Fiat 124 Spider Forum banner

1 - 17 of 17 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
157 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
and tell me if the WIX air filter would be a good filter for an OEM replacement. I know the article is old, and for diesels, but it looks like it makes some good comparison among the various aftermarket filters.
It sucks getting old and trying to figure out the conclusion of this test.

Thanks for all response and answers. My guess is the WIX did middle of the road??

Thanks Grandpa Bill

Here is the link:
http://www.nicoclub.com/archives/kn-vs-oem-filter.html

:confused:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,108 Posts
I would tend to agree, the Wix filter is middle of the road, in this test, where the OEM is an AC Delco filter sized for a Duramax diesel engine. (Isuzu builds that engine, I wonder what filters they spec?) Would the similar results come up testing FCA's OEM filter (probably a different supplier from time to time anyway) for the 1.4L turbo engines, against the 3rd party replacements? Who knows. Change the air filter every one or two oil changes and you may not be all that different from the OEM... I think.

In the "general discussion" sub-forum, Greg gave me some in-depth filtering info comparing OEM and his filter for the V4 air intake system, see the "cold air intake" thread, messages written this weekend. Won't help you directly, but just gives more info about air filters.

Steve.
 

·
Vendor
Joined
·
3,099 Posts
I'll mention some things about this test which may not be obvious at first glance.

First of all, the test conditions are really extreme. They are flowing enough air for 500 horsepower and throwing over 1 pound an hour of dirt into the intake. That's a lot. I seriously doubt my car's intake will ingest a pound of dirt in street use in a ten year period and under those conditions I certainly wouldn't be driving at full throttle generating anywhere near that amount of power. Of course if you are doing off road driving, that's another issue, but I'll touch on that in the next point.

Second, ALL the dust they throw at it reaches the filter. That's not the way automotive intakes work (at least not the better ones used on street cars). Automotive intakes use a principle called inertial separation, which means that there are several turns the air has to make before it reaches the filter. Nothing that isn't really small and light will make those turns and even if it does it's usually at such a low speed by the time is reaches the filter it just bounces off and ends up in the air box. That's why when you remove a filter you usually find little pieces of grass, dirt, bugs or whatever that have collected somewhere before the filter.

In an off road type intake, this inertial separation principle is really important. If you are driving through clouds of dust in the Baja 1000, or Paris-Dakar, you probably need an intake with serious inertial separation to avoid clogging the filter, that and a huge amount of filter area. (the more filter area, the more slowly is becomes restricted when trapping debris)

Third, and this is a biggie. They say in this test they are using dust ranging from 2.5 up to 80 microns. Do you know how small 2.5 microns is? One of your red blood cells is about 5 microns across, a hair on your head is about 75 microns across. There is a lot of debate about just what size of dust particles and in what amount could be damaging, but even oil filters are only rated down to 20 microns. They don't really say in this test how much of that dust was down in the smaller range, but I suspect that at least 1/4 of it was 20 microns or below.

Fourth, they don't take advantage of the ability to clean the K&N filter, which any serious enthusiast would do long before it was exposed to the amount of dirt it sees in this test.

For me the bottom line is that this while I think this test is interesting I don't think it's representative of issues on a real car.

Greg
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
157 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Thanks

I'll mention some things about this test which may not be obvious at first glance.

First of all, the test conditions are really extreme. They are flowing enough air for 500 horsepower and throwing over 1 pound an hour of dirt into the intake. That's a lot. I seriously doubt my car's intake will ingest a pound of dirt in street use in a ten year period and under those conditions I certainly wouldn't be driving at full throttle generating anywhere near that amount of power. Of course if you are doing off road driving, that's another issue, but I'll touch on that in the next point.

Second, ALL the dust they throw at it reaches the filter. That's not the way automotive intakes work (at least not the better ones used on street cars). Automotive intakes use a principle called inertial separation, which means that there are several turns the air has to make before it reaches the filter. Nothing that isn't really small and light will make those turns and even if it does it's usually at such a low speed by the time is reaches the filter it just bounces off and ends up in the air box. That's why when you remove a filter you usually find little pieces of grass, dirt, bugs or whatever that have collected somewhere before the filter.

