger)

Undo the four screws (yellow circles) around the filter box.
Unplug the Mass Airflow sensor (red arrow).
Loosen the screw on the air intake clamp (red circle) so that the filter box may be slipped out of the air intake.



Lift up the filter box lid and slip it out of the intake using care not to pull the airflow sensor wiring. Now you can see the filter. Lift it out:



It is difficult to tell how bad a filter is by just looking at it. Here is a new filter and a servicable one with just a few thousand miles. The crankcase breather discolors it quickly, turning the blue to green, but the filter is still good:



Use a good, bright flashlight to determine the filter's condition. Hold the flashlight right against the underside of the filter and move it around looking for light transmission. Clogged elements will allow little light passage. This filter is no longer servicable:



This is the same flashlight under a new filter:



The Honda filter part number is 17220-RWC-A00. It is shaped so you can only install it right-side-up. Put it in and replace the airbox, clamp the intake snug, click on the airflow sensor and snug down the airbox screws.
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Old 03-12-2010, 01:16 PM   #2
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Edit: it is not really necessary to unplug the airflow sensor. It is more helpful to just slip the sensor wire out of the rubber clamp that is circled in red in the first pic. This gives enough wire play to remove the airbox.

Last edited by 737 Jock; 03-12-2010 at 01:18 PM.
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Old 03-29-2010, 04:20 PM   #3
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Just did mine. So easy. Thanks for the info.
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Old 03-29-2010, 09:49 PM   #4
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Great post w/great content. Just what we need to know to get it done... thanks 737Jock. I've seen your other posts and this is par for the course for you!

BTW - PM me if anyone is interested in the K&N drop-in replacement filter, $40 shipped, unopened. I went w/the Typhoon instead, so no longer have a need for the drop-in. I paid $49.xx off ebay + shipping. Just trying to cut my losses.
http://www.knfilters.com/search/prod...x?Prod=33-2382
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Old 03-30-2010, 11:27 PM   #5
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hey sublime, i pmed you
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Old 03-31-2010, 12:16 AM   #6
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^just hit you back on PM Felix! Thanks!
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Old 04-09-2010, 02:11 PM   #7
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thanks for the post, I just done mine along with the cabin filter. I sure feel the car drives a lot better (smoother).
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Old 04-16-2010, 09:51 PM   #8
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Did this to my car 5 min fix. Car smells great. Easyiest car ive done this to, last car required removal of bolts and a couple electriclal harnesses to get to it.
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Old 04-17-2010, 08:31 PM   #9
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aww [email protected]# that was suposed to be posted under cabin air filter not engine filter. i dont have to deal with that filter...
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Old 08-03-2010, 04:06 PM   #10
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That's for the DIY
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Old 08-11-2010, 12:53 PM   #11
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Thanks. It was really easy to change. My car was feeling really sluggish and I had the B16 service done and it still felt bad. I decided to change the do the engine air filter and lo and behold my car is back to normal. The thing was dirty, feathers, leaves and other stuff. I also changed the cabin air filter and that thing had black burn marks on it.

The Acura parts wanted $20 for the engine filter and $45 for the cabin. I told him it's probably reversed in pricing so I only got the engine filter and bought the cabin for $15 at Canadian tire.
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Old 01-07-2011, 01:00 PM   #12
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Easy. I found a cigrette butt in the old air filter. That can't be good for performance!!! The new K&N fits perfect.
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Old 04-03-2011, 02:23 AM   #13
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I just wanted to thank 737 Jock for the great DIY post and saving me money! I replaced a very dirty 20k km air filter with a K&N one and the RDX seems to accelerate more quickly.
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Old 05-07-2011, 01:02 PM   #14
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First of all thank you 737 Jock for sharing your expertise with noobs like myself. I decided to splurge on a service contract (once in a lifetime thing) but now that it is over I am looking forward to performing some basic DIY service on my vehicle. I was wondering if you ever thought about using the K & N reusable filters for the RDX? I also checked out some of your other DIY threads. They really gave me a boost of confidence towards getting started on my own DIY schedule. Thanks again.
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Old 07-26-2011, 10:15 AM   #15
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Thank you ! Great pics ( I am visual) make this really easy to follow.
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Old 07-27-2011, 01:37 PM   #16
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quick tip: order an extra set of bolts for the air filter covering. After a while, and probably due to excessive heat under the hood, the heads of the 2 bolts closest to the engine may break down/rust/melt which makes it pretty hard not to screw up the phillips head of the bolt. Throwing new bolts in every so often will make your job alot easier with just a regular screw driver. Cost is around 1-2 bucks per bolt.
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Old 08-05-2011, 07:01 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TNSamurai View Post
First of all thank you 737 Jock for sharing your expertise with noobs like myself. I decided to splurge on a service contract (once in a lifetime thing) but now that it is over I am looking forward to performing some basic DIY service on my vehicle. I was wondering if you ever thought about using the K & N reusable filters for the RDX? I also checked out some of your other DIY threads. They really gave me a boost of confidence towards getting started on my own DIY schedule. Thanks again.
Thank you, I appreciate the encouragement!

