There are a number of reasons why cold air intake is one of the most commonly performed modifications car enthusiasts do on their vehicles.
According to Pro Speed Racing Australia, modifying the cold air intake can cost anywhere between two to five hundred dollars (depending on the manufacturer of the intake and the type of car one owns) thereby making it a pocket friendly modification that can dramatically improve the performance of any vehicle. Moreover, they can easily be installed on most cars by just anyone who knows his way around the engine.
Cold air intakes work by creating some space between the air filter and the engine, thus ensuring the air that’s being sucked into engine is cooler. Usually, the air that enters the engine is drawn from the area right next to it, which of course is quite hot. Cooler air carries a lot more oxygen, which burns better. A cold air intake helps the oxygenated air enter the engine and gives you a bigger bang for buck for your gas.
This can be compared to you exercising outside in a hot, muggy afternoon, as compared to working out early in the morning when it’s cooler with a light refreshing breeze egging you on. Imagine how your performance would be different in both these scenarios and it works the same way with your car.
Cold air intakes are designed to help cooler air flow more efficiently and they are almost always better than the traditional airflow assembly used by your car’s manufacturer. Compared to the small and restricted sock tubes, aftermarket intakes boast of smoother tubes with comparatively larger diameters to encourage a stronger, cooler airflow.
That of course doesn’t mean that systems installed by your manufacturer are completely useless as the extra filtration helps your car’s engine stay clean under all circumstances. However, if you want that extra power, while helping your car perform at its peak rather than hovering just around the average mark, you’d need to compromise a bit.
If you want to improve the performance of your car, you’d need to open up its airflow. You can expect some bug payoffs from a really small investment. Tests have shown that simply by allowing the engine to draw cooler air can improve its horsepower gain between 8 -22 ponies in most vehicles. Plus it is known to improve your car’s fuel efficiency and would probably give it a nice manly rumble as well.
A cold air intake is one of those rare modifications that work quite well by themselves. By this we mean that you don’t need to do an additional modification to get the best out of this one. That’s primarily the reason why most beginners start off with the air intake and then move on turbo kits and other performance cars parts offered by Pro Speed Racing Australia for further modifications.
The other reasons are low cost and the fact that a two minute instructional video on Youtube is all you need to do it right.
It hardly makes sense to spend thousands of dollars on adding a supercharger or a turbo to your car if the engine’s airflow is so restricted that it might be suffering from asthma. So if you’re planning to gift your car some additional muscle, start with the air intake.