if i can remove and clean the air filter of all visible debris, is it really necessary to replace it? it is a shallow rectangle and it is easy to really get at the nooks and crannies.
Sure you can. But you won’t remove all the contaminates from the filter. Some particles are sub-micron sized and are impinged into the filter media. So you can remove the big stuff, but the little particles remain.
It shouldn’t cost too much…maybe between $12 and $20 if you don’t buy it from the dealership. Walmart will have a cheap replacement for your car. So will most auto parts stores.
Yes, it is necessary to replace it.
MOST of the contaminates are trapped inside the filter which you’ll never be able to clean out. Air filters are very important. Don’t cheap out…it’s best to replace it. For every gallon of gas your car consumes…it’ll consume 10,000 gallons of air.
You can only remove the BIG stuff from the filter. The small stuff you can’t see is what clogs the filter. Replace the filter at the interval recommended in the maintenance schedule that came with your Camry. For most people it only needs to be replace every few years.