Your K&N Air Filter Experience/Opinion

Information and questions on GL1100 Goldwings (1980-1983)
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Your K&N Air Filter Experience/Opinion

Post by patbrandon1 » Fri Mar 21, 2014 6:34 am

I will be putting in a new air filter in my GL1100i soon, and I just want to know if anyone has used the K&N air filter, and if you think it is worth the extra cost. I thought about it. I looked it up on the internet, and there are pretty good reviews, but those can be for personal gain, so I thought I would seek personal unbiased experience.

At $51.99 it seems a little high. As opposed to $12.00 out the door for a standard one. I'm not really poor, but am also not trying to aim at it either. Your input would be appreciated.

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Re: Your K&N Air Filter Experience/Opinion

Post by tfdeputydawg » Fri Mar 21, 2014 7:09 am

Claimed HP & milage increases do not seem to be reality. Yet to change the air filter on my 1800. May do so at around 50K(don't ride in dusty conditions, nor rain much).
Don't believe I would spent that kind of money on that air filter!

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Re: Your K&N Air Filter Experience/Opinion

Post by RBGERSON » Fri Mar 21, 2014 7:59 am

Not worth it IMHO..........................


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Re: Your K&N Air Filter Experience/Opinion

Post by harvey01 » Fri Mar 21, 2014 9:01 am

Back in early 2000 I put one in my 1981 CBX. All of the hype and advertising sounded great.

But they don't stress the need to clean the filter every so often and to oil it. so then you have to buy their cleaning solution, and their oil.
Yes, it has worked satisfactorily and the cleaner and oil have lasted. I do believe it has been cheaper in the long run to buying a new replacement annually. But the upkeep work is greater than the use of a simple replacement air filter like I use in the GL1800.

I have bought 3 bikes since getting the CBX and have not put a K&N filter in any of them.
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Re: Your K&N Air Filter Experience/Opinion

Post by dingdong » Fri Mar 21, 2014 9:17 am

The biggest complaint I have "heard" of is the possibility that more air flow adds up to more dirt particles entering the engine. Makes some sense. I do know though that if you hold a K&N up to the light you can see through it which tells me not to chance it.

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Re: Your K&N Air Filter Experience/Opinion

Post by themainviking » Fri Mar 21, 2014 9:45 am

In order for K&N to get the fuel mileage and power estimate increases that the company claims, you would have to have an absolutely clean filter, which by it's very nature, if it is passing enough air to meet the claims, is also passing dirt particles. My experience with them is that they only begin to filter well when they are about half dirty, and soon after, need cleaning again. That puts you back to almost when you started, with not very good filtration. I would pass on the K&N, personally.
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Re: Your K&N Air Filter Experience/Opinion

Post by Wingsconsin » Fri Mar 21, 2014 11:17 am

My son had one on his GL1100 I . It was on there when he bought it so we used it..
Bought the cleaning kit and the fresh oil for it too...

I really do not believe that it made that much difference. Although we have no comparison data to support either side.

I DO KNOW (because we did this) that once PROPERLY tuned and synched the Rebuilt and cleaned Carbs and the bike delivered excellent MPG and HP with the K & N filter in place - but we did all the tuning and synching with it on the bike so it was matched up together.

I think if you want to do something to get better performance - be sure your carbs are clean, and properly synched.. We gained almost 8% better fuel economy and noticeably more power by doing a good solid synch after the carb rebuild. It wasn't quite right for the first 3 weeks we ran it, then I spent an entire evening getting the synch DEAD ON ..and the bike ran better than ever. These GL1100's are sensitive to carb issues,, more so than other Wings in my experience (and I have owned a GL1100, GL1200, and 2 GL1500's)

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Re: Your K&N Air Filter Experience/Opinion

Post by Fatwing Chris » Fri Mar 21, 2014 5:03 pm

I personally wouldn't run one in anything I own.I would use them in a lot of race applications if I were into it,but not for normal use.They may filter well enough in most street applications,but I don't want to listen to the extra intake noise for one thing.
It's kind of comical over on the atv sites when a discussion breaks out over K&N.Even the diehard guys will say "well you really shouldn't use them in real dusty conditions".What an awesome product,a filter that doesn't really filter until they're nearly plugged and people line up to buy them.
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Re: Your K&N Air Filter Experience/Opinion

Post by patbrandon1 » Fri Mar 21, 2014 8:11 pm

Thank you all for your insight and experience. I am now going to go with the standard filter. I was leaning that way, but just wanted to know if I wasn't being open minded enough. I did think that K&N maybe had a lot more pleats in their filter, or something like that. But after reading here, and more online research, it seems they just use thinner material, and the oil catches dust.

One may save a bit in the long run with the K&N, but for me, I'll spend the little more, and be sure I don't try to burn dirt. I don't ride through much dirt and dust these days anyway. Thanks again for the great information. People on here rock!

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