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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Powertrain and Drivetrain Discussions > N54 Turbo Engine / Drivetrain / Exhaust Modifications - 335i > Air filter question



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      07-17-2009, 10:12 AM   #1
I335
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Air filter question

Is it OK to clean a stock air filter with a shop vac or an air compressor? Do people not do this because it might just loosen up the dirt and let it into your engine?
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      07-17-2009, 10:50 AM   #2
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Youre not going to get it as clean as a new filter, which means you are restricting the flow. The other problem is you may not be able to see a break in the old filter medium that may already allow fine particles through that didnt when new.

If you are going to do it though, I would use compressed air and blow in the opposite direction of the flow through the filter as when it is in the intake tract. That way you arent trying to push any (old) debris through the filter. You are also going to be able to produce more pressure this way versus a vacuum (~14psi). I would start off with 20-25psi and work my way up until I thought it was clean.

The only reason I would do this is if I absolutely had no other choice.
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      07-17-2009, 11:22 AM   #3
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Thanks for the info HighVoltage - makes good sense. I was thinking of doing this just once in a while between filter changes just to keep it flowing as much as possible and wanted to make sure there are no "cardinal rules" against it. Thanks again!
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      07-17-2009, 11:27 AM   #4
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its a paper filter and you will probably damage it by blowing any kind of compressed air through it. Or atleast air at a psi that will "clean" the filter. I would just consider tapping the filter to shake free any loose dust or debris, upside down ofcourse, just like you would blow air through it.

And what's a new filter 20 bucks. If it's a cost thing maybe look into a aftermarket drop in that is capable of being cleaned
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      07-17-2009, 12:46 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 200Duece View Post
its a paper filter and you will probably damage it by blowing any kind of compressed air through it. Or atleast air at a psi that will "clean" the filter. I would just consider tapping the filter to shake free any loose dust or debris, upside down ofcourse, just like you would blow air through it.

And what's a new filter 20 bucks. If it's a cost thing maybe look into a aftermarket drop in that is capable of being cleaned
Another good point - thanks. It's not a cost thing at all, more of an OCD thing really...
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      07-17-2009, 12:52 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 200Duece View Post
its a paper filter and you will probably damage it by blowing any kind of compressed air through it.
@ 20-25psi? I seriously doubt it. Greater than 50psi, probably...
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      07-17-2009, 01:58 PM   #7
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all the methods work --

i used everyone of them -- compressed air -- shake-tap and outright replacement .. guess it depends on personal OCD traits

i go for the replacement -- unless its a lifetime filter then it gets washed and oiled ..
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      07-17-2009, 02:03 PM   #8
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Just did it. It really wasn't that dirty but I used a vac and the compressor. 50psi was no problem but I wouldn't go higher than that. I clearly saw some fine dust blow out of it with the compressor and I also cleaned up inside the air box a bit. There was quite a bit of sand and some small bits of leaves in there. I'm over my OCD now - at least for today...

Thanks again guys.
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