Sunday, January 11, 2015

ECU Tuning - Unleashing the Hidden Power Within the ECU

At Last Call Racing, we are often on our Dyno Dynamics dynamometer finely calibrating the ECU's of the greatest vehicles made, but what is it that we are doing to the ECU?

ECU Calibration allows a person with knowledge of and experience with the physical and chemical actions and reactions taking place within an internal combustion engine to analyze data received from the vehicle's many sensors, as well as using professional lab grade external sensors and make corrections to the information within the ECU. Among the most important, this allows for the proper control of fueling based on fuel stoichiometry, mass airflow or aircharge, camshaft timing events, percent of cylinder filling (load), speed and load based volumetric efficiencies, fuel components (injectors/pumps), and fuel pressure. With the fuel aspect of ECU calibration, the correct mass air value is calibrated in order to supply the correct amount of fueling based on the above mentioned factors. Many aftermarket parts are focused on the ability to move more air, and when these parts are installed, the ECU often needs re-calibration.

Having our fueling properly calibrated based on corrected values for mass airflow, we can properly calibrate other important regions of the ECU outputs, such as Spark Advance, Variable Cam Timing, Electronic Throttle Control functions and when applicable, turbocharger wastegate duty cycles to control boost pressure.

We often find that the OEM does a very good job on mass airflow calibration for the stock engine as sold from the manufacturer. However, even with a stock vehicle there are often areas in the ECU calibration that have room for an improvement in performance. By commanding an A/F ratio (Lambda value) that makes better power for a specific engine and load value, we could extract more power and still retain a very safe and ideal A/F ratio. We also find vehicles with variable cam timing have a great amount of power hidden right in the factory components as we can control intake and exhaust valve opening and closing events, enhancing torque and power at all engine speeds. 

By properly optimizing the engine control unit, we can safely add torque, horsepower and a sportier driving vehicle while retaining or even enhancing fuel mileage, clean emissions and perfect drive-ability. Last Call Racing can help give you the best driving experience with your vehicle with our custom tunes. Contact us today if we can help answer any questions you may have about tuning your vehicle. 


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