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Old 08-04-2009, 12:40 PM   #11 (permalink)
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The advantage of a K&N is almost entirely in its long life. Takes a long time to make up the price over replacements, generally.

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Old 08-04-2009, 01:06 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Performance mods aimed at increasing efficiency such as increasing compression, increasing spark advance, improving intake and exhaust flow in the street driving RPM ranges will improve MPG as long as you are driving for MPG because it will take less fuel to provide the same power.
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Old 08-04-2009, 01:07 PM   #13 (permalink)
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There is almost no advantage to a K&N. You put oil in the filter, which gets into your engine, and gums stuff up. How is that an advantage?

Sure, you don't have to replace your filter for "a million miles". But you DO have to keep cleaning/re-oiling it. That stuff costs money as well.

You're actually better off just getting some stainless mesh, cutting the paper element out of an old filter, and folding the stainless in 4-8 layers, large enough that it fits in your old filter's rubber housing.

That, my friend, is a cheap, lifetime, maintenance free (rinse it out once in awhile) filter.
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Old 08-04-2009, 01:13 PM   #14 (permalink)
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It only takes replacing a filter about 3 or 4 times to make up the cost. I have used K&N filters in everything. I know on my porsche the K&N is the same price as the stock replacement. So I went with the K&N. I bought a cone filter for my neon's CAI when I was 16. I still use that same filter today on various other cars/projects. My new car is a little bigger so I had to upgrade to a bigger filter. For very high mileage cars K&N's may not be worth it, but for a brand new car that you will keep for a few years its definitely worth it.
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Old 08-04-2009, 01:49 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I once read a pretty comprehensive test on the K&N vs. Paper element. (don't ask me to find the link, it's been too long) The conclusion, with this paticular application which I believe was a late 80's 5.0 mustang, was that a high quality paper element flowed exactly the same as the K&N until the K&N was washed and treated with oil, then the paper filter out flowed the K&N. It's almost impossible not to over oil when you clean them. I put over 100,000 miles on my orginal paper filter, then changed to K&N and noticed no significant change in mpg, then put another 100,000 miles on the K&N before washing it (it was reallllly dirty, you might even say clogged), noticed no change in mpg after cleaning it. We use so little air in our light footed driving that you could block most of the filter and never know it was blocked. If you got the money and the K&N makes you feel good, then go for it. I can't really justify it as a ROI mod though.
Myself, I like to enjoy driving the car. So when a part rusts out or fails I upgrade, rather than do a direct replacement. My exhaust rusted out and for $100 more than a direct replacement I got a 2.25" mandrel bent pipe with nice open muffler and resonator. It really livened up the car throught the power band, much more enjoyable to drive. The exhaust manifold cracked, so I bought a used header, this really woke things up when driving in a spirited fashion and also helped torque quite a bit. Car remains economical, increases my driving pleasure and parts that fail get replaced with better parts...win,win,win!
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Old 08-04-2009, 02:20 PM   #16 (permalink)
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K&N Lets too much crap through, paper filters for life.
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Old 08-04-2009, 08:44 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Here in NZ we can buy chinese copy K&N for about 1/4 the price.

I still dont bother with them.

For a free filter I like folding tee shirt cotton 2 or 4 times depending on the weave and fitting with a hose clip over a 2-4" tube/flange.

K&N are designed for maximum airflow. Ecomodders are trying to achieve minimum airflow. Even a really dirty old paper filter will usually do
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Old 08-04-2009, 09:48 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Well thanks for all the advice guys! So it seems like I'm probably just going to stay away from any 'performance' mods for my car. It seems like any economical benefit would be minimal to say the least. I am looking to eventually replace my power steering with a manual rack, and possibly put an under-drive pulley on the car, but that seems like that would be the extent of anything beneficial. I'm also going to give a shot at 'choking' my intake a little bit with some duct tape, and see how she does.
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Old 08-05-2009, 01:43 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Your intake is already choked by your throttle valve No need to choke anything else.
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Old 08-05-2009, 02:34 PM   #20 (permalink)
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i just read an article, if i recall on this site, doing a comparison on K&N vs. stock paper vs. no filter at all. there was no noticeable difference in mpg at all. no filter got the worst, stock got the best, but only by .6 mpg, or some small number like that.

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