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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently bought this Steeda intake for my 07 zx4 sedan, put it in 2 days ago no problems. I'm now noticing when driving that the car certainly sounds better but the butt dyno swears it has less power now.

It's only 17-20 degrees Celsius out so I don't think heat soak would be the cause of this. I disconnected the negative on the battery when I put the intake in as you do, so the ECU is probably still re-learning, could that be related to it? Can this be caused by a tiny air leak if the hoses aren't tight enough? I did notice that the angle of the hoses and connector piece (between engine tube and cone filter) was a little odd, but it seems to be completely sealed. Could it potentially be that the filter is too shoved into a corner and can't get as much air as it's trying to?

Alternatively, is it just my imagination and am I expecting too much from an intake? I wasn't expecting much in the way of power but I certainly wasn't expecting less.

I'm pretty new to modifications or work on cars in general, any help/advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
To add on: I recorded and compared my 20 - 80 km/h times, the stock intake actually provides better acceleration than the Steeda one. So I'm not crazy, but why would an intake do the opposite of what it was designed to do?
 

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2006 ZX5 2.0, 2004 ZX3 SVT EE. 2004 ZX3 SVT
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To add on: I recorded and compared my 20 - 80 km/h times, the stock intake actually provides better acceleration than the Steeda one. So I'm not crazy, but why would an intake do the opposite of what it was designed to do?
You can try tuning the filter by blocking part of the filter. I had the same filter on my 07 and it definitely gave my car more pep. Probably more a result of your current state of tune. You don't state how many miles are on your car. You still have the original fuel filter and spark plugs?
 

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The effect of these air filters is lessened if you have an automatic as well. Without a tune you are not going to notice much.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
You can try tuning the filter by blocking part of the filter. I had the same filter on my 07 and it definitely gave my car more pep. Probably more a result of your current state of tune. You don't state how many miles are on your car. You still have the original fuel filter and spark plugs?
165k kms, so about 100k miles.

Tuning the filter? I've never heard of that before, can you describe that process a bit more? Why would that change anything about how it functions?

I just bought new spark plugs within the month so those should be okay. Fuel filter I have no idea, but probably the original. I don't have a car lift so I'd have to take it in to someone to get that changed.

Also, it's a manual thankfully.
 

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165k kms, so about 100k miles.

Tuning the filter? I've never heard of that before, can you describe that process a bit more? Why would that change anything about how it functions?

I just bought new spark plugs within the month so those should be okay. Fuel filter I have no idea, but probably the original. I don't have a car lift so I'd have to take it in to someone to get that changed.

Also, it's a manual thankfully.
Tuning a filter is easy. I use a plastic milk jug. You want to trim the plastic so it fits inside the filter and blocks some of the air coming in. Ideally you want to block the air nearest the throttle body so you maintain a venturi effect.
 

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If you reset the ecu by disconnecting the battery you need to do an idle relearn first. It is simply allowing the car to idle for 5 or 10 minutes while the computer adjusts the air fuel ratio. The computer will also adjust while you are driving but you have to realize that the parameters for adjustment are limited. There just isn't enough to compensate for more airflow, why a tune is a must with most modifications. Welcome to the wonderful world of car modifications.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
If you reset the ecu by disconnecting the battery you need to do an idle relearn first. It is simply allowing the car to idle for 5 or 10 minutes while the computer adjusts the air fuel ratio. The computer will also adjust while you are driving but you have to realize that the parameters for adjustment are limited. There just isn't enough to compensate for more airflow, why a tune is a must with most modifications. Welcome to the wonderful world of car modifications.

That makes sense, I don't understand what tuning the air filter does though? Does it teach the ecu to run on less air, then it does better when there's more air?

When I was testing the two air intakes I intentionally did not reset the ecu, I wonder now if that could be related.
 

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That makes sense, I don't understand what tuning the air filter does though? Does it teach the ecu to run on less air, then it does better when there's more air?

When I was testing the two air intakes I intentionally did not reset the ecu, I wonder now if that could be related.
If you realize the computer can only compensate for a modest increase in air, you can imagine the difficulty it is having due to you increasing the air supply by a very large factor. Look at the opening on the factory airbox and then realize you now have an opening at least 4 times bigger. You also have reduced the velocity of the air because now you have a short tube and before you had a long tube. It is just not one factor, you see? Even by blocking some of the Steeda filter, you are still getting more air than the stock filter.
 

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And yes, if you don't reset the ecu, you aren't really applying any scientific method to your comparison.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Alright, thanks for the pointers and advice pbfoot!

My scientific method has been pretty bad so far as I've changed spark plugs, the valve cover gasket, and the air intake (swapping them around a few times) within the past few weeks, resetting the ecu each time (since I disconnect the battery to work). I'm going to do a proper test now, new spark plugs and new intake, and let the ecu actually relearn properly for a few days before recording the speed again.

If I'm still noticing the decrease after a while I'll try to find a buddy with a lift so I can check the fuel filter, and after that maybe tuning the intake.

I appreciate the time, thank you.
 

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@lonelypotato55 You can change the fuel filter without a lift by reverse driving the back two wheels into ramps to crest space to get underneath the back end of the car.

You’ll need to be willing to do the work while lying on your back.

Be careful with the white clip. I broke mine. Fortunately the fuel filter seems to make s solid connection without it.
 

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@lonelypotato55 You can change the fuel filter without a lift by reverse driving the back two wheels into ramps to crest space to get underneath the back end of the car.

You’ll need to be willing to do the work while lying on your back.

Be careful with the white clip. I broke mine. Fortunately the fuel filter seems to make s solid connection without it.
The clips on the fuel filter are not meant to be removed, just pushed up.
 

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😂 That explains a lot of the trouble I had!! Thanks @pbfoot!!

I appreciate all the guidance you give folks here! You’ve been very helpful to many - including myself. 👍
Well...I broke the clips on mine the first time and discovered you didn't have to remove them. Ugh. You're welcome for any help I give. I'm not always right.
 

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Thats certainly sad to hear that your butt dyno feels less power with the steeda intake. i simply disconnected my air box to see what would happen to my acceleration and I'm quite happy with the way my car acted.. yes my maf wasn't able to appropriately tell the computer how much air to fuel it actually got until the o2 sensors to compensate the fuel trim and yes It pushed 30%( i have a scanner) but man it feels snappy.. this was just a test until I go ahead and cut the lifetime airbox open to accept normal replaceable filters. I suggest Trying it out in a clean area of course.
 
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