In an off road type intake, this inertial separation principle is really important. If you are driving through clouds of dust in the Baja 1000, or Paris-Dakar, you probably need an intake with serious inertial separation to avoid clogging the filter, that and a huge amount of filter area. (the more filter area, the more slowly is becomes restricted when trapping debris)

Third, and this is a biggie. They say in this test they are using dust ranging from 2.5 up to 80 microns. Do you know how small 2.5 microns is? One of your red blood cells is about 5 microns across, a hair on your head is about 75 microns across. There is a lot of debate about just what size of dust particles and in what amount could be damaging, but even oil filters are only rated down to 20 microns. They don't really say in this test how much of that dust was down in the smaller range, but I suspect that at least 1/4 of it was 20 microns or below.

Fourth, they don't take advantage of the ability to clean the K&N filter, which any serious enthusiast would do long before it was exposed to the amount of dirt it sees in this test.

For me the bottom line is that this while I think this test is interesting I don't think it's representative of issues on a real car.

Greg
I'm probably going to go with the V1 intake with a WIX filter and change them out every 5,000 miles. Air filters are cheap.

Bill
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
1,925 Posts
It seems to me that they used ISO 5011 standardized air filter testing methodology. Feel free to correct me on that. I've reviewed that report many, many times before as well as the original data that was presented elsewhere and included in that report. I believe this was the original article: http://www.billswebspace.com/AirFilterTest.htm

The reason I used it was mostly to weed out K&N air filters. A while ago, I read somewhere that a Cummins diesel mechanic was voiding warranties, and that Dodge actually had specific statements that if a truck came in with a dusted turbo (google "turbo dusting,") and there was a K&N air filter present, that the warranty would be voided on account of the poor filtration.

It is worth noting that oil film in crank bearings can get down to the single microns in thickness.

This test allows us to draw two conclusions regarding K&N air filters.

1. K&N air filters pass 47x more fine dust than OEM filters.
2. K&N air filters clog to restriction with 1/3 the amount of dust loading than cellulose based filters. Note that it doesn't matter if you load it up all at once or if it takes 30,000 miles to do it; either way, you'll be cleaning the K&N filter 3x as often as you'd be replacing an OEM filter. This really makes you wonder for how many miles that filters is actually providing any performance benefits, and how often you'd have to clean it to realize those benefits. An educated guess would have you cleaning that filter 6x as often as you'd be replacing the OEM filter to see any benefit.

I'd also like to note that in many vehicles that use K&N filters, elevated silicon numbers are seen in oil analysis reports. I cannot count how many times someone has sent me an oil analysis to review, to which my first question is, "What oil filter are you using?" Every time I have to ask that, it's a K&N filter. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe silicon to be abrasive. I don't like seeing elevated silicon levels in oil analysis reports, so in my honest opinion, contaminants passed through the air filter are getting into the oil, it's a problem.

Another less standardized test was posted over on www.gmtruckcentral.com: http://www.gmtruckcentral.com/articles/air-filter-study.html

In this test, they appear to have used very small particles to measure efficiency, but what's noteworthy is that some filters actually did extremely well. It should come as no surprise that AMSOIL's EA nanofiber filter did the best of all samples. The panel filters are unfortunately discontinued, but conical universal filters using the same filtration media are still sold by AMSOIL and also by Injen in their EA lineup. As a benefit, they also have a better pleat density (and therefore filtration surface area) than K&N filters. Regardless, NAPA Gold and Wix were the next best performing filters with 2.5% and 3.4% of contaminant passed respectively. K&N scored an embarrassing 35% of contaminant passed.

I guess at this point, the questions to ask are, "how much wear are these particles causing, and is it worth the minimal performance increase and maintenance requirements?"

Personally, I avoid K&N filters, or any oiled filters for that matter. I find that for street car use, they don't provide enough performance gains to be worth their drawbacks.

