22nd Sep 2008, 15:37
Wow, I seriously hope no one has taken the OP seriously on the 'air hole plug' comment. Honestly, don't freaking do it. You will end up with worse engine problems. That hole is used to draw air from the fender well, which will draw colder air than the 'Ram Air' setup will.
Speaking of the 'Ram Air', if the OP knew anything about what he was spouting about, he would have said that the 'Ram Air' a Grand Am has is NOT an actual working Ram Air system like you would see in a Trans Am. There are two bends in the plastic shroud before the air gets to the air box. Think about it for a second. It's a little hard to RAM AIR IN if it has to be deflected around two separate turns in the piping. It doesn't help performance, and you CERTAINLY won't get a boost from plugging the only other hole in the air box.
BTW - I own a 99 GAGT, so yes I do know what I am talking about. They are awesome cars, just have to watch out for the usual stuff (also, lower intake manifold gasket is prone to leaking coolant, FYI).
22nd Sep 2008, 19:22
Fyi for you guys, the factory ram air does next to nothing for performance, and plugging that extra hole in the box actually hurts performance. An engine will only pull in as much air as it needs for it's rpm. No air "escapes" out the other hole. It goes to an intake tube behind the head light that pulls colder air in from the fender, rather than from the convoluted routing of the heat soaked "ram air" ducting in the engine bay. Colder air is denser air, which means more oxygen to burn with fuel, which means more power. This is internal combustion 101.
24th Sep 2008, 11:21
Comments 15:37 and 19:22 are both right on. I'm a mechanic and car enthusiast, and the point about the bends in the "ram air" being a hindrance to performance are correct, as is the comment about colder air being denser and aiding combustion better.
I own a 2001 "Quad 4" Grand Am as a third vehicle and wanted to up the performance of it cheaply. I fabricated my own cold air system using a very short tube and hi-flow cone filter with a curved heat shroud (to facilitate smoother air flow). The increase in power is amazing. It is a much more noticeable increase than I got in my 2007 Mustang using an after-market cold-air system. The aftermarket system has a 90 degree bend and an incredibly long tube. Neither of those features really contributes to better performance.