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I want more power!
|I get asked this question a lot. . .and it is usually followed by, "and I don't have a lot of money". So, here is my list of go-fast mods for every budget.
Performance Upgrades by level
----this pages is constantly updated.
Tune up your Car! - Replace the air filter, fuel filter, change your oil(Go Synthetic!), Transmission Fluid(Automatic), Spark Plugs, Cap & Rotor, new O2 sensor, coolant flush & thermstat replaced, check your tire pressure, Run some injector cleaner (I use Techron).
Dump in a bottle or 2 of 91% Isopropyl alcohol(rubbing alcohol) to dry out any moisture, it also increases Octane: R+M/2...101 -- Mixtures with 92 Octane Premium @ 10% yield 94.5 Octane
You will be suprised how well your Storm runs when it is propery tuned.
Timing Advancement - advance 2-7 degrees more! (FREE)
-Ignition/Timing advance is the point at which the spark plug fires relative to the piston reaching the top of its travel on the compression stroke, and it's measured in degrees of crankshaft rotation.
For example, if initial timing is 10 degrees, the spark will fire 10 degrees before the piston reaches the top of its stroke.
The reason that spark advance is important is because engines perform best when complete ignition of the air/fuel mixture and peak cylinder pressure occur just after the piston has reached TDC and begins to travel downward on the power stroke.
To do this, especially at higher engine speeds where the spark fires up to 50 times per second, the air/fuel mixture must begin burning before this point so it has time to completely burn and produce maximum power.
Retiming the engine so that the spark fires earlier in the combustion cycle relative to top dead center gives the air/fuel mixture more time to burn in the combustion chamber before the piston begins its power stroke.
Firing the spark too late, especially as engine rpm increases, wastes power because unburned fuel is expelled on the exhaust stroke. This is why most engines, especially those with low compression, respond well to advancing the timing respective to the factory setting.
By advancing timing in small increments, say 2 degrees at a time, you can usually find a few horsepower.
Similarly, wider spark plug gaps, within the ability of the ignition to produce enough energy to fire across them, ignite the mixture more quickly and reliably.
If you’ve got an inductive timing light and a spark plug gapper, you can experiment with different amounts of timing and plug gap until you find the combination that makes your engine happy.
One thing to remember though, you don't want to advance the timing too much, as this will lead to detonation. Detonation is caused when the air/fuel mixture ignites too soon and the power is lost. When this happens, it causes your engine to ping-and cause premature wear and tear on the engine.
To keep detonation at bay, you can run a higher Octane level fuel.
Have you ever seen that Ebay "Performance Module" that claims up to 20+HP gains? All it is a 4.7K ohm resistor($0.39 Radio Shack) that you use to bypass the IAT (Intake Air Temp) sensor. This tricks the ECM (Electronic Control Module) into thinking that it is cold outside, specifically 580F. When the ECM senses that it is cold out, it advances the timing
1-2 degrees to warm up the engine quicker. Once the IAT sensor registers that the engine is at normal operating tempature, the ECM retards the timing to the normal 10 degrees BTDC.
Save Your Money! You can do this manually just by advancing the timing, and get even more gains. The 20+HP gains are accurate, if you are doing this to a big block V8 engine.
For a inline 4 (I4), you might see 4-5HP gains.
Weight Reduction - Remove seats, spare tire, etc. . . (FREE)
All of that extra weight in your car makes your engine work harder. If you are going to race, make sure that you don't fill your gas tank. Each gallon of gas weighs 6.7 lbs. (6.7 lbs x 12.4 gallon tank = 83.08 lbs.)
When I race, I try to have only 1/8 of a tank, and I never fill the tank past the 1/2 mark.
Spark Plug Wires($45-$60) - Despite claims made by some wire set manufacturers; no wire set made will increase or add additional horsepower to your engine. Many people have said that engine performance has increased after they fitted a wire set.
