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Air Filters



An air filter is a device which removes contaminants, often solid particles such as dust, pollen, mold, and bacteria from air.

They are often used in internal combustion engines, gas compressors, diving air compressors, ventilation systems, and any other application where air quality is important.

Engine intakes tend to use either paper, foam, or cotton filters. Some buildings, as well as planes and other man-made environments (e.g., satellites and space shuttles) use foam, pleated paper, or spun fiberglass filter elements. Another method uses fibers or elements with a static electric charge, which attract dust particles.

There are four main types of mechanical air filters: paper, foam, synthetics and cotton. Though all have varying degrees of practicality, it is generally recognized that cotton air filters are best because of their durability and technological advantages.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Air Filters"

More about Air Filters:
A particulate expose filter is a device composed of fibrous materials which removes solid particulates much as dust, pollen, mold, and bacteria from the air. A chemical expose filter consists of an sorbefacient or catalyst for the removal of airborne molecular contaminants much as volatile organic compounds or ozone. Air filters are used in applications where expose quality is important, notably in building ventilation systems and in engines.

Some buildings, as well as aircraft and other man-made environments (e.g., satellites and expanse shuttles) ingest foam, pleated paper, or spun fiberglass filter elements. Another method, expose ionisers, ingest fibers or elements with a static electric charge, which draw dust particles. The expose intakes of interior combustion engines and compressors tend to ingest either paper, foam, or cotton filters. Oil bath filters have fallen out of favor. The technology of expose intake filters of gas turbines has improved significantly in recent years, due to improvements in the aerodynamics and fluid-dynamics of the air-compressor part of the Gas Turbines.

Automotive cabin air filters

The cabin air filter is typically a pleated-paper filter that is placed in the outside-air intake for the vehicle's passenger compartment. Some of these filters are rectangular and similar in shape to the combustion air filter. Others are uniquely shaped to fit the available space of particular vehicles' outside-air intakes. Being a relatively recent addition to automobile equipment, this filter is often overlooked. Clogged or dirty cabin air filters can significantly reduce airflow from the cabin vents, as well as introduce allergens into the cabin air stream.

Internal combustion air filters

The combustion air filter prevents abrasive particulate matter from entering the engine's cylinders, where it would cause mechanical wear and oil contamination. Known as Engine air induction systems (AIS), they are typically constructed of paper or felt.

Most fuel injected vehicles use a pleated paper filter element in the form of a flat panel. This filter is usually placed inside a plastic box connected to the throttle body with an intake tube.

Older vehicles that use carburetors or throttle body fuel injection typically use a cylindrical air filter, usually a few inches high and between 6 and 16 inches in diameter. This is positioned above the carburetor or throttle body, usually in a metal or plastic container which may incorporate ducting to provide cool and/or warm inlet air, and secured with a metal or plastic lid.

Long Life Filtration System

In 2003 Ford Motor company introduced the Visteon Long Life Filtration System to the Ford Focus This system has a foam filter placed in the bumper of the car and is stated to have a 150,000 mile service interval. According to a technical paper published by Society of Automotive Engineers, this design offers higher and more stable filtration efficiency than conventional air filters

Filter paper

Pleated paper filter elements are the nearly exclusive choice for automobile engine air cleaners, because they are efficient, easy to service, and cost-effective. The "paper" term is somewhat misleading, as the filter media are considerably different from papers used for writing or packaging, etc. There is a persistent belief amongst tuners, fomented by advertising for aftermarket non-paper replacement filters, that paper filters flow poorly and thus restrict engine performance. In fact, as long as a pleated-paper filter is sized appropriately for the airflow volumes encountered in a particular application, such filters present only trivial restriction to flow until the filter has become significantly clogged with dirt.

Foam

Oil-wetted polyurethane foam elements are used in some aftermarket replacement automobile air filters. Foam was in the past widely used in air cleaners on small engines on lawnmowers and other power equipment, but automotive-type paper filter elements have largely supplanted oil-wetted foam in these applications. Depending on the grade and thickness of foam employed, an oil-wetted foam filter element can offer minimal airflow restriction or very high dirt capacity, the latter property making foam filters a popular choice in off-road rallying and other motorsport applications where high levels of dust will be encountered.

Cotton

Oiled cotton gauze is employed in a small number of aftermarket automotive air filters marketed as high-performance items. In the past, cotton gauze saw limited use in original-equipment automotive air filters.

Oil Bath

An oil bath air cleaner consists of a round base bowl containing a pool of oil, and a round insert which is filled with fibre, mesh, foam, or another coarse filter media. When the cleaner is assembled, the media-containing body of the insert sits a short distance above the surface of the oil pool. The rim of the insert overlaps the rim of the base bowl. This arrangement forms a labyrinthine path through which the air must travel in a series of U-turns: up through the gap between the rims of the insert and the base bowl, down through the gap between the outer wall of the insert and the inner wall of the base bowl, and up through the filter media in the body of the insert. This U-turn takes the air at high velocity across the surface of the oil pool. Larger and heavier dust and dirt particles in the air cannot make the turn due to their inertia, so they fall into the oil and settle to the bottom of the base bowl. Lighter and smaller particles are trapped by the filtration media in the insert, which is wetted by oil droplets aspirated there into by normal airflow.

Oil bath air cleaners were very widely used in automotive and small-engine applications until the widespread industry adoption of the paper filter in the early 1960s. Such cleaners are still used in off-road equipment where very high levels of dust are encountered, for oil bath air cleaners can sequester a great deal of dirt relative to their overall size, without loss of filtration efficacy or airflow. However, the liquid oil makes cleaning and servicing such air cleaners messy and inconvenient, they must be relatively large to avoid excessive restriction at high airflow rates, and they tend to increase exhaust emissions of unburned hydrocarbons due to oil aspiration when used on spark-ignition engines.

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Air Filters Article by Svetlana Lozovenko
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