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View Full Version : DIY: Custom Pre-Filter for your Aftermarket Drop-In Panel Filter (Done on my Abarth)



Deefourtay
04-20-2013, 08:52 PM
Hey guys!! I was bored today and decided to rig up a custom pre-filter for my Abarth's K&N biggrin If you use the same stuff I did, it will fit perfectly without requiring any kind of sealant or glue. I'm sure this will work similarly for the regular Fiat 500s as well. It may not add any performance, but will keep the it cleaner in dusty conditions.. I saw a lot of junk in my k&n so the pre-filter is a nice addition..

Items Used:

-K&N Drop In Filter (Abarth Specific, from 500 Madness)
-Uni Universal Filter Foam 12" X 16" X 5/8" (Purchased from a motorcycle shop)
-A pair of good Scissors
-A black Sharpie Marker
-8mm Socket Wrench for the Airbox

589258945895

Step 1: Put top side of K&N onto the Uni Foam Media, and trace the outside perimeter as carefully as you can with the Sharpie.
Step 2: Check if the size matches up accurately (Doesn't have to be 100% perfect, but as accurate as you can.)
Step 3: Trim/Rub off any excess foam shavings
Step 4: Lift up Airbox assembly (8mm Socket Wrench)
Step 5: Place Pre-Filter on top of the K&N, insert filters inside the top Airbox Assembly.. (Make sure everything fits flushly and sealed up correctly)
Step 6: Insert Airbox back down into the tabs, while pushing down firmly.. Hand tighten the 8mm bolts before using the socket wrench (Do not over-tighten)

Enjoy!!

-Ryan T.

This is just a tutorial, work on your car at your own risk.. I will not be held accountable for any damages on your vehicle while installing this

Deefourtay
04-21-2013, 12:22 AM
Due to my Paranoia of adding restriction, I left out the oiling part & trimmed a quarter of the foam away to kind of mimic the factory filter design.


It's totally up to you if you decide on oiling it and the size of your cut! sillylol But I DO NOT RECOMMEND oiling the filter if you decide to keep the full size foam piece as this may cause a lot of restriction.

http://i37.tinypic.com/mt8le1.jpg


Now here we have 2 totally serviceable filters!! ^

DJ Sueno
04-21-2013, 04:50 PM
So you made a filter for your filter? :EEK:

Good work on the customization, but I think it isn't needed and you may be better off with the stock filter if you are really worried about extra dirt/dust collecting on the K&N filter...

I think the pre-filters are great for pod type filters to protect from water, dust and what not, but with the drop-in filter, the box is doing the best job to keep it protected...

Just my .02 cents...

Tweak
04-21-2013, 10:29 PM
So you made a filter for your filter? :EEK:

Good work on the customization, but I think it isn't needed and you may be better off with the stock filter if you are really worried about extra dirt/dust collecting on the K&N filter...

I think the pre-filters are great for pod type filters to protect from water, dust and what not, but with the drop-in filter, the box is doing the best job to keep it protected...

Just my .02 cents...

The stock filter setup includes a foam pre-filter on the Abarth.

DJ Sueno
04-21-2013, 10:46 PM
The stock filter setup includes a foam pre-filter on the Abarth.
So the K&N alone is probably providing some decent flow then... The reason to get an after market filter is to provide more flow/less restriction... I think adding a "pre-filter" on the K&N drop-in defeats the whole purpose of replacing the stock filter...

To each their own I guess...

Deefourtay
04-21-2013, 11:29 PM
Like I stated above, this isn't necessarily a performance mod.. A drop in filter isn't really going to give you any gains either, just easier that you can clean it. I actually felt like I lost some midend torque using the k&n and adding this prefilter, I've gained it back since it mimics the design of the stock unit. The k&n is more breathable then the stock unit as well, so there is no way it is going to flow any less then the factory filter :)

Don't know if it's a placebo thing but the car also seems to run a lot better with it then running the k&n by itself. Boost pressure builds stronger and holds boost longer, and back fires on demand are back

Tweak
04-22-2013, 12:28 AM
So the K&N alone is probably providing some decent flow then... The reason to get an after market filter is to provide more flow/less restriction... I think adding a "pre-filter" on the K&N drop-in defeats the whole purpose of replacing the stock filter...

To each their own I guess...


I actually have an after-market intake which uses a cone K&N and a foam pre-filter and the guys here HCI I think now offer a foam addition to bring down the noise and they have stated it changes sound but does little to impede airflow.

Deefourtay
04-22-2013, 02:16 AM
I truly agree, if will not make a big difference as far as restriction goes, but it does muffle the suction sound a bit in the intake. My car is a magnet for insect matter and debris when I travel up north, and I decided to go with this 2 stage filter mainly for that.. I'll keep you guys updated

DJ Sueno
04-22-2013, 12:47 PM
I actually have an after-market intake which uses a cone K&N and a foam pre-filter and the guys here HCI I think now offer a foam addition to bring down the noise and they have stated it changes sound but does little to impede airflow.As I mentioned in my earlier reply, a pre-filter for a pod/cone filter makes more sense and function, since it's open in the engine and exposed to more dust/dirt and possible water... The drop-in filter is enclosed in a box and is more protected...


I truly agree, if will not make a big difference as far as restriction goes, but it
does muffle the suction sound a bit in the intake. My car is a magnet for insect matter and debris when I travel up north, and I decided to go with this 2 stage filter mainly for that.. I'll keep you guys updated
Another route you could have taken was to simply cut a piece of window screen mesh and customized it to fit around the air duct opening...

Deefourtay
04-22-2013, 12:58 PM
DJ Sueno, don't trash on my idea unless you experienced it yourself.. :bash: You might think I'm crazy, but.. I've been testing it all weekend and the car definitely runs better with the 3/4 piece of foam on top! More low-midend backfiring than before, it breaks traction much easier, and pulls great.. Simply felt like running the K&N alone was a little too much air, the factory design of the intake does a good job as a "ram air" setup. Running the K&N alone felt like it either caused more lean or rich running conditions because the throttle felt more airy/boggy without the foam.. It's a mystery, but I guess the car likes the 3/4 piece of Uni better "AS I BEEN SAYING" :joyous:

BTW, I get your point about the "sealed design" of the factory airbox, but as a "ram air" type of airbox.. It still catches a lot of debris which is normal. Generally, a K&N Filter will flow a lot more air than a traditional paper filter, so adding the foam compensates for any smaller particles that might make it's way through the K&N. The Factory "Paper" filter has a small foam piece as well.

As I mentioned in my earlier reply, a pre-filter for a pod/cone filter makes more sense and function, since it's open in the engine and exposed to more dust/dirt and possible water... The drop-in filter is enclosed in a box and is more protected...

I don't have a dyno to confirm anything, but so far my observations feel pretty strong to me..

I'll find out more when my car gets Dyno'd in June.. + Something secret under my sleeve..