K&N air filters...
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  1. #1
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    K&N air filters...

    how many of you guys use the K&N panel filter?

    are they any good? are they worth the $50? and have they caused you any probs?

    if nothing is to be gained, should i just stick with OEM air filters?

    thanks for any input

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  3. #2
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    little or no gain. BITOG did a test and said that it flowed 0.14% better than a clean stock filter. The oil that they use is a MAF killer and the increased particulate matter that is let into your engine dirties up the throttle body faster and increases wear in the combustion chamber.

    However you'll find that the people who shelled out $50 for one will attest to its performance gains. Who knows . . . I had one . . . i felt something when I put it in . . . but that's because i was removing a dirty stock filter which i suspect most people were. When i took my K&N out and put in a new stock filter . . .i felt something different too . . .

    This ought to be a nice pissing match.

    Dave

  4. #3
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    they are good, they can cause problems, OEM is fine.

    i use one in my other car, but not my Passat due to the MAF being sensitive and the risk of causing problems with over-oiling it.

    they might be worth the money if you drive a lot of miles and want the extended service interval; and if you don't screw up the MAF.

    you probably won't gain much if any HP/Torque...

    others will chime in with their opinions on this hot topic. or you can do a search on "air filter" (with the quotes) and get most of the same stuff.

    good luck,

    a.s.

  5. #4
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    yea...i think im gonna go oem, avoid any MAF probs...

    is there a write up on how to clean the throttle body? is it an easy job?

    im getting ready for my spring tune up and want to hit all the high notes.

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  7. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by crew217
    This ought to be a nice pissing match.

    Dave
    Arn't they always?

    I have had a KN filter in my Passat since 99. No problems yet, but who knows. Maybe one day the MAF will go bad

  8. #7
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    Other than not having to buy another air filter for your passat, there's no benifit of using one long as you change the stock filter on time. But unless you're going to do something crazy to your motor, stock filter will do just fine.




    Josh

  9. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by shuPASSAT
    Other than not having to buy another air filter for your passat, there's no benifit of using one long as you change the stock filter on time. But unless you're going to do something crazy to your motor, stock filter will do just fine.

    Josh
    I have to disagree with that. Stock intervals are 40k . . . . I change every 10k. I can't see even leaving it to 20k considering how dirty these filters get. With 10k changes, I at least know that there won't be much particulate matter restricting flow.

  10. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by crew217
    I have to disagree with that. Stock intervals are 40k . . . . I change every 10k. I can't see even leaving it to 20k considering how dirty these filters get. With 10k changes, I at least know that there won't be much particulate matter restricting flow.
    Oh I do agree with checking every 10k miles. I check mine every oil change 'cuz I drive alot on the highway and lot of sh#t gets shoved up in there. That's why I use K&N so I don't have to worry about hurting performance as much. Maybe I should've recommended it little differently.




    Josh

  11. #10
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    I switched to K&N about 500 miles ago. My 99'1.8T with 55K on the clock seemed to breathe a bit better and sound a bit more "free". But I would never say there was any feeling of increased hp. But as Crew mentioned I replaced a (relatively) dirty stock panel with about 10,000 miles of use. I could go either way, but it would not surprise me if I decided to eventually switch back.

    PJP

  12. #11
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    I put one in my 99 & two days later threw a CEL (this was after shaking the crap out of it in it's bag to get rid of extra oil, which there was a ton of)...turned out to be MAF. VW replaced it under the extended warranty. Two weeks later, threw another CEL. VW said "Wow, two bad MAF's in a row" & replaced it. Two weeks later, threw another CEL. Called VW & the service manager said "Don't bother to bring it back unless you want to buy an OEM filter".

    My MPG went up slightly when I had the K&N, but it just wans't worth the hassle.

  13. #12
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    I have K&N but I got it for the same price an OEM one would cost. I didn't get it for performance, only to save on cash as I do not have to buy another one.

  14. #13
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    I got a K&N .. I like it .. but would not pay 80$cdn for it , no way .

    I paid 15$ for it .. so it all good , no probs so far.

  15. #14
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    I have mine in my car for almost a year now, with no problem. The MAF issue with the K&N filter is due to people over oiling the filter when they clean it up. When you clean it, just clean it over running water, do not use pressurized air on it!!. let it fully air dry, add your oil on it and let it dry. Once that is done, i highly recommend using an old pellow case, put your K&N in it and spine it around in the pellow case. It will get rid of all the extra oil. Wipe down the edges and reinstall.

    The gain in power is just a myth IMO, but i believe the car breath better with the K&N then with the stock. You also pay in between $10 to $20 for the stock ones each time vs $50 once for the K&N. If you are going to keep the car for a while, i recommend the K&N, if it is temporary, keep the stocks on. Good luck

  16. #15
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    I always thought if the K&N type filters could increase efficiency even a little, the manufacturers would use them to help keep their fleet fuel economy numbers up. Hell, that's the major reason for the newer 0W-20 oils.
    Original Club B5 member: 08 R32 & missing my 99 B5

  17. #16
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    I read once in a car magazine that filters like K&N could help at WOT if the car was not designed for adequate air flow with the stock filter. Obviously if the engine was not getting enough air, then a filter designed with a higher airflow rate could help out.

    Better air flow is one thing, but the air still needs to be filtered. Maximum air flow could occur with no air filter, but the air coming in better be clean!

    This being said, I choose the stock filter for better filtration, but will change it more often than the recommended 40,000 miles.

