ASK THE MXPERTS: WHERE THERE IS SMOKE THERE IS FIRE
I’ve always wondered if it’s true that an air filter can catch fire. I’ve never seen a burning air filter in all my years of racing. Can they?
Yes. It doesn’t happen very often, but there is a kernel of truth to it. Four-strokes have been known to backfire and catch the air filter on fire. It isn’t a common occurrence, but it happened enough times that in 2012, Honda actually doubled up the backfire screen on the CRF450. It should be noted that the MXA wrecking crew has removed the backfire screens from our four-strokes for years (and never called the fire department once). That said, you can order special flame-resistant air filter oil from DT1 (www.dt1filters.com) that will work on any brand of filter, while Twin Air makes special air filters that are made from flame-resistant foam (www.twinair.com).