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How to Clean STIHL Leaf Blower Air Filter? | 2 Types and Their Cleaning!

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STIHL is an American company known for its forestry equipment, such as electric chainsaws, mowers, etc.

Using a chainsaw or blowing the leaves produces a lot of dust which can get deposited in the engine or carburetor, lowering its efficiency.

To avoid this problem, STIHL adds air filterers to their machines to ensure smooth running, but these air filters can also get dusty with time and would need to be cleaned.

Read on to learn how to clean STIHL leaf blower air filter.

As the air filters clean the air, they tend to accumulate dust and debris over time. If not cleaned regularly, this debris will clog the filter and decrease the engine’s efficiency.

Moreover, it may cause overheating and other damage.

If you want to keep your machine’s engine running smoothly, you will need to thoroughly clean and change the air filters of your leaf blower. If you are unsure how to do it, keep following our guide and learn how to clean STIHL leaf blower air filter.

Let’s dive in!

How to Clean STIHL Leaf Blower Air Filter
ust bought my first Stihl. It’s only a small BG 86 – via Reddit

What is an Air Filter?

An air filter is a component attached to the engines of various machines used to filter the air.

“The air filters purify the air entering the machine and thus filter out any particles/debris that might enter the engine of the carburetor.”

An air filter ensures that the engine’s air is closed so it will not deposit any particles in the carburetor. It maintains the engine’s health, preventing wear and tear and increasing its efficiency and lifespan.

Why Does Your Tool Need an Air Filter?

Air is continuously entering an engine while it is running.

This air first passes through an air filter that cleanses it to ensure the combustion process takes place smoothly and to prevent any blockage and wear and tear in the engine.

This process is essential to avoid wood splinters, concrete dust, small rocks and pebbles, sticks, and other debris entering the engine, as these things can severely affect the working of the machine and cause damage that can prove fatal.

For this reason, STILH uses air filters in their equipment to ensure they run smoothly and stay good for a long time.

With that said, let’s now move toward our primary concern—how to clean STIHL leaf blower air filter.

How to Clean STIHL Leaf Blower Air Filter?

To ensure your STIHL air filter keeps working smoothly and does not get clogged, you need to clean the air filters of your STIHL leaf blower regularly. If you are not very handy with machinery, then this task might seem a little intimidating to you.

But let me tell you; it is certainly not difficult at all!

To help you clean your leaf blower air filters without spending money or seeking professional help, our experts have jotted down a helpful guide on how to clean STIHL leaf blower air filters.

Read on!

Cleaning the Air Filter

A clogged air filter can decrease the efficiency of your engine by increasing fuel consumption, overheating, reducing the engine’s power, and hindering the starting of the engine.

Follow these steps to learn how to clean STIHL leaf blower air filters.

Types of Air Filters

Different models of STIHL leaf blowers are equipped with different types of air filters. The two most common air filters and the instructions for cleaning them are discussed in the following text.

You can identify the model by seeing the housing case or the air filter itself.

Type 1: Flat Filter Material

Here are the steps:

  • Locate the filter housing, turn the lock of the filter cover in a counterclockwise direction, and set it in a vertical position.
  • Remove the cover of the filter.
  • Use a brush and a cloth to clean the dirt around the filter.
  • Pull the retainer off and remove the air filter out of the filter housing.
  • Replace the filter element. (As a temporary solution, you can blow this part with compressed air or knock it out on your palm to clean it. No matter what you do, do not wash this piece.)
  • Replace the broken or damaged parts, if any.
  • Place the air filter back into the housing and push the retainer in its place.
  • Place the filter casing back on, rotate the lock in a clockwise direction, and set it in a horizontal position.

You’re done!

Type 2: Pleated Filter Material

For the other type of filters, here are the steps:

  • Unscrew the casing of the filter cover by moving it in a counterclockwise position and setting it in a vertical position.
  • Pull out the retainer from its latch and remove the filter element.
  • Clean any loose debris or dirt around the filter.
  • Please take out the air filter from its casing.
  • Gently knock the filter element on the palm of your hand and use compressed air to clean it. Blow air from inside to outside.

If you notice more stubborn dirt, clogging, or stickiness, use the following method:

  • Wash the air filter using the STIHL special cleaning solvent, or you can also use any other clean and non-flammable solutions such as warm soapy water, etc.
  • Rinse the filter thoroughly using the solution.
  • Wash it with a strong jet of water from the inside to the outside. (Do not use water at high pressure.)
  • Place the filter in an airy place and let it dry completely in the air. (Do not expose the filter to extreme temperatures to dry it.)
  • Place the filter back in the housing and put it in its position. Latch the retainer in to secure the filter.
  • Now place the housing back on the air filter and turn its lock back in the horizontal position by turning it clockwise.

And you’re done!

Watch this video if you want to know more:

STIHL BG55 Blower Maintenance – Spark Plug, Air Filter, Gas Filter, Spark Arrestor – YouTube


Maintenance of the air filters is essential to ensure your tools are running smoothly, without any hindrance.

If you have a STIHL leaf blower, you know it comes equipped with an air filter, and cleaning it is crucial to maintaining the leaf blower.

To increase your tool’s efficiency and life span, we have put together this detailed guide on how to clean the STIHL leaf blower air filter and keep it working smoothly.

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