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2003 PZEV ZX3 comes with a CAI from the factory - just noticed it this weekend. I don't see how it can be improved from the design other than maybe chaning out the filter to a K&N. There is some type of meter that I can see, I can't tell whether it's a moisture bypass or what.

I see a lot of differences between my motor layout and most of the pics online. The most major difference is that my motor is sitting the other way; with the intake forward and the exhaust to the back. Also just installed an alarm this weekend too and the 2002 wiring diagrams don't fit the 2003 exactly, I hope to get an accurate one posted soon. Still can't find the tach sensor though - the wire they say to look for is at the coil and there is no friggin coil in this car!!! I found the color they recommended but the meter tells me it does nothing with RPM changes. Oh well, the whole reason for post is this question:

Has anybody done any improvements on the 2003 Stock CAI that I should be aware of?
 

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As far as I know you cannot change the filter out of the factory intake, it is completely sealed and to be replaced every 150,000 miles. There are aftermarket CAI's out there, but as for modifying the stock one, I don't think you can do much with that.
 

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Well, because I've heard some pretty big horror stories about CAI's, especially with respect to water intake. I don't want to cause problems if it's not going to give me a decent gain. I just had thought that maybe somebody might have done something to the stock, versus changing from stock CAI (which doesn't look to bad) to an aftermarket CAI.
 

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kaweahnet said:
2003 PZEV ZX3 comes with a CAI from the factory - just noticed it this weekend. I don't see how it can be improved from the design other than maybe chaning out the filter to a K&N. There is some type of meter that I can see, I can't tell whether it's a moisture bypass or what.

I see a lot of differences between my motor layout and most of the pics online. The most major difference is that my motor is sitting the other way; with the intake forward and the exhaust to the back. Also just installed an alarm this weekend too and the 2002 wiring diagrams don't fit the 2003 exactly, I hope to get an accurate one posted soon. Still can't find the tach sensor though - the wire they say to look for is at the coil and there is no friggin coil in this car!!! I found the color they recommended but the meter tells me it does nothing with RPM changes. Oh well, the whole reason for post is this question:

Has anybody done any improvements on the 2003 Stock CAI that I should be aware of?
That meter you see on the factory intake measures pressure drop across the filter. It is a completely sealed system (for emissions reasons) designed for 150,000 miles of normal use (whatever that is) but if it starts to clog sooner, that meter will show red. The factory filter cannot be replaced except as an entire intake unit.

The Duratech 2.3 liter engine in the PZEV car is turned around, you are correct, vs. a 2.0 liter Zetec. Completely different animal.

I am not surprised the '02 wiring diagrams don't match the '03 PZEV very well. Completely different animal, as I said. It's not just a different engine mechanically, but the ECU is completely different as well.

You are correct, it doesn't have "a" friggin coil. It has four. One for each plug, located right in the plug cap. It is called C.O.P. for coil-on-plug ignition. I don't know how to connect a tach, but it's possible that you can't. The wire you would look for on a conventional ignition is the one being switched by the igniter module. The C.O.P. system has basically four separate igniter modules. You could easily locate one of the igniter signals to one of the four coils, but, that signal would be 1/4 as fast as you want.

I haven't heard anyone on this forum discussing mods to the factor intake - Marcy, Focus Central, and Focus Sport seem to be the popular aftermarket options.
 

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kaweahnet said:
2003 PZEV ZX3 comes with a CAI from the factory - just noticed it this weekend. I don't see how it can be improved from the design other than maybe chaning out the filter to a K&N. There is some type of meter that I can see, I can't tell whether it's a moisture bypass or what.

I see a lot of differences between my motor layout and most of the pics online. The most major difference is that my motor is sitting the other way; with the intake forward and the exhaust to the back. Also just installed an alarm this weekend too and the 2002 wiring diagrams don't fit the 2003 exactly, I hope to get an accurate one posted soon. Still can't find the tach sensor though - the wire they say to look for is at the coil and there is no friggin coil in this car!!! I found the color they recommended but the meter tells me it does nothing with RPM changes. Oh well, the whole reason for post is this question:

Has anybody done any improvements on the 2003 Stock CAI that I should be aware of?
Had you given any thought to maybe doing a search of the PZEV section of this very forum ?? May want to look into it. I hear it is all the rage these days.
 

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I want to first off give major props to the CAI by Marcy. I have had it for 2 months now and it is awesome. The Horsepower gains are close to 10FWHP...how much more horses do you want to get from a Intake bud? 10WHP is hella hard to get in any other car. You'd be lucky to get 10WHP from an intake in a civic.

Anyways, about the water problem...walter created his CAI so you can use your OEM splash guard with it. The slash guard will protect your CAI intake from sucking up water. Just as long you don't decide to plunge your front end into a lake anyways. Also...if you are still skeptical about it....by the AEM bypass valve and slap that on there along with your splash guard just to be safe. Anyways...those are just my suggestions.

I dunno anything about the electrical system you are trying to do...I just installed my sound system so I am sorry I Cannot help ya there!
 

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kaweahnet said:
Well, because I've heard some pretty big horror stories about CAI's, especially with respect to water intake. I don't want to cause problems if it's not going to give me a decent gain. I just had thought that maybe somebody might have done something to the stock, versus changing from stock CAI (which doesn't look to bad) to an aftermarket CAI.
Whats a decent gain? I would say that the 8-10 whp you get from this is pretty decent.
 

