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I was replacing my air filter and I noticed the engine air intake wasn't connected. The unit was pretty gunked up and gross inside, should I replace it?
I remember having the air filter replaced a while back when I was getting my oil changed on a road trip and I assume the engine air intake was has been off since then. I don't really know **** about cars, so any input would be greatly appreciated.
Here's a link to the part: https://www.parts.com/index.cfm?fus...&diagram=4450145&Title=-2003-06-AIR-FLOW-TUBE
It's number 16 on the diagram. http://www.elementownersclub.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=177370&stc=1&d=1493500819
Thanks,
 

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Hopefully someone who knows exactly what that part does will chime in. As far as I can tell it is just a molded piece of plastic that allows air to pass thru. Mine pops off every time I check the air filter. If no one more knowledgeable chimes in I would just clean it out and re-install it. I don't see any difference between it and a straight thru hose, unless its molded that way to prevent any oil from coming up and into the intake rubber tube. Sort of a PVC valve without the check valve.
 

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my first thought was that it's a breather for the transmission, in case any volatile fumes show up there. they would then be sucked up into the intake.
 

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I was replacing my air filter and I noticed the engine air intake wasn't connected. The unit was pretty gunked up and gross inside, should I replace it?
The filter is the fresh air filter for the pcv system. It draws in fresh air that has passed through the main air filter. The air goes into the valve cover and then into the crankcase through this filter and is exhausted through the pcv valve connected to the intake vacuum downstream of the throttle plate. The pcv filter is supposed to keep hot oil vapors from the crankcase from condensing on the inside of the large air intake tube between the filter housing and the throttle body after the engine is turned off. That is why it looks nasty with oil vapor residue. It should be replaced periodically.
 

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The filter is the fresh air filter for the pcv system. It draws in fresh air that has passed through the main air filter. The air goes into the valve cover and then into the crankcase through this filter and is exhausted through the pcv valve connected to the intake vacuum downstream of the throttle plate. The pcv filter is supposed to keep hot oil vapors from the crankcase from condensing on the inside of the large air intake tube between the filter housing and the throttle body after the engine is turned off. That is why it looks nasty with oil vapor residue. It should be replaced periodically.
OK, nobody else bit. How often? 10 yrs/100k miles or so? Just your rule of thumb.

Thanks,

Update: Pulled mine while waiting for trans fluid to drain. At 12 years and 83k miles mine was squeaky clean inside. Not even enough residue to show on a clean cloth wipe. No filter media in there (mine anyway), just two chambers and a connecting passage. I'd call it more a baffle or catch can minus and it would clean up easily with a mild detergent or whatever you favor on oily plastic.
 

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OK, nobody else bit. How often? 10 yrs/100k miles or so? Just your rule of thumb.

Thanks,

Update: Pulled mine while waiting for trans fluid to drain. At 12 years and 83k miles mine was squeaky clean inside. Not even enough residue to show on a clean cloth wipe. No filter media in there (mine anyway), just two chambers and a connecting passage. I'd call it more a baffle or catch can minus and it would clean up easily with a mild detergent or whatever you favor on oily plastic.
It is normally ingesting clean air so it should stay clean. If one used cheap oil and extended the change intervals it would probably eventually get nasty from the inside out.
 
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