Symptoms of a Faulty Nissan Altima Cold Air Intake
The Nissan Altima cold air intake is an add-on component that can increase your engine's power, improve engine cooling, and increase fuel efficiency. However, if you hear low revving in the engine or any abnormal noise from the intake system, then there must be something wrong with the part. To diagnose this component, take note of these common symptoms:
Abnormal or excessive noises
This symptom is common among aftermarket cold air intakes because they require the resonator-based muffling tubes that stock air filtration systems have. If you remove these tubes, then the noise from the cold air intake would increase.
Another possible cause for excessive noise is a loose hose clamp. If at least one of these is loose, small debris may be sucked into the component through the clamp's gap. You'll know that this is your problem when you can hear excess noise coming from the cold air intake especially at higher RPMs.
To check for any abnormal noises, pop the hood of your vehicle and rev the engine while a friend listens for any strange noises outside your car.
Inaccurate mass air flow sensor
If you notice that your car's engine sounds like it is revving lower than needed, then the mass air flow sensor might be incorrectly measuring the air that's being sucked into the engine. Check for loose wiring connections in the cold air intake as this might be the root cause. Also, check the mass air flow sensor plug if it's placed properly.
Less horsepower or below-average fuel efficiency
A cold air intake can increase your engine's horsepower and improve your car's fuel efficiency. If you notice that your engine is performing on less horsepower than usual, or if your car's fuel efficiency is lower than normal, then there might be something wrong with the component.
Inspect the filter and see if it is clogged up or dirtied. If it is, you may have to change it in order to allow the cold air intake to optimize its performance.
Smoke from the engine
If the cold air intake's filter comes in contact with water, there might be a chance of the water getting sucked into the engine, which could then cause major damage. When, after driving through a flood or a deep puddle, and you see smoke coming from the engine, then the intake might have sucked in some water. If this does happen, immediately pull over and turn off the engine to prevent further damage.