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1999 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 base Truck will a cold air intake really improve the fuel economy?

June 30th, 2013 · 1 Comment

I have a 1999 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 base Truck will a cold air intake really improve the fuel economy? It is a 4.8 L V8 and it only gets like 14-16 mpg city, i was wondering if a cold air intake, or anything else would improve the gas mileage.

- Nobody ever claimed that a CAI would improve fuel economy. You misread the product description. The only claim they make is that they improve horsepower. You can’t get more HP AND more fuel economy at the same time. Plus, the only time a CAI actually increases HP is when you’re over 5,000 RPMS with the throttle wide open. How often do you drive like that? Unless you plan to race this vehicle, the only thing that will go down is the cash in your wallet.

- CAI’s are designed to improve peak horsepower, which occurs at high RPM’s the engine does not normally operate in during daily driving. The trade off is they often reduce torque at the lower RPM’s where your engine spends most of its time thus reducing efficiency in daily driving. Believe it or not the building full of guys with automotive engineering degrees in Detroit know more about making a fuel efficient air intake than some guy selling CAI’s on Ebay out of his garage.

- It might but it all depends on how you drive this truck. Trucks are geared for power based on the capacity of the vehicle. As such it is not geared for economy. Most drivers are not aware how an engine uses fuel and I see way too many people driving trucks in excess of 70 MPH. Since air resistance increases to the square of the velocity, the truck must work hard to fight that wind. Then there is issue of passing cars all over the road. What happens is this, Imagine that each change of speed, uses or wastes fuel. Lots of acceleration demands lots of fuel. Driving steady, in cruise control at 60 to 62 MPH will allow the motor to use only the fuel need to maintain that speed. I have documented 10% to 30% increases in MPGs with this technique. Time enroute is not affected much. For each mile above 60 you save about 1 second per mile. At 70 it drops to about 9 seconds per mile while costing up to 30%. In an average 20 mile run you “save” about 1 min, 45 secs. while using a lot of gas. Then there is that traffic light that cancels the time “saved.” Park quickly were you go, The time the engine is ON wastes fuel when searching for that perfect parking spot. Even in a diesel. Avoid drive thru lines as this wastes lots of fuel. During cool weather, avoid using the AC. This can cost you 2 to 3 MPG.Amazing, is it not? I also use synthetic oil to keep the engine clean and minimize internal friction. But your 1999 motor may not be suitable since it can burn it off due to wear inside the motor. Then there is weight. Avoid hauling anything you do not need to.Try these techniques and you may surprise yourself how much less gas your truck uses.

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