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Toyota 4Runner Engine Air Filter Replacement Guide
How to change the engine air filter element in a 5th generation 2010-2016 Toyota 4Runner with the 1GR-FE 4.0L V6 motor.

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Paul B. Michaels
Author & Photographer
Auto Mechanic Since 1989

2015 4Runner 4.0L V6
Release Metal Latch
This automotive maintenance tutorial was specifically written to assist owners of the fifth generation (2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 & 2016) Toyota 4Runner SUV in cleaning or changing the engine air filter element for the 1GR-FE 4.0 liter V6 motor.

Owners of other Toyota, Lexus or Scion vehicles such as the Yaris, Corolla, Matrix, Prius, Camry, RAV4, Sienna, Tacoma, Tundra, FJ Cruiser, Venza, Highlander, Avalon, Sequoia, Land Cruiser, IS 250, ES 350, GS 350, tC, xB, xD, iQ and FR-S may also find these DIY instructions to be helpful.

A few compatible replacement filters with their part numbers are as follows: Toyota 17801-38051, K&N 33-2438, Wix 49350, Mahle Original LX 3003, Ecogard XA6122, Fram CA10835, PT Auto Warehouse AF10835, Purolator A36122, Hastings AF1441 and Champion CAP10835.

Pop Off 2nd Fastener
Release Front Left Latch
The first two steps are to open the hood and then move to the left side of the engine bay.

The large black plastic engine air box is located just to the left of the engine and behind the power steering fluid reservoir.

Release the four metal latches that secure the top half of the air box by pulling them off and swinging them down.

Back Left Latch
4th Metal Latch Released
There is one metal latch at each of the four corners of the engine air box.
Lift Off Air Box Cover
Pull Out Old Air Filter
Once all four metal latches have been released, gently lift the top half of the air box to access the old filter.

Pull the old air filter out of the bottom half of the air box housing.


Old Filter Removed
Inspect Both Sides
Inspect both sides of the old air filter.

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

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

I always buy the Toyota 17801-38051 genuine OEM filter since it has excellent reviews on Amazon.

If you'd rather have a re-usable filter that will last the life time of the SUV, go with the K&N 33-2438 which will need to be washed and re-oiled every 50,000 miles.

Clean Out Air Box
Install New Engine Filter
If your vacuum has a crevice attachment, clean out any sand or debris in the bottom of the air box.

Lower a new filter in to the bottom half of the air box with the pleats facing down.

Lower Air Box Cover
Secure Metal Latches
Push the top half of the air box down in to place over the lower half.

Flip the four metal latches up and over the top half of the air box to secure it in place.

Flip Up Metal Fastener
Engine Air Filter Replaced
Double check that the two halves of the air box are flush together and there is no part of the new filter visible at the edges.

Be sure to record the engine air filter change in your SUV's service records.

For more, check out my other 2010-2016 Toyota 4Runner 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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