You might just enjoy DIY, because no one will take better care of your car than you. And I know you will not miss paying $70 an hour for labor!

I'm not keen on washing air filters and then waiting for them to dry, and getting them oiled right. I'd rather just put in a new one and be on my way. But many people use the washables such as K&N and like them just fine.
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Old 11-08-2011, 03:04 PM   #18
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Great DIY! Just installed my K&N!
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Old 01-08-2012, 01:45 PM   #19
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I'm not seeing the red arrow and circles on the photos your referred to in. Am I blind or are they not showing up? Thanks!!
Blanche
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Old 01-09-2012, 05:41 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlancheK! View Post
I'm not seeing the red arrow and circles on the photos your referred to in. Am I blind or are they not showing up? Thanks!!
Blanche
click the first image, to open up the full size image at imageshack. Then you will see the red arrows.
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Old 01-11-2012, 10:42 PM   #21
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When did you all first have to change the engine air filter? My 09 has 45K miles and I have not received the MID notice to change, but thinking about doing it anyway.
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Old 01-11-2012, 10:51 PM   #22
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^^ After 3 years and 45k miles, it probably needs changed. At least take it out and check it.

Quote:
I'm not seeing the red arrow and circles on the photos your referred to in. Am I blind or are they not showing up? Thanks!!
Blanche
Arghh. The pics don't seem to enlarge anymore. I'll see if I can get new ones.
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Old 02-12-2012, 09:43 AM   #23
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More time to take pictures than replace

Quote:
Originally Posted by 737 Jock View Post
Undo the four screws (yellow circles) around the filter box.
Unplug the Mass Airflow sensor (red arrow).
Loosen the screw on the air intake clamp (red circle) so that the filter box may be slipped out of the air intake.
For my 2011, all I had to do was undo the four screws. The casing top easily lifted away so I could get the filter out. No need for me at least to loosen or unplug anything else.

I went with WIX 49123. Bought from Amazon for just under $20. (Also bought the cabin air filter at same time (WIX 24815) for another $10.) I've had great success with WIX over the years...

I did mine at 20K miles (just over 1 year of driving around Dallas).
Here's pics of the original one:


and new one:
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Old 03-07-2012, 12:24 PM   #24
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Thanks for the DIY.
I too did not have to un-do hoses.
I will second MMike's suggestion on the new bolts/screws. I recommend in case that far-back 4th #%%^# screw falls off and is unfindable somewhere down below and you have to drive to an auto parts store to finish the job.
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Old 04-10-2012, 01:46 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MMike1981 View Post
quick tip: order an extra set of bolts for the air filter covering. After a while, and probably due to excessive heat under the hood, the heads of the 2 bolts closest to the engine may break down/rust/melt which makes it pretty hard not to screw up the phillips head of the bolt. Throwing new bolts in every so often will make your job alot easier with just a regular screw driver. Cost is around 1-2 bucks per bolt.

MMike1981 what's the part number for the bolts.

Thanks
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Old 05-28-2012, 11:52 AM   #26
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Having trouble removing the top of my engine air filter housing on my 08 RL. 4 screws come out easy but not the top piece. Any ideas?
Thanks.
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Old 06-27-2012, 12:32 PM   #27
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I agree that it's not really necessary to remove any hoses or wiring to open the air cleaner cover. The inlet hose flexes enough to lift the cover -- although it's helpful to remove the engine cover (four 1/4 turn quick-locks) to give the inlet hose more room to move.

Additionally, the air cleaner screws are captured in the cover and should not fall out unless it is cracked.

Here are some better pictures:





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Old 06-29-2012, 01:32 AM   #28
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Aftermarket engine air filters:

Wix 83123, Carquest (says it's Wix)

Fram CA10578, Advance and Autozone

Purolator A26312, Advance and Pep Boys

Last edited by 737 Jock; 06-29-2012 at 01:44 AM.
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Old 07-17-2012, 11:23 AM   #29
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Quote:
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Aftermarket engine air filters:

Wix 83123, Carquest (says it's Wix)

Fram CA10578, Advance and Autozone

Purolator A26312, Advance and Pep Boys
I think Wix is 49123, not 83123
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Old 07-18-2012, 11:55 PM   #30
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^^

Yeah, that's a good call.

