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.

5 car accessories that make your life easier

In the age of ever advancing technologies, there are quite a few handy accessories that can make your driving experience a lot more comfortable.

1. Mobile Phone Holder

We spend 2-3 hours daily in our cars and during this time, we invariably have to use our phones, be it for navigation or texting. An inexpensive mobile phone holder can make it a lot more convenient for us to use our phones.

mobile holder

2. First aid kit

You never know when you might need to clean and cover a wound. Having a few simple items in a first-aid kit can keep the early onset of infection at bay. Keep a first aid kit in the trunk of your car, or under the passenger seat.

first aid kit

3. Flashlight

In case you ever face a breakdown on the road, a flashlight can come in handy. Whether for checking the underside of your car or ensuring you aren’t stuck in complete darkness, it’s certainly a useful thing to have.

flashlight

4. Bluetooth FM modulator

Who wants to spend thousands on new car stereos when spending just a few hundred rupees for a modulator will do the trick. FM modulators are small frequency enhancing devices which transmit music from your ipod, MP3, or other music playing device to the receiver in your car stereo. It works like a small radio station right in your car.

FM modulator

5. Gear Lock

With car thefts on the rise, having a gear lock can provide your car with added protection. A gear lock basically prevents anyone from changing gears, so unless someone has a key, they can’t drive away with your car.

gear lock

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