Traverse Forum banner

1 - 20 of 22 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
110 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
This was touched on in another post, but I wanted to start a new post on it to get everyone's opinions. I want to buy a K&N air filter for our Traverse. I have one on my other car and have been very happy with it. I have heard positive and negative things about them from other people. I won't post any of those things just yet because I don't want to sway the conversation one way or the other before it even starts. Anyway, if you do have an opinion, please post it here so I can make an informed choice based on the opinions of my peers along with my own research and opinions. Thanks!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
53 Posts
ol1,

I have been a member on another site for a number of years and this subject came up a number of times, along with "best bang for your buck" types of performance modifications.

I believe the consensus was something like this: Car makers leave nothing "on the table" regarding performance. All the low hangin fruit has been picked.

Almost all "performance modifications" have a negative side at some point. For example regarding air filters: There is at some point noiser air flow into an engine, poorer filtering or improper flows over a given mass-flow sensor, etc. Fundamentally, there is little to be gained on the suction side of naturally-aspirated modern engines. The fact that a given air filter may sound like its "working better" by being noiser, is simply not consistent with better inlet airflow, (it is just noiser). I'm certain any number of converts will attest to better performance, but I believe they are unable to establish technical-clinical testing, by their personal bias, (after they pay money and install whatever - they simply want to believe it).

However, it is well-established that all manufacturers do make cars with relatively quiet exhausts to sell cars to the general public. And, there is some performance to be gained with replacing the exhaust with a freerer-flowing system. Almost always, the replacement is noiser and would not sell well to the general public. But in this case again the extra noise is also what the buyer wants of these systems (it just sounds more powerfull). So we now have a "win-win", with that particular owner, (perhaps until the car is to be sold).

I have not even touched on any warranty issues that might be violated.

IMHO, It may be much more cost-effective if you simply buy some K&N window stickers on eBay.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
110 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Well, I noticed absolutely no noise difference at all when I put the K&N air filter in my car. So that is not a plus nor a minus at all for me. The idea of it sounding any different at all has no bearing on me deciding to buy or not to buy the air filter. Neither does the "Hey, look at me" factor, so buying window stickers does not affect my buying or not buying the air filter. The only way anyone can tell I have a K&N air filter in my car is if they take the cover off and look at the filter. It is in no way, shape, or form a status symbol to me. The only main reason why I would buy one is for increased fuel economy (better MPGs). The only secondary reason would be the slight increase in horsepower. However, that minute increase plays very very little into my choice. I guess what I'm getting at is this: There was a noticeable increase in MPGs when I put the air filter in my 2001 Malibu. I was able to take the filter from the Malibu when I sold it and drop it straight into my 2003 Grand Am. Since I never drove the Grand Am with any other filter than the K&N, I can't say whether or not it made any MPG improvement. That one filter has probably close to 125,000 miles on it. That being said, I know it was better to spend $55 or so one time than to spend $20 or so every 50,000 miles. I guess my biggest questions are, would it increase MPGs in the Traverse and would it have any negative side affects at all that could possibly negatively offset the increase in MPGs?

Thanks for your reply and please don't think that I am bashing you or your opinions, I just wanted to let everyone know that my goals are getting better fuel economy and not hurting the engine at the expense of a few more MPGs.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
I had put the K&N replacement filter in about a month ago and noticed my MPG dropped significantly, about 2-3 MPG per tank. I have a 2009 AWD Traverse LTZ with 7200 miles on it. Prior to the install, I was getting 22-24MPG on the highway. After the K&N, I couldn't crack 20MPG. Towing was even worse, when towing the boat (4400#), I was getting 12-13 MPG before the K&N, with the K&N it was 8 and 9MPG. After 2 weeks of that, I pulled the plug on the K&N and put the factor air filter back in. MIleage instantly improved. Anyone want the K&N, you can have it, free.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
121 Posts
I also HAD one, now in the dump.... As shewstring confirmed, my milage also decreased by 1 - 2mpg. However, this was in my Trailblazer. The only benefit to the K&N is never having to purchase another filter. I'll take the mpg's, thanks..
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
55 Posts
I was just speaking to a shop owner and the subject came up about the K&N filters , Apparently there is a major problem with the oil used on the filters "blowing up" the mass airflow sensors.The problem is the sensor is getting coated with oil probably caused by the old " if some is good more is better " when applying the oil to the filter initially or after cleaning. I have been using their product for years, my last Silverado had 127,000 miles on it with about 122K with the K&N never had a problem I have to admit with my 06 Silverado I am using a "Green" filter just because of better flow characteristics than the K&N. Whether it's a case of better marketing or whatever that's why I changed. I have been getting 20-21 mpg highway which I never did with the paper filter and no problems with anything else related to it. Hope this helps
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
55 Posts
The Green filters are an updated version of the K&N style filter, it has a different material as a filter medium and much lighter oil to treat the filter fabric. As of a few months ago they did not offer a filter for the Traverse. I'm sure you could do the same thing as K&N if you over oil it,these have a tighter weave in the filter medium ,hence the lighter oil. They caution about using too much oil though. A little goes a long way. Hope this was helpful.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
I haven't noticed any difference in mileage between the original oil filter and the K&N. First oil change was done at 1235 mi. I have an AWD and the mileage is consistant with what was on the sticker. My current mileage is 2004.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15 Posts
I put a K&N in my LT. My dad swore by it in his Pathfinder so I gave it a try in both my Trav & 04 Xterra.

