mower filter replacement

I recently was given a craftsman mower with a Tecumseh engine by a neighbor who inherited it but had never used it. I replaced the blade, plug, filter and oil. The gas tank was dry, and when I filled it for the first time, the gas leaked straight through the carb and dripped out the air filter. From reading through previous posts I assume the float is stuck, and I plan on cleaning the carb to correct this.
Call me a cheapskate, but do I need to buy another filter if the new one I put in there was soaked in gasoline? Or will this have no effect on performance or safety? Thanks for any advice.
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

I had same problem, I rebuilt carb and replaced float.
I had the air filter (cylinder shaped thing, paper / cardboard center, maybe 4 inches long, maybe 2 inches diameter) out of the filter housing and sitting on a workbench in backyard for 3 - 4 days. No rain, almost no humidity. Filter dried real well. I just reused it. Not even a gas odor to it by the time I put it back in.
So far, no problems.
YMMV.
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Word of advice - get them running before you replace blades, filter, oil, etc.
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Yeah, lesson learned. Cleaned and rebuilt the carb and started it up today - fired right up, and the filter seems to be drawing fine. Thanks for the responses.
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