Boosting Your Ram 1500’s Performance The Cold Air Intake Explained Complete Guide

Are you curious to know how you can make your Ram 1500 faster and more efficient? Look no further!

This guide will explain the ins and outs of a cold air intake, and how it can help boost your truck’s performance. You’ll be amazed at the power a cold air intake can give you. Let’s discover this upgrade together!

Adding a cold air intake to your Ram 1500 is a great way to improve performance and fuel economy. Unlike traditional air intakes, cold air intake replaces the entire system from the filter to the engine. This allows for more efficient use of airflow, resulting in an increase in power and improved fuel economy.

A cold air intake provides a number of benefits over a traditional air intake system, such as increased airflow, improved combustion efficiency and increased engine power. By forcing cooler ambient air into the engine at faster speeds than a traditional system would allow, it provides more oxygen to carry fuel molecules throughout the chamber. This increases combustion efficiency and ultimately reduces emissions as well as improves performance and fuel economy.

When choosing an aftermarket cold air intake, you’ll want to pay attention to several important factors:

  • Flow Restriction: ensuring that there is no restriction on airflow coming in or out of your Ram 1500’s engine
  • Air Filter: Selecting an upgraded cone filter can help maximize airflow while keeping contaminants out of your engine
  • Power Output: Many RAM1500 owners opt for a tuned version – when properly calibrated, can boost horsepower output by up to 40%.
  • Materials/Construction Quality: Cheap materials can reduce durability as well as performance – be sure to choose an aftermarket part made out of quality aluminum or steel components for long-term reliability and performance boosts
  • Installation Process/Support: Improper installation can lead to vacuum leaks which will quickly deplete any gains from your new Cold Air Intake – be sure that any installed unit comes with instructions or access to experienced technical support should you have any questions about installation or its operation.
  • In this guide, we’ll be discussing the fundamentals of a cold air intake and how it can improve performance and efficiency in your Ram 1500.

Cold air intakes are designed to draw more oxygen-dense cooler air into the engine, allowing more efficient combustion and more horsepower.

This guide will explain the advantages of upgrading your Ram 1500’s factory air intake system to a cold air intake, as well as provide an overview of the parts necessary and step-by-step instructions for installation. We will also point out some common mistakes to avoid during installation so that you can get the maximum benefit from your new setup.

Read on for an in-depth look at how to upgrade your Ram 1500 with a cold air intake!

What is a Cold Air Intake?

A cold air intake is an aftermarket automotive system that allows the engine to breathe more easily, providing more efficient and powerful combustion. This system consists of several components, including an air filter, a box or housing to contain and protect the filter, and a tube that carries the air from the intake opening to the engine.

The basic idea behind installing a cold air intake is to provide your truck’s engine with colder air that can be burned cleaner and more efficiently than warmer air. Colder air contains fewer impurities like dust, dirt and other airborne particles so it will not cause as much damage or reduce performance levels. Additionally, colder denser air allows for better combustion which leads to an increase in power and torque output.

Explanation of the function of a cold air intake

The cold air intake is a device that helps the engine in the Ram 1500 to breathe more efficiently by providing a steady supply of cooler air. This cooler air has higher oxygen content and allows the engine to burn fuel more effectively than regular air. A properly designed cold air intake can provide noticeable power increases, as well as improved throttle response and acceleration.

Installing a cold air intake into your Ram 1500 can be relatively easy depending on the type of unit you purchase, but it’s important to choose one that is specifically designed for your make and model. The install process typically involves replacing the factory intake system components with aftermarket parts like an intake tube, filter, and mounting hardware. Once installed, your engine will be able to draw in fresh, cool ambient air directly from outside making it easier for it to ingest higher volumes of combustible oxygen for more efficient combustion. As a result you’ll get improved throttle response and increased power output from your Ram 1500’s engine!

Benefits of a cold air intake for a Ram 1500

Installing a cold air intake (CAI) system in a Ram 1500 offers much better performance than the standard air intake system. It helps to reduce wear-and-tear on the engine, increases horsepower, and improves acceleration and fuel economy. Here we will discuss the various benefits of using a cold air intake for your Ram 1500.

