The car cold air intake kit is responsible for supplying air to the engine. Air plays a very important role in the combustion process of a car’s engine. The amount of oxygen contained in the air entering the engine is the most critical factor.
Air with a high oxygen content allows more fuel to be burned. This improves the performance of a vehicle, at least in theory.
How It Works
Whether we’re talking about a street car, a race car or even a tow vehicle, one of the easiest-to-install and most cost-effective performance parts we can add to it is a cold-air intake.
The car cold air intake kit is how your car engine inhales and takes in the oxygen it needs. Some people might say this is your car’s nose and lungs. The engine is like a pump. The more air it can move, the more power it can deliver to the wheels.
Litres, cubic centimeters and cubic inches are all measures of engine displacement. This measures how much air can go into and pushed out of the cylinders.
An inlet manifold is a series of tubes that distribute the air coming into the engine evenly to each of the cylinders. This is so that the right amount of air can mix with the right amount of fuel in a four stroke process.
During the first stroke which is the intake stroke, air from the intake manifold is sucked into each cylinder. Intake valves are then closed for the other three strokes, compression, combustion and exhaust. The valves reopen when the cycle starts again.
An inlet manifold makes sure that there is enough air available when the valves open for each intake stroke. Each cylinder gets the same amount of air.
What People Say About Cold Air Intakes
Some people say that cold air intakes are an easy way to get extra power from your vehicle. Let us think about that for a second. Cold air intakes move the air filter outside the engine compartment so that cooler air can be sucked into the engine for combustion. Cooler air is more dense therefore has a higher oxygen content. This allows the engine to produce more power.
Air filters are usually near the upper wheel well area, located near fenders where there is access to free flowing cooler air, and less hot air from the engine.
They also increase the airflow by removing the need for a box surrounding the air filter. Cold air intakes use large diameter intake tubes that are smoother and have fewer bends. Most cold air intakes are often wider than the factory ones.
Removing the air box and using these bigger smoother tubes helps to create an uninterrupted air flow system. These types of high capacity swaps on their own do not really do much to improve your car’s power.
Do Cold Air Intakes Work?
If you have a car that you have tuned or bored the engine to get more power. Then a high flow intake is necessary to get the most out of your engine. There is a drawback to putting the air filter in different places like low behind the wheel. Most new cars these days have the filter behind the wheel.
Sure the air filter will suck in cool air, but if there was a flood then it sucks in water. If water is sucked into the engine, this can cause damage to your engine. This is why off-road vehicles have a periscope looking intake.
No engine runs completely efficiently. As the air and fuel mixture burns, there will be left over dirty bits that exit as pollutants. Some amount of fuel is going to be partially burned. This partially burned fuel has to be processed out of the system via the exhaust to make room for the next cycle of combustion.
Pros And Cons Of Cold Air Intakes
Quicker Throttle response: Cooler air is more dense therefore contains more oxygen than hot air. This allows the engine to operate more efficiently, creating a quicker throttle response.
Longer Engine Life: When you run your engine at cooler temperatures. This could extend the life span your engine as the engine will run without overheating.
Better Mileage: The oxygen contained in the air fuel mixture can be improved by using a cold air intake system. These produce better mileage as the air fuel mixture combustion process is more efficient, giving better engine performance.
Water Entering The Engine: One of the main disadvantages of installing a cold air intake is that the chances of water entering the engine will be significantly higher. This can ultimately result in your engine hydrolocking. This happens when an engine either seizes or suffers catastrophic failure due to a substantial volume of water entering the cylinders.
An internal combustion engine effectively resembles a form of air pump. The internals are all designed to deal with the compression of air.
Reading Accuracy: It is argued by some people that when a cold air intake system is installed. The mass air flow sensor should also be upgraded. This is because of the belief that the air flow sensor will start to provide inaccurate readings of the air flowing to the engine. If the air flow reading are inaccurate, this in turn distorts the calculations of the air fuel mixture.
A cold air intake is a really good addition to your car. It allows for marginal improvements in performance and power. However, as with any upgrade, in the absence of an engine re-tune, high flow exhaust systems or engine bore etc. A cold air intake as a standalone modification, will not do much to provide any significant power gains.
Swapping your factory filter and air box for a cold air intake is a very popular modification. I think this is because it is relatively cost effective to carry out this work. There is a very wide range of cold air intakes to choose from should you decide to upgrade your factory intake system.