Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Got A Need For Speed? Easy Ways To Gain More Horsepower

By Levi Quinn

SUMMARY: Does the purring of a suped-up engine make you smile? Have you ever rolled down your window at a stop light to listen to the muscle car sitting beside you? If so, you've got horsepower fever.

While we all don't own a tricked out, 1966 Chevelle with a candy apple red paint rob and a custom interior, you can feed your need for speed, even in the family minivan. Here are few easy tips to get you stated.

Lubricants are your engine's best friend

Transmission fluid and motor oil are not just necessary for your engine to run, they can affect the power performance of your vehicle. Heat and friction steal away precious horsepower from your engine by slowing down moving parts and causing the engine to work harder. Choosing a newer synthetic, high grade lubricant can greatly reduce friction and keep your engine cooler, resulting in increased horsepower.

Upgrade your ignition system

When changing your spark plugs and wires, invest in a more expensive set. Increasing your spark allows for a more complete combustion of your fuel, giving you more horsepower and better gas mileage. Changing out your spark plugs, wires and coil can be a quick and easy way to boost your horsepower.

Give your engine some breathing room

Your air filter is vital to your engine's performance. Fresh air allows your engine to breathe, giving you better horsepower. A clogged, dirty air filter not only blocks the fresh airflow to your engine, it allows dirt and debris to get sucked in as well, clogging your moving parts and turning your fluids to sludge. Clean your air filter regularly and replace it like clockwork. Consider installing an oil soaked filter like one from K&N, they are guaranteed for life and help provide peak performance from your engine.

Keep it cool, baby

The hotter your engine runs, the harder it has to work. Installing a cold air kit infuses your air filter with fresh, denser, cool air, instead of allowing it to suck the warm air from under the hood back into the engine. Cold air kits are easy to obtain and install. Most do-it-yourselfers will have no trouble installing a cold air kit.

Pay more at the pump for better performance

While the 87 octane may look enticing with today's high gas prices, the cheap stuff will not do your engine any favors. It's a lot like hospital food, it will keep you alive, but it's not recommended for long term sustenance. More octane equals more power, period. Splurge for the higher grade gasoline or add a bottle of octane booster for an instant increase in horsepower. Of course, the bigger your engine, the more noticeable the difference will be.

Keep in mind that these tips won't make your minivan Nascar ready, but it will give you a little more pep off the starting line the next time you race that turquoise Topaz at the stoplight.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Good insights about car upgrades and how to gain more horse power.I'll be sure to take note of this and bring it to the next level with the help of my trusted auto shop.Thank you for sharing.