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Apparently, you have heard that installing a cold air intake increases your car engine’s horsepower. But how is that true? How much horsepower does a cold air intake add? Well, manufacturers typically exaggerate the small benefits of their products and make them look too important/significant.
Cold air intakes would definitely increase how your engine performs – boasting the response time and efficiency. But in the real sense, adding a cold air intake does not “add” more horsepower to your engine. Whatever horsepower your engine has, remains what it would ever have.
Hereunder is a discussion on how cold air intakes improve car engine performance and cause the engine to use more horsepower.
What Does Cold Air Intakes Do?
Apparently, cold air intakes provide a channel for “Cold” air to get into the engine, and by so doing, keep the engine cooler, which in turn, makes the engine deliver more efficiency and power.
Without installing a cold air intake, your car’s engine would definitely run fine – if you’re using the right lubricant. Asides from allowing more “cold” air into the engine’s combustion chamber, there’s no other function of cold air intake.
Of course, there are advantages and disadvantages of installing cold air intakes, but when it comes to horsepower, below is the demystification you should know.
See Also: How Much Horsepower Does a Turbo Add?
How Much Horsepower Does a Cold Air Intake Add?
Cold air intake manufacturers would advertise and tell you that their products add 5 – 10 horsepower to an engine – that’s just a marketing tactic.
Adding a cold air intake would not increase the HP of your car’s engine, it would only make the engine run more efficiently than ever, so, you’d notice a boost in the engine’s performance.
Let’s say your engine runs normally without a cold air intake; when you finally install a cold air intake, it’d add more cold air into the combustion chamber, which would result in a richer air-fuel ratio. The intake valve would also introduce more oxygen into the engine’s chamber, which would help to maintain the engine temperature.
Apparently, a hot/overheating engine would deliver poor performance, but when the engine is cooler, it delivers its best performance. So, in essence, what the cold air intake does is unlock your car’s engine for the best performance by introducing more “Cold” air into the chambers.
There is no proven test were adding a cold air intake increased the horsepower of an engine by any number. Whatever you’ve been told about horsepower increment is false – it is simply a marketing fallacy to convince you the more to buy the cold air intake.
It is advisable to first consider and evaluate the PROs and CONs of installing a cold air intake before proceeding to get one for your car. If you have an overheating engine, you should look out for the faulty component causing the overheating, then get it fixed to stop the engine from overheating.
Is Getting a Cold Air Intake Worth It?
For some cars, yes, it is worth it, and for some other cars, it may just be an unnecessary addition and waste of money. Installing a cold air intake is worth it when you’re driving an older (high mileage) car that seems not to be getting enough air into the engine, which may be causing the engine to overheat.
On the other hand, if the stock air filter and air inflow channels on your car have big spaces, there’s actually no need to get an aftermarket cold air intake. Excessive air inside the engine would facilitate moisture build-up, which is not healthy for the engine and its components.
Thus, put simply, a cold air intake is handy when there’s a need to improve airflow into the engine. If your car’s engine gets enough air from the stock provisions, there’s no need to spend on a cold air intake.
Talking about “How much horsepower does a cold air intake add?” Marketers would tell you it adds 5 – 10 HP, but that’s all lies. The maximum horsepower of a car engine cannot be changed unless the engine is completely overhauled.
Adding a cold air intake to a vehicle would only make the engine cooler, which in turn, can trigger a significant increase in the engine’s power output and efficiency. In other words, cold air intake can actually make a car engine run better but doesn’t add more horsepower.