Best Rules-of-Thumb Guide of How to Install Cold Air Intake

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Do you own a car? You must know how to install cold air intake. This is because the internal combustion engine is based on fuel, air, and spark to offer good performance. Photo Credits: Nick Ares.

An enhancement in these three areas brings a great difference in fuel economy and power. This is one of the significant reasons that it is the first modification that drivers consider while customizing your vehicles.

Read more about Best Cold Air Intake for Chevy Silverado & Ultimate Cold Air Intake Benefits.

What is Cold Air Intake?

A cold air intake is referred in short as CAI. It is an aftermarket assembly that is done to give the cars internal combustion cool air, thereby helping the engine with an increase in performance and energy efficiency.

What Does a Cold Air Intake Do?

Installing a cold air intake means moving outside the air filter from the engine compartment. This sucks the cool air for combustion into the engine.

The cool air is denser and there are more power and fuel for your vehicle. The intake of cold air ensures free airflow in the engine compartment, while the building up of hot air is less.

Learning how to install a cool air intake has its benefits by replacing smoother intake tubes, while the engine ensures an airflow uninterrupted. Cold air intake does not assure as to the fuel efficiency and improved horsepower is based on your vehicle, the way you drive, and the aftermarket product.

How to Install a Cold Air Intake?

Installing cold air intake is an inexpensive modification. It is easy to install and does not need much power. Getting a suitable cold air intake for your car can be handled with these steps:

Step 1: Turn the engine off:

The initial step to installing the cold air intake is to stop your car engine. Park it in a place there is enough space and allow the engine to cool off.

Do not touch as the engine parts may be hot. Give enough time to cool down.

Step 2: Unplug the battery:

Remove the positive and negative terminal of your battery. It should be disconnected before starting the process of installation.

Step 3: Keep in off position the original air intake:

Locate the air intake inbuilt. It appears as a plastic tube running from the bay of the engine to a plastic filter box. You have to take it away and ensure the tube and the filter box is also removed carefully.

Remove the small bolts using a socket set, in case it is engine mounted.

Step 4: Remove the sensors:

Relying on the car model and the engine makes, check the old intake connection with the sensors and remove it.

Step 5: Install the new cold air intake:

This installation is a crucial step to fix the cold air intake. You may carefully refer the instructions before installing and connect to the engine.

Link the cold air intake silicone coupling to the throttle body and secure the coupling with a hose clamp. Slide into the silicone coupling the intake tube, use hose clamps and fix the air intake.

It may need you to go under the car as a part of installation completion.

Step 6: Check your work:

As you complete the installation, ascertain your intake pipe is running from throttle bay. Check the clamps and bolt are in place and secure, while the hose is tightly connected. Without fail tighten the mountings.

Step 7: Reattach the terminal of the battery:

The battery terminals should be reattached to the recent air intake. Attach first the positive terminal and then the negative terminal.

Step 8: Run a test drive:

Now run the engine and check if the installation is correct so that you know the difference between riding your car and enjoying the ride.

Installation of a cold intake system is not bothersome and you need not spend a fortune.

Do the Installation Yourself Following these Quick Steps: How to Install Cold Air Intake

Step 1: Ensure the engine is cool.

Step 2: Disconnect the negative terminal of the battery cable.

Step 3: Remove the old air intake.

Step 4: Link silicone coupling of the new CAI kit to the throttle body.

Step 5: Secure by tightening the hose clamp.

Step 6: Slide the intake tube and ensure it is away from the engine bay.

Step 7: Secure the brackets and tighten the silicone coupling.

Step 8: Plug into the latest cold air intake system the airflow sensor.

Step 9: Reconnect the battery.

Step 10: Immediately enjoy the new boosts of power.

how to install cold air intake
Photo Credits: Nick Ares

FAQ’s About Installation of Cold Air Intake

Question: How much horsepower can be added by cold air intake?

Ans: The simple process of filter redirecting to draw cool air is for the best horsepower gain. Having a cold air intake installed improves fuel efficiency and it makes the sound of the engine better, as well.

Question: Does cold air intake cause damage to the engine?

Ans: Cold air intakes do not cause harm to the engine of the vehicles. Some believe it will be a gradual process to improve the performance of the engine, ensuring fuel efficiency to increase and to combust at low temperatures.

A common belief is that lower temperature is best for the engine and with cold air intake, the engine is safe.

Question: How is the performance affected?

Ans: A cold air intake promotes the airflow by keeping the air reaching into the engine at a lower temperature. With the colder air, it gets denser and there is more oxygen in a smaller volume and the performance is promoted and not affected.

Question: Why a cold air intake is important?

Ans: A cold air intake is important as it works as an amazing medicine allowing your engine to breath. This is because the cold air moves outside the engine compartment air filter and the cooler air gets sucked for combustion within the engine.

Cooler air brings denser air, which is more oxygen in the combustion chamber indicating more power.

Question: What happens in case the cold air intake becomes wet?

Ans: A cold air intake will not work against you. The filter may become wet and fail to suck water. However, if the filter is installed properly in a car, it will be covered by the bumper and splash shield that there is no chance of becoming wet.

Cold Air Intake Benefits

The cold air intake benefits help in cooler airflow, thereby providing higher air volume to the engine.

The benefits of cold air intake include:

Increased Horsepower

The cold air intake systems performance is assured as it is designed to provide an unimpeded, smooth path for the airstream that the airflow is cooler and the oxygen-dense is more. The air intake system, assures an increase in torque and horsepower.

Safeguards Your Engine

Poorly filtered air damages the internal engine severely. It can degrade cylinder walls, valves, and pistons. However, with a quality cold air intake, it helps incorporate particles into the surface of the filter, thereby assists in maintaining the efficiency of the filter and the ability to flow air. In this way, engine protection is safeguarded

Improves Engine Sound

Factory systems feature tubing with baffles and tight bends that these obstacles slow the airflow while creating turbulence. However, these systems muffle the engine noise and even with cold air intakes, they stay quiet at speed.

Go Green

Once the engine life has covered 300,000 miles, you can replace the air filter. Having a cold air intake system installed means the air filters are tested for its functional use and you can support ‘Go Green’.

Installs Easily

Learning how to install a cool air intake is easy and can be completed within 90 minutes. There is no need for extra tools. The basic hand tools are enough. There are installation video and detailed instruction in the kit that it facilitates easy installation.


A cold air intake works by enhancing the air volume entering the engine. It is possible through a larger diameter intake tube and thus, the velocity and air volume increase, allowing the engine to receive more air.

The efficiency is added to the combustion process as the colder air is denser, thereby the Power-train control module adds more fuel, resulting in enjoying more power.

Driving a vehicle means to ensure you have the required tools to get started. The cold air intake designs vary, so knowing how to install cold air intake is recommended.

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