How to clean an ATV foam air filter

How to clean the ATV's foam air filter

Cleaning a foam air filter is as important as lubricating the drive chain before each ride. A well-maintained air filter can prevent severe engine damage. Make sure your filter is cleaned, greased-in with filter-oil and attached firmly.

ATVs come standard with foam air filters. If you have a K&N air filter, check out how to clean a K&N air filter.

Regardless of where you ride, how you ride and how long you ride, air filters always get dirty. So regularly check your air filter, especially if you ride with an open airlid. If you clean it after each ride you will most probably never have to replace it!

How to clean a foam air filter

foam air filter
  • Take off the seat.
  • Take off the airbox airlid.
  • Unscrew the air filter.
  • Put a cloth inside the air intake tube leading to the carburator to prevent dust, dirt and water from entering.
  • Clean the airbox and airlid while the cloth remains present.

Or, clean with water and soap

  • Get a bucket filled with warm water and carefully squeeze out any dirt. Never wring out and air filter, since you might tear it or get holes in it.
  • Remove the dirty water and pore in warm water and soap. Repeat the squeezing out any dirt.
  • Rinse it off under warm tap water untill all the soap is completely washed out.
  • Squeeze the air filter close to dry.
  • Lay down the air filter on a clean cloth or piece of newspaper to dry. Do not lay down the air filter on a radiator, nor put it in a microwave oven.
  • Once dry, grease in the air filter.

Or, clean with 'filter cleaner'

clean air filter
  • Get a bucket and pore in some warm water. Carefully squeeze or push out any dirt. Never wring out and air filter, since you might tear it or get holes in it.
  • Remove the dirty water and pore in some 'filter cleaner'. Immerse the filter for 3-5 minutes and carefully squeeze or push out any dirt again.
  • Take out the ai filter.
  • Squeeze the air filter close to dry.
  • Rinse it off under warm tap water untill all 'filter cleaner' is completely washed out.
  • Lay down the air filter on a clean cloth or piece of newspaper to dry.
  • Once dry, grease in the air filter.
grease foam air filter

Grease in the air filter

An air filter does not only need cleaning, it also needs to be greased-in with 'filter-oil' to prevent tinny particals of dust to penetrate the air filter. Using (blue) filter-oil you can grease-in the air filter. You can also use motoroil or sunflower oil.

  • Put on some rubber gloves and evenly rub in the filter-oil. An easier way to manage without gloves is by taking a plastic grocery bag and put the air filter in together with some filter-oil. Close up the bag and give it a good massage.
  • Next, make sure you do not leave the air filter extremely greasy to ensure a maximum airflow. Take some kitchenpaper or a newspaper and roll the air filter in it, squeezing out and rubbing off as much redundant grease as you can.
  • Put the air filter back in your now-cleaned airbox and let it dry for 24 hours preferably.

Now we're talking about a highly protective and functional, clean foam air filter... !

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