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The big gains you get from an aftermarket CAI is you are replacing the restrictuve factory parts with free-er flowing parts. If you are worried about water, keep the splash gaurd on, and don't submerge the bumper.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Yes, guerro, I did do a search and didn't find what I was looking for. Sorry to offend you by starting a new thread. Why are so many people anal about someone starting a new thread? Is it really that bad?

Thank you, soffiler, for some very good information. Much of which I was not aware of - especially that meter on the intake. I had a distrubutor-less ignition in a prior car so I am familiar with the C.O.P deal - so luckily I didn't spend a lot of time looking for the friggen coil, I knew there were 4 sitting right on the valve cover.

FYI, if you want to find the door trigger on an 03 ZX3 I found it simplest to go to each do trigger in the pillar and tap into the Black/Blue (driver side) and Black/Yellow (passenger side) to get a solid trigger. Those two wires at the CJB (drivers kick panel) don't work correctly for a door trigger because they are tied into the dome light. What a pain, but if I would have known that ahead of time it would have saved me a good 2 hours testing every wire in the CJB.

Is this thread really that bad? ... I've gotten a lot out of it, so much more than I was during the searching I was doing.
 

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It would take a hell of a lot to get water through the filter and up the long tube and into the trottle body, even then it would be only slight moisture, which isn't going to harm anything.
 

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eggyolk said:
It would take a hell of a lot to get water through the filter and up the long tube and into the trottle body, even then it would be only slight moisture, which isn't going to harm anything.
even with the marcy? see i get worried cuz i will drive mine through Buffalo Snow every year. and that means doughnuts and whatnot. Plus i am forced to drive because i commute to college. i am concerned i will ruin it.
 

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kaweahnet said:
Yes, guerro, I did do a search and didn't find what I was looking for. Sorry to offend you by starting a new thread. Why are so many people anal about someone starting a new thread? Is it really that bad?

Thank you, soffiler, for some very good information. Much of which I was not aware of - especially that meter on the intake. I had a distrubutor-less ignition in a prior car so I am familiar with the C.O.P deal - so luckily I didn't spend a lot of time looking for the friggen coil, I knew there were 4 sitting right on the valve cover.

FYI, if you want to find the door trigger on an 03 ZX3 I found it simplest to go to each do trigger in the pillar and tap into the Black/Blue (driver side) and Black/Yellow (passenger side) to get a solid trigger. Those two wires at the CJB (drivers kick panel) don't work correctly for a door trigger because they are tied into the dome light. What a pain, but if I would have known that ahead of time it would have saved me a good 2 hours testing every wire in the CJB.

Is this thread really that bad? ... I've gotten a lot out of it, so much more than I was during the searching I was doing.
Simma donna. Dont get yer panties in a wad. Can't you take a little ribbing ? Sheeesh. [:p] I never said there was anything wrong with your post. Post away. I could care less. [;)]
 

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Discussion Starter #15
No biggie, you were just giving me grief about not searching.
 

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Hmmm That coil thing is intersting. Didn't know that. But it still leaves your question unanswered. Where does the tach get the reading from? Or at least I think that's what you were asking.
As far as the engine I don't know if this still holds true but is the PEZV an american made motor? I know it used to be the exhust to the back for american motors and the exhust to the front for mazda type stuff. I know the ZX3's are made in mexico and the sadans are made in detriot. So mabe that doesn't hold true anymore. Who knows. Just thought I would put in my 2 cents.

Oh I see alot of people worried about the CAI's sucking water up. But I havn't herd of it happening yet. Not that it can't happen but I think it depends most on the type you buy. I got a volant on my ZX3 and by looking at the way it's put together it would be pretty hard to suck up water with it, at least not any harder then the OEM part. I know they don't have a Volant yet for the 2.3 but I'm sure it'll come soon enough. The engine is still fairly new so, I would hang on and see what other options come your way.
 

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When I had my car on the dyno, to get the engine speed sensor hooked up, they just clipped the inductor onto one of the 2 wires going to a coil. I think they used coil 2 or 3, but I don't think it matters.
 

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smoknzx3 said:
Hmmm That coil thing is intersting. Didn't know that. But it still leaves your question unanswered. Where does the tach get the reading from? Or at least I think that's what you were asking.
As far as the engine I don't know if this still holds true but is the PEZV an american made motor? I know it used to be the exhust to the back for american motors and the exhust to the front for mazda type stuff. I know the ZX3's are made in mexico and the sadans are made in detriot...
The tach gets a signal from the ECU, which picks up engine RPM from the crankshaft position sensor. It is a BAD idea to try to tap into this signal with an aftermarket part. The signal you get on the coil primary is a nice, strong signal that is pretty immune to whatever draw your aftermarket part might place on it. Not at all true for the ECU signal. That is a low-level electronic signal that you can and will screw up rapidly if you go hanging something on it that it was not designed to drive.

Engine orientation has nothing to do with country of origin. It might have worked out that way a few times in the past by sheer coincidence, but you certainly cannot tell country of origin by merely looking at the exhaust manifold. I believe the Ford engineer who was posting on this board for a while (deepwater) told us the Duratech is presently built in Mexico but they are moving it back to Detroit. Working from memory on that one.

In North Dakota, do they really pronounce the word "exhaust" like you spell it? Exhust?
 

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kaweahnet said:
No biggie, you were just giving me grief about not searching.
Ummm, No. You will know when I am giving you grief.
 

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remove your maf and take off the carbon traps on both sides. The carbon traps are circle mesh grills that are right at the entrance and exit of the maf. This will give you a better exhaust tone, as for performance gains didnt notice much. Maybe an increase of 1hp for the loss of 1tq. but thats just how it works.
 
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