Upgrading to a high-performance air filter can be a great way to improve the performance of your vehicle. Not only can it increase your horsepower by up to 5 HP, but it can also improve your fuel economy. This is because high-performance air filters draw air from outside the engine compartment, where the air is colder and denser. This denser air is more oxygen-rich and burns better, leading to improved engine performance.
Additionally, these filters don't need to be changed as often as regular filters, as they don't clog as quickly or as easily. One of the most popular high flow air filters is the K&N filter. It is easy to install and comes with a 10 year or 1 million mile warranty. It uses four to six layers of cotton gauze pleated around a mesh frame to build the filter media, allowing for greater airflow than paper filters while still providing excellent filtration.
Some of the more expensive units also come with a cold air intake unit, which extracts air from outside the car instead of the hot air used inside the engine compartment. But don't expect a huge increase in power when you hit the accelerator. The gains are usually small and you may not even feel them. Additionally, running without a filter can lead to dirt contaminating and damaging the sensor, which can lead to incorrect airflow readings and affect fuel ratio calculations.
So is upgrading your air filter worth it? It depends on what you're willing to pay for a quality filter and how much you value improved performance and fuel economy. If you're looking for an easy, cost-effective way to increase engine performance, then fitting a K&N high flow air filter is definitely worth considering.