  18. #17
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    I put a K&N in my 5.5 at 20k and now I am at 53k without any problems so far.

  19. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by RAH
    I have mine in my car for almost a year now, with no problem. The MAF issue with the K&N filter is due to people over oiling the filter when they clean it up. When you clean it, just clean it over running water, do not use pressurized air on it!!. let it fully air dry, add your oil on it and let it dry. Once that is done, i highly recommend using an old pellow case, put your K&N in it and spine it around in the pellow case. It will get rid of all the extra oil. Wipe down the edges and reinstall.

    The gain in power is just a myth IMO, but i believe the car breath better with the K&N then with the stock. You also pay in between $10 to $20 for the stock ones each time vs $50 once for the K&N. If you are going to keep the car for a while, i recommend the K&N, if it is temporary, keep the stocks on. Good luck

    You can get the OEM Bosch filter on stopshopanddrive.com for like 9.50.

    Just thought I'd tell ya .


    EDIT: Sorry, it's the Mann filter.
    Last edited by bass_lover1; 03-15-2005 at 07:53 AM.

  20. #19
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    I put on in at 25,000 miles, cleaned it at 70,000 and dealer accidently threw it out at 115,000 miles when the MAF sensor was replaced. Mechanic said it was very dirty but what does he know (he did realize it was a K&N though). Dealer put a paper one in.
    Keep in mind the chip makers do recommend them so there's got to be something to their performance.

  21. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by SilverFlash
    I put on in at 25,000 miles, cleaned it at 70,000 and dealer accidently threw it out at 115,000 miles when the MAF sensor was replaced. Mechanic said it was very dirty but what does he know (he did realize it was a K&N though). Dealer put a paper one in.
    Keep in mind the chip makers do recommend them so there's got to be something to their performance.
    ERRRRRRRR come again? Who designs a chip with a K&N in mind? Or are you just referring to the notion that they can sell you a $50 filter after they've taken $500 of your money for a chip.

  22. #21
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    I bought a K&N 3 years ago. I haven't really noticed a difference for better or worse. I did re-oil it at 60,000 miles (now at 86,000), but oiled very lightly and let the oil bleed off overnight, in addition to the "pilowcase trick". According to my vag-com (and butt-dyno), my MAF sensor is still working fine. (I do clean my MAF sensor every 20k miles)

    At this point I've gotten my money's worth but probably wouldn't bother buying another, since the level of filtration and the flow restriction seems to be about the same as with paper.

    The only other K&N advantage I can think of (and this is a stretch) is wet weather performance. If you are driving in very wet conditions, some of the moisture in the air has to be getting to the filter element. The oil-soaked cotton K&N should hold up better than a paper element, right? Then again, I've never heard of anyone's paper filter "melting" in the rain. Hmmm.

  23. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by crew217
    ERRRRRRRR come again? Who designs a chip with a K&N in mind? Or are you just referring to the notion that they can sell you a $50 filter after they've taken $500 of your money for a chip.
    When I bought my Neuspeed chip, they specifically mentioned using a K&N air filter to maintain the C.A.R.B. emissions certification. Fortunately, I live in a state w/o emissions testing so it doesn't matter.

    FWIW, I've been using my K&N now for about 15K miles with no problems yet.

    -Chris

  24. #23
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    Since my last post I've had my MAF die. I can't say for sure if it's K&N related, but I am back to running the stock paper filter. YMMV. --pete

  25. #24
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    Put a K&N in my car within the first 2k miles. Traded in an almost-completely-unused one (told the guy I bought the wrong size) from my previous car, so cash out was $0.00. (Don't bother arguing that I paid for the first one. It's a sunk cost, so there's no effect to me now.)

    I've only got 5500 miles on now, so it's pretty hard to tell if there's anything to it. I just like that I don't have to worry about changing the filter as often.

  26. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by traubenberg

    I've only got 5500 miles on now, so it's pretty hard to tell if there's anything to it. I just like that I don't have to worry about changing the filter as often.
    Actually you have to change it more because the K&N has less capacity than a paper filter . . . even though it lets in quite a bit of crap into your engine.

    Dave

  27. #26
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    I have one. No noticable gain in performance, I only buy them because I can clean them & reuse them. I use them in all my vehicles - cars, minivans, motorcycles. No problems that I've known about. I clean them once a year. YMMV.

    Don

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    Quote Originally Posted by crew217
    Actually you have to change it more because the K&N has less capacity than a paper filter . . . even though it lets in quite a bit of crap into your engine.

    Dave
    Clean it, maybe ...but change it? Methinks thou doth protest too loudly.

  29. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by traubenberg
    Clean it, maybe ...but change it? Methinks thou doth protest too loudly.
    change = clean . . . . however . . . the more you clean it, the more you'll wear out the cotton element and more particles will be allowed to pass.

    Methinks you like the greasy oily substance on thou MAF.

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    Quote Originally Posted by crew217
    Methinks you like the greasy oily substance on thou MAF.
    Leave my greasy, oily substances and my MAF out of this.

  31. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by crew217
    change = clean . . . . however . . . the more you clean it, the more you'll wear out the cotton element and more particles will be allowed to pass.

    Methinks you like the greasy oily substance on thou MAF.
    You don't even know how soaked up my K&N was when I cleaned it 2-3 years ago......my MAF was fine (over 40-50k). Suprised cause MAF is a normal issue with these cars anyways.

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