Replace a Cabin Air Filter on a 2012 2018 Ford Focus

The cabin air filter in modern cars filter the incoming air from the outside of the vehicle so that particles and debris do not make it any further to the inside of the vehicle. Changing this filter frequently, or at least once a year, will improve the air quality inside the vehicle and prevent the inhalation of things like road dust, pollen, and other microbes that travel through the air.


  1. Locate the Cabin Air Filter
    • This can be found in the footwell of the passenger side of the car.
    • It is slightly hidden towards the top left corner of the footwell.
  2. Remove the Bottom Cover of the Glove Box Assembly
    • Pinch the sides of the securing tabs from their catch (exposing a yellow rivet) and remove the bottom panel.
  3. Remove the Screw
    • There is 1 screw holding the cabin air filter panel in place and this can be removed with a T20 Torx driver by turning the screw counter-clockwise.
  4. Remove the Air Filter Panel
    • Squeeze the 2 tabs together and pull out and down to remove the panel.
  5. Remove the Air Filter
    • Pull the air filter out towards you being careful of hanging wires if there are any.
  6. Replace the Air Filter
    • Place the air filter into the now empty assembly with the arrow pointing to the back of the car and the rough sides of the filter on the left and right.
  7. Replace the Air Filter Panel and tighten the screw back into place
    • Insert the top part of the panel first and then push into place.
  8. Replace the Bottom Cover of the Glove Box
    • Make sure to align the tabs towards the front of the car and push the securing tabs back in place.


  • Air filters may be reused by cleaning the filter with a vacuum or by shaking the filter, but it is not recommended.
  • To help get the new air filter into place, you can try squeezing the filter down like an accordion to make it fit. Just make sure to orient the filter in the right direction.
  • It may be helpful to write dates on the air filter for when they were replaced so that next time if you or another person go to replace it, it’s known when the job was last done.
  • Having a vacuum on hand can be helpful as dust and debris may have built up over time.


  • Be mindful of the possible dust and debris and how that may affect your health.