Let’s say your car is running on all cylinders, literally and figuratively. You’re fanatical about oil changes, never miss a coolant system flush and always rotate your tires. Your maintenance schedule is followed religiously, as defined in your car owner’s manual. If that describes how you take care of your car, congratulations – most people are willing to cut a few corners when it comes to car care & maintenance.
Yet even the most dedicated car enthusiast – and yes, some “cut the corners” types, too – occasionally demand a little bit more from their car. Factory components are OK, but they don’t deliver a desirable fuel economy. Likewise, stock accessories are certainly fine for normal performance, but what about those drivers who’d like to see their car go the extra mile?
Whenever the urge strikes for better mileage, more horsepower and something beyond the ordinary, your car requires a boost. And nothing delivers immediate results quite like performance parts.
Before looking at some different radiator problems, it helps to know exactly what role the radiator plays in the first place. In order to keep the internal engine temperature at a manageable level, coolant fluid flows around the engine block. When the temperature exceeds a certain point, the thermostat opens up, allowing coolant to flow into the radiator through an upper entry tube. A fan helps reduce the temperature of the coolant, and the fluid goes back into the engine through a lower exit tube. The process repeats constantly, keeping your engine’s temperature range around 190-210 degrees.
And with the term “performance parts,” we’re not necessarily talking about the super-modified cars that are popular with younger drivers. Most “mods” barely resemble the original factory car. But you can still add impressive performance characteristics to your car with barely any noticeable above-the-hood changes. In fact, the performance parts below are all in place of (or alongside with) existing parts, so they’re not detectable unless you actually rev the engine and take it for a spin. Performance Parts for Performance-Minded Drivers
Here’s the great thing about performance parts, circa 2015: they’re readily available (and affordably priced, and can be found at BuyAutoParts.com). Not even a generation ago, acquiring the latest exhaust kit or tuner was a labor of love. Many “blind purchases” were processed, where the buyer didn’t have a firm grasp as to what the performance even looked like, let alone how it actually performed.
But with user-friendly online outlets, finding the optimum performance component is easier than ever. Specs, pics, reviews, even how-to content is all there – the hardest part is figuring out what part to buy!
We’ll focus on 4 different performance parts: air intake performance kits, performance engine tuners, Coilover kits and performance fuel systems. Each particular component has its own performance boosting ability and is worth anyone’s consideration. Anyone of these performance parts added to your car (whether individually or in combination with other upgrades) will show instant results.
Air Intake Performance Kits
The theory behind a “cold air intake” is that cold air has higher oxygen density than warm air, which helps the engine run more efficiently. And the theory is sound; cold air intakes have been shown to increase horsepower and fuel mileage. Essentially, an air intake performance kit takes the internal air filter and moves it outside of the engine compartment. This relocation makes all the difference in gobbling up cold air in & around your engine block.
Air intake performance kits come in a wide variety of configurations; from simple tubes to comprehensive, all-in-one kits (with clamps, filters, elbows, custom conduit and more). Depending on your OEM engine specs, the air intake performance kit will differ in price, application, installation time and even performance. One thing’s for sure though – it will certainly help your engine run better.
Performance engine tuner
Need a tune-up. Do it yourself with a performance engine tuner. Commonly called “Superchips,” these wonder devices are small in stature and big on results. They’re called Superchips for a reason – some drivers swear they impart superpowers to their car’s formerly sluggish performance.
Relatively easy to install, performance engine tuners work by constantly measuring your engine’s status, and making instant, automatic adjustments to optimize speed & acceleration, MPG and other crucial performance categories. Another bonus of performance engine tuners is that they can also help limit maintenance costs. With an advance warning and the capability of reading diagnostic trouble codes, engine tuners are on the front line against potential problems down the road.
Which performance engine tuner is right for you? It depends what you’re looking for. Regardless of your preference – custom screen kits and software-centric tuners are always popular – a noticeable boost in engine output comes standard.
Performance is usually equated with the car’s engine but it’s worth noting that other car components can drastically improve other ride attributes. Take ride comfort and handling, for instance. super chips consist of a heavy spring positioned over a shock absorber – hence the name “Coilover.”
Coilover kits are installed for many reasons. Lower overall ride height is one benefit; with a lower center of gravity and better weight distribution, they can help improve handling. Another is optimum braking power and tire wear. Coilover kits can help improve brake response and also evenly distribute weight to each wheel; this improved position results in a more “level” tire wear, thus reducing the need to rotate tires. (As with the engine tuner’s diagnostic prowess, a common theme among performance parts is their better overall maintenance.)
Stiffer springs also establish better suspension geometry and can reduce body roll when cornering, accelerating & braking. From street-savvy coilover kits to more conventional types, you can install a coilover kit best suited to your unique driving habits.
Performance Fuel Systems
Similar to a cold air intake, performance fuel systems give your car’s engine a boost – although unlike the cold air intake, these systems optimize the fuel for better overall performance. Water and debris removal from the fuel has tremendous benefits for a more efficient engine. With advanced filtering mechanisms, performance fuel systems deliver the cleanest fuel possible to your car’s injectors. This small, seemingly insignificant tweak has a noticeable impact on mileage, acceleration, and other engine attributes.
Most factory-installed fuel pumps work fine, but a performance fuel pump provides considerable benefits. A FASS Titanium Series Fuel Pump is one of the best performance fuel systems available today.
Engine tuners, suspension upgrades, fuel/air optimization, and air intake improvements – these are just four ways you can take your car’s performance to another level. If you’re planning on a few performance tweaks, these four are a great place to start. Best of all, these modifications are affordable and are fairly easy to undertake. And even if you’ve already done some performance upgrade projects, there’s always another component to consider.