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Would a chip help at all?

 
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Old 05 Mar 2013, 05:47 pm
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Location: Kansas City, Missouri, USA
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Default Would a chip help at all?

I have a 2001 LE, 2.2 n/a, i get about 20 highway, which is decent for a car thats about to turn 12. Would a performance chip help at all?
Thanks
PTVibe
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Old 05 Mar 2013, 06:19 pm
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Default Re: Would a chip help at all?

If your talking about the "performance" chip they sell on eBay and some other places, yes and no.

The "chip" is actually a resistor that's attached in one way or another to the IAT (Intake Air Temperature) sensor. It fools the computer into thinking there's cooler air coming into the throttle body. This it turn advances the timing and more fuel is added to the intake mixture. The YES part is that you can gain a couple of HP just like when you car acts and goes better in the cool morning air.

The problem, that "chip" never stops. The computer thinks there's cooler air all the time, even at idle. Extra fuel and timing advance happens from the minute you start the engine till it's shut off. Some who have tried it, also had the engine light come on and stay on because of the attachment to the IAT.

Read all the small print in any add you see for a "chip", even if it doesn't look like an add-on to the IAT and see how it connects to the engine. Used to be when they first came out, it looked just like a paper clip with a resistor that plugged into the IAT. That resistor was what fooled the computer. Now, I see adds for a nice looking box with wires (high tech) but reading the add, it's the same thing as the paper clip only dressed up in a nicer package.

There was a company who actually did accept your computer in the mail (about 3 weeks turn-around time) and somehow reprogrammed it for a gain in performance. Somewhere around $300 but the drawback was that if your car was taken in for any kind of service, you could easily loose the reprogramming that was done if they hooked the computer to their diagnostic equipment.
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Old 05 Mar 2013, 06:56 pm
Young Cruiser
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Kansas City, Missouri, USA
Posts: 78
Default Re: Would a chip help at all?

Quote:
Originally Posted by CREWZIN View Post
If your talking about the "performance" chip they sell on eBay and some other places, yes and no.

The "chip" is actually a resistor that's attached in one way or another to the IAT (Intake Air Temperature) sensor. It fools the computer into thinking there's cooler air coming into the throttle body. This it turn advances the timing and more fuel is added to the intake mixture. The YES part is that you can gain a couple of HP just like when you car acts and goes better in the cool morning air.

The problem, that "chip" never stops. The computer thinks there's cooler air all the time, even at idle. Extra fuel and timing advance happens from the minute you start the engine till it's shut off. Some who have tried it, also had the engine light come on and stay on because of the attachment to the IAT.

Read all the small print in any add you see for a "chip", even if it doesn't look like an add-on to the IAT and see how it connects to the engine. Used to be when they first came out, it looked just like a paper clip with a resistor that plugged into the IAT. That resistor was what fooled the computer. Now, I see adds for a nice looking box with wires (high tech) but reading the add, it's the same thing as the paper clip only dressed up in a nicer package.

There was a company who actually did accept your computer in the mail (about 3 weeks turn-around time) and somehow reprogrammed it for a gain in performance. Somewhere around $300 but the drawback was that if your car was taken in for any kind of service, you could easily loose the reprogramming that was done if they hooked the computer to their diagnostic equipment.
Im not looking for HP gains, just trying to increase fuel economy
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2001 PT Cruiser LE, Purchased June 29, 2012, Born April 2001

Wanted Mods: Milani Rims, 2" Lowering Kit, Aftermarket Cold Air Intake, Custom Painted Trim, Painted Calipers, Slotted/Drilled Rotors, Custom Seat Covers

In Progress Mods: Shopping for rims, rewiring fog lights into parking lights

Completed Mods: Courtesy LED Strips (Thanks to rob342), Interior LED Lights
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Old 05 Mar 2013, 07:16 pm
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Default Re: Would a chip help at all?

Quote:
Originally Posted by PTVibe View Post
Im not looking for HP gains, just trying to increase fuel economy

Keep it tuned up properly and change your driving habits to those of someone who wants to save gas. Go 2 to 4 pounds of air over what the sticker recommends on the drivers door (on a 2001, it's 34 lbs.) and keep top speed down as far as you can without blocking the traffic behind you. It's shaped like a brick so pushing it down the road cost gas. The slower you go the more gas you save.
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Old 05 Mar 2013, 08:01 pm
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Default Re: Would a chip help at all?

Far as air pressure goes you really need to go by the tires recommend psi. To avoid premature tire ware. 6 lbs. Under max air rating is good for your needs.
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Old 05 Mar 2013, 08:15 pm
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Default Re: Would a chip help at all?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Busted_PT View Post
6 lbs. Under max air rating is good for your needs.
MAX air pressure on my tires is 50 lbs. 6 under is 44 and I recommended 36 to 38, so he should be in the safe zone.
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Old 06 Mar 2013, 03:53 am
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Posts: 1,256
Default Re: Would a chip help at all?

Crewzin, thank you for the interesting info about those 'magic' chips. Sounds like opening a can-o-worms. Tires: I run 40 in the front and 35 in the rear on15" x 65 series tires. I would not recommend this on 17" tires. Pressure should be checked when the tires are cold.

Mileage: non-turbo --auto trans --ac off --defrost off --switch position next to defrost off. I get 27 mpg highway @ 65-68 mph. Better at 55, worse at 70. This is with cruise control on. Note: 65 mph = 2500 rpm.

The oxygen sensor controls the mileage [fuel] when in closed loop. They wear out with miles and contamination. I might try replacing the #1 sensor [in the exhaust manifold]. If you do, let us know the results and the brand.
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Old 06 Mar 2013, 08:42 am
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Default Re: Would a chip help at all?

Chip will NOT help with mileage, might not even make a performance change you'd notice.

Put synthetic oil in -it's more "Slippery" - reduces friction - helps a tad, and is better for your engine anyway. I go 5,000 miles between changes.

Be sure air filter is clean.

IF you have a choice, get pure gasoline, without alcohol - the alcohol gives poorer mileage.

Good plug wires & Plugs gapped at 0.040...

You can cruise steadily at a fairly good clip, it's acceleration that really sucks gas.

I'm at about 113,000 miles and have recorded all gas put in the car - total miles divided by total gallons give me an overall mileage of just over 25 MPG.

I go 4-5 PSI above the door sticker, and check the tires at least once a month.

Tires can make a difference, also - I have Michelin Hydroedge on 16" rims, which are a fairly "hard" rubber - and lower profile (17") means more rolling resistance and poorer mileage.
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