Wix makes the filter and identifies it as 49123.

Carquest sells the filter and identifies it as 83123 in their stores.

Here's a page that shows both the Wix and Carquest part numbers:

https://www.equipmax.net/baldwin/CGI...empartid=83123
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Old 07-19-2012, 10:25 PM   #31
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Since some non-OEM RDX filter options have been listed, perhaps there will be some interest in a filter comparison (link below), run using an ISO 5011 test, commisioned by an owner of a GM Diesel vehicle - so of course the AC Delco filter is included. Please understand that the link is just provided as informational, as I have never seen any semi-valid air-filter comparison before, regarding filter efficiency as well as flow-restriction.

If the difference in filter efficiency shown in the link, seems too small to matter, keep in mind that the difference between 99.93% and 98.63% means that the less efficient filter will pass almost 20 times (19.57) as many particles, for a given particle size. Again, that is 20-times more, not 20% more.

In the interest of disclosure, in my Chevy I use Fram (off-road) and AC Delco (city) filters, and the OEM Acura filter in my RDX.

http://www.nicoclub.com/archives/kn-vs-oem-filter.html
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Old 07-29-2012, 09:50 PM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gwickes View Post
For my 2011, all I had to do was undo the four screws. The casing top easily lifted away so I could get the filter out. No need for me at least to loosen or unplug anything else.

I went with WIX 49123. Bought from Amazon for just under $20. (Also bought the cabin air filter at same time (WIX 24815) for another $10.) I've had great success with WIX over the years...

I did mine at 20K miles (just over 1 year of driving around Dallas).
Here's pics of the original one:


and new one:
So is the 11 and on one easier to change the engine filter? Just remove the four screws and you can change the filter?
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Old 07-29-2012, 09:59 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gwickes View Post
For my 2011, all I had to do was undo the four screws. The casing top easily lifted away so I could get the filter out. No need for me at least to loosen or unplug anything else.

I went with WIX 49123. Bought from Amazon for just under $20. (Also bought the cabin air filter at same time (WIX 24815) for another $10.) I've had great success with WIX over the years...

I did mine at 20K miles (just over 1 year of driving around Dallas).
Here's pics of the original one:


and new one:
So is the 11 and on one easier to change the engine filter? Just remove the four screws and you can change the filter?
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Old 08-31-2012, 05:16 PM   #34
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It is very easy to snap the heads off of the screws when you put the air box back together. The screws are available at Honda dealers as well as Acura dealers, but they are very pricey. I once saw the recommended torque values for these posted, but I cannot find it now. Does anyone know what it is?

Also, my NAPA store stocks both the induction air and cabin air filter at their stores, and they both look to be equal or better quality than the OEM.
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Old 09-15-2012, 11:11 AM   #35
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just did my engine filter and cabin air filter. like everyone said prior, it is very easy. changed both under 15 minutes. cabin air filter was by far the easiest, all I did was follow the thread in the DIY. Engine filter proved to be a little trickier for me, as I am pretty anal/OCD about installing anything myself..especially something in the engine bay. I have a '12, and no need to do more than unscrew the 4 screws to the airbox lid, lift gently, and then remove/replace the air filter. It was a little difficult to shimmy the filter in there while holding the lid up. However, once you get the alignment right, it just drops in there.

And just so I can appease my OCD, there is no way to install the filter the wrong way, right? If the filter drops in and the lid closes and the lid screws, and screw on tightly, I most likely have installed it right? I had to shimmy/work the filter with one hand so it wasn't the easiest..but all of a sudden the filter just set into the space. Just want to make sure that means it's installed right.

Told you I'm crazy haha. Thanks!
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Old 02-24-2016, 03:03 PM   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skylane View Post
It is very easy to snap the heads off of the screws when you put the air box back together. The screws are available at Honda dealers as well as Acura dealers, but they are very pricey. I once saw the recommended torque values for these posted, but I cannot find it now. Does anyone know what it is?

Also, my NAPA store stocks both the induction air and cabin air filter at their stores, and they both look to be equal or better quality than the OEM.
I broke a bolt/screw and just took it to Ace Hardware and bought a stainless steel one for $1 to replace it versus whatever the dealer might want to charge.
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