Wix makes solid filters, both oil and air, and will serve you well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
157 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Thanks

It seems to me that they used ISO 5011 standardized air filter testing methodology. Feel free to correct me on that. I've reviewed that report many, many times before as well as the original data that was presented elsewhere and included in that report. I believe this was the original article: http://www.billswebspace.com/AirFilterTest.htm

The reason I used it was mostly to weed out K&N air filters. A while ago, I read somewhere that a Cummins diesel mechanic was voiding warranties, and that Dodge actually had specific statements that if a truck came in with a dusted turbo (google "turbo dusting,") and there was a K&N air filter present, that the warranty would be voided on account of the poor filtration.

It is worth noting that oil film in crank bearings can get down to the single microns in thickness.

This test allows us to draw two conclusions regarding K&N air filters.

1. K&N air filters pass 47x more fine dust than OEM filters.
2. K&N air filters clog to restriction with 1/3 the amount of dust loading than cellulose based filters. Note that it doesn't matter if you load it up all at once or if it takes 30,000 miles to do it; either way, you'll be cleaning the K&N filter 3x as often as you'd be replacing an OEM filter. This really makes you wonder for how many miles that filters is actually providing any performance benefits, and how often you'd have to clean it to realize those benefits. An educated guess would have you cleaning that filter 6x as often as you'd be replacing the OEM filter to see any benefit.

I'd also like to note that in many vehicles that use K&N filters, elevated silicon numbers are seen in oil analysis reports. I cannot count how many times someone has sent me an oil analysis to review, to which my first question is, "What oil filter are you using?" Every time I have to ask that, it's a K&N filter. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe silicon to be abrasive. I don't like seeing elevated silicon levels in oil analysis reports, so in my honest opinion, contaminants passed through the air filter are getting into the oil, it's a problem.

Another less standardized test was posted over on www.gmtruckcentral.com: http://www.gmtruckcentral.com/articles/air-filter-study.html

In this test, they appear to have used very small particles to measure efficiency, but what's noteworthy is that some filters actually did extremely well. It should come as no surprise that AMSOIL's EA nanofiber filter did the best of all samples. The panel filters are unfortunately discontinued, but conical universal filters using the same filtration media are still sold by AMSOIL and also by Injen in their EA lineup. As a benefit, they also have a better pleat density (and therefore filtration surface area) than K&N filters. Regardless, NAPA Gold and Wix were the next best performing filters with 2.5% and 3.4% of contaminant passed respectively. K&N scored an embarrassing 35% of contaminant passed.

I guess at this point, the questions to ask are, "how much wear are these particles causing, and is it worth the minimal performance increase and maintenance requirements?"

Personally, I avoid K&N filters, or any oiled filters for that matter. I find that for street car use, they don't provide enough performance gains to be worth their drawbacks.

Wix makes solid filters, both oil and air, and will serve you well.
Thanks... I'm going with WIX air filters , and MANN/ Puralator Oil filters with Pennsoil 5W-40 Euro Full Synthetic every 5,000 miles and should be good.

Thanks again
Bill
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
948 Posts
I think your information is helpful. Over in the Miata world the K&N filter generated as much vitriol as style bars! I've never used them either. OEM has always been fine for me.
Best regards
Pete
 

·
Vendor
Joined
·
3,099 Posts
I am sure the WIX filter is just fine.

It's been mentioned before, but I'll add it again. In THIS application the K&N panel filter doesn't add any performance because it actually has less filter area than the OEM filter. It's pleats are too shallow. It's only advantage is that it's washable.

