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Pros and Cons of K&N Cold Air Intake

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A cold air intake is a type of air intake system designed to provide air cooling mechanisms into the vehicles’ engine.

A K&N cold air intake is the most recommended and popular choice in the air intake system. It has a proven performance gain at a minimal cost and is easily installed. The following pros and cons will help understand more about the K&N intake system before making your buying decisions.



1. Increases acceleration: K&N cold air intake increases the vehicle’s horsepower and engine responsiveness when accelerating. The more air trapped in for combustion the faster the acceleration speed.

2. Greater fuel economy: When there is less air pumped into the engine, the vehicle will consume more gas due to compensating for lack of oxygen. Install cold air intake system into the vehicle will reduce gas consumption and save you on fuel costs.

3. Increase performance: This cold air intake system has a proven history of increasing the performance of the vehicle. It increases vehicles’ speed, power, efficiency, and sound.

4. Warranty is intact: You don’t have to worry about interference with the vehicle warranty if you want to increase the vehicle’s performance. K&N cold air intake does not void your vehicle’s warranty.

5. Re-usable filter: The K&N intake system can be cleaned and re-oiled using the recommended oil kit and cleaning products. This reduces the cost of buying a new intake filter.

6. No water ingestion: K&N cold air intake system using a supplied heat shield which helps to keep the hot engine bay air. This ensures your engine is safe from any damage or water ingestion in case of rains. This increases the reliability of the vehicle.

7. Long-term: The K&N products are covered with million miles warranty and the cold air intake system is not exceptional. Once you buy one, you can use it for the vehicle’s lifetime.

8. Enhanced sound: The K&N cold air intake muffles the engine noise and increases the engine efficiency ensuring you get great performance at less noise.

9. Effective filters: Once you buy the air intake system, you can also install the air filters from K&N to easily trap debris and dirt. This ensures your air intake system is effective.

10. Extend engine life: The cold air intake ensure the engine runs at colder temperatures extending the engine life.



1. High power increase: Although the system is installed in a safe location and is more reliable in case of wet weather or rains. If you live in dry climate areas, the cold air intake system may make the vehicle have a high power increase.

2. Sensor errors: There are long-term problems on vehicles with mass airflow since excess oil can build up and cause sensor errors.

3. CARB exempt: K&N cold air intake systems are not allowed on the California public roads (CARB exempt). If you install the cold air intake system, you will be driving illegally on the California roads.

4. Reduces engine power: The cold air intake system uses an air filter and when the filter becomes clogged with dirt or dust it affects the air intake system resulting in reductions in power and reduced engine performance.

5. Problems in starting the vehicles: When the filters in the intake system are dirt, they cause problems when starting the vehicle and also affect the vehicle’s fuel economy.

6. Excessively high idle: Cold air intake systems may experience excessively high idle or surging idle due to a vacuum leak.

7. Check engine light: All cold air intake systems have sensors that monitor the air intake system and detect any problems or vacuum leaks and set off the check light in order to notify the driver of the problem.

8. Type of filter: The effectiveness and horsepower of the engine depend on the type of filters used to trap debris and dirt from blocking the cold air intake system.

9. Shape: K&N cold air intake with a 90-degree bend can offset the vehicle’s idle. It may suck air into the engine.

10. Hydro-locking issues: If moisture is trapped in the engine cylinders, it affects the engine components causing hydro-licking.

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Tom

    DON’T do it! Ive had so may problems with my 2011 Frontier, had one put in when I bought it now the engine light won’t go off (for several years) unbelievable costing me thousands, have to go back to original but I tossed it a long time ago. what a nightmare.

  2. Joe

    I have had the K&N 77 Kit Cold Air Intake installed now for about 125k miles with no issues. I reinstalled the stock filter with gas prices going up just to see what would happen with fuel consumption. Also, I tow a 7k pound trailer with my 2015 F250 5 days a week. The stock intake produced 3 tenths of a mile less per gallon, loss of horsepower, and less responsiveness in acceleration. I do live in a exceptionally dry environment in Arizona. Just reinstalled the K&N. I would recommend it.

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