What you should know about chip tuning

What is chip tuning?

With chip tuning, we change the parameters of the engine control in order to achieve extra performance from the engine. We optimize the special maps, e.g. the boost map, the ignition map or the fuel map. What is of great importance here is that we leave the safety functions of the engine control switched on. With us, this component protection is fully functional – something you unfortunately cannot say of many “tuning boxes” or amateur tuners. When the component protection is deactivated, severe engine damage can be the consequence.

Modern engine controls have become very complex since legal requirements, e.g. in terms of environmental protection, are getting ever stricter. There are not many tuners who understand these functions and know what interacts in the maps and at which points. On the basis of its Formula 1 history and many years of experience in tuning and racing, the team of BAR-TEK has acquired the knowledge necessary to achieve a perfect result for your engine – far beyond the normal tuning parameters: We unlock the performance of your engine!

 

What exactly can chip tuning bring me?

With our professional chip tuning, we increase the performance of your engine up to 40% with a low additional load on the entire engine. And we don’t forget about fuel consumption either: With the same driving style, it is even possible to reduce fuel consumption. Your engine will be far sportier and better attuned to you. 

 

When do I need chip tuning?

Chip tuning is the entry level to engine tuning: If you want to increase your engine performance, the first step is to optimize the engine electronics. In most cases, performance increases of up to 40% can be achieved with it. If you still want more performance – for instance, by way of changed hardware such as an upgrade turbocharger, different injection nozzles or a large down pipe – then you need individual tuning (chip tuning) in order to exploit the potential of your modified hardware components to the full. 

Please keep in mind that you have to adapt your software professionally when the components have been changed. Our chip tuning experts will be glad to advise you!

 

Will my vehicle still be practical for everyday driving after the chip tuning?

Yes, your vehicle will be absolutely practical for everyday driving after the chip tuning. You can use your car as always in everyday life without any worries whatsoever. Only one thing is different: When you drive at full throttle now, you will be pressed into the seat! It’s exactly this sensation of acceleration that makes us tune engines. The adrenaline kick, similar to the one you experience on a roller coaster, makes us happy, and we want to share this happiness with you. Hence our name MOTORsport!

 

The reserves of the manufacturers – that is why chip tuning makes sense

In the development stage, the manufacturers of the engines always allow for certain reserves, so each engine operates well, always and everywhere. Depending on the engine, these reserves can amount to 40%. Both the hardware (i.e. the fitted parts) and the software for the control of the hardware must be designed for use by the general public. The manufacturers ask themselves: Who will drive with it? A granny who drives two miles to the bakery or indeed rather a youngster on the race track? Where is the engine used? In the cold north at minus 20°C or in the Sahara Desert in extreme heat? The manufacturers must consider all these factors and ensure that the engine they design delivers its performance without suffering any damage. Safety and a long service life are very important factors because the manufacturers guarantee them, of course! But still, your engine requires different values for optimal performance in the US than in the desert. In order to adapt the maps according to the actual load, you should do chip tuning.

 

Chip tuning: That is how it reduces fuel consumption

Again, you must first understand how the manufacturers of engines plan and proceed: Legally defined driving cycles determine the fuel consumption. But the real fuel consumption depends on many factors – among other things, on the injection quantity stored in the map of the engine control unit. When a new engine is being designed, the manufacturers create the injection map on a roller chassis dynamometer, i.e. with a vehicle on the roller. In this process, quite unrealistic conditions are simulated, e.g. extremely small and thin tires, to keep the rolling resistance as low as possible. Unfortunately, these conditions have no basis in reality, and that is exactly where the potential for savings lies in the mapping at real conditions. On our MAHA roller dynamometer, we can simulate a very real environment and thus tune the engine optimally. We see exactly the operating mode in which the engine consumes more fuel than is actually necessary. In the medium term, this can even save cash! This type of tuning pays off for companies that have a sizable fleet, e.g. of company cars. With our optimization under real test conditions, costs can amortize within a short time. Money is saved, and it’s good for the environment as well!

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Does the chip tuning cause a higher level of wear on my engine?

It can’t be denied that there is an additional load on the engine after the optimization. This additional load is still within the reserves stipulated by the manufacturer, though. An engine with chip tuning is an engine with lower safety reserves. So the vehicle must be warmed up and cooled down with great care. For the turbocharger, these processes are of paramount importance so it won’t be damaged by strong heat development. A higher boost automatically means more end speed of the turbocharger. Only through a higher speed of the turbine do you get more boost. It is therefore extremely important to stay within the turbine maps of the manufacturer and keep the safety functions in the engine software activated. This is the only way to ensure that the additional power remains stable in the long run and you can enjoy your engine for a long time.

