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AIRAID!

Posted in How To on February 26, 2004
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Contributors: Augusto Herrera

A lot of the excitement surrounding the new '04 Ford F-150, besides the restyling of the truck, is the boost in power from the Triton 5.4L V-8. Ford spent considerable time and money upgrading the powerplant to bring peak torque in earlier and boost the overall horsepower and torque rating of the engine. Among the tuning tricks used on the new 5.4L V-8 are aluminum, three-valve cylinder heads; variable camshaft timing; and special valves inside the intake manifold to keep the engine at peak torque.

The whole package delivers 300 hp and 365 lb-ft of torque. Let's suppose, however, that you could bolt on additional horsepower and torque with the simple addition of a new aftermarket air intake system. And even better, you could gain this power at a usable 2,500 rpm range as opposed to near redline.

The Airaid Filter Company recently developed a new high-volume air intake system for '04 F-150 owners looking to pick up more throttle response and power from their three-valve 5.4L powerplant. In keeping with the company's patented Cool Air Dam design, the new 5.4L V-8 system uses a crosslink high-density intake tube with billet-looking bracketry that mates to a brightly finished Cool Air Dam. Airflow is directed through Airaid's five-layer SynthaFlow conical high-flow air filter, which is washable and reusable.

The system is a simple R&R bolt-on operation that can be accomplished with ordinary handtools in about an hour. The Airaid intake system also has provisions for the factory PCV fitting and mass airflow sensor, which helps make this system both street- and smog-legal. According to Airaid's independent dyno testing, the system was good for an additional 20 rear-wheel horsepower and 46 lb-ft of torque.

The following photos highlight a typical installation. If you're looking to add a little more punch to the already potent '04 F-150, check into Airaid's new intake system for the Triton 5.4L V-8.

<b>1. </b> Airaid's new intake system for the '04 Ford F-150 features billet-style bracketry, a brightly finished Cold Air Dam, and uses a five-layer SynthaFlow high-flow air filter. 1. Airaid's new intake system for the '04 Ford F-150 features billet-style bracketry, a brightly finished Cold Air Dam, and uses a five-layer SynthaFlow high-flow air filter.
<b>2. </b> The factory intake on the new Triton 5.4L engine is a maze of tuning tubes. It's remarkable that the engine works as well as it does, breathing through all these straws. 2. The factory intake on the new Triton 5.4L engine is a maze of tuning tubes. It's remarkable that the engine works as well as it does, breathing through all these straws.
<b>3. </b> A side-by-side comparison of the Airaid intake and the factory intake is dramatic, especially if you look at the air-inlet size on the stock setup. 3. A side-by-side comparison of the Airaid intake and the factory intake is dramatic, especially if you look at the air-inlet size on the stock setup.
<b>4. </b> The first step of the install is to remove the intake tube that leads to the filter box. 4. The first step of the install is to remove the intake tube that leads to the filter box.
<b>5. </b> With the PCV hose on the passenger side of the engine disconnected and the mass airflow sensor removed from the right side of the airbox, the box can be unbolted from the intake manifold. Save the rubber ring seal from the factory box for later use. 5. With the PCV hose on the passenger side of the engine disconnected and the mass airflow sensor removed from the right side of the airbox, the box can be unbolted from the intake manifold. Save the rubber ring seal from the factory box for later use.
<b>6. </b> This is what things should look like with the factory air intake removed. 6. This is what things should look like with the factory air intake removed.
<b>7. </b> With the factory rubber ring seal installed on the Airaid intake tube as per the instructions, the tube is then attached to the throttle body. 7. With the factory rubber ring seal installed on the Airaid intake tube as per the instructions, the tube is then attached to the throttle body.
<b>8. </b> The side mounting brackets are attached next. 8. The side mounting brackets are attached next.
<b>9. </b> Once the intake tube is mounted, the mass airflow sensor is attached and reconnected. 9. Once the intake tube is mounted, the mass airflow sensor is attached and reconnected.
<b>10. </b> The Cold Air Dam needs to be assembled prior to installation in the truck. The install instructions show you what panels go where. 10. The Cold Air Dam needs to be assembled prior to installation in the truck. The install instructions show you what panels go where.
<b>11. </b> With the Cold Air Dam mounted in place and connected to the air intake tube, the filter can be added. At this point, double-check that the PCV is reinserted in the intake tube and that the mass air meter is connected. 11. With the Cold Air Dam mounted in place and connected to the air intake tube, the filter can be added. At this point, double-check that the PCV is reinserted in the intake tube and that the mass air meter is connected.
<b>12. </b>  This is what the final assembly should look like. 12. This is what the final assembly should look like.

POWER PLUMBING
Most of you have heard the expression, "A little goes a long way." The same holds true when it comes to getting fresh air into an engine. Something as simple as a filter change can boost throttle response and horsepower. Combine that by straightening out the airflow to the filter, and you're definitely going to make power. That's the theory behind Airaid's Modular Intake Tube (MIT). Designed to work with the stock airbox, the tube replaces the factory intake tubing, which often has baffles and Helmholtz devices inside for noise restriction. On the new F-150 5.4L Triton motor, Airaid's Modular Intake Tube actually flows 400 cfm more air than stock, and when combined with Airaid's premium replacement filter, improves throttle response and overall horsepower.The new F-150 has a unique flat-panel filter that uses a felt gasket for sealing. Airaid's premium replacement filter not only uses the same polyester/felt gasket around the edges for sealing, it's also constructed of five layers of SynthaFlow filtration media bound by a stainless-steel screen and urethane. The filter features a "No Hassle" lifetime warranty and is washable and reusable.Installation of the filter and MIT takes only minutes and nets approximately 11 rear-wheel horsepower, according to Airaid. The company's Modular Intake Tubes are also available for a variety of other applications.

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