Lengthy Review: S&B Cold Air Intake 75-5064 [2009-2012 Ram 1500 5.7L Hemi]
First and foremost, let me say that I am in NO WAY affiliated with S&B Filters, as some have asked thru PM. Iím a career firefighter as my full-time work and I cut lawn as a side job on most of my days off. I, like you, am a consumer first and foremost. After that, I enjoy modifying cars with quality aftermarket products. Iíll happily spend good money as long as I get bang-for-bucks in return. Donít we all feel the same way? So when I find a quality product, I tend to be VERY loyal to that company and its products for future rides. I feel the same way towards vendors. Prime examples: S&B Filters and Auto-Anything.
As Iíve posted on these boards in the past, I became a fan of S&B Filters many years ago when I owned a 2000 GM fullsized pick-up. Truth be told, I purchased my first S&B Cold Air Intake for my GM somewhat blindly. I saw a picture of it on a forum and loved the way it lookedÖ so I purchased it. The installation was super-easy. The appearance was drawing. The sound was throaty and mean under WOT. The HP gain was obvious across the band-width based on my butt; but more-so on the bottom-end. The MPG gain was minimal, but that probably had more to do with the fact that I had a hell of a time keeping my foot off the pedal on the far RHS.
After that vehicle I purchased a 2005 F150 Screw which I poured a few dollars into from the interior, to under the hood, to the drivetrain and finally the exterior [appearance]. There are some pictures floating around these boards of that truck which, again, had an S&B Cold Air Intake. The installation was very straight forward and easy. Again, I saw obvious HP gains [especially mid and top end]. The sound was a little more mellow than the what the GM displayed under WOT, but nonetheless apparent. The finished appearance was much better. The MPG gain was a full 2MPG and some change. Suffice to say I was very happy with S&B Filters following this truck and hooked on their products.
Which bring us to my 2012 Ram 1500 5.7L Hemi. When the mod-bug hit me [doesnít it always?] not long after purchase, the first thing I did was look at the S&B Filters webpage to see what was available for our trucks. Based on previous experiences, this was the system I wanted. Nothing! I was disappointed but Ėtruth be told - not shocked as thereís a limited amount of performance modifications available for our trucks [you listening tuner companies?]; especially back in January of this year. Then, thru these and other boards, I researched the bee-jeesus out of the CAIís that were available for our trucks. I settled on another closed-box intake [Iím not a fan of bare and/or open lid boxes; but Iím not about to get into that here] from a manufacturer Iíve used before [I wonít mention any other brand names under this review]. Just prior to pulling the plug and purchasing [literally hours away], I decided to check the S&B Filters webpage again. Iím sure glad I did!
Which brings us here to my no BULLSHEET review [remember, I have no connection to S&B Filters] of the S&B Cold Air Intake Model 75-5064 manufactured for the 4th Generation 2009-2012 Ram 1500 5.7L Hemi HERE
This is the oiled/cleanable filter model and NOT the dry/disposable filter model. Iím not a fan of dry filters as I briefly touched on in another thread. But just so I can give an honest review/comparison, I did also order the dry filter which will arrive shortly Iíve been told. Upon delivery and change-out of the oiled-filter to the dry-filter, I will update this thread and forward a brief opinion on what difference [if any] the dry filter displays.
One last thing before I start. I initially was going to do a full-blown review on these boards where step-by-step installation instructions and photos were provided. Halfway thru snapping pictures and taking notes thru the install, it occurred to me that the installation instructions provided by S&B Filters was spot-on; and that the photos they had in those instructions was pretty much what I was snapping. I immediately stopped as it was a waste of my time and would have been yours too. So Iíll say this: if you follow the installation instructions that S&B Filters has provided to a tee, the installation is a breeze. In fact, it took me a LOT longer to remove the OEM intake housing/assembly than it did for me to install the S&B CAI. If youíre not sure on how to remove the OEM intake housing and assembly, S&B provides that information also on the instructions supplied. However, there are more than a few threads on these boards, but the very best IMHO is HERE by brad12kx who has an excellent pictorial attached. The installation instructions can also be found on S&B Filterís webpage HERE.
Build & Quality & Construction: Top notch! Air box assembly is solid and has a really nice company logo on its side [facing the vehicleís firewall]. The oiled-filter is heavy duty [manufactured by S&B Filters]. Intake tube is rigid with no flex and looks great with the companyís logo. Everything from the filter to the housing down to the screws and hose-clamps is top quality. Even the smallest item supplied like the grommets are heavy duty. S&B generously [even] supply replacement plastic clips in case your break/ruin your OEM ones while removing the plastic fender liner. S&B Filters has also provided some extra screws [at least I had some extras left over] just in case some grow legs and go MIAÖ.. and we all know that can happen. Upon completion of the installation, the thing that struck me instantly was not only how well everything fit together but how rigid and tight everything was. The parts are solid floating around your workbench on their own; once theyíre put together, theyíre good for life! Letís face it, thereís absolutely no reason any intake assembly, once installed, should have any play or flex to it. Obviously the crew at S&B Filters is on the same wavelength as me. Well done guys!
Ease of Installation / Fit-n-finish: As I touched on before, if you follow the [outstanding] supplied installation instructions with real-time pics, as S&B has set out, then installation is an absolute breeze with no issues. This didnít surprise me given my experience in the past with this manufacturer, but itís always pleasing when your expectations are met. No problems whatsoever. Everything lines up well and fits together the way a non-OEM intake kit should. Not only that, but as mentioned above, everything is rigid and part A is made to fit part B and so forth. For example: where the intake tubeís mouth meets your fender-wall is a nice butted-up, tight/wedged fit up against that OEM sponge surround. It took me about 20MINS at best to install this intake once the OEM intake assembly was removed and discarded. A thorough once over immediately following the install revealed NO adjustments were necessary. Honest. Nothing but enjoy! It doesnít get better than that, now does it?
