so i may look at getting a cold air intake but i dont know what to look for i was searching and then i saw short ram intakes and stuff i know you have to get a heat shield right?
well anything will help
You can get an extra 10-15 ponies with a cold air intake. MAYBE 5 with debaffle. Debaffle will get you a louder reving volume, but not too much more. It really depends on how much you plan on spending. The true cold air intake is a chore, and it extends from the intake to just below the radiator, either to left or right from it. It draws the cold air from the front of the car, away from the engine. The shorter, less expensive cold air intakes is about 1.5 feet long and doesn't get as cold of air, seeing how it is near the engine, slightly. You will have to get a heat shield, but if your crafty, you can make one yourself for less money and more customization.
Debaffling your engine means taking out the large tube out of the bottom of your air box. You then usually add a green filter (or K&N) for better filtration. Without the tube, there is less restriction, a little performance increase and a louder sound from the engine. Take out what is shown in the red boxes. It will cost you anywhere from 100-300 for a good one. You can get them a lot cheaper though, but quality can be an issue.
I am not a fan of CAI on BMW as the system is close to a CAI as it stands. If you are going to build one, then measure the ID of the MAF and buy plastic pipe of the appropriate size (if you can find flexible thin wall plastic pipe of the required size, buy that) and using elbows and rubber couplings you can get the the grill area where you would add a cone filter. My daily driver is a 1998 Neon with 2.0 liter and DOHC with a MTX, I have added a underdrive pully, front and rear anti-sway bars, a B&M short shifter, a MOPAR reflashed PCM and a homemade CAI. The Neon air intake is a mess as it takes air from the engine compartment just aft of radiator and brings it back to the firewall where the filter resides and then plumbs to the throttle body back at front of engine. I eliminated all of the plumbing and put a rubber collar on the throttle body, added 2" PVC to just behind drivers head light, then a 90 degree elbow to a piece of PVC just behind the grill and that is where my K&N cone resides. Does it add HP, I would like to think so but in any event it has a nice growl to it from about 3000 RPM to redline at 7500 RPM.
You know my air box doesn't quite look like that. I opened it up to take that tube out and there really wasn't a tube at all. I might have to take a picture. Also I did notice that there was the tube going right next to the radiator. Talk about a pain in the ass I almost threw it to the wolfs last night when I put in my new headlights. Anyhow it almost seems like a homemade one, out of flex pipe, and a home made heat shield just exactly where the stock box sits would work. Plus take the brake duct that sits right below it and add some more pipe if you want to the bottom of the car where that plastic thing sits that always rubs when your approach angle is too steep. That would be the best and probally not cost you much at all.
Also there was a guy in the DIY section that used a flex pipe from the brake duct straight into his stock box. That would be easier and just as effective.
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You'd be surprised to see the Dyno's on CAI's. I've seen a gain of 15+ HP in some cars. Plus, those Dyno tests are flawed from the start with a CAI. The car needs to be moving for the CAI to be effective, so you can imagine what gain could be made with a constant flow of cold air. By the way, the brake duct is the the best place for the intake to be placed. The kits are more, but the difference in the density of the air is preferred.
I'm thinking of doing a CAI for mine. I'll make it myself. Where can I see dyno charts for CAI alone? My airbox doesn't look like the one pictured either. Why would dyno chart be flawed? Has anyone actually done tests to see if you can get a boost in pressure from the ram effect? Even so it wouldn't be effective under 100MPH.
Each cars CAI Dynos are going to be different. Some cars will get a boost of 3 HP and some will get a boost of 17. It all really depends on the type of engine, number of cylinders, etc. The Dynos aren't necessarly flawed, however, when testing a CAI, which relies on the constant flow of air, your going to get some under rating. When a car is sitting still and reving at 6 grand, the static vehicle and the hot air near the engine will have a slight effect. The reason for the colder air is the density difference. CAI 101 --> Cooler Air = More Dense = More Volume When Combusted = More Power to the Cylinder. Any way to increase volume in that stage is helpful. It's not necessarily the speed, but the RPM that matters in this case.
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