This is a review of the AirRaid 301-237 Synthamax Dry CAI System.
Purchased from Autoanything.com for $334.71 (Phone price included shipping and no tax to Illinois)
Box arrived within one week of order. box was twice as big as the entire system but included excessive amounts of bubble wrap. A checklist of all the parts was included hand inspected and signed by the person performing assembly of the order.
Components came loose with the exception of the small screws and adapters which came in a sealed bag known as the hardware pack.
The filter came in its own marked retail box. The filter inside was shrink wrapped.
The directions come on a double sided sheet with black and white pictures. The biggest confusion for me in terms of the direction was deducing between the reducers hose and the hump hose. But part numbers made it clear. Another issue is when installing the gasket at the end, the picture is difficult to see, but after playing with it, it seemed more logical for the basket to fold outwards than inwards.
Installation took approximately 1.5 hours (performed by me a science teacher who has never done much to a car with the exception of changing the oil and installing rotors and pads. I've also replace the rear tire of a crotch rocket, but that's about it. Removing the stock components was a breeze. Not much mechanical knowledge is required. Simply disconnect the temperature sensor, loosen two clamps, remove two bolts, and wiggle the airbox off. Remember to save the bolts and rubber grommets.
The installation was rather painless if you follow the instructions. The fact that I had to use tapping screws to install and air scoop panel seemed stupid, they could have just drilled the holes.
Removing the Plastic Ornamental engine cover was easy, putting it back on took some giggling.
Removing the hard plastic breather tube and installing a smaller rubber breather tube seemed counterproductive, but it was simple enough. The hard plastic tube had to be insulated to prevent melting against the engine, this rubber tube lays in the same area. Rubber is more resilient to heat which may be better long term. It may be a good idea to zip-tie the rubber tube to the fittings, but I did not do so and the instructions do not call for it.
Loosening the clamps before installation helps, I know it sounds obvious but they are rather wide open when you get them so opening them some more really makes installation easier. Putting everything together is simple, but I do recommend putting the hump hose onto the Intake tube before installing it, otherwise clamps fall off and it is a big hassle.
Removing the temp sensor when it is 50 degree F outside is a challenge. Wrap it the exterior connector from the outside, and heat the factory intake tube with a hair dryer. This softens the rubber and the sensor pops out much easier avoiding damage. Another thing you can do courtesy of 2 Guys Garage is to use a little bit of silicon spray. (No clue if this is bad for the sensor.
Getting the filter in the box, required wiggling, loosening of the clamp, and some persuasion. Be careful the filter does bend if you press on it hard enough.
Once everything was in place, just tighten all the clamps. No specific torque settings, so clamp it all down, make sure the system does not move or give when you pull on it and you should be good to go. Don't go all Hercules on the clamps, because they will break. Installing the gasket like I said before is a pain, but if you have it face outward it goes on much easier. Leaving it in a warm room will also help make it more flexible.
This is what the stock filter did on a 2011 CC Sport 3.55's 4X4 (Stock Truck)
EVIC showed Avg of 14.3 MPG, Manually calculated 14.1MPG (Highest 14.5 MPG)
Response was good and engine noise/rumble was noticeable, but not intense.
EVIC (after reset) shows Avg of 15.6 MPG, with a high of 15.9MPG
Manual calculation will be posted as soon as I run a fresh tank of gas (87 octane)
Response is much better and engine noise is noticeable in the cabin. During full acceleration with the windows closed, it is LOUD in comparison. ( Will take some time getting used to.)
This was not the most labor intensive installation I have ever done. I am 6'4" and had some difficulty reaching back to disconnect the oil breather tube since it is behind the oil fill cap. Making hopping up on a stool or a step ladder would be a good idea for someone shorter. Not everything in the directions is clear, but if you look over them a few times, you can figure it out. The product is well built, and the fit is fantastic with the exception of getting the filter on the first time. Taking off the temp sensor takes some effort but can be done as long as you are careful with it. The biggest worry at the current moment is knowing if there are any leaks in the system. (I am not mechanically inclined enough to know how to tell). But if you clamp everything well I don't think it should be a problem. You are going from 2 factory clamps to 5 clamps with AiRaid so the potential of things coming loose is greater. Double checking is a must, especially since when I finished it was dark outside.
Overall this product is great and for 330 bucks if what the EVIC says is true, I will be looking at some gas savings long term in comparison to the stock air filter which looks like the worst filter I have ever owned and appears shoty when compared to even a Napa Gold filter. Engine rumble/noise has increased and it audible in the cabin at full throttle. This is something that will take some getting used to, but at the same time you know that it is sucking in more air which result in the louder rumble so it must be working better than stock.
I give this product ZZZZZZZZZ (9Z's)
Quick Youtube clip from the cabin with the windows closed. With the new CAI