240Z, 260Z, 280Z (S30) Forums Dedicated to first generation ZCars

Cabin Air Filter for S30?

Old 09-12-2014, 10:40 PM
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Cabin Air Filter for S30?

As I'm finally moving from the engine bay to the interior on my 260Z retirement project, I've been cleaning up the ventilation system. There is a lot of dirt, smutz, leaves and other debris in the system, from the blower through the console vents.

I noticed there's no cabin air filter in these cars. A quick search through the forum has revealed nothing. Has anyone managed to rig up something that is convenient and works well? I may be motivated here ...
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Old 09-13-2014, 04:09 PM
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A filter won't fix the problem with dirt / debris already in the system. I think the more simple solution would be to park the car NOT under a tree, or in a garage / under a carport, or cover it when not being driven.
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Old 09-13-2014, 05:25 PM
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Agree. Have you checked the diagrams in your service manual? Most car air ducts snake around so much it's hard to clean them from the openings even with a flexible vacuum. Your car may have driven through a Phoenix-style dust storm and has enough dust in the system to keep you supplied for years.

If you have the time and are a perfectionist with this project, you might just take the whole system apart (yes, it's all under the dash...) and do it right. I finally did that on my Z31 to get the dust and mold out. Couldn't stand the smell. Only took a Saturday and made a big permanent difference in the air I breathe in her.

PS: While you're in there, you get to check and clean every harness connector, every damper activator, every cable switch, link, etc. It's a clean-freak's dream! When you're finished, you will OWN that Z!

Last edited by zxguy1986; 09-13-2014 at 05:52 PM.
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Old 09-13-2014, 09:09 PM
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Originally Posted by NismoPick View Post
A filter won't fix the problem with dirt / debris already in the system. I think the more simple solution would be to park the car NOT under a tree, or in a garage / under a carport, or cover it when not being driven.
Originally Posted by zxguy1986 View Post
Agree. Have you checked the diagrams in your service manual? Most car air ducts snake around so much it's hard to clean them from the openings even with a flexible vacuum. Your car may have driven through a Phoenix-style dust storm and has enough dust in the system to keep you supplied for years.

If you have the time and are a perfectionist with this project, you might just take the whole system apart (yes, it's all under the dash...) and do it right. I finally did that on my Z31 to get the dust and mold out. Couldn't stand the smell. Only took a Saturday and made a big permanent difference in the air I breathe in her.

PS: While you're in there, you get to check and clean every harness connector, every damper activator, every cable switch, link, etc. It's a clean-freak's dream! When you're finished, you will OWN that Z!
Gents - thanks for the inputs but I guess I didn't say this right.

My car is currently just a shell at a body shop being prepped for a full paint job - gonna look awesome BTW.

The rest of it has been placed in large plastic bins arranged mostly by location in the car (except for the motor and tranny which are on a stand and a dolly respectively), and I've been going through them one by doing a full restoration on everything.

Finally got through engine bay crates and am now in the interior, working on the components under the dash first. Did the fuses and the relay system on the kick panel.

Now I'm working the blower motor assembly, heater box, controls and everything else associated with ventilation. Yes, the heater core has been pressure checked and flushed (radiator too) and the A/C evaporator is at the radiator shop now.

And yes, the complete system has been disassembled and cleaned thoroughly. It shines! Tomorrow the blower assembly is even getting a fresh coat of paint. All the foam/rubber is being replaced as well. This car will be driven by my darling wife so it has to be awesome.

So yes, we are definitely on the same page as far as the good cleaning and refurbishment goes.

It just looks to me with that simple cowl to blower motor assembly interface, there's an opportunity to place a filter in the system. What I'm hoping is someone's already done it as so far it looks like I need to place something in the cabin between the blower motor assembly and the body opening. That means to change it you have to drop the blower motor. Maybe it's not too bad of a job but if somebody out there is more clever than I (and there is a LOT of evidence that this is the case BTW), I'm happy to ride on their coat tails.

Anyone???

P.S. You're right, I'm gonna OWN this Z!
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Old 09-14-2014, 12:35 PM
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BTW, I've got an on-going post in the technical/performance sub-forum about this project. It probably should be in this venue but when I started the thread it was about performance mods.

https://www.zdriver.com/forums/240z-...project-37922/
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Old 09-14-2014, 05:22 PM
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Congrats on the extent of work you are doing on that Z! Very impressive. You should post more of your work here to tell us what you found as you disassembled, fixed and put back together. Especially pics - if you took 'em!

OK, my best input is that you should not need an intake/distrib air filter in the average environment. A Z takes in the air, conditions it for temp and sends it in. If you expect to drive through a dust storm twice a week, you might just turn off the air intake and ride it out each time. Zs aren't Bentleys and can't easily accommodate pollen or odor filters or other stuff I hear those cars can. Plus, any filters you put on would need to be easily accessed for cleaning or replacement.

