What Kind of Maintenance Does an Air Filter Require?

BY MICHAEL D.

Before investing in a primo air filter for your vehicle, there are a few things you must consider. First and foremost, how much of a boost in power are you looking for? You should know that these gains will vary from vehicle to vehicle, even if every vehicle in the world were fitted with the same high-quality filter. Engine size and various performance upgrades dictate this, so you should calibrate and calculate within the parameters of your vehicular reality.

One of the more pressing questions on your mind may be more practical, and a bit selfish — but rightfully so.

“What kind of maintenance does an aftermarket air filter ask of you?”

How much elbow grease will you be asked to expend, and how often? It’s a fair question, as are they all, but this article, brief as it is, should put this particular issue to rest.

Each air intake kit on our site comes with a detailed care regimen. Depending on what the manufacturer says, you won’t have to clean your air filter of the accumulated dirt, dust and other contamination but once every 30,000 – 50,000 miles. Use the manufacturer’s cleaning kit to clean your filter as needed. More often than not, this will involve spraying down your filter with the bottle of cleaner. Really soak it in to make sure everything that’s trapped in the filter dissolves. Do this thoroughly to both sides, not just the one.

Let your filter sit, but don’t allow it to dry completely. After about 10 minutes, take your common garden hose and, with a low-pressure stream coming out, rinse the filter from the clean side to the dirty side. This will help you avoid flushing the contamination into the fibers of your filter. So, remember — always rinse from the clean side out. Gently shake out all the excess water, and from here, you need to let it air-dry naturally.

Next, re-oil it for use and reinsertion to your engine bay. Try to distribute the spray evenly along every pleat, leaving no dry spots. Spray from the air intake side, then let the oil wick into the fibers of the filter. Over-oiling may lead to contamination of the MAF sensor, which could activate your engine light or negatively impact the running conditions of your engine. Wipe off any excess oil that may linger, then re-install that baby and get back on the road. All told, this entire process should take less than an afternoon.

For those of you after a less restrictive intake, maybe a gnarlier engine growl, or if you wouldn’t mind a more aggressive change in the way you drive, you’ve come to the right place. AutoAnything stocks a wide assortment of products to suit different needs and navigation styles. Follow the links below to see what our virtual shelves have to offer.


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