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Honda Pilot Engine Air Filter Replacement Guide
How to change the engine air filter in a 1st generation 2003 to 2008 Honda Pilot SUV with the VTEC 3.5L V6 motor.

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2006 Pilot Engine Air Box
Loosen Counterclockwise
Second Air Box Screw

This automotive maintenance tutorial was specifically written to assist owners of the first generation (2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008) Honda Pilot SUV in cleaning or changing the engine air filter element for the VTEC 3.5 liter V6 motor.

Owners of other Honda or Acura vehicles such as the Accord, Civic, Crosstour, CR-V, CR-Z, Fit, Insight, Odyssey, Pilot, Ridgeline, ILX, TSX, TLX, TL, RLX, RDX, NSX and MDX may also find these DIY instructions to be helpful.

A few compatible replacement engine air filter elements with their part numbers are as follows: Fram CA9361, Bosch 5326WS, K&N 33-2200, Honda 17220-RDJ-J00, PT AF9361, Mann-Filter MA 1078, Hastings AF1160, MAHLE LX 3099, ACDelco A2964C, Champion CAP9361, Pentius PAB9361, Purolator A35403 and Beck Arnley 042-1634.

The tools needed to access and replace the engine air filter include a Phillips head screwdriver or an 8mm socket with an extension bar and a 1/4" drive ratchet.

Loosen 3rd Screw
2003-2008-Honda-Pilot-Engine-Air-Filter-Replacement-Guide-005 2003-2008-Honda-Pilot-Engine-Air-Filter-Replacement-Guide-006
Loosen 4th Screw
The first two steps are to open the hood and then move to the right rear area of the engine bay (close to the driver's seat).

The top half of the air box is held in place to the bottom half by four screws.

You can use either a Phillips head screwdriver or an 8mm socket with an extension bar and a 1/4" drive ratchet.

Loosen the four screws by turning them counterclockwise.

The screws will remain attached to the air box cover.

Pull Off Air Box Cover
Remove Old Air Filter
Clean Out Bottom Half
Gently pull off the air box cover to access the old filter.

Remove the old air filter from the bottom half of the air box.

If you have a vacuum cleaner with a crevice attachment, clean out any sand or debris in the bottom of the air box.


2003-2008-Honda-Pilot-Engine-Air-Filter-Replacement-Guide-010 2003-2008-Honda-Pilot-Engine-Air-Filter-Replacement-Guide-011
Inspect Both Sides
Inspect both sides of the old air filter.

If the old filter is dark grey or black and clogged with dirt, dust, leaves, insects, hair, soot, pollen, twigs and other debris, it should be replaced with a new element.

I recommend buying the Fram CA9361 engine air filter since it has excellent reviews on Amazon.

If you'd prefer to have a re-usable filter, choose the K&N 33-2200 filter which will have to be washed and re-oiled every 50,000 miles.

Install New Air Filter
Replace Top Half Air Box
Tighten Four Screws
Lower the new air filter in to the bottom half of the box.

The shape of the filter frame will only allow it to be installed in the correct orientation.

Push the air box cover down in to place.

Tighten the four screws by turning them clockwise with the 8mm socket and a 1/4" drive ratchet.

Be sure to record the filter change in your vehicle's service records.

For more, check out all of my 2003-2008 Honda Pilot DIY Repair & Maintenance Guides.

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