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How to Add Horsepower to Your Car and Gain Extra Power

Updated on March 16, 2015
CC BY-SA 2.0
CC BY-SA 2.0 | Source

Adding Horsepower

You can add horsepower to your car, and you don't really need to be mechanically inclined, just determined. With the proper tools and some pre-planing, it's not hard to do.

If you grew up during the 1970s then you remember the muscle cars of the era. Mustangs, Camaro, FIrebird, TransAm. Corvettes and Montecarlo.

These were some of the cars that auto enthusiasts used to "upgrade" and made them into muscle cars worthy of car shows. Most of today's cars are so in-tune with the on-board computers that minor tinkering, unless done by professionals, can alter or even damage its functions and performance.

But there are some things that can be done to give any automobile added "ump". All cars lose or gain horsepower because of three main things;

The amount of air that is needed to mix with the gasoline, the amount of exhaust that is released and weight. In today's cars, the computer chip is also a factor.

To give your car extra horsepower you need to increase some things, and change others.

First, change the factory installed air filter for cone shaped filters, usually called cold air intake filters. They substantially increase the amount of air entering the motor. Attach them using the existing hose or add chrome tubing which you can get at the same place where you buy the filter. These filters need little maintenance and maintenance kits are readily available. You will almost never need to buy another filter. K&N makes very good ones, but others are just as good. Position the filter in the engine bay but as far away from the motor core as you can. These filters work better with cooler air. Cold air adds more oxygen thus your car performs better. There are also heat shields for these filters that will help in keeping the temperature of the air cooler.

Second. Change the factory installed muffler. They restrict the amount of exhaust from your car and robs it of horse power. Think of a water hose with a small outlet, the bigger the outlet the more that comes out. Pressure builds up on the exhaust and dramatically lowers the available engine power. Go for mufflers that are labeled performance. Thrush Mufflers are a good choice, but depending on much tranquility and harmony you want to keep with your neighbors, there are quieter brands.

Third, and this is only for models that have a computer, change the factory computer chip for a performance chip. You will get about 10-15 extra horsepower by doing this alone. Jet Manufacturing has a good selection.

Off course other things can rob your vehicle of horsepower like the weight, air drag, and lack of regular maintenance.

These three additions or changes can add up from 20 to 50 ( more in some cases) extra horsepower to your car turning it from an everyday ride to a pleasure to drive.

Adding horsepower


© 2011 Luis E Gonzalez


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    • LuisEGonzalez profile image

      Luis E Gonzalez 4 years ago from Miami, Florida

      John686: Thanks

    • profile image

      Johnk686 4 years ago

      I am in agreement with pretty much everything that you mentioned entirely! Excellent website document! ceaggeebfcee

    • profile image

      Pharmd646 4 years ago

      Thanks for another magnificent post. Where else may just anybody get that kind of info in such a perfect manner of writing? I have a presentation next week, and I'm at the look for such information. dgdeedk

    • profile image

      Pharmg850 4 years ago

      Hello! fecdaeg interesting fecdaeg site! I'm really like it! Very, very fecdaeg good!

    • LuisEGonzalez profile image

      Luis E Gonzalez 6 years ago from Miami, Florida

      JP993; Thank you

    • JP993 profile image

      JP993 6 years ago from England

      Great hub, I do love a bit of car modifications. These are the first things to change to release a few extra horses.


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