Are Premium Air Filters Worth It for Cars?

The more dirt, dust and abrasive debris that is removed from the air entering the engine, the more efficiently the engine will run and last longer. It is therefore logical to assume that buying a higher quality air filter will contribute to higher engine efficiency and longer engine life. Air filters are an essential part of any car's engine, as they help to keep the air clean and free of debris. The Stack Exchange network consists of 180 communities from Q26A, including Stack Overflow, the largest and most trusted online community for developers to learn, share their knowledge and develop their careers.

You may get an extra 1BHP from a good quality filter, but it is unlikely that you will notice the difference. What better quality filters DO have is that they take longer to clog, so they don't really GIVE you more power, but rather help AVOID energy loss once you've driven a couple of thousand miles. I paid good money for a K&N air filter for my old traveler, an 18-year-old Subaru 4-cylinder. After installation, I heard a pretty clean grunt noise from the engine when accelerating, but the idle and mileage and gasoline performance were the same.

On the other hand, a K&N air filter installed on my Kawasaki Concours not only gave me that cold grunt noise when accelerating, but I noticed a smoother idle and a small, yes small, increase in top speed performance above 7,000 rpm. So there you go, I think they're worth the money and time spent cleaning them every few thousand miles if used in a performance application, but for a normal old car, the standard, cheap paper filter is the way to go. One of the benefits of a high flow air filter is that unlike normal filters, it doesn't need to be changed every year. All you have to do is clean it approximately every two years. This is because they don't clog as quickly or as easily, but they offer better airflow and better filtration of the air entering the engine.

And if your engine gets more air, then it can perform better. In fact, a high flow air filter can increase your horsepower by about 3 to 5 HP and also increase your torque. At the same time, this can lead to higher fuel efficiency. How? In some of the more expensive units, the filter comes with a cold air intake unit. It is installed to extract air from the outside of the car instead of the hot air used inside the engine compartment. Going back to science class, cold air is denser and therefore will burn better, thus improving your engine performance.

Performance filters are usually tailored to your vehicle model and make. The best high-performance air filters are reusable as long as they are properly cleaned. These replacement air filters are designed to open your engine to its full potential by increasing power and fuel economy. While they are superior to paper filters, they are also more expensive. This filter uses specially treated paper that achieves better filtration results than many other engine filters on the market.

To measure the airflow of a particular air filter, you will need two pressure gauges and accessories to drill the air inlet before and after the filter is installed. I went to do an oil change recently and the technician at Jiffy Lube tried to sell me more - buying a better oil for my car and buying a more expensive air filter. One measure is filter efficiency which refers to the amount of particulate matter that does not pass through the filter. However, it was necessary to spray the air filter with oil and getting to it was a big problem (it was placed on the right front fender). You can easily wash and clean these air filters and reuse them over time without needing to replace them. The cooler air outside the engine compartment is denser than the warm air inside the engine compartment - which is heated by internal combustion of the engine - as well as other movement mechanisms that generate heat through friction. As with any automotive product there is much more opinion about air filters than actual data from scientific tests or - as Facebook continually proves - there is much more data from toilets than from laboratory.

The filter must also be efficient enough to protect the engine but at the same time allow enough air to reach. Whether you want to increase power, fuel efficiency or simply reduce hassle of regularly changing your air filter - a high flow filter can be a good option. This filter like most engine air filters traps even smallest particles before they reach engine providing you with cleanest possible air. It's a lot like a vacuum cleaner when you notice decrease in power; dirty filter can be cause because air is literally being pushed through price of your vehicle's energy. Oil has been used to trap dust in air filters for almost entire time that internal combustion engines have existed.

Hannah Sawatzki
Hannah Sawatzki

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