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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Upon a recent dive into changing my headlight bulbs, I dropped a socket into a strange black box beneath the headlight while I was trying to remove a sneaky bolt. After trying to retrieve the bolt, I was greeted with many wonderful things contained in this box:
20180329_191837_1522491062191.jpg

I was unsure what these were, or why they were in this space, so after some research into how an intake system works, I was delighted to realize (assuming I am correct) I have been driving with no air filtration of the air going to my engine. Not sure how much this could have damaged things so far, but assuming this was yet another quirk the PO forgot to mention, this has existed well over 15k miles. If you look below, a majority of the air box is destroyed:
20180329_192757_1522491317741.jpg

The air filter is easily visible at an angle, and the inlet tube going straight to the resonator above is open to the air. My question here is firstly, are my thoughts correct here? Next, has the engine been damaged. And last, are there any OEM air boxes that don't cost a fortune? If not, I don't mind diving into a custom or bolt on intake kit after hearing of the pros and cons of such a thing. Thank you very much for reading, I apologize for the length!
 

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Fairly easy to go w/a sri(short ram intake) similar to the Steeda one for the '05-'07 models. I'm not sure what the fitment issue was for the '03-'04 models w/ the 23. You'll need to use the same diameter intake for the maf to read correctly.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Fairly easy to go w/a sri(short ram intake) similar to the Steeda one for the '05-'07 models. I'm not sure what the fitment issue was for the '03-'04 models w/ the 23. You'll need to use the same diameter intake for the maf to read correctly.
Gotcha, alright. My exact model is 03' ZX5 2.3L with the PZEV spec, if that changes recommendations at all. Are there any downsides to custom intakes? From what I gather, all they can and will do is *maybe* change the engine noise slightly, and *maybe* net noticeable power. I have no problem with either of those, as I want a bit more noise, I don't want to change my exhaust and turn into yet another trashy civic I see on Beach Boulevard. xD
 

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Just make sure to use the same size tubing for the maf to read correctly. Use a good flowing filter. btw do a bsd (balance shaft delete) that'll help with hp/mpg + add a qtr of oil capacity also which the 23's could use.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Just make sure to use the same size tubing for the maf to read correctly. Use a good flowing filter. btw do a bsd (balance shaft delete) that'll help with hp/mpg + add a qtr of oil capacity also which the 23's could use.
Are there any relatively inexpensive kits you recommend? Or is it better to try to source the bits I would need to make it work seperately? I have never worked on an intake system before 馃槄. Thanks for your replies!
 

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Are there any relatively inexpensive kits you recommend? Or is it better to try to source the bits I would need to make it work seperately? I have never worked on an intake system before 馃槄. Thanks for your replies!
These guys sell most of what is available for aftermarket performance intakes:
https://www.c-f-m.com/performanceparts/pc/Air-Intakes-c456.htm


The big two are the Steeda Short Ram and the FSWerks Cool-Flo. if you want to try your hand at some DYI, do some searches on the stealth intake. Essentially you add a cone filter to the end of you MAF tube
 

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You could do something like this:



I cut up the old intake tube and reused the part I needed. I had to wrap some tape around the part that goes into the filter so it would be snug. I already had the filter laying around so it cost me literally nothing. I did have to make a few mods; that plastic fitting that plugs into the tube had to be turned 90 degrees, I also cut the plastic hose and put a peice of rubber hose in the middle so the back part of the plastic hose would lay where it was supposed to. It looks kinda ratchety but it works.
 
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