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Toyota RAV4 Cabin Air Filter Replacement Guide
How to change the A/C system's cabin air filter element in a 5th generation 2019 to 2023 Toyota RAV4.

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2019 RAV4 Glove Box
Open Glove Box - Empty
Right Side - Damper Arm
This automotive maintenance tutorial was specifically written to assist owners of the fifth generation (2019, 2020, 2021, 2022 and the facelifted 2023 model year) Toyota RAV4 SUV in cleaning or changing the A/C system's cabin air filter element located in the HVAC blower motor housing.

Owners of other Toyota and Lexus vehicles such as the Camry, Corolla, Highlander, Prius, Avalon, C-HR, GR86, Venza, Sienna, Sequoia, 4Runner, IS 250, IS 300, IS 350, ES 350, GS 350 and GX 460 may also find these DIY instructions to be helpful.

A few compatible replacement aftermarket cabin air filters with their part numbers include the following: EPAuto CP157, Spearhead BE-157, Premium Guard PC99237X and Beck/Arnley 042-2229.

No tools are required to access and replace the filter.

The first few steps are to sit in the front passenger seat, open the glove box and empty out the contents.

Move to the right outer side wall and locate the glove box damper arm.


Pull Off Damper Arm
Push In Side Walls
Release Side Stops
Gently pull the damper arm off the two plastic prongs on the mounting peg attached to the right outer side wall of the glove box.

Firmly push in the two side walls of the glove box until the plastic side stops can be released from behind the dashboard.

Lower Glove Box
Blower Motor Assembly
Left Side - Two Tabs
Gently lower the glove box down to the floor mat.

The plastic hinges on the bottom edge of the glove box might come apart. They can easily be reattached later on.

Once the glove box is out of the way, you'll be able to see the HVAC blower motor assembly and the rectangular shaped filter cover.

There are two release tabs on the left side of the filter cover and another on the right side.

Right Side - Two Tabs
Pinch Together Two Tabs
Squeeze Right Side Tabs
Pinch together the two tabs to release the retaining clip on the right side first.

Then squeeze together the two release tabs on the left of the cover.

Carefully pull the access cover off the filter slot.

Filter Cover Removed
Filter Tray Exposed
Slide Out Filter Tray
You'll notice that both the filter cover and the filter tray have "UP" arrows to indicate how they should be orientated.

Set the filter cover aside in a safe place.

Slide the filter tray straight out of the slot in the HVAC blower motor assembly.

Filter Tray Removed
Inspect Both Sides
Pull Old Filter Out of Tray
Pull the old filter out of the tray.

Inspect both sides of the old filter.

If the old filter is relatively clean, tap out the large debris and remove any fine dust with a vacuum cleaner.

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

I recommend buying the Spearhead BE-157 cabin air filter since it has excellent reviews on Amazon from other RAV4 owners.

Clean With Vacuum
Install New Filter Into Tray
Filter Slot - Clean Out
Install the new filter into the tray with the "UP" arrow pointing in the same direction as the "UP" arrow on the tray.

Note - If you bought an aftermarket cabin air filter and it has an "AIR FLOW" arrow. The "AIR FLOW" arrow should be pointing down towards the blower motor and the floor mat.

Check the slot in the HVAC blower motor housing for any large debris such as twigs, leaves or dragonflies.

Remove any large debris with a wet/dry shop vacuum or the crevice attachment on your home vacuum cleaner.

"UP" Arrow - Filter Tray
Slide In Filter Tray
Line Up Filter Cover
Orientate the filter tray with the "UP" arrow pointing in the correct direction.

Slide the tray straight into the filter slot until it is fully seated.

Line up the filter cover with the slot.

Two Slots - Left Side
Reinsert Tabs Into Slots
Push To Secure Clips
There are two slots on the left side of the filter slot.

First, reinsert the tabs on the left side of the filter cover into their corresponding slots on the left side.

Then swing the right side closed.

Push on both sides of the filter cover to secure the two retaining clips.

You should feel or hear the retaining clips "click" securely into place.

Filter Cover Replaced
Raise Glove Box
Push In Side Walls
Double check to make sure the filter cover is secure before moving on to the next steps.

If the glove box hinges came apart, line them up and push them back together.

Raise the glove box towards the dash board.

Firmly push in the two side walls of the glove box until the plastic side stoppers can be reinserted

Pop On Damper Arm
Damper Arm Secured
Close Glove Box - Done!
Move to the right outer side wall of the glove box and push the damper arm back on to the two prongs attached to the mounting peg.

Replace the contents of the glove box and close it to complete the job.

Enjoy the fresh clean air from your A/C system!

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

According to the service schedule in the "Warranty & Maintenance Guide", the cabin air filter should be replaced every 30,000 miles or at least every 36 months. If you often drive off road or in dusty or sandy conditions, the service interval for changing the cabin air filter should be a bit shorter at around 15,000 miles (or 18 months).

For more, please check out all of my 2019-2023 Toyota RAV4 DIY Repair & Maintenance Guides.

If you found this guide to be helpful, please consider making a small donation by clicking on the "Donate" button located to the right of this paragraph. Thank you!
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