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Steve Q

Fitting an induction kit

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An induction kit is one of the most common performance modifications that can be fitted to any vehicle and is designed to increase the amount of cold air entering the engine. This is achieved by replacing the standard restrictive airbox setup and replacing it with ducting direct from the throttle body and a cone style air filter which is left open to more air.

So why do manufactures fit restrictive airboxes I hear you ask. Well the reason why manufactures fit restrictive airboxes is to reduce noise emitted from the engine bay, as well as slowing down the speed of the air as it hits the filter to help with fuel economy and emissions. The downside of this for modifiers is that there can be a loss of power for the engine as well as throttle response being less responsive. This is where the induction kit comes in as it allows modifiers to regain the extra power, throttle response and induction roar which tuners desire.

Let’s be clear though, the benefits in extra bhp or throttle response are often minimal from an induction kit unless the vehicle has other modifications such as a straight through exhaust system, ECU remap or uprated camshafts and better pistons. This is why you’ll see race cars fitted with induction kits as the benefits are supported by these other modifications. Where there is an improved power delivery this can often be found higher in the rev range, but can reduce response in the lower rev range. Thankfully on the whole the fitment of an induction kit is the same on all vehicles as we will demonstrate. The car for our walk through guide is a Mk2 Suzuki Swift 1.5 petrol, but I will show you pictures of a similar set up on a Mk5b Zetec engine Ford Escort. Both cars have more than 10 years of design between them but the fitting instructions would be the same.

Tools required:

Screwdriver        

Spanner/socket

WD40

Step 1

An obvious one, but the first thing to do is open the bonnet and establish where your airbox and MAF sensor (airflow sensor) are situated.

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Step 2

Depending on the vehicle it might be worth disconnecting the battery. I’ll be honest, I didn’t as the only electrical component is the MAF sensor but for added safety you can do this if you’re not confident when working with mechanical/electrical components.

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Step 3

Untighten the screws and jubilee clips holding the air ducting and airbox in place. More than likely there will be at least two jubilee clips and four screws to undo. Usually there is a jubilee clip holding the air ducting to the throttle body and one holding the ducting on near the end of the airbox or filter.  

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Step 4  

Now before you remove the loose airbox from the car, check your new induction kit to see where the MAF sensor will fit. There should be a hole in the induction kit ducting where the MAF sensor will fit into. With any professional kit the MAF sensor screw holes or brackets (if applicable) in the induction kit ducting should line up perfectly with the MAF sensor. If it does, then remove the MAF sensor from the airbox. You may also find your car will have an extra breather hose like the Ford Escort. The breather hose will only need removing from the airbox end as it will get reattached to the cone filter once the induction kit is installed.

image.thumb.png.584a1158d9e6019b63a97594256d304f.png MAF sensor

Step 5

Carefully remove the airbox from the engine bay, being mindful not to damage any other hoses, engine components or the MAF sensor!

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Step 6

Now with the airbox out of the way you can offer up the new induction kit air ducting to the car. Place one end of air hose unto the throttle body and lightly tighten it with the jubilee clip. Depending on your vehicle you may find the induction kit manufacture has provided extra brackets to hold the induction kit in place. There will often be fitted to brackets/screw holes from where the old airbox once sat. 

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Step 7

Then fit the MAF sensor to the air ducting and screw it in place. As previously mentioned, be careful with the MAF sensor as they can be fragile!

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Step 8

Fit the new cone filter to the end of the air ducting and tighten to the ducting with a jubilee clip. The fit the breather hose to the back of the cone filter (if applicable).

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Step 9

Unfortunately most induction kits do not come with a heat shield. We would recommend you buy one, most of which are universal. The benefit of the heat shield is to stop the new cone filter absorbing hot air from the engine (also known as heat soak) and thus reducing you bhp.

image.thumb.png.b131c31201939974a5b0aee1cccbffab.png The polished curved metal, wrapped around the left side of the cone filter is the heat shield

Step 10

With your induction kit you should have another piece of flexible plastic tubing. This is your cold air feed. Place one end of the cold air feed near to the cone filter and then bend the tubing down/away from the engine to where it is most likely to get cold air, and attach it to secure bodywork or brackets with cable ties. Don’t attach it to any moving components, those that can get hot and don’t put it in the way of the fan! Depending on your original airbox design, you may find you can use some of the original airbox ducting as an additional cold air feed as we did on the Suzuki Swift.

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Step 11

Once you’re happy that the air ducting, cone filter and cold air feed are all in the right place tighten up all the necessary screws and jubilee clips to make the induction kit secure.

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Step 12

Most important of all, start the car up and with the help of an assistant lightly rev the engine to listen out for any air leaks and to make sure you’re engine management light hasn’t come on.

Step 13

If everything is good at this stage, take the car for a drive to appreciate the improved induction roar and hopefully improved throttle response.

And that’s it!

Ford Escort before and after

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Trouble shooting

Engine Management Light on

If the engine management light is on this can be a result of the engine receiving too much cold air or hot air if it’s via heat soak. In a worst case scenario the engine management light could be on if the MAF sensor has been damaged when being transferred to the induction kit, if the fitter has provided due care and attention. If no components are damaged, then a remap could help resolve issue as well has proving further performance gains.

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Flat spots

If you experience flat spots in the cars acceleration my advice would be to wait a while as the cars ECU has to adjust to the new reading received from the MAF sensor. If the problem persists after you’ve used a tank of fuel then it could suggest the car is running lean and getting it checked at a garage is advisable. A remap again could resolve the issue.

Recommendations

It is recommend having the car checked on a rolling road to see if any improvements have been made, but more importantly no poor affects have occurred to the engines performance through heat soak.  

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It may also be wise having the vehicle checked with an MOT tester to make sure the vehicles emissions have not been affected from the installation of the induction kit.

The legal bit

Please note the instructions provided in this article are designed to be a rough guide and it is strongly recommended you follow any instructions provided by the induction kit manufacture where possible. Furthermore AutoEvoke holds no responsibility in the event of damage or injury caused to property, vehicle or persons during or after the fitment of an induction kit following from this guide. Owners and fitters follow these instructions at their own risk.   

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