So I'm thinking of a custom extension of your dash distrib vents. Each extension would include a filter of your choice and could be easily detached for cleaning/replacement. Obviously requires some custom design and fabrication - but easier to clean/replace than anything buried back in the dash. Just thinking...

Also, your basic Z isn't equipped with a blower motor strong enough to get enough conditioned air through any filter you might place between it and its vents. You might ends up with so little clean, filtered air that you think your blower fan isn't even turned on...

Last edited by zxguy1986; 09-14-2014 at 07:17 PM.
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Old 09-14-2014, 10:35 PM
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Originally Posted by zxguy1986 View Post
Congrats on the extent of work you are doing on that Z! Very impressive. You should post more of your work here to tell us what you found as you disassembled, fixed and put back together. Especially pics - if you took 'em!

OK, my best input is that you should not need an intake/distrib air filter in the average environment. A Z takes in the air, conditions it for temp and sends it in. If you expect to drive through a dust storm twice a week, you might just turn off the air intake and ride it out each time. Zs aren't Bentleys and can't easily accommodate pollen or odor filters or other stuff I hear those cars can. Plus, any filters you put on would need to be easily accessed for cleaning or replacement.

So I'm thinking of a custom extension of your dash distrib vents. Each extension would include a filter of your choice and could be easily detached for cleaning/replacement. Obviously requires some custom design and fabrication - but easier to clean/replace than anything buried back in the dash. Just thinking...

Also, your basic Z isn't equipped with a blower motor strong enough to get enough conditioned air through any filter you might place between it and its vents. You might ends up with so little clean, filtered air that you think your blower fan isn't even turned on...
Thanks for the inputs regarding distribution vents. You're right about it not being a Bentley and I suppose we're a little used to more modern cars that do have cabin filters.

It is a concern that adding a filter in front of the blower would impede its ability to move air. I've been digging through it just today. Looked at some of the foam that's used to filter window A/C units. Pretty thin but it would need to be replaced often is my guess. Given that the interface between the blower and the cowl is hard to get at (although easy to place a filter) and full of sticky stuff, I'm having second thoughts about that location. Again, the distribution vents might be the easier place. I'll keep pondering. Maybe in the hoses and the center box ... at least there I don't have to support them with a screen or grid so they don't get caught in the fan.

My thread on the technical/performance sub-forum needs an update but it does have quite a few restoration pics there. I take photos as a matter of course to make sure I can put things back together as well as documenting what I've completed. I use the best of those to update the forum.

https://www.zdriver.com/forums/240z-...project-37922/
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Old 09-22-2014, 06:17 PM
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We'll Eventually See How This Works - PHOTOS!

I decided to go ahead with an attempt at a cabin air filter. It's done and ready to install, if I only had a car ready ... but that's my restoration thread.

I decided it would be simplest to install the filter between the input air diverter (you know the one that has the flap that selects inside versus outside) and the blower box. Putting it up at the cowl was just too messy (think gooey sticky sealant) and you wouldn't be able to filter inside air.

Photo 1: I used the room air conditioner filter material which I picked up at the local hardware store for around $3. Of course it's a lot more than I needed but when did you last purchase any kind of filter for $3? Now I have plenty of material to change the filter. Yes, I could wash it, but why bother?

Photo 2: I then used some wire cloth to make a backing for the filter foam. This was to make sure if the foam deteriorated, it wouldn't be getting clogged in the blower. I used some open cell foam tape to protect the metal diverter box. I realized afterwards that since the filter foam goes on the diverter box side of the wire cloth, the foam tape was probably not necessary.

Photo 3: This is the same pattern of open cell foam on the blower box. It's laid right where the diverter box bolts up. Interesting to note it's not a good match and one could possibly get better air flow by opening up the blower box input. On this side the foam is required.

Photo 4: This shows the filter material laid over the wire cloth. We're now ready to bolt the two boxes together.

Photos 5 and 6: The boxes are bolted together and you can see the filter in place. Please excuse the painter's tape over the fan housing rubber insulators. Per a previous post, these units were recently cleaned up, rust treated and painted.

I expect I'll eventually be replacing the blower motor with a more powerful unit as others have done. For now, it's on a list as I'm continuing with my restoration project.
Attached Thumbnails Cabin Air Filter for S30?-img_2407.jpg   Cabin Air Filter for S30?-img_2431.jpg   Cabin Air Filter for S30?-img_2434.jpg   Cabin Air Filter for S30?-img_2436.jpg   Cabin Air Filter for S30?-img_2437.jpg  

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