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2018 Jeep Compass 2.4L. W/ Pedal Commander, MPx Lightweight Crank Pulley & Water Pump Pulley
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I recently installed a k&n drop in air filter. Upon inspection of the air box I found that there is a carbon type looking filter built into the lid of the airbox. I also observed that the factory air filter has an additional layer of material like a 1/2 in of poly Filter matting. At 15,000 miles this poly filter matting was extremely dirty. I also removed the additional carbon type filter built into the lid of the airbox. Has anyone else had the same experience and do you know why there is additional filtering materials?
 

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I don't know for sure but I would hazard a guess that a team of engineers collectively smarter than any of us who were paid big bucks to design a proper intake for this motor found sufficient reason to convince even the the tightest bean counters at FCA that the extra material (and cost) was necessary. Maybe its good at keeping water from getting sucked into the intake when you ford a big mud puddle. Its undoubtedly good at keeping sand and fine particles from entering the engine when driving down dirt roads and dusty trails.

Whatever it is, your motor will no longer enjoy its benefits, but it WILL probably sound like a super cool vacuum cleaner so, not all for nothing ;)
 

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I just went to change the filter with an K&N and saw in the top of the box there is another filter just as you saw. I can't find anything on it. Maybe it is a trailhawk thing? Mine is plastic welded into the top. I don't want to break it out but I also want the intake freed up for air flow.
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I believe it is for sound abatement. A muffler for the intake system so to speak. My PT Cruiser has a large chamber with baffles in it that certainly do nothing for air flow. The chamber is at the top of the pic. Yes, that is a K&N filter in the PT. The factory air box in the PT also had a white snorkel that had a smaller diameter than the air tube to the throttle body. I removed that long ago. To me it was restricting air flow.
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I don't know for sure but I would hazard a guess that a team of engineers collectively smarter than any of us who were paid big bucks to design a proper intake for this motor found sufficient reason to convince even the the tightest bean counters at FCA that the extra material (and cost) was necessary. Maybe its good at keeping water from getting sucked into the intake when you ford a big mud puddle. Its undoubtedly good at keeping sand and fine particles from entering the engine when driving down dirt roads and dusty trails.

Whatever it is, your motor will no longer enjoy its benefits, but it WILL probably sound like a super cool vacuum cleaner so, not all for nothing ;)
Actually there is a "catch can" for water built into the air inlet tube between the bottom of the air box and the actual air inlet opening. The thing sticking off of the tube is the catch can and hangs down when the tube is installed.
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I had the exact same experience as the original poster, only my secondary filter had come loose from the air box lid so I'm wondering about whether it's needed. As I read this thread, that question never got answered (except for the notion of noise abatement). The question also becomes, this secondary filter will certainly get dirty at some point so how does one clean or replace it? At what interval?
 
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