Fuel Efficiency: Cold air intakes draw in colder dense air from outside the engine, which is rich in oxygen content. This allows for more efficient combustion of fuel and consequently more power to be produced from each revolution of your engine cylinders. This translates into lower fuel consumption, leading to better performance ratios and greater overall miles-per-gallon efficiency when compared to factory set standards.

Power and Acceleration: By providing your engine with cooler air, you are allowing it to burn more oxygen per cylinder, thereby increasing its horsepower output by as much as 10%. As such, you can enjoy an increase in torque throughout all RPM ranges as well as better acceleration times overall. Additionally, since oxygen feeds combustion it also serves to improve the overall combustibility of fuel leading to lower emissions at higher RPMs – an added bonus!

Enhanced Throttle Response: With a CAI equipped on your Ram 1500 the throttle response time is improved due to increased airflow rate being delivered straight into each cylinder resulting in improved combustion fidelity and output response from each reaction within each piston chamber – delivering instant torque!

Improved Engine Longevity: Keeping your vehicle’s engine cool is essential for its longevity; burning hot temperatures can cause major wear-and-tear over time such as carbon build-up due to incomplete burn cycles or valve sticking due thermal expansion fatigue of metal components. A cold air Intake eliminates this problem by preventing heat soak through an insulated filter/housing design comprised out/sealed off against excess heat admittance while introducing an ample supply fresh incoming oxygen rich ambient atmosphere – keeping engine temperatures cool and sustained even during periods of intensive operation or offload stress disbursement (such as racing).

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Cold Air Intake for Ram 1500

Since a cold air intake is an engine modification, it is essential to consider various factors before buying one. This section takes a closer look at the different aspects to have in mind when purchasing and installing a CAI for a Ram 1500.

Pricing: Cost should factor into your decision when selecting a cold air intake system. You should consider the quality of components used and make sure you get your money’s worth. Always remember that you don’t have to break the bank to get great performance from a CAI.

Maintenance: While cold air intakes are known for their durability, they can still require occasional maintenance like cleaning or replacement parts. Make sure you find out about the level of maintenance required for your desired CAI before you buy it.

Durability: When considering products from any manufacturer, research how durable their products are before making your purchase — this applies to CAIs too! Look for reviews from other consumers who have used the same product and check the expected lifespan of components like the filter or shield etc.

Pickup Injection Style: One important factor to keep in mind is your Ram 1500’s fuel-injection style — whether it’s multi-port or throttle-body (TBI). Make sure that whichever model you choose will work correctly with your vehicle’s injection style as not every system is compatible with both types of injection systems.


When choosing a cold air intake for your Ram 1500, you’ll want to make sure you select one in the robust material that can effectively transport and filter the air. Cold air intakes are made with materials such as aluminum, plastic, and stainless steel. These materials differ in cost and durability and can perform differently based on weather conditions. The appropriate material needs to be capable of blocking extreme temperatures that can potentially cause damage to your vehicle engine.

Aluminum, plastic, and stainless steel cold air intakes have their own benefits. Aluminum cold air intakes are lighter than their counterparts while providing superior strength and corrosion resistance. Plastic intake units have superior heat resistance properties but they may require additional preparation time before installation due to their flexible nature. Finally, stainless steel helps protect against oxidation or rusting but this type of material is also more expensive compared to other available options.

No matter what you choose for your Ram 1500 cold air intake system it is always a good idea to research the best materials for your climate conditions so that you can eliminate any potential problems before they arise from using an inappropriate material choice for the job at hand.

Compatibility with Ram 1500 model

When considering purchasing and installing a cold air intake system to boost the performance of your Ram 1500, it is important to ensure that the system is compatible with the engine model of your truck. Depending on the year, make and body style of your vehicle, different cold air intakes may be available. Additionally, while most modern cold air intakes will work with all levels of trim in the Ram 1500—from Tradesman to Laramie—it is still a good idea to double check compatibility before purchase.