Greg
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
449 Posts
I think the airbox of the 124Spider ist the same as in the 2.0L MX5, with the same filter.
So the filter area should be big enough. With a modified 124Spider I would change oil and air filter every 6250miles (10.000km)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
62 Posts
Ever given the K&N Air filter a thought? It will fit straight in and gives the same area filter coverage.
I bought one. It is worth it if you are going to keep the car for numerous years considering an OEM replacement is not cheap.. There has been some scaring people off claiming that some resedue from the air filter oil will contaminate the intake sensor. That turns out not to be the case at all. K&N even strongly disputes any such claims and even so as fahr guarantie that it will not affect such a sensor nor will anything will get through the filter other than increased air input and adding in running the engine more efficiently. 7
Installed mine some 2 months and no issues. If anything, i think it drives a little snappier since.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
733 Posts
Ever given the K&N Air filter a thought? It will fit straight in and gives the same area filter coverage.
I bought one. It is worth it if you are going to keep the car for numerous years considering an OEM replacement is not cheap.. There has been some scaring people off claiming that some resedue from the air filter oil will contaminate the intake sensor. That turns out not to be the case at all. K&N even strongly disputes any such claims and even so as fahr guarantie that it will not affect such a sensor nor will anything will get through the filter other than increased air input and adding in running the engine more efficiently. 7
Installed mine some 2 months and no issues. If anything, i think it drives a little snappier since.
Guess you didn't read the previous posts in this thread?! K&N is like Harley, selling their products based on marketing hype, rather than functionality. The K&N oiled gauze scored very poorly in independent tests of filtration, much worse than OEM or other aftermarket filters. I haven't used a K&N filter on any of my cars or motorcycles in I don't know how long. Given a choice, I tend to go with Uni dual-stage foam filters instead of K&Ns for the cone-shaped universal clamp-on style. But I suppose with their "million mile warranty", and the fact that you can "wash" them, the K&Ns could be an acceptable filter. But not on my Spider!
 

·
Vendor
Joined
·
3,099 Posts
Ever given the K&N Air filter a thought? It will fit straight in and gives the same area filter coverage.
I bought one. It is worth it if you are going to keep the car for numerous years considering an OEM replacement is not cheap.. There has been some scaring people off claiming that some resedue from the air filter oil will contaminate the intake sensor. That turns out not to be the case at all. K&N even strongly disputes any such claims and even so as fahr guarantie that it will not affect such a sensor nor will anything will get through the filter other than increased air input and adding in running the engine more efficiently. 7
Installed mine some 2 months and no issues. If anything, i think it drives a little snappier since.
There isn't really any issue with the K&N. The oil wont effect anything in the Spider, it's boost sensors are impervious to oil. If they weren't the car wouldn't run for long considering how much oil gets thrown from the crankcase and into the intake on this car.

Its filtration is just fine, at least for any normal usage, and the ability to clean and re use it is nice.

I do have two objections to it. As I stated before it doesn't add any power in this car, certainly not more than 1hp, and we have done a lot of testing on this. (in other cars it does). My other objection is in relationship to the million mile warranty. In my experience they don't honor it. Eventually the surrounding seal will separate from the cotton materiel, and they claimed that since that's not a failure of the actual filtration materiel, the filter didn't fail and thus they wouldn't honor it. So in my view that million mile warranty is just a marketing claim. Your mileage may vary.

Greg
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,108 Posts
My first entire season with my car, it ran with the aFe Pro Dry S washable filter that Greg/EC sells. https://shopeurocompulsion.net/collections/fiat-124-engine/products/afe-power-magnum-flow-air-filter-fiat-124-spider-abarth At winter shut down, 8000 miles, I washed it thoroughly, letting is sit in some warm, mild soapy water (light amount of dish soap in a half sink of warm water) while I changed my motor oil. I then rinsed and rinsed and rinsed it with warm water, flushing to begin with from the downstream (i.e. clean) side of the filter, then rinsing the inlet side of the filter, even hitting it with about half flow pressure from the kitchen sink spray hose. I parked it in front of a small fan to dry completely before re-installing.

This seems to be a well built, high quality filter, I'd recommend it. They make an oiled version of this filter as well, but frankly, the rationale for oil filters that you get the pleasure of cleaning... is absolutely lost on me. I tried that once with a small engine filter. After about a minute of the washing process I dropped the dam* thing in the trash and wet to single-use filters.

Steve.
 
1 - 17 of 17 Posts
Top