7 Best Cold Air Intake Systems of 2022

Jerry Wilson
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The GME DRY S filter system is designed to help clear your car’s air intake system of any residual moisture or dirt that might have clogged the system. It reduces intake sound, increasing airflow, and stabilizes power, giving you more horsepower and torque out of your engine. It’s a great replacement for consumable reusable cone-shaped foam filters that may eventually get clogged with dirt, debris, and carbon build-up.

The DRY S uses a 10” cotton gauze filter and an enhanced oil absorption technique to collect and trap more dirt. It’s also a breeze to clean and maintain.

This is a quality product that doesn’t require any tricky installation process. Plus, it’s available at a great price and includes a 1-year manufacturer’s warranty.

NameCategoryProduct
K&N Cold Air Intake Kit: High PerformanceBest OverallK&N Cold Air Intake Kit: High Performance
Spectre Performance Air Intake Kit: High PerformanceBudget PickSpectre Performance Air Intake Kit: High Performance
AEM 21-478WR Wrinkle Red Cold Air Intake SystemUpgrade PickAEM 21-478WR Wrinkle Red Cold Air Intake System

1. K&N Cold Air Intake Kit: High Performance

Our rating: 9 / 10

K&N Cold Air Intake Kit: High Performance

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Pros:

  • Guaranteed to increase horsepower
  • Engineered using the latest in electronic data to deliver performance gains
  • Easy to install without special tools
  • Inlet air temperature sensor included for compatibility with select factory sensors
  • Dry filter and moisture sensor
  • If any parts fail, they’re covered by K&N’s Million-Mile Limited Warranty
  • Engineer tested to deliver the most horsepower to your engine
  • The easiest way to add horsepower to your car

Cons:

  • For use with some factory sensors, an adapter may be required
  • All K&N intake systems are intended for use from the factory throttle body back only.

Eventually, your car or truck will fall into disrepair. If it’s going to happen sooner rather than later, you might as well get the highest performance possible out of it.

The K&N 63-series is great because the filter is washable and reusable, meaning you save money in the long run.

Features:

  • For use with some factory sensors, an adapter may be required
  • All K&N intake systems are intended for use from the factory throttle body back only.

2. S&B Filters 75-5069 Cold Air Intake

Our rating: 8 / 10

S&B Filters 75-5069 Cold Air Intake

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If you want an intake system that can hold its own against the elements, the S&B is your best bet. The kit is 100% oil-free, which means your intake system can easily be cleaned and maintained.

Installation took about an hour, and I experienced no problems. At the end of the day, this kit is a solid addition to your performance-driven vehicle. It doesn’t cost a lot of money, and it offers performance that is comparable to high-end systems.

3. Volant 151536 PowerCore Cool Air Intake

Our rating: 8 / 10

Volant 151536 PowerCore Cool Air Intake

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4. AEM 21-478WR Wrinkle Red Cold Air Intake System

Our rating: 8 / 10

AEM 21-478WR Wrinkle Red Cold Air Intake System

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5. Airaid 400-140-2 Intake System

Our rating: 8 / 10

Airaid 400-140-2 Intake System

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Pros:

  • Plenty of Technological Features
  • Great Customer Service

Cons:

  • Not Suitable For All Vehicles
  • Doesn’t Sound Like A Typical Cold Air Intake

The Airaid 400-140-2 Intake System is my top pick for cold air intakes as it features plenty of technological features that increase chances of getting the best bang for your buck.

It uses a CNC mandrel bent aluminum inlet tube and an extra large conical air filter which reduces intake temperatures. In addition, it features Airaid's Air Scoop, which is a patented air scoop that helps redirect airflow into the filter. You can also control how much air you want to introduce into your intake setup with Airaid's filter seal o rings.

Airaid also provides a lifetime warranty for all components that are included in the system.

6. Spectre Performance Air Intake Kit: High Performance

Our rating: 8 / 10

Spectre Performance Air Intake Kit: High Performance

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Pros:

  • Easy to install
  • Durable and lightweight aluminum construction
  • Direct fitment

The Spectre Performance Air Intake Kit was designed to offer Honda accord owners a way to enhance the performance of their existing engine. This kit was made to increase horse power and allows air to flow more freely through the engine which in turn promotes combustion.