Most aftermarket cold air intakes are designed to fit specific models manufactured within several years’ ranges. For example, Volant currently makes a model compatible with 3.6-liter and 5.7-liter models built between 2009 and 2019; this may change over time as new models are released by Ram. Some parts stores may also carry Ram 1500-specific aftermarket cold air intake systems for cleaning up emissions or further improving engine performance. In most cases it should only take minor modifications prior to installation if you’ve purchased an incorrect or incompatible part for your vehicle; however, you can always check online resources such as forums that specialize in DIY auto repair before attempting a complex installation process on your own.

Air Filter Design

When it comes to filtering the air into your engine, there are several design aspects that set Cold Air Intake filters apart from typical stock filters. While standard filters protect your engine from both large and small particles in the air, Cold Air Intake filters offer superior protection by using multiple layers with each layer trapping different-sized particles. This trap-and-filter method decreases the amounts of contaminants that enter the engine which aides in the performance of your vehicle.

The two most common types of Cold Air Intake filter material are foam and paper. Foam filters provide excellent particle filtration and can last up to 50,000 miles but require cleaning more often than paper ones. Paper filers also provide high performances filtration but they do not need to be cleaned; they can be replaced as needed after a period of time depending on driving conditions. The right type for your vehicle is based on its specific needs and you should talk to an expert before making a decision.

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Air Intake Tube Design

Choosing an air intake system for your Ram 1500 can depend on a variety of factors. Some cold air intakes require little to no modification, while others may require you to modify or change parts to ensure proper fitting and installation. There are three main types of air intake tubes: short ram air intakes, cold air intakes, and hybrid intake tubes.

Short ram air intakes are the most common type of cold air intakes available and the easiest to install. They draw the coolest possible engine-intake charge into the combustion chamber and act like a carburetor by supplying the engine with a consistent flow of fuel/air mixture. The benefits of this type of system include increased performance, greater horsepower, improved fuel efficiency, simpler installation, and lower cost when compared to other systems.

Cold air intakes draw in more cold air than a short ram intake because they are placed farther away from engine heat sources such as exhaust manifolds and thermostats. As an added bonus, most units have additional sound dampening materials built-in to help reduce sound waves that come out from the engine bay while driving at higher speeds. Benefits include increased torque across the entire RPM range as well as enhanced performance under any weather condition or temperature outside.

Hybrid Intake Tubes combine elements from both short ram intakes and cold air intakes offering improved performance that can match or exceed even aftermarket cold-air systems due to its larger diameter tube designed for maximum airflow potentials not seen in standard models. In addition, they also allow for 360 degree design with adjustable mounting points for precise location fitment depending on specific requirements users may have for their vehicle – making it a perfect addition for those seeking complete customization in terms of performance upgrades.

Installation of a Cold Air Intake for Ram 1500

Installing a cold air intake is a moderately involved process, best left to those with an aptitude for automotive repair and maintenance. Before installing a cold air intake on your Ram 1500, it is important to familiarize yourself with exactly what a cold air intake is and how it improves performance and fuel economy.

To begin, the basic components of a cold air intake include an air box, ducting (air filter inlet), and possibly even a heat shield (restrictive stock rubber housing can be removed). Once these components are identified, you can confirm their compatibility with your vehicle by visiting the online product catalog or consulting customer service at your local auto parts retailer.

Once you have determined that your Ram 1500 will accept the specific cold air intake unit you have selected for installation, preparation for the job must then begin. This starts by familiarizing yourself with all tools that are required for the job – sockets of multiple sizes should be readily available along with wrenches and/or screwdrivers depending on the mounting strategy of your particular kit.

It is also important during this phase to ensure that all fasteners (screws & bolts) are quality grade – spending extra money here could save you time down-the-road should one of them fail! Having identified all necessary components and materials prior to beginning installation of your cold air intake system will save countless hours. A quality workshop manual such as those produced by Haynes or Chilton can be purchased relatively inexpensively at most auto parts stores or online retailers like Amazon or eBay. Take time to read these individual steps thoroughly before attempting any physical labor on any vehicle. Safety must always be top priority when dealing with any moving mechanical system; so make sure to use gloves & proper eye protection at minimum when performing installing any type of mechanical part — Anything else will only contribute material cost!

