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2011, 2012 Silverado and Sierra AIRAID Air Intake Delivers Street Legal Power in About 1 Hour

AIRAID air intake for 2011-2012 Chevrolet Silverado/GMC Sierra 2500HD & 3500 diesel engines

The AIRAID 2011-2012 Chevrolet Silverado/GMC Sierra 2500HD & 3500 diesel intake air box reuses the factory cold air fender inlet and adds a forward-facing inlet & lower snorkel

An engine is essentially a giant air pump, and anything that can be done to eliminate restrictions on the intake and / or the exhaust, the better the engine will run and the more power it will make. While this holds true with any engine, it’s most dramatic with modern diesels. Large displacements and variable vane turbos demand incredible amounts of air in order to run at peak efficiency, yet auto manufacturers usually sacrifice airflow in order to keep under hood noise to a minimum. This is what makes aftermarket intakes and exhaust systems so effective: they nearly eliminate restrictions and enable an engine to breathe easier, and the result is often more power. Best of all, quality aftermarket intake systems, like those from AIRAID, offer a simple bolt-on installation, making them perfect for shade tree mechanics.

AIRAID air intake on the 2011 Chevy Silverado 2500HD with a 6.6L LML Duramax Diesel engine

The test mule used for install and dyno runs of AIRAID intake 200-281 was a 2011 Chevy Silverado 2500HD with a 6.6L LML Duramax Diesel engine

AIRAID, the Performance Intake Company, is one of the most established names in the aftermarket air intake business. AIRAID has been catering to the needs of diesel enthusiasts for many years with a wide selection of diesel pickup truck intake systems. Often the first to market with an intake for new diesel models, AIRAID is well known for utilizing quality components that fit right and work right out of the box with no tuning required. Testing was performed on AIRAID diesel air intake, number 200-281, to validate the effectiveness of this AIRAID air intake system.
 

Under the hood of the 2011 Chevy Silverado 2500HD with a 6.6L LML Duramax Diesel engine

Auto manufacturers usually sacrifice airflow in order to keep under hood noise to a minimum which is what makes aftermarket air intakes, like those from AIRAID, so effective

The test mule used was a 2011 Chevy 2500HD with a 6.6L LML Duramax engine. The truck had a leveling kit and some slightly larger tires than stock, but otherwise was just how it left the factory. The stock intake helps keep the engine noise to a minimum, but those noise-cancelling properties come at the cost of airflow and overall performance. The AIRAID MXP Cold Air intake system for 2011-2012 Chevrolet Silverado/GMC Sierra 2500HD & 3500 models with a Duramax Diesel engine replaces everything from the throttle body out.

AIRAID air intake tube for the 2011 Chevy Silverado 2500HD with a 6.6L LML Duramax Diesel engine

The smooth interior walled molded AIRAID 2011-2012 Chevrolet Silverado/GMC Sierra 2500HD & 3500 Duramax intake tube includes provisions for all of the factory sensors

This AIRAID MXP Series intake includes a new roto-molded intake box, new intake tube, velocity stack, couplers, hardware, and of course an AIRAID air filter. The AIRAID air box included in the 2011-2012 Chevrolet Silverado/GMC Sierra 2500HD & 3500 diesel intake system reuses the factory cold air inlet duct in the fender but also adds a forward-facing inlet and a lower “snorkel” to grab cool air from behind the front bumper.

Air box for the AIRAID air intake for the 2011 Chevy Silverado 2500HD with a 6.6L LML Duramax Diesel engine

The AIRAID 2011-2012 Duramax MXP Intake air box dwarfs the factory unit to accommodate a large air filter, and greatly increase the amount of cool air available to the engine

The first stage of the installation process is to disconnect the negative cables on both batteries. This helps prevent check engine lights and also forces the engine to re-learn its tuning once the installation is complete. Begin removing the factory components by pulling out the stock intake tube which is held in place with simple worm clamps. The stock air filter box is removed by pulling upward firmly to release the box from its rubber grommets. Use caution when removing the stock intake to make sure you don’t damage any wiring or other under hood components. Beneath the stock air filter box is a flat metal panel that needs to be removed to make room for the large AIRAID air box. It is held in place with four 10mm bolts. The plate can be set aside but the bolts will be re-used for installation of the AIRAID air intake.

