How driving your car can lead to winter hay fever

Winter hay fever can affect drivers due to clogged air filters – especially after the most pollen-rich summer for 12 years

VW hay fever

Summer is well and truly over. The dark mornings and early evenings are creeping up, leaves are falling, and hay fever has become a distant memory. Or perhaps not, if your car has a clogged pollen filter.

The result of the most pollen-rich summer for 12 years could be winter hay fever, warns Volkswagen. The condition is caused by trapped allergens in vehicle air filters – particularly those that see plenty of daily use, such as trucks and vans. They’re calling it ‘air filter flu’.

The solution is to make sure filters are changed regularly. These are what contain the pollen, dust, bacteria and other allergenic particulates. 

VW hay fever

Volkswagen says more than a quarter of van drivers fail to replace cabin filters regularly. They remain a key component to check in any official vehicle inspection. 

During the course of the summer, UK businesses lost almost five days for every hay fever-stricken employee.

“Downtime remains a huge problem for van users, whether that’s the vehicle being off the road or the driver,” said Trevor Hodgson-Phillips, head of service and parts for Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles.

“We advised van owners before the summer to replace old air filters to reduce hay fever suffering and it’s just as important to replace blocked filters ahead of winter, especially after a record year for pollen. This is an example of quick and low-cost maintenance that helps keep the driver and the van on the road.”

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Ethan Jupp
I'm Content Editor at MR. Road trips music and movies are my vices. Perennially stuck between French hot hatches and Australian muscle cars.


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