Step-by-step instructions

If you’re looking to get the most out of your Ram 1500, then replacing your factory cold air intake (CAI) is a great way to start. Cold air intake systems provide colder and denser air to the motor, aiding in optimum performance and efficiency. If you’re new to automotive maintenance, fear not – this guide will walk you through the entire cold air intake installation process for your Ram 1500.

Before you start installing your new CAI, it’s important that you double-check all necessary components that come with the kit, including gaskets and hoses. Make sure every component is properly accounted for before taking on this project.

Next, begin by raising the hood of your vehicle and disconnecting any wiring harnesses from the factory cold air intake. To protect yourself from engine heat and dust particles, it’s recommended that you wear protective eye glasses along with a face mask. Once disconnected, unscrew any clamps or bolts used to secure the old intake system before sliding it away from the engine compartment.

Before moving forward with installation of a new CAI system, inspect around your engine block where holes may be present due to long-term corrosion or damage during removal of old parts. If no visible damage is present in these areas then proceed by mounting components upon initial assembly according to manufacturer recommendations found in instruction manuals included with most kits from leading manufacturers such as K&N Filters and AEM Cold Air Intakes Systems for vehicles such as Ram 1500s etcetera.

Start assembling parts by first placing any necessary gasket or sealants into position before repeating steps 3-4 together until all pieces are properly attached on both sides of intake setup inside engine space while ensuring clamps are firmly tightened. Connect wiring harnesses once complete prior to starting up vehicle engine, running idle, testing & evaluation eventually delivering expected results during everyday operation confirming successful installation effort done!

Tools required for installation

Before attempting to install a cold air intake, it’s important to make sure you have the right tools. Depending on the model of your Ram 1500, some of the required tools may vary. However, most installations will require the following:

  • Ratchet and sockets ( usually a long extension and universal joint). The exact sizes may vary depending on your truck
  • An adjustable wrench or open ended wrench
  • Pliers or a similar type of hand tool suitable for removing hose clamps
  • A flathead screwdriver or similar type of hand tool suitable for removing clips and fittings.
  • Metric hex driver set for different bolts used in engine bay installations (optional)
  • Flashlight

It is also recommended that you have gloves due to the possibility of cutting yourself from sharp edges around parts located in the engine bay. Additionally, having a torque wrench is always a good idea for any kind of installation as it helps ensure that all components are properly tightened to manufacturer’s specifications.

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In conclusion, adding a cold air intake to your Ram 1500 can improve its performance and provide you with improved fuel economy. The installation process is straightforward and cold air intakes are widely available for purchase online and from local auto supply stores.

It’s important to note that a cold air intake is only one way to boost the performance of your Ram 1500. Other upgrades such as an aftermarket exhaust system, performance chips, and various other accessories can also be used in conjunction with a cold air intake to achieve optimal performance in your vehicle. Furthermore, if you decide to make these changes yourself, it’s always recommended that you use genuine OEM parts for best results.

In any case, installing a cold air intake on your Ram 1500 can be an effective way of distinguishing it from stock units and make it an even more reliable and capable performer down the line.


Does a cold air intake make a difference on Ram 1500?

Yes, it can improve performance by increasing airflow to the engine.

How much horsepower does a cold air intake add to a Ram 1500?

The amount of horsepower added can vary, but it is typically between 5-15 HP.

How does the Ram cold air intake work?

It replaces the factory air intake system with a larger, more efficient system that allows for more air to enter the engine.

How does a cold air intake improve performance?

By increasing the amount of cool air that enters the engine, it can improve combustion and increase horsepower and torque.

What does a high performance cold air intake do?

It provides even greater airflow to the engine, resulting in increased horsepower and torque.

How much HP does a cold air intake add to a 5.7 Hemi?

It can add between 5-15 HP to a 5.7 Hemi engine.

What are the disadvantages of cold air intake?

It can potentially allow more dirt and debris into the engine, and it may not be legal in some areas due to emissions regulations.

How much HP does a cold air intake add?

It varies depending on the specific vehicle and engine, but it can add between 5-15 HP on average.

Does cold air intake add sound?

Yes, it can increase the sound of the engine by allowing more air to enter.

Does cold air intake make car louder?

Yes, it can make the engine sound louder due to increased airflow.

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