However, in reality, performance only increased because the engine's potential power was previously restricted by faulty, stock or warn out ignition wires. RTR Performance
Throttle Body Upgrade - From GSi Storm or Impulse ($10-$50)
- The Base Storm TB is 53mm, the GSi is 56mm. That is a 5.66% in flow. Not much, but every little bit helps, that is why they have it on the GSi in the first place. ;-)
Air intake/Cold Air Intake ($50-$200) - RTR Performance
Exhaust Pipe/High Flow Catalytic Converter/Muffler upgrade - 2 1/4 to 2 1/2 pipes ($150-$500)
Header replacement($180-$500) - Pacesetter, Stan's(used), or custom.
Test Pipe ($40) - Replace the catalytic converter. If you are in an emission controlled location, this is for off-road use only(drag/track), so in other words, don't get caught ;-)
Lowering Springs/coilovers - lowers center of gravity for better handling. It also lowers the drag coefficient by reducing the underbody air flow, in max drop situations. RTR Performance
Strut/Tower bars - Handling ($25-$70) - Helps control front frame twist associated with uni-body construction. For better handling performance, this greatly strengthens corner speeds and minimizes understeer due to chassis flex. RTR Performance
Tires ($300-$500) - Performance tires, take your pick as there are a bunch out there.
UnderDrive Pulley Replacement ($170) - Unorthodox Racing has discontinued making them for the Storm/Impulse/Elan engines. They have limited Stock on 1.8L DOHC pulleys. You might get lucky and find a 1.6L pulley used. Unorthodox Racing Pulleys
Aluminum Flywheel Replacement ($450) - Fidanza Engineering Corp
Performance Ignition system ($150+) - MSD 6A or 6AL and GM Blaster coil -Very affordable. You need the Tach splitter cable for this one to work with your tach. If you are not into wiring, get the Wiring Harness.
Jacobs Electronics i.C.E. Pak kit includes the Ice Pak Energy Pak & Torquer Coil - Very Expensive, but the best.
ECM Replacement/PiggyBack kit ($100-$1000) - HKS SAFR, APEXi SAFC, Haltech E6GM. I won't mention JET because I have yet to hear of anybody that got this and said anything good about it. So, save your cash on that one.
Oil/Transmission/Fuel cooler/radiator add-on/upgrade ($40-$400)
Performance Clutch - Manual transmission ($300-$400) -
Nitrous Oxide - Dry Setup ($300-$400), Wet Setup ($500+) NOS / ZEX / Venom Performance / Ny-Trex
Porting engine parts - Intake/Exhaust manifolds ($20 in materials)
Fill Engine mounts with Polyurathane ($15) - 3M WindoWeld
Turbo Charger add-on ($1000-$2000) - Parts needed:
4:1 - 6:1 FMU or FPR, or larger injectors
Turbo O2 sensor housing
Silicone hoses to connect the pipes all together.
Oil Filter relocation Kit, or run a T off of the oil pressure sensor to supply oil to the turbo
Assorted lines for oil plumbing(brass T, oil pan barb, etc...)
Knowledge to know what to do with the above list! www.Google.com is your friend!
Nitrous Oxide - Direct port injection ($500-$1000) - NOS / ZEX / Venom Performance / Ny-Trex
Engine Swap- From a 12 valve to a 16 valve Storm GSi or Impulse RS Engine ($500-$1000)
Porting engine parts - Head intake & exhaust ports ($20 in materials)
Phenolic intake manifold gaskets ($70-$150) - RTR Performance
Cylinder bore ($500-$1000) - Increase the displacement! Stock overbore pistons from Isuzu come in 2 different sizes, .050" and .100" . RTR Performance
Raise the Compression ($500-$1000) - custom pistons/shave the head. - RTR Performance - Ross Racing Pistons / JE / Wiseco / Arias / Probe Industries
Ceramic coating on Intake/exhaust manifold/turbine housing ($5-$300)
Custom Cams - ($300) From Mild to Wild Custom Cams
This is somewhat a controversial subject. The Rice Nazis, as I call t