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The weather is beautiful outside, you take a deep breath to suck it all in and wham! You sneeze! Just like our vehicles, we need air to work. But if there are pollutants getting into our airways we .. and our Jeeps are not going to work as well.
And your Jeep needs to breathe, the air filter is one of the most important parts of a vehicle for combustion. So when yours starts to get a bit dirty its time to find a good replacement.
The nature of being out and about in dusty environments is that a Jeep’s air filter might need to be changed a bit more often than regular cars. But, there are plenty of performance options available. Looking for a cabin air filter? We included some of those as well!
Let’s take a look at the best air filters for Jeep Wrangler JKs:
aFe Magnum Flow Dry Air Filter for Wrangler JK
The aFe Magnum Flow air filter is for Jeep Wrangler JKs. This is a dry filter which means it’s easier to maintain and clean. It’s made of a plastic shell and is a 3 layer filter that uses synthetic polyurethane to keep your engine running smooth.
You can reuse this multiple times after cleaning – something you can’t do with oil filters. You could just smack this on the ground to clean it, it’s that easy. Or you could do it properly with a vacuum cleaner/hose and let it dry. Some people claim to get better MPG with high-performance filters and while that may be true, it’s not something that has been measured or advertised.
The synthetic materials used are able to stand up to temperature swings without deteriorating. All aFe filters come with a lifetime warranty. Many owners have had these for an extremely long amount of time, 5 years and up.
K&N High Performance Filter Jeep Wrangler JK
The K&N High Performance air filter is for Jeep Wrangler JKs. This is the other long-lasting option in its class competing with aFe for the top spot. They both have great reviews and are almost equal in price(but it fluctuates).
So, why do we prefer the aFe?
This filter is going to require maintenance. In fact, that’s why there’s an up-sell for a cleaning kit. It’s an oiled filter – you can’t just shake it out or use the hose to wash it off. You’ll have to remember to wash it properly, let it dry properly, and re-oil it properly.
So when you re-oil this filter, you’ll have to wait about a day for it to dry. That means you’ll need to keep your stock filter and switch it out every time you have to do this. It won’t be often, but we don’t want to deal with that.
If you are a fan of K&N and don’t mind going through those steps then it’s no big deal. After all, its reusable just like all the performance air filters – you buy either this or the aFe and you’ll be happy for the majority of your vehicle’s lifespan. This includes a 10 year warranty and the filters are made in the USA.
Spectre Air Filter
The Spectre Performance Air filter is an affordable option for your Jeep. The pleated design is maintained with steel mesh and the material for filtration is synthetic. It is another oil-filter, but for the sake of how cheap it is, we thought we’d feature it.
It’s similar in appearance to the K&N, as for performance it hasn’t been on the market long enough for the verdict to be out. But if you don’t mind giving it a shot for the price it might be a good choice.
Fram Cheap Air Filter
The Fram air filter is as cheap as it gets – you’ll save money compared to anything out there. The quality from a high-performance option and a medium performance to this is noticeable. It’s a thinner design that is going to be an OEM swap pretty much.
If you’re planning on going somewhere dusty and don’t want to deal with your regular air filter getting gummed up, maybe you might go for this. Or to use it while you’re re-oiling your high performance option.
For us, if you’re going to upgrade your air filter it’s worth it in investing in one that will last you several years. Engines are pretty expensive after all, and keeping gunk out of them is really important.
Cabin Filter vs Air Filter Jeep Wrangler
The difference between these two types of filters is one is for your engine(the regular air filter) and one is for your interior ventilation system(the cabin filter). The cabin filter will remove pollen and other debris from the air circulating through your air vents.
Fram Jeep Wrangler Cabin Filter
Fram partnered with Arm & Hammer for this cabin air filter kit. So if your Jeep is getting kind of stinky or you just don’t feel like your air is fresh, this could be a good choice. It’ll snatch away the dust, pollen, and other crud that makes our eyes sneeze and water.
It will reduce your airflow a little bit, but that’s because it’s a thick filter that’s doing its job. Many stock cabin filters are thin compared to this Fram. You can see from the product reviews that this really does do an awesome job of trapping particles.
This is a point of contention but I don’t recommend oil filters. Between a mixture of laziness and forgetfulness — I’ve let one sit way longer than it needed to. If you’re the go-getter who has a busy life but can still keep everything together then you’ll remember to clean it. That’s not the case for all of us when it comes to oil filters!
They’re harder to clean compared to dry filters. They’re the popular option in intakes but for an OEM replacement? Just go with a dry filter. Both aFe and Fram would work just fine.
I'm the owner of Beast Auto. I live in Phoenix, Arizona. I love anything automotive related, and taking road trips all across my beautiful state.