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Title: Performance Air Filter (created on: 02/22/2005 )
Author: Rob House

Want extra horsepower?  Well, some of the performance air intakes that you may
see on the internet may not be a very good long term deal. I'm sticking with 
paper even though it may be a bit more restrictive. Check this out (and a large
 thank you to the author!):

Air Filters 
I found this on the web regarding K&N filters: 
John: I was responsible for evaluating re-usable air filters for a major 
construction/mining company that had hundreds of vehicles ranging from large 
earth movers to pick-up trucks and salesmen's cars. This study was embarked upon
due to the fact that we were spending upwards of $30,000 a MONTH on paper air 
filters. Using them one time then throwing them away.. I initiated the study in
that I was convinced that a K&N type filter or oiled foam would save us many
dollars per year in filter savings, man hour savings, and of course engines as
these would filter dirt better than paper. (yes, I had read the K&N ads and was
a believer) 

Representative test units were chosen to give us a broad spectrum from cars 
right through large front end loaders. With each unit we had a long history of 
oil analysis records so that changes would be trackable. 

Unfortunately, for me, every single unit having alternative re-usable air 
cleaners showed an immediate large jump in silicon (dirt) levels with 
corresponding major increases in wear metals. In one extreme case, a unit with a
primary and secondary air cleaner, the secondary (small paper element) clogged
before even one day's test run could be completed. This particular unit had a
Cummins V-12 engine that had paper/paper one bank and K&N/paper on the other 
bank; two completely independent induction systems. The conditions were EXACTLY 
duplicated for each bank yet the K&N allowed so much dirt to pass through that 
the small filter became clogged before lunch. The same outcome occurred with 
oiled foams on this unit. 

We discontinued the tests on the large pieces almost immediately but continued 
with service trucks, foremen's vehicles, and my own company car. Analysis 
results continued showing markedly increased wear rates for all the vehicles,
mine included. Test concluded, switched back to paper/glass and all vehicles 
showed reduction back to near original levels of both wear metals and dirt. I 
continued with the K&N on my company car out of stubbornness and at 85,000 miles
the Chevy 305 V-8 wheezed its last breath. The top end was sanded badly; bottom
end was just fine. End of test. 

I must stress that EVERYONE involved in this test was hoping that alternative 
filters would work as everyone was sick about pulling out a perfectly good $85 
air cleaner and throwing 4 of them away each week per machine... 

So, I strongly suggest that depending upon an individual's long term plan for 
their vehicles they simply run an oil analysis at least once to see that the K&N
or whatever alternative air filter is indeed working IN THAT APPLICATION... It 
depends on a person's priorities. If you want performance then indeed the K&N is
the way to go but at what cost??? 

And no, I do not work for a paper or glass air filter manufacturing company nor 
do I have any affiliation with anything directly or indirectly that could 
benefit George Morrison as a result..