Maintenance - Air Filters
Maintenance - Air Filters
With Lexi Pechout and Danika White
Keeping your air filter clean is one of the key maintenance things you should be constantly doing to keep your bike in great running condition.
The air filter is a foam filter that lets air go into your engine without letting dust and debris move through it.
Danika uses a biodegradable air filter oil and cleaner, the NoToil system has a cleaning detergent so you don’t have to use gasoline or varsol to clean the oil off the filter. This can be done in a sink at home since it's non-toxic, skin-safe, and biodegradable.
Lexi uses a petroleum based filter oil. These include Motorex, Maxima, Bel-Ray, Motul and many others. Some of these systems have detergents but the main cleaning system for these would be varsol or gasoline. When using an aggressive solvent like varsol or gasoline make sure to always do a secondary wash with soapy water. This will help extend the life of your air filter because the aggressive solvents can break down the foam and glue that the filter is held together with.
Both these systems work great for oiling and cleaning filters, there's no wrong system to use. Just comes down to what you prefer, and is easiest for you.
A good tip is to have a spare air filter, this makes the whole air filter cleaning and installing process more efficient.
Air Filter Oil
Air Filter Cleaner
Bucket or Sink
Taking out a used air filter is simple, but you want to be careful as you don’t want any sand/dirt from the filter to drop into the air boot. We recommend doing this in a garage where you're away from wind, dirt, dust. If you do need to change a air filter at the track or trail, it's a great option to have an already oiled air filter in a bag and make sure to keep the air box covered while changing.
Depending on what type of bike you have removing and installing the air filter may be a bit different, in this maintenance video this is a 2021 KTM 350 SX-F.
STAGES OF THE AIR FILTER
Make sure to be consitently checking your air filters. Even if you placed a clean air filter in your bike, if it has sat for a couple weeks the oil can settle to the bottom of the air filter and would need to be reworked. Here are some stages of air filters.
IT'S GONE TOO FAR
What ever you do, don't let your air filter get to this stage. Your poor bike will be so sad. When a filter is this dirty the airflow is greatly reduced, It also has a better chance of sucking debris through since the filter is fully saturated and cant take on any more dirt or dust.
I clean my air filter each ride if it’s a really dusty day, but max three rides no matter the conditions. - Danika White
Air filter servicing is one of the easiest and most cost effective maintenance items you can do for your bike to keep it performing at its best!