Appearance: Iíll make this short and sweet. Show me another intake on the market that looks better, and turns more heads, than S&B Filterís Cold Air IntakesÖ ? Iíll save you the time Googling. There is none. Photos do NOT do this intake justice. Ask any owner of S&B Cold Air Intakes and theyíll whistle the same tune. S&B Cold Air Intakes look a LOT better in person than they do in picturesÖ I sheet you not! The End.
MPG Gains: Way too early to determine, but this will be updated as time goes.
Performance & Sound: First performance: my butt-dyno registered obvious HP gains. Nothing thatís going to tear the track up, but we are speaking of a CAI only here; not a supercharger or the like. I took it for a good drive in town, along my back roads and I-295 for almost 80MILES round-trip. Throttle response is obvious at take-off. Throttle response is REALLY obvious at WOT cruising/ kick-back. The throttle seems to be noticeably more responsive when you hit it while cruising. Iíve always like this to be apparent because you never know when a Ford or Chevy may roll up on you, right? Sound: now this was the pleasant surprise for me and something I was honestly not expecting. Honestly, itís almost worth purchasing this CAI just for the ďthroaty growlĒ under WOT that it screams out. It sounds a LOT better than any [and every] previous CAI Iíve owned. Let me give you an example: previously when Iíd hit the throttle, my exhaust would send out sweet deep throaty tunes coming from BEHIND me. Now, however, that very sweet sound seems to be amplified and surrounds my truck from front to back. Love it! Keep in mind my exhaust is not OEM [see my sig] so take it for what itís worth. An old-timer once told me ďÖ. if you can hear the intake sucking in air, then your engineís working efficiently and loving you for it.Ē You can most certainly hear the S&B intake sucking in air.
Cons: Yeah, after all that, thereís one [little] thing that doesnít sit well with me. Iíll say up front that this is a personal preference as the next person may not see an issue and be perfectly fine with it. Some may even say itís trivial. I absolutely hate the way the S&B engraved logo on the clear Plexiglas lid/cover has been placed on the outer edge of the lid [see pics below]. All other S&B CAIís that Iíve had in the past, and seen, have had the logo engraved in the dead-center of the Plexiglas lid, which I thought looked awesome! You pop your hood and there it was, the S&B logo directly above the filter in dead center, which almost looked like it was floating in mid air. Why S&B Filters decided to take this route with this intake is beyond me. In fact, I painted the S&B logo on my GMís lid the same color as the truck and it looked awesome, and many praised it and copied it. I was going to do the same thing with this oneÖ. until I saw the logoís positioning. Nah! Yeah, maybe Iím splitting hairs here but I know what I like and what [little] things donít sit well with me. Itís certainly NOT a product deal breaker but I wish it was positioned in the center where I was expecting it to be. Iím sure S&B Filters have their reasons for changing the logoís positioning, but if it was just a no-reason thing, then why change something that isnít broke, right?
One last thing if youíre still awake: The intake comes with an air inlet drop tube [almost a scoop type but not quite] that hangs down well past the intake housing and is attached [you can see it it the pics]. S&B Filters provides a plug for this tube for those who may be concerned that [unwanted/unwelcomed] warm/hot air may be sucked into the throttle body. I did NOT install this plug as I see four credible reasons not to IMHO. One: as we all know, hot air will rise so itís highly unlikely any standing hot engine compartment air in that region will hover around long enough to be sucked thru. Two: if for some reason that particular region does have standing hot air, the several crevices directly in front of this region [the grille/bumper/skirt/under-body area] will assure that it escapes quickly. Three: the more air you can get into and thru your intake, the merrier. Not plugging this inlet drop tube will guarantee that additional air Ė albeit minimal Ė will assist the main fender wall opening. But give the crew at S&B Filters credit where itís due; at least theyíre trying to cater for everyone and those peopleís concerns by providing the plug. Kudos guys! The final reason for NOT installing the supplied plug is that horrible fender-wall opening Ram have used as the primary outside air supply for the intake. Have you seen it? If you donít know what Iím speaking of, HERE BlackRamHemi speaks about it briefly and snaps a bunch of really good picture of it. Can you say ďrestrictive?Ē Another brain-fart on Ramís behalf; pffttÖ For that reason alone, leaving the plug off of the S&B CAI will assist in drawing much needed additional outside air, IMO.
If youíve managed to get this far, then I thank you for taking the time to read. This is a damn fine system that ANYONE who owns the model Ram in question, and is the market for an after-market Cold Air Induction Intake, should SERIOUSLY consider taking a good hard look at. I hope my thread has helped you in some shape or form. I will give periodic updates over the coming months should anything change, or anything of the sort. The more miles I put into this, the better Iím going to have a feel for it. Anything out of the ordinary, good or bad, will be documented and updated in this thread. Ask any questions you want here [or PM me if you wish] and Iíll address them immediately upon viewing. If thereís a particular picture of the S&B CAI you want to see, or maybe a close-up of one part or another that I may have missed, Iíll be happy to accommodate and snap more pics for you. Just say the word. If I missed something, I apologise; bring it up and Iíll be more than happy to address it.
Now enjoy the pics [in no particular order] belowÖ..
Truck was sold today [5/19]. I got an offer I couldn't turn down. I had no more need for a pickup so I cut it loose. About to purchase a '14 Jeep SRT8 this week.