Things you need to know about upgrading your brakes

When tuning your car engine you must give attention to other non power related parts of the car to ensure safety and stability.

When you've dramaticallly increased the power of the car you will generally be carrying a higher average speed so your brakes will need to be up to the job of dealing with the extra power.

A brake converts your cars momentum into heat and dissipates this. As speeds increase and braking requirements grow a standard brake disc will start to fail and be unable to dissipate all the heat required.

In bad cases the brake pads will start to smoke, and a layer of gas between the pads and discs will dramatically affect braking ability.

High frictions sports pads will offer a better performance when hot and will resist the tendency to smoke.

 Larger discs will be much better at dissipating heat as well so swapping your brakes to a larger set is a sensible upgrade option when performance tuning your engine.

You can also get vented discs where two layers of the heat friction surface are used with a network of channels between them which almost doubles the heat dissipation provided by the disc. These are usually wider than solid discs so you'd need to increase the size of the caliper to carry them and brake effectively.

Most manufacturers offer a higher performance model in each model range and these are generally fitted with better brakes.

It makes sense to source the performance option, specifically chosen for your car model and is generally much cheaper than getting bespoke high performance parts for your car.

Do bigger brake discs needs more pistons and a larger servo?

When adding larger discs and pads you will usually need to increase the number of pistons and size of the brake servo to cope.

The power of your cars braking is limited by the amount of traction the tyres provide so to a big degree you need to match your brakes to the power of the car and the grip. 

Often engine tuners will add larger wheels which can accomodate bigger discs and also fit wider tyres to increase the grip and improve braking.

Adding discs with grooves and drilled holes will usually improve the heat dissipation.

High performance sports brake pads will generally not work well in normal traffic as they require some heat to bite. As you'll have them cold most of the time they will be innefective for a second or so before they warm up. They are also often more noisy than fast road or standard brake pads.

Check out online forums such as the one over at TorqueCars to see which brake upgrades will work best for your car and the amount of tuning you have done to your engine.

Diesel tuning

Modern diesel engines are worlds apart from those smelly noisy diesels of times passed. Today there is quite a stigma attached to the diesel engine and as aresult many dismiss them.

The diesel engines are now very refined with notable offerings from Peugeot, BMW, Audi and jaguar and these offer petrol matching levels of performance with great fuel economy.

The way a diesel engine works, by detonating the fuel air mix by compressing it. Pressure equals heat and heat equals combustion when it reaches a specific threshold. This causes the fuel to be efficiently burned, much more so than with a conventional petrol engine which is why disels are so economical. As a consequence of this method of combustion diesel burns much more slowly than petrol which is why you do not see the same high rpm ranges.  This gives diesels their characteristic flat near linear torque curve.

Hidden cost of Tuning cars

What you get out of your car tuning project is very much dependent on what you put into it. The more you spend the better the return and the larger the base power the greater the performance benefit. The aim of this site is to give a sensible overview on engine tuning modifications and realistic expectations.

Aftermarket Superchargers

The principle of a supercharger is getting compressed air into the engine. As the air is compressed it contains more oxygen and allows you to burn more fuel. It also helps the maximise the efficiency of your engine.

Converting a NASP engine to forced induction is usually easier with a supercharger due to the linear way they work and they require slightly less work to install than a turbocharger.

All you need to know about car tuning stages

Vehicle part makers quote modifications in Stages usually but what does this mean? It is usual for performance part makers and tuning houses to use the numbers 1 – 3 to for each state of tune. To be frank it is actually quite  meaningless as they often mean different things but there are some common threads we can infer between them all.

What do each tuning stages refer to and how do they differ when comparing say a stage 1 with a stage 3 modification.

Everyone you ask will have thier own idea and no stage is tied to a power gain or percentage figure.


Cold air vents and CAI kits

Cars are more lively and perform better when it is colder, you’ll also notice that you make more power and your fuel economy is lower in cold weather.  This is due to the effects of air temperature and the fact that cold air carriers more oxygen than warmer air.  An intake vent will help to address this problem, and can be a stylish addition to your car by providing an easy route for cold air to enter the engine.

Stainless steel Performance exhausts

Engines burn fuel and need to expel the combustion materials in the most efficient manner possible. The exhaust is the route these take from the engine to the back of the car but there are many considerations that need to be taken into account to ensure this happens in the best way possible. It is essential to get the flow rate just right, too low a flow rate and the power band will suffer.

Debunking car tuning myths

Some Myths about car tuning

When it comes to car tuning there are lots of sites offering bad advice and there are lots of urban myths around.

In this lens I aim to dispel the myths about car tuning and establish a common sense guide when it comes to getting more power out of your engine.

We will focus initially on the engine and handling side of car tuning although there are many other potential areas of improvement when it comes to cars.

Getting the wrong mods or parts can really wreck a car so we suggest you choose v

Turbocharged engine tuning

When deciding on a power train which should you go for?We looked at NASP engines in our previous article and here we shall examine the tuning options for turbocharged engines.

Personally the thing about turbos is the power hike you get as the turbo spools up and kicks in. The big plus is turbo engines are light and produce the same power as bigger NASP engines.

Remapping the ECU

The ECU or Engine Control Unit controls all aspects and function of your cars engine. Pretty much every car since 1992 have an engine management unit controlling at the very least  fuel/timing.

Modern demands for fuel economy and strignent emissions requirements the computer has evolved into a complex system.