This kit is designed with a 70mm throttle body for maximum power. It also has a large air filter which offers increased air flow. Not to mention the kit is designed with a high performance polished air intake.

This cold air intake systems is made from aluminum and is a direct fit which means you don’t have to hassle with the hassle of cutting or modifying anything. It is guaranteed to deliver and you’ll definitely feel the results.

7. Injen SP1902P Cold Air Intake System

Our rating: 7 / 10

Injen SP1902P Cold Air Intake System

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Pros:

  • Heat shielding to prevent engine temperature increase
  • Low Resonance Sound Technology
  • Complete with a heat shield and hardware

Cons:

  • Lower quality material
  • Air bypasses the engine temperature sensor when checking engine operation

The Injen SP1902P Cold Air Intake Kit is one of the best cold air intakes for cars you can buy on the market right now. It is designed to allow more air into the engine as well as being much cheaper than other intakes.

This air intake system is made from tough quality heat-shielding material that is designed to withstand extreme temperatures. The air intake features rubber tubing and a surge tank intake that can be used with most aftermarket cold air intake systems on the market.

Speaking of optimum engine cooling, the air intake also provides efficient ventilation as it comes with a heat shield that is required for optimum air flow in addition to a heat shield that allows the intake to work with brackets and aftermarket intakes.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What are the best cold air intakes?

What are cold air intakes? This is a common question that could be asked by a variety of car owners. A cold air intake is a simple device that is placed over your car’s existing air filter.

The purpose of this device is to force the intake of cold air into your vehicle. With this, it allows the engine to achieve the maximum amount of air. With air, this allows the car to move with a higher amount of efficiency and power. Most cold air intake systems have an attached air filter that is easy to replace. Of course, you should have a professional do the installation for you.

Are all cold air intakes the same?

Cold air intakes are commonly made from hard end plastic or aluminum tubes that draw air directly into the engine. The colder the temperature of the incoming air, the more efficient it is at absorbing the heat from the engine. This system is commonly referred to as a cold-air intake (or CAI).

A CAI system is a component that is attached to your car's pre-existing air flow system. This device is filled with air at a lower temperature, because its external and free from engine heat. The system increases the volume of air you're feeding to the engine by improving air flow and this helps your engine to create more power.

Some cold air intakes actually contain an internal fan. This fan increases the flow of air into the combustion chamber of the engine. This system works effectively to reduce the cost of drawing air from the outside, which lowers the temperature of the air entering the engine. This also helps a vehicle to be more fuel efficient.

How much horsepower will a cold air intake add?

This depends on multiple factors, including the horsepower of your vehicle, the specifications of your cold air intake, and the frequency of your driving. Cold air intakes can actually decrease or increase your horsepower which is the complete opposite of a performance air filter. However, cold air intakes on average will increase horsepower by 5% across the board, and they have a much larger impact when you take into consideration the engine size, vehicle size, and the type of driving frequency. Note that this is the maximum horsepower gain you'll see. The impact of a cold air intake can vary significantly depending on the situation.

Can a cold air intake damage your engine?

Theoretically, it can. Since cold air is denser than warm air, it provides more oxygen per volume. However, before you run out and buy a whole bunch of cold air intakes, keep in mind that operating an engine at wide open throttle without an intercooler is also bad for the engine. Your engine needs to run at temperature to operate efficiently and safely.

Like most things in life, the key is to find a balance. You need to make sure that your engine isn’t allowed to get too hot and that you are using the intake and intercooler correctly. If you do that, then adding a cold air intake is a great way to increase the performance of your car.

Conclusion

Choosing a cold air intake for your car takes some research, even if you're familiar with how vehicles work. We hope that we've helped you make the decision to buy a new cold air intake system by providing useful research, education, and advice. We will continue to update this list as new cold air intake systems come to market, and we'll be monitoring trends and changes in consumer preferences to provide our readers with the best resource to choose the best.

Our Recommendation

NameCategoryProduct
K&N Cold Air Intake Kit: High PerformanceBest OverallK&N Cold Air Intake Kit: High Performance
Spectre Performance Air Intake Kit: High PerformanceBudget PickSpectre Performance Air Intake Kit: High Performance
AEM 21-478WR Wrinkle Red Cold Air Intake SystemUpgrade PickAEM 21-478WR Wrinkle Red Cold Air Intake System