Cold Air Intake Filter: Choosing the Right One for Your Car

October 31, 2012

When you’re buying a new cold air intake filter for your vehicle, it’s important to choose the right one. Don’t go for any air filter. Think about one that will do the best job at putting air in your engine to improve the performance. It requires a little research to find the air filter that will best suit your needs.

Step One - What Do You Need?

You’ll quickly discover that there are two types of cold air intake filter. The first will give a much improved air flow. That will translate into increased performance of your vehicle and greater horsepower. The other type of cold air intake filter will last longer and offer much better filtration of the air, so there will be less danger of particles entering the engine. Which one you choose will depend upon how you want to drive your car.

Step Two - Brands

When it comes to brands of cold air intake filter, you’ll need to do some research. You can keep on buying the manufacturer’s band, although it probably won’t be the best on the market. It will do the job. There are universal air filters, which keep out dirt but don’t work with great efficiency.

There are lifetime brands that are renowned for their ability to filter out items, if that’s your biggest concern. Buying an aftermarket cold air intake filter means you’re going to find one that will perform better overall, and exceptionally well in specific areas. You’ll find that the airflow in general is much better, regardless of brand, which will bring better performance.

Step Three - Noise

As the air filters installed by manufacturers on new cars block much of the air, they tend to leave the vehicle fairly quiet. The trade off for better air flow is an increase in the noise. If you want to have better pickup from a standing start or be able to go faster, you should go for an aftermarket filter. If a quiet ride is your prime consideration, stick with the original brand of air filter.

Step Four - Performance

There are high performance air filters available that will work with a cold air intake. Several manufacturers offer items that will work on virtually all vehicles with some adaptation.

Their secret is in the design. There’s a bigger surface area, as well as deeper pleats in each crease in the filter. Together those things mean the airflow into your engine is maximized. The effect of this is to improve the combustion and make it more efficient. This translates to more horsepower from the engine, which increases the performance.

Step Five - Bypass Filters

With a cold air intake filter, it’s possible to experience hydro lock, which panes when water enters the system through the air filter. This might happens on roads that are flooded, for example. If this is a problem with your vehicle, look at a filter with a water bypass which will prevent water getting in. As an alternative, you can use a regular air filter and a hydroshield, but these aren’t always effective.