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Discussion Starter #1
Anyone have any experience with after market filters (eg K&N) for 3rd generation V-6 engines that claim to increase air flow, throttle response, and horsepower? If so, what do you like, or dislike about it? Any installation challenges? I live in a very dusty area and understand some filter elements may be washable which would save some money down the road.
 

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IMO, unless the K&N filter is significantly larger than stock like it is on Harleys but isn't when it has to fit into a stock airbox as on a RAV4, it's a restriction and causes the opposite effect as advertised.
I'd simply blow out or replace the stock filter since they are only $6-8 on rockauto.com
 
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I have run K&N filters only on modified motorcycles and one sports car (with four carbs) as a last resort when stock air filters would not fit. K&N were just too much hassle. I found zero improvement.

...just noticed Dr. Dyno's post. Agree entirely. On my last *MC build I went with a non-oiled foam filter that was quick and easy to wash.

* my last ground-up build: 1946, '56, '66 HD with a whopping 36 horsepower. :)
 

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I just looked at the K&N #33-2355 that fits the 3.5 V6 - without actually seeing it in person, it appears to be a straight swap replacement - of course K&N claims improved air flow and acceleration - for what its worth the reviews (14) by RAV4 owners were pretty positive - aside from stated power gains, some mentioned improved gas mileage - the price is a bit steep though at $50.99 for many to justify the upgrade.
 

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I just looked at the K&N #33-2355 that fits the 3.5 V6 - without actually seeing it in person, it appears to be a straight swap replacement - of course K&N claims improved air flow and acceleration - for what its worth the reviews (14) by RAV4 owners were pretty positive - aside from stated power gains, some mentioned improved gas mileage - the price is a bit steep though at $50.99 for many to justify the upgrade.
With respect, you will not find any performance improvement, and do you really look forward to cleaning it, re-oiling it -- for no advantage?

Many reviews fake.

Just skip K&N.
 

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I had a K&N filter on my 05 RAV4 and saw no improvement in fuel economy or power. You may save money on filter only if you keep your vehicle past 10 years but you may come out ahead much sooner compared to the very expensive Toyota dealer air filters.

A normal air filter can last over 40,000 miles so you will not be changing it that often. Even if you live in a dusty area you can get them very cheap at Rockauto as low as $6.

You also need to clean the K & N filter when the oil dries out and gets dirty. I found it easy to clean using a garden hose and dish soap. Then I blow it with a leaf blower before I let it dry in the sun. The worst part is that the K & N filter oil is expensive.

The only thing I like is the fact it is cool looking.
 

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With respect, you will not find any performance improvement, and do you really look forward to cleaning it, re-oiling it -- for no advantage?

Many reviews fake.

Just skip K&N.
I completely agree..Have used K&N a couple of times in the past, found no improvement with
mileage., costs more and messy to clean, oil, re-install...
 

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AFE Pro Dry S....no oil, washable....
My off the line is smoother...mpg change not noticable.
Worth the money in my opinion...
 

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AFE Pro Dry S....no oil, washable....
My off the line is smoother...mpg change not noticable.
Worth the money in my opinion...
I have the same filter and concur with your findings. I chose it because my tower strut brace makes it a pain in the arse to change filters. It's also EXTREMELY efficient at filtering dust and tiny particles. Wash it. blow dry, put it back.
 

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K&N used an oil cotton gauze element. Pre 1950s technology. They do flow more air when they are clean, but also lets through more dirt. Those in the offroad world know to NEVER use a K&N on a vehicle that sees dirt time.

AFE seems to have the market cornered on the dry element filters. They are significantly better than the K&Ns, but questionable if they are better than a disposable paper filter.

Don't ever get fooled into believing that you can gain more horsepower by not burning more fuel.
 

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Also...these are MAF-based cars (mass airflow sensor) - which sits on the engine-side of the air filter. The K&N WILL deposit oil on the MAF and that can lead to other issues.

There is an (older) review floating around the Web that although the K&N's may flow more air, they also let in more dirt. If more power and/or MPG was as easy as a filter, I'd think Toyota (and others) would already use it.
 

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stick with the stock. I've had an AEM CAI in my Mazda3, that was ok, good midrange and high end response but low end suffered. Mileage, did not notice much. I also used a K&N in my wife's mazda3, that was a drop in replacement. Again, nothing noticeable. The advantage to these filters is that you can clean them out and reuse them. I found it wasn't really worth the extra money or hassle to deal with it.

Currently, I just use a Fram for my air filter and have had no issues with it.
 

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I think the only way to get more air flow through a filter is to make it less efficient at filtering dirt. I?ve seen air filter test and K&N didn?t preform that well. Personally I would not used one in my vehicles. It slowly destroys your engine that?s not obvious while it?s happening. Others people may feel different.
 

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Also...these are MAF-based cars (mass airflow sensor) - which sits on the engine-side of the air filter. The K&N WILL deposit oil on the MAF and that can lead to other issues.
You should not get any oil anywhere if you re-oiled your K&N filter properly. The filter should only be lightly oiled. You would need to wipe the excess oil if you applied too much with a paper towel. If you can feel the oil with your finger then you need to wipe it off until the filter is dry to the touch. The filter is not suppose to be dripping full of oil which is what causes problems.
 
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