Does a Cold Air Intake Actually Help?
- Most cold air intakes will claim that they add an extra
15 HP. This may be true but with our testing, we have not
seen consistent enough numbers to encourage us to back up
this claim. This does not however mean that cold air intakes
don’t work. Where cold air intakes pay off are in engine
longevity. By adding a cold air intake, especially in conjunction
with a programmer, you are increasing the amount of air that
your turbo can take in. This does two things. First it improves
the fuel to air ratio which can lead to better MPG’s.
Second, it lowers the EGT’s which can be very detrimental
to an engine if allowed to get too high.
Do I Want an Oiled or Dry Cold Air Intake System?
- When you think about cold air intakes, there are two main
components to consider. First is air filtration. When comparing
oiled filters to dry filters the oiled will always filter
out more particulate than the dry filter will. The added oil
allows the cotton fibers in the filter element to trap more
particulate matter as the air passes through it. The downfall
is that in dusty environments the oil filters tend to get
dirty quicker than the dry filter will.
The second component to consider on a cold air intake is performance,
or how much air flow it allows. From the tests that we have
seen, there is no difference in air flow between an oiled
filter or a dry filter, if they are both clean. However, as
we stated before the oiled filter will catch more particulate
and become dirty quicker than the dry filter will. As a filter
becomes dirtier, its performance decreases due to excess particulate
matter restricting the air flow. Therefore, a dry filter will
provide more performance over a longer period of time than
an oiled filter will.
For daily driven trucks we recommend oiled filters, unless
the truck is driven in an extremely dusty environment. We
feel that the extra filtration power added by the oil is worth
sacrificing the 1 or 2 extra horsepower you might get from
using a dry filter.
How Much Horse Power will I Gain from a Cold Air Intake?
- Over the years we have seen outrageous horse power claims
from cold air intake manufacturers. From our experience you
can generally gain a maximum of 15 HP from adding a cold air
intake. We aren’t saying that those manufacturers didn’t
actually get those numbers, however we have thus far been
unable to duplicate them.
Can Cold Air Intakes Cause Problems to My Engine?
- There are very rare cases where adding a Cold Air Intake
to your engine can sometime cause issues with the MAP sensor
in the truck. However, when this happens it is usually a result
of human error such as over oiling the filter or damaging
the MAP Sensor during installation.
How Do I Clean my Cold Air Intake?
- To clean your cold air intake properly you should always
precisely follow the directions included with the cleaning
kit produce by the manufacturer of your intake. Generic filter
cleaning kits purchased from a local auto parts store will
clean and oil your filter effectively. However, most of our
customers have a hard time estimating the appropriate amount
of oil to use on their filter. When using a generic cleaning
kit take caution to not accidentally over oil the filter.
This excess oil can cause problems with sensors and can get
into your turbo.
When Cleaning My Filter Element, Why Can’t I
Spray it Off or Blow It Dry?
- You should never use compressed air or high pressure water
on your intake. Using either of these high pressure elements
can cause damage to the fibers of your filter. Damaged fibers
will not hold oil properly nor will they capture all of the
particular matter passing through the filter. If your filter
is extremely dirty you should simply repeat the cleaning instructions
provided by your manufacturer.
Should I Get an Open or Sealed Cold Air Intake System?
- When you talk about the performance of a cold air intake,
you must consider its effects on the turbo. A turbo’s
main job is to compress air before pushing it to the intercooler.
Air is much more easily compressed when it is cold. With that
in mind an open intake allows the turbo to draw in more hot
air from the engine compartment than a sealed intake would.
A sealed intake is designed in such a way that it draws air
through the fender well of the vehicle instead of through
the engine compartment. Therefore, a sealed intake is the
preferred option for performance reasons.
Will Adding the Air Scoop Give Me Better Performance?
- Theoretically, yes the intake scoop will give better performance
because it allows the filter element to draw in cooler air
than normal. However, from our experience adding an Air Scoop
actually causes your filter to become dirtier at a faster
pace. This means you can actually loose performance due to
the filter becoming clogged. We also strongly recommend against
Air Scoops if your truck is driven in areas with high accumulation
Can’t I Just Clean My Dry Filter?
- No! Unfortunately at this time there is no such thing as
a dry cleanable filter.
Can I Clean My Filter with Any Oiled Cleaning Kit?
- No! Each company designs and tests its filter to run with
a particular amount of oil on it. Therefore, if you purchase
a cleaning kit from a brand, which is different from the filter
brand, you take the risk of putting too much or not enough
oil on the filter. Both of which can cause problems to your
intake or vehicle.
Should I get a Filter Wrap for My Cold Air Intake?
- It is not necessary to purchase a filter wrap for your intake.
We however, highly recommend the use of filter wraps. Filter
wraps help to keep the larger debris from ever coming in contact
with the actual filter element. When large debris begins to
collect on the filter it begins to have a snow ball effect,
which in turn causes the filter to become dirty much faster.
Using a filter wrap helps to prevent this issue.
Will a New Cold Air Intake Have a Spot for My Mass
Air Flow Sensor?
- Yes! All cold air intake systems sold by Thoroughbred Diesel
are equipped with a bung designed to hold the Mass Air Flow
Is It True That Oiled Filters can Damage a Mass Air
- Most Mass Air Flow issues we have seen have been due to
user error. During the cleaning process the owner has usually
applied to much oil (usually due to purchasing a generic oiling
kit) and that excess oil has leaked through to the MAF Sensor.
Are Cold Air Intakes Required with Turbo Upgrades?
- Most of the time CAI’s are required with turbo upgrades.
If you are unsure, you should check with the manufacturer
of your turbo. Most turbo manufacturing companies require
that you have a performance cold air intake in order for them
to honor your warranty. Thoroughbred Diesel always recommends
that you upgrade your intake system when upgrading your turbo
to provide optimal performance and reliability.