There are three key factors of engine performance: spark, fuel, and air.
It is no secret that we often pay more attention to the fuel and spark and consider the air quality not important.
Yet, when the air quality of our engine decreases and loses its efficiency, it is a significant decrease in performance, handling, and fuel economy.
Additionally, when the air inside your engine is dirty, the life expectancy of your engine can be reduced dramatically.
So. how can we maintain the air quality of our engine? The answer is getting a proper air filter.
Basics of Air Filters
Your engine is constantly exposed to dirt, moistures, and all other contaminants of the atmosphere.
So, the sole job of your air filter is to keep the air clean all the time. Even a small amount of accumulated contaminants can significantly reduce the performance of your engine, or worse, causing a complete failure.
Your typical air filters are located in an air box, between the fresh air inlet and your engine. So, to replace your air filter, you will first need to remove the clamps or screws of your air box, which is fairly easy.
The hard part, however, is choosing the right air filter that can do the job right. There are proper air filters that work just as intended, and some that simply don’t.
Here, we have researched the best engine filters available in the market today, and we will review some options you can consider. There are two key factors we considered when choosing the best engine air filter: airflow and filtration quality.
A free-flowing air filter is extremely important to maintain an adequate amount of air supply to your engine. As the filter accumulates dirt, it will flow less air.
Since the main job of a vehicle air filter is to catch contaminants, filtration quality is the most important factor.
MicroGard air filters are known to be the best in both filtration and air flow. However, there are several issues in getting MicroGard air filters:
- MicroGard air filters are vehicle-specific. So, you will have to be really careful in checking the compatibility. Then, there can be several different options for your vehicle. So, choosing the best MicroGard air filters for your vehicle can be really difficult.
- Even after all that, MicroGard air filters are only available in selected authorized dealers. So, you don’t have much versatility.
With those issues being said, we have tested some of the best alternatives available on the market. The criteria remains the same: the air filters we recommend should have filtration and air flow levels on par with the best MicroGard air filters.
Here are our product recommendations
Top 5 Best Alternatives for MicroGard Air FIlters
As one of, if not the most popular brand for engine filters, FRAM is more known for its quality than affordability.
Yet, the FRAM CA10855 is extremely affordable, while not sacrificing the qualities of any FRAM air filters: excellent filtration level and air flow for better engine protection and boosted performance..
- Very affordable
- Excellent filtration and decent air flow quality
- Compatible with a wide range of vehicle types
- Not very durable, can only withstand 12,000 miles of driving
The FRAM CA10885 is an excellent choice for those looking for an affordable replacement air filter with decent quality. Before purchase, refer to FRAM’s website to check your vehicle compatibility.
As with MicroGard air filters, Wix is also one of the most prominent manufacturers of engine filters. So, we can expect a high level of filtration and air flow.
There are several prominent features of the Wix 46213, including:
- Adhesive pocket pleat
- Urethane soft-sealing gasket
- Mesh support screening
- Non-woven paper filter
- Very efficient air flow restriction
- Easy to install, and compatible with many different vehicles
- Thicker than your standard OEM air filter
- Very competitive price
- Does not fit some vehicle types
- Although thicker than standard filters, there are still thicker replacement air filters available
Wix filters are on par with even the best MicroGard air filters available, yet are easier to find on the market, and compatible with more vehicles.
The Wix 46213 air filter panel is an excellent replacement air filter with high-level of filtration and air flow efficiency and is extremely affordable. Simply one of the best air filters available on the market today.
The K&N 33-2304 replacement air filter is designed to increase horsepower and acceleration by providing outstanding filtration and air flow.
K&N itself is also a prominent company producing more than 1,200 different air filters for virtually every vehicle on the road.
- Very durable, can be used for up to 50,000 miles of driving
- Machine washable and reusable
- Can fit most existing air box, very easy to install
- K&N Million Mile Limited Warranty
- Very efficient air flow and filtration
- Pleated, oiled material to enhance overall filtration
For those looking for performance, the K&N 33-2304 is an excellent choice. Extremely efficient and very effective in boosting horsepower and acceleration.
Another one by FRAM. While the previously FRAM CA10855 is an affordable option, the CA9073 is a premium air filter designed for performance.
It provides double the engine protection of the CA10855, and has better air flow and filtration level.
- Very easy to install with included directions
- Excellent filtration level
- High-performance air flow quality
- Also need to be replaced every 12,000 miles
If you are looking for performance boost and maximum engine protection, The FRAM CA9073 Extra Guard air filter provides those qualities with a relatively affordable price. Very easy to install with illustrated directions, and compatible with many vehicle types.
Simply put, one of the best engine filters and one of the best alternatives to MicroGard air filters.
Purolator is one of the oldest manufacturers for engine filters, producing hundreds of the best engine filters available over the years. So, we can expect a high-quality air filter from Purolator without much doubt.
While Purolator doesn’t produce as many air filters as, say, FRAM, the ones that are available are excellent. Featuring a tight-seal gasket to ensure only filtered air reaches your engine. So, excellent filtration quality.
One of the best engine filters if you are looking for more acceleration and fuel economy.
- Tight-seal gasket for more filtration efficiency
- Excellent air flow level with multi-fiber, high-density media trap
- Boosting your engine performance while also increasing fuel economy
- Compatible with many vehicle types
- Easy to install
- Can only last up to 12 months or 12,000 miles
Another excellent choice if you are looking for performance. Another unique quality of the Purolator A24675 is that it is excellent at maintaining fuel economy. While it is relatively more expensive compared to other products, you will save more money in the long run while enjoying the boosted performance.
Whether we are looking for more performance, or simply taking care of your vehicle, more often we put more attention to fuel, oil, or the engine itself. Maintaining clean air intake is often our later priority.
Yet, as we have mentioned above, maintaining clean air intake by having a proper air filter is very important not only to boost performance but also to prolong the engine lifetime.
Replacing air filters is a relatively easy process, and most likely you can do it without help. Yet, choosing the proper air filter for your vehicle can often be difficult.