Car modifications to boost its performance

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For a lot of enthusiasts, their car may not be exactly how they’d like it to be. Some feel that manufacturers even tune down cars for commercial reasons. And that’s when they start discovering car modifications.

Ordinarily, an engine works this way: A piston moves down, creating a vacuum, allowing air at atmospheric pressure to be drawn into the combustion chamber or cylinder. Combined with fuel, chemical energy is turned into kinetic energy through combustion. This forces the piston up, which in turn rotates the crankshaft and provides the drive for the car.

Though some people view performance modifications as a justification to increase fuel consumption, that isn’t true. Fuel economy is relative to performance. And the basis for better performance is more efficient combustion in the engine. So here are some modifications that may help your car perform a little better:

1. Cold Air Intake  

Difficulty of installation: Easy

The temperature of the air can affect the efficiency of your car. A cold air intake kit is an aftermarket system that brings cool air into the  engine. Normally, a car regulates the temperature of air as it enters the engine. Cold air intake kits, however, can lead to higher performance and engine efficiency, based on the idea that colder air is denser than warm air, which means that it contains more oxygen, necessary for more dynamic combustion in the engine.

2. Cat-Back Exhaust

Difficulty of installation: Medium

If you do an intake upgrade, it’s a good idea to upgrade your exhaust. A cat-back exhaust system entails everything after the catalytic converter but do check the legality of changing one in your location. Cat-back exhaust systems aren’t necessarily loud. With the use of resonators and mufflers, it can still be high-flow and lower-volume. But it’s safe to assume it will be significantly more noticeable than your stock exhaust system.

3. Air Filters

Difficulty of installation: Medium

Aftermarket air filters allow for more airflow into the engine for a more efficient use of the air/fuel combination, while also blocking contaminants and impurities that slowly degrade performance over time. Secondary air filters are generally made up of a thin layer of cotton or other material housed between several layers of impurity-catching thin mesh. High-quality aftermarket air filters drop into the engine’s air box, and that’s about it for installation. And because they’re made of fabric, they’re washable.

4. Spark plugs and wires

Difficulty of installation: Easy

Although not so much a modification as it is a general maintenance tip, spark plugs and wires can affect engine performance in the long run. Spark plugs wear out over time as their conductive elements erode away and force your ignition coils to do more work to produce a “hotter” spark. Wires also make a big difference due to electrical resistance and insulation to causing interference. The cost for this is modest and can be easy to do on your own, therefore it pays to do this once every 80,000 km or so.

 

WARNING: Ensure that you check your manufacturer’s warranty before making any changes to your car. Although most changes can be made without voiding the warranty, it is still safer. Also, don’t make too many changes all of a sudden. Analyse what performance parameters you want to improve and what is the best way to do that. That way, you save money and the trouble.

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