AIRAID air intake installed in the 2011 Chevy Silverado 2500HD with a 6.6L LML Duramax Diesel engine

With the installation complete, the AIRAID 2011-2012 Chevrolet Silverado/GMC Sierra 2500HD & 3500 Duramax diesel air intake system looks great and fits well

The new AIRAID MXP air box dwarfs the factory box. Not only does it accommodate a much larger filter, but it also greatly increases the amount of cool outside air available to the filter. The 2011-2012 Chevrolet Silverado/GMC Sierra 2500HD & 3500 Duramax MXP air intake is an open-element design that uses the hood as a lid for the new air box. Weather stripping along the top of the AIRAID air box helps to keep engine compartment air isolated from the filter. The AIRAID box drops right in place of the factory air box and is held in place with three of the four 10mm factory bolts removed previously.

Dyno testing the AIRAIR air intake for the 2011 Chevy Silverado 2500HD with a 6.6L LML Duramax Diesel engine

AIRAID’s in-house all-wheel-drive Mustang chassis dyno showed an estimated gain of 19 horsepower and 34 lb-ft of torque at the wheels of a 2011 Chevy Silverado 2500HD 6.6L diesel

Much thought went into the new AIRAID 2011-2012 Chevrolet Silverado/GMC Sierra 2500HD & 3500 Duramax intake tube. Not only does it include provisions for all of the factory sensors and such, it incorporates a velocity stack into the filter mount that optimizes airflow similar to the venturis on a carburetor. Additionally, the AIRAID air intake tube has smooth interior walls rather than the factory accordion-style tube. There are a few things that need to be transferred from the original intake to the new one; including the filter minder, and the mass airflow sensor (MAF). The MAF sensor is attached to the stock intake box with torx screws. AIRAID supplies the correct-size bit to remove the screws and new allen-head screws to attach the MAF sensor to the AIRAID tube.

AIRAID air intake air filters include red SynthaFlow and red, black and blue SynthaMax filter media

AIRAID offers most of its air intake systems in two filter styles and three colors: red oiled cotton blend filters, or fully synthetic SynthaMax dry filters in red, blue, or black

AIRAID supplies a hump hose and stainless steel clamps to connect the intake tube to the throttle body. It is recommended to position the hump hose and clamps on the throttle body first and then insert the AIRAID 2011-2012 Chevrolet Silverado/GMC Sierra 2500HD & 3500 Duramax intake tube into place between the box and the throttle body. It takes a little finesse to get everything positioned just right, but once it’s in, everything fits like a glove. The lower portion of the intake tube secures to the MXP air box using four stainless allen-head bolts. The filter attaches to the intake tube itself, so there’s no need for another coupler at the intake box.

With the installation largely complete, the weather stripping can be installed on the top edge of the air box. This weather stripping is important because it seals against the underside of the hood, which keeps hot engine air away from the filter. The last piece of the puzzle is the filter itself. AIRAID offers most of its air intake systems in two filter styles and three basic colors. There is the intake with a traditional red oiled media filter, 200-281, or identical intake systems with SynthaMax full synthetic dry filter media in red (201-281), blue (202-281), or black (203-281). AIRAID air filters and air intake systems carry a no-hassle lifetime warranty.

AIRAID MXP Cold Air intake systems for 2011-2012 Chevrolet Silverado/GMC Sierra 2500HD & 3500 models with a Duramax Diesel engine:

200-281 AIRAID Cold Air Intake - Red Oiled Premium Air Filter
201-281 AIRAID Cold Air Intake - Red Dry Synthetic Premium Air Filter
202-281 AIRAID Cold Air Intake - Black Dry Synthetic Premium Air Filter
203-281 AIRAID Cold Air Intake - Blue Dry Synthetic Premium Air Filter

With the installation complete, the AIRAID 2011-2012 Chevrolet Silverado/GMC Sierra 2500HD & 3500 Duramax intake looks great and fits well. A decal noting the Exemption Order (EO) number granted by the California Air Resources Board (CARB) should be visibly placed under the hood indicating that this AIRAID air intake kit is street legal in all 50 states. No tuning is required to experience enhanced performance with the AIRAID 2011-2012 Chevrolet Silverado/GMC Sierra 2500HD & 3500 Duramax intake system. Performance data from AIRAID’s in-house all-wheel-drive Mustang chassis dyno showed an estimated gain of 19 horsepower and 34 lb-ft of torque at the wheels. This AIRAID intake kit helps improve power delivery throughout the rpm range for substantial drivability improvements. Not bad for a simple bolt-on performance upgrade that took about an hour to perform.

Find additional Chevy or GMC Duramax Diesel upgrades from AIRAID, The Performance Intake Company, using the AIRAID Find Products search. Use the AIRAID Dealer Search tool to find an authorized AIRAID Performance Filters or Performance Intake Systems dealer near you.


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Founded in 1997, AIRAID is a leading manufacturer of cold air intake systems, premium performance air filters, and PowerAid throttle body spaces for domestic and import cars, trucks and SUVs. For more information go to www.AIRAID.com.