So after reading the 2002 Cabin Air Filter replacement guide, I decided to do mine. However, mine was not easy as I thought it was going to be and ended up having to take apart the center console and right trim, trim panels to access the left side phillips screws that hold the left side of the glove box on.
I had also bought an air filter from NAPA but it did not show which way the air was supposed to flow through it, therefore I did what Hurt did and purchased a filter from Lowes that had maximum flow but also focused on allergens.
To make this easy follow these steps and ref the pics and I hope you can see them. This is my first attempt at posting.
1. The book (yep I bought a 72 hr subscription from Subaru techinfo) says in order to remove the glove box you need to disassemble the center console. I started out by taking the glove box insert out and removing the screws in the front and side screws and then pulling on it enough to allow me to slide out the filter tray. I then felt as if I might crack some plastic so into the manual.
Remove the shifter panel that holds the shifter boot. I removed the ash tray insert out. I then pried up on the back edge of the shifter console straight up very gently. Once the is up you can then pull down on the front edge and the hooks will free them selves. (ref pics ACC 18-21).
I then pulled off the cigarette lighter connector plug and then spun the console 90 degrees and pulled up over shifter to give me free space. This will expose the screws and hooks on the right garnish trim.
2. Undo the aft garnish trim screw. Pry straight up on the aft part of the garnish trim first which will then make it easier to pull aft and slightly up to release the three forward hooks on the garnish trim. (ref pics 22-23)
3. Now the top screw for the right kick side center console panel is visible. Undo this screw and gently pull aft and out ward to free the screw hole notch and the prongs of this panel also go into slots along the left edge of the glove box. You can kind of bend and pull to develop the clearance necessary to free the prongs. TAKE YOUR TIME!! You can break the prongs. (ref pics 24 and 25.)
4. Remove the glove box insert if you haven't done so already. Squeeze the top and bottom edges and pull out. You can then see the fan motor back there. If you have kit no. SOA342L500, you might be able to get to your filter. I don't know for sure as I will find out today. I couldn't as mine is below and behind the glove box compartment. (ref 3 and 13)
5. Remove glove box drawer. Remove the right outer panel that is alongside the door and is vertical. Gently pry outward to release three hooks. (ref pic 11). This will expose the drawer damper string. Remove that, the string will not completely retract. Next remove the drawer pivot pins. Remove the limiter pins (plastic) from inside the drawer on the left and right side. Pry the center out and then pry out the outer part to remove the square pins out. (ref pics 5 and 6).
To remove the drawer all that is left the right lower pin accessed from the right side that the outer cover hid. The right one is a pry out expansion plastic retainer. By prying pulling out the center part the whole housing can be removed. Then drop the right corner and pull out the left corner and the drawer is free. (ref pic 10).
6. To remove the glove box housing. Now you will see the left upper and lower phillips screws that retain the glove box to the dash frame. Remove them. Remove the front screws on the left and right side near the top (ref pics 7,8,9). Remove the plastic screw on the lower right side. Another plastic expansion screw (ref pic 11 and 12).
Also on the lower corner is a gang connecter. If you push in on the two tabs you can slide it downward and dont have to disconnect any wires. I also disconnected the glove box light connector. Now, Gently pull on the upper glove box starting with the right side as you can get your hand in behind to assist it. There are four hooks. It should be free now (ref pic 31).
7. Now the fan motor unit is completely accessible. ( ref pic 34.) The panel to access the filter has 4 tabs. Gently squeeze them together and it will release allowing one to slide out the tray. Mine did not have a filter. But I used the filter I bought at NAPA as a template to cut the filter I bought at Lowes. I put a dot on the bottom side of the filter to ensure I installed it correctly after cutting it as both sides look virtually the same.
So how did it all turn out? great. It's a real pain to take all that apart every 6 mos. I will try yearly and see how we do. I am also going to talk to the dealer about the kit.
I have attached the document with writeup from above and pics if they don't make it.