K&N air filters....dangerous?


Yeah, Im the slow GN, so?
Jan 15, 2002
Ok so recently I had bought the 9" K&N and installed it into my engine with the MAF pipe and whatnot, well my dumb ass drilled a hole into the MAF sensor when I installed it(trust me I have realized how dumb that was to do)and the thing broke. Well, I replaced the sensor but of course my dad took the car to goodyear to have it looked at. Well goodyear scared my dad into putting it back to stock when they told him that the filter was a danger to my car. The idiots said that they suck in water and can ruin the engine, and that the transmission fluid on the filter will ruin my MAF sensor. Now I know I could get the fluid off of the thing but my dad still is paranoid about the water thing. It is a daily driver, so what could I do to prevent water from going in the engine? I have looked at some of the cold air inductions systems but they are just soooo expensive, I would much rather put the extra money towards exhaust and whatnot. Please help, my car made a huge improvement with the cone and it really sucks with the 4" crap back in there.
GoodYear poeple know Tires....Not Turbo Buicks!


If the Air filter isn't out in the open, or under the hood where water can get to it..I wouldn't worry about it...I have had my K&N filter on in the stock location for some 5,000 miles, and a few years....it has never gotten wet or killed my car yet!

About the Tranny Fluid on the Filter.....Thats K&N Filter oil...With no oil on the filter It will not filter out dirt...it won't really cause the MAF to go bad...at least I have never heard of it happening...
The filter can suck in water? Where is it located? If you just attached it to the MAF sensor, then it is right behind the headlight. How is water going to travel up there? The only way you could hydro-lock the motor is if you have some piping that mounts your filter near the ground. And then it would basically have to be submerged in water for it to suck up enough water to damage the engine. Raining won't do any harm to it.
STAY AWAY FROM THAT SHOP!!!! Only way you'll be sucking up any water if if you drive through standing water (ie flooded street) and the stock assembly will suck it in just as easily in that case. I've used K&N (and other similar filters) for years with ZERO ill effects, that guy is just a OEM quoting drone. Take your car to a TR specialist when it needs service!!!

Doug C.
I figured that was the case, but a goodyear mechanic told his story of how his truck got locked up after driving through a big puddle and the filter sucked water to the engine
Herb, you must've posted while I was still typing, I didn't read yours.
But I have heard of this happening: the oil from the K&N filter can get sucked off the filter and get onto the MAF sensor, and then when it gets hot it fries the sensor. That's what I've heard, anyway.
I don't know what our MAF sensors look like, I don't want to remove the screens to look. But this would apply to MAF sensors that look similar to our MAT sensor.
My dad takes matters into his own hands in that manner. Dude, if the filter is under the hood it is not going to jack anything up. Remember, there are alot of guys at shops like the goodyear shop that you are talking about that don't know anything. On my dad's viper we have an air box taht has no rain baffle, and K&Ns on it, The car has essentially a ram air system, there is a NACA duct in the hood that hooks up to the air box. HIs car is VERY modified. We have been stuck in situations where we have been driving and got caught in a very large rainstorm and not had 1 drop of water that touched the throttle bodies. Dude, I don't think you have anything to worry about when using any kind of K&N product. I trust any of there products on our viper, and on my GN.
The filter oil can contaminate the maf sensor, I have seen it in a few cars that we've done, mostly fords.

It dosen't hurt the maf. Only causes eratic readings.

I am sure that there are others who disagree.
Pretty funny some things those guys who think they know about cars can come up with! I have had a K&N on my old Ramcharger 4x4 forever. It has been severely sprayed with water and muddy water and none has ever been through. I did once find a drip that came down the stud past the wingnut. I now use an old GN injector o-ring there:D . I have not tried it yet, but I heard a K&N half under water will flow only air through the other half if you can picture that. Like you were told before: Stay far away from that store! Good Luck, Get that K&N back on!
I have never had a problem like this and as you can see in the pictures on my website the filter is behind the bumper. Actual the bottom of the filter rests on the bottom inside of the bumper.

Yes, I have driven the car in the rain as it was my daily drive until I got the C3.
That's ridiculous!! The paper filter is more dangerous as it will come apart if it gets wet, then all the dirt on the filter ends up in the motor.
2nd, I've had a K&N cone filter attached to my MAFs for years, and I still have the same MAFs, AND I have ram air, AND I drive in the rain on purpose, Fast. Also, if the oil from the filter is getting on the sensor, then you used too much oil on the filter.
By the way, a little water is good for the motor occssionally, it gets rid of the carbon. The chances of hydro-lock are unlikely at best unless you drive the car underwater, in which case a cast iron filter ain't gonna save ya...:rolleyes:
I mount the K&N air filters behind the bumper on the cold air kits I make and have never had a problem. My GN has only been caught in the rain a couple of times but each time I was coming back from shows from NJ & PA and drove all the way back to CT in massive downpours the whole way. This was a real world test that's for sure. No harm done with water damage, the filter had some water on it but nothing inside from what I saw. It won't harm the filter getting wet as that is how you clean them anyway. Of course I wouldn't recommend driving thru deep puddles or sippy holes.:eek:
Sounds like the only sucking sound in this case was the Goodyear supposed mechanic trying to suck your dad's wallet dry. That was a no brainer to never get within a thousand feet of a goodyear store if you need mechanical work done other than tires.
originally posted by menace848
I figured that was the case, but a goodyear mechanic told his story of how his truck got locked up after driving through a big puddle and the filter sucked water to the engine

Haha, he was an idiot! Of course it could hydrolock if you take it swimming! Probably happened back in '94 when the south half of Georgia was underwater with caskets floating up out of the ground and he was out monster mudding. Remember that? I lived in Newnan then; pretty rough. I remember it rained the entire month of July. My yard was under 3" of water at all times. Just don't take the TR off-road, mmmkay? :D
The K&N will suck up alot of water into the motor........If you drive it into a lake.
WOW, that was a good one...........I'm surprised he didn't try to sell you new bearings for your go-faster bars.
Do not ever take a Buick to a shop like Goodyear, Midas or any of them. They are all full of s**t.

I took my car to Midas to have them bleed the master cylinder and it came back with the boost pegged at 23 psi on pump gas and a head gasket that was blown apart.

Those dorks never know what the hell they are talking about.
The Goodyear guy is a moron. All of what I say has been mentioned.

1. Water - You would have to virtually submerge the cone in water to cause motor damage. If you have it attached to the MAF and you have water that high, the motor will only be a SMALL problem compared to the others, like getting out before the car sinks! I have mine behind the bumper where it is subject to puddle splashes from the front tire and have driven it in frog-strangers.

2. Filter oil. If you don't over-saturate the filter, then oil won't get to the MAF. I have used K&N's for years and helped others with theirs. I have never even seen residue on air boxes around where the filter seats.

A friend has one on his Pontiac Formula (you know, the one where the filter sits under the "nostrils" on the hood), never a problem with water or oil.

Don't take your car back there!
What a MORON!!

I bet he keeps Piston return springs, blinker fluid, and muffler bearings in stock too....right next to the neon brake fluid!:rolleyes: