9 Tips- How To Clean RV Air Conditioner Filters Save Money

Does the inside of your RV smell? Are your allergies worse when you are in your RV?  Maybe it’s your RV air conditioner filters. Read on as we share 9 tips on how to clean your RV’s air conditioning filters.

Dirty RV AC Filters
Dirty RV AC Filters

9 Easy Steps to Cleaning Your RV AC Filters

  1. Turn off your air conditioner
  2. Find the return ducts (on the ceiling inside your RV). Return ducts have filters, supply ducts do not have filters
  3. Remove the plastic vent cover by grabbing in between the vents and pull down firmly (sometimes helps to give a twist while pulling)
  4. Remove the filter
  5. Vacuum the filters being careful not to tear them to remove dust
  6. If the sponge-like filters are very dirty or greasy (like those in the kitchen ducts can be), wash them in warm soapy water (Dawn dishwashing detergent works great!) and spread them out to dry
  7. Wash the plastic vent covers in warm soapy water too
  8. Once the filters and the vents are COMPLETELY DRY, replace the filters and the vent covers
  9. Turn your RV air conditioner back on

That’s all there is to cleaning your RV air conditioning filters. We do ours monthly and it’s a great way to keep your RV smelling fresh and clean!

Clean RV AC Filters
Clean RV AC Filters

Where Are Your RV Air Conditioner Filters Located?

The AC filters are inside your RV on the ceiling. Look for the little vents (ours are round) in each room. Some RVs like ours, have them hidden behind ceiling panels, so make sure to look for access points. RV manufacturers don’t normally put them in the bathroom due to the humidity that can damage the ac unit. There are no air conditioning filters on the outside of your RV.

RV AC Vents on Inside Ceiling
RV AC Vents on Inside Ceiling

Not All Vents Have Filters- What Is The Difference In The Vents?

Some of the ducts are the intake or supply ducts that pull in the air into the ac unit to chill it. Intake ducts do not have filters in them. You may need to clean the plastic covers on these.

The other ducts are called return ducts and they are the ones that return the chilled air into your RV. These return ducts have filters.

When Do You Clean Your RV AC Filters?

We inspect our ac filters on a regular basis and look for any dust or dirt build-up. Also, if you cook inside your RV, you might want to clean them after cooking any food that produces strong odors (like fish).

How Often Should You Clean Your RV AC Filters?

We clean our filters once per month according to our maintenance schedule. If you have allergies you may want to clean them more often. It really helps to keep the pollen and dust down inside your RV.


What If Your RV AC Filters Are Too Dirty To Clean? Can You Get Replacement Filters?

Yes, you can buy new filters by contacting your air conditioning manufacturer or an RV air conditioner parts dealer and order new filters. You can also just buy a foam filter sheet and make your own (a lot cheaper alternative).

How To Make Your Own AC Filters

Buy a foam filter sheet like the one pictured below. Remove your existing filters and lay them on the foam sheet and, using them as a pattern, cut out new filters.

Keeping Your AC Filters Clean Is Good For Your RV

Keeping your RV AC filters clean not only makes your RV smell fresher, but it can also help with seasonal allergies and can help you avoid costly repairs!

Carol Ivey

Carol is a long-time adventurer who loves traveling in her 44 foot Newmar Mountain Aire Class A RV with her husband Mike, and their Black Standard Schnauzer aptly named "Rider". Carol has been sharing travel stories and advice for years and their newest adventure chronicles what luxury RV living and travel is all about. Tips, tricks, and lessons learned about Glamping- seeing the country in style and comfort while cruising behind the wheel of a luxury RV. They definitely know how to RV-N-Style.

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