I'm still trying to determine if there is any gain in my MPG. There is *no loss. I get 22 - 24 mpg HW on my AWD LT and that depends on road incline... so I'm pleased. I average 17 - 20 mpg between on & off city & HW to/from work which is not bad at all... good actually considering the car and I do not baby the car (but I don't abuse it either).

I can't say I'm happy with the filter but I'm not dissapointed. Only time will tell. I'm approaching 4K miles on the car. I put the filter in before our 2k round trip to NC & SC (from NY). There are also factors like oil change (that I already did 3 of) & such. Hard to tell.

They put an insane # of screws that hold that thing in... and it takes a while to take off. You can easily drop the bolt if you are not carefull. I don't even want to think about inspection. I will probably have to stand there by the mechanic to make sure he reinstalls all the bolts if they check the air filter. Actually I'll probably take a photo beforehand so that when I get it back nothing is missing.

This one place did not replace 3 of the 6 screws that hold my Xterra's skid plate under the car. By the time I noticed it was too late to complain.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10 Posts
Hey everyone I just wanted to input a little of my info on the K&N Air Filters. I personally have not purchased one for my 2010 Traverse yet but I am considering it. However I have owned 4 different K&N system in the past and loved everyone. I had one on a 1982 Silverado with the 305 engine, one on a 1990 Silverado with the 350 Engine, a Cold Air Intake on my 2007 Silverado Classic and one in my 2002 Grand-Am GT1.

I can tell you that I gained fuel economy by about 1 mpg in all but the 2007 Silverado, I did loose about 1 or 2 mpg. However after looking into that at the time I found out that all motors will act differently due to how much restriction the factory filter placed on the system. It turns out that you are going to loose the fuel economy because the engine can now take in alot more air at one time giving you a slight increase in horsepower and in turn sucking down more fuel.

As for the sound factor of the K&N...if you are only replacing the factory filter with a K&N replacement you should not hear any noticeable difference. However if you change out the intake system to something like a CAI then when you throttle up you will get a deeper, throaty air sound. It actually sounds pretty good and aggressive.

Finally as for the oil effecting you MAF sensor....yes it is possible and dealerships tell you not to use oiled filters because of this. What they don't tell you is that if when you re-oil your filters after cleaning them if you follow the manufactures instructions exactly along with dry time after oiling you will not have any problems. I ran the K&N in my Grand-Am for 5 years and cleaned the filer every 6 months. Never once have I had a MAF sensor issue with the car. Usually the issues are brought about by the own over oiling not by the product itself.

With all that said, and based on the experience of a few others on this forum, if you do not mind the slight mpg decrease I do recommend the K&N for just about any vehicle.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
407 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
551 Posts
I have always used k&n filters on my cars and was going to get one for the traverse withouth even thinking about it. Main reason was, if nothing else, the cost savings over time being able to reuse them. However, after reading this I am not sure. Does our manual (dont have it on me!) actually say the air filter is good fo 50,000 miles? That seems high to me. If that is the case, and some people have seen decreased mileage I am not going to bother with getting a K&N.

However, if anyone does get one I would be interested in seeing how it works out for you? Maybe keep track of mileage for a couple weeks and report any changes.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
110 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
Mistic said:
I ran the K&N in my Grand-Am for 5 years and cleaned the filer every 6 months.
Hey, it's your money, so do what you want, but K&N recommends cleaning the filter every 50,000 miles. If you drive 50,000 miles in 6 months, I guess you have other things to worry about, too. Again, do what you want with your money but I'm just pointing that out in case you didn't know. (That's for the drop in filter. Not sure about the CAI filter.)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
407 Posts
Tiestosteele said:
I have always used k&n filters on my cars and was going to get one for the traverse withouth even thinking about it. Main reason was, if nothing else, the cost savings over time being able to reuse them. However, after reading this I am not sure. Does our manual (dont have it on me!) actually say the air filter is good fo 50,000 miles? That seems high to me. If that is the case, and some people have seen decreased mileage I am not going to bother with getting a K&N.

However, if anyone does get one I would be interested in seeing how it works out for you? Maybe keep track of mileage for a couple weeks and report any changes.
Yes, 50,000 miles is when it says to change the factory air filter. (2009 Enclave manual, but should be the same)
 
1 - 20 of 22 Posts
Top