 

Does the chip tuning have to be entered in the vehicle documents?

With chip tuning, we achieve a performance boost so the extra performance must be entered by TÜV. For many cars, we can offer you an entry in your vehicle documents. The cost of the entry varies according to vehicle type and engine type. Please just ask us.

 

Do I get a guarantee on the chip tuning and my vehicle?

We give the full BAR-TAK guarantee on our software optimization and work. 

 

The procedure of chip tuning

The chip tuning is performed in several steps. Upon receiving the vehicle, we read out the error memory. This ensures that the vehicle has not stored any electronic errors in the memory. This is followed by a visual inspection in the engine compartment to rule out any leaks in the boost system or any other defects. If the vehicle is functioning properly, we read out the original software of the engine control unit and save it. Then we optimize the parameters in the special maps. Once the programming has been completed, we flash the optimized data onto the engine control unit. A test drive follows during which all parameters are monitored and read out live. If a value is at variance, it will be adjusted again in the software and flashed once more onto the control unit. Once all values are in the optimal range, the programming is completed, and you can enjoy your performance boost!

 

Can I send in my control unit by normal mail?

You can send us your control unit by normal mail, and we do the programming directly on your control unit. Please fill in our form to this end and send it to us together with your control unit. Individual tunings for which we have no appropriate data can be carried out only directly on the vehicle. In the case of major hardware conversions, please send us a request by e-mail in advance.

 

How does the chip tuning get to my control unit?

It always depends on the vehicle. For older vehicles, before the 2000 model year, the EPROM (memory chip with the engine software) usually must be removed for writing and soldered in again. In the case of vehicles as of the 2000 model year, the optimized software can usually be written onto the engine control unit (flashed) via the OBD interface in the vehicle. Very new vehicles with tuning protection are read out and written with a special method. The control unit is removed and read and written with state-of-the-art BDM and boot pin devices.

 

How long does the chip tuning at BAR-TEK take?

With chip tuning, you can usually get your car back on the same day. Depending on the type of vehicle, the optimization takes between three to six working hours. When you send us your control unit, we usually perform the programming by the next working day. For individual tuning work, the amount of work is naturally higher and must be discussed on a case-by-case basis.

 

How do we change the parameters in the software?

We work with leading-edge and efficient programs for the mapping and changing of the engine software. These programs allow us to detect all necessary parameters and change them accordingly. The knowledge and experience in handling this technical issue play a decisive part here. As mentioned above, we leave the component protection of the engine and the peripherals, e.g. the turbocharger, activated. You can see how the map of the boost looks like here. By changing the duty cycle, we can increase or lower the boost. Even very small changes can have a big impact, so special caution is absolutely necessary here! If the boost is too high, the turbocharger might speed excessively and disintegrate into pieces. It is awfully important to know which bolt to turn in order to get the desired result.

 

What if I want to restore the original condition of my car?

Before optimizing your control unit, we read out your original data and save it on our server. You can flash it in our shop later any time you like. This is our BAR-TEK® promise!

 

What is important in order for you to enjoy your tuning a long time?

Your engine needs care. Regular oil changes are important. Please don’t use any long-life oils. For G60 and 1.8T engines our CASTROL-RS oil is better for your engine to feel great. For TFSI or TSI engines you need the BAR-TEK® GTX Racing Oil. Warming up and cooling down are also extremely important. So no full-throttle drives directly after starting the engine. You need a warm-up yourself in the morning, drinking lots of coffee and brushing your teeth. After driving very fast, the engine also needs time to cool down. For all temperatures to level down to the normal parameters, please let your engine run for a while after stopping. Always feed it the best fuel, preferably gasoline with an octane rating of 95 AKI. Then it yields the most performance. It’s definitely not wrong to replace the usual wear parts earlier then at the prescribed intervals. Cam belt, clock valves or air mass sensor succumb to wear. Better to replace these parts earlier than scheduled and regularly access the error memory. In our shop, we offer high-quality wear parts. Your engine will be grateful, and you will enjoy your tuning for a long time.

 

Our conclusion on chip tuning:

On our state-of-the-art MAHA dynamometer, we are able to carry out performance increases with the real engine running. This is done taking into account all environment parameters and peripherals in exactly the way you drive your car on the road. The special software parameters are adapted by us in a targeted way to a sporty tuning in order to exploit the full potential of the engine. We leave the component protection of the manufacturers activated; in most cases, fuel is even saved! So it is not a given that a higher engine performance automatically means higher pollutant emissions.

 

Your benefits from chip tuning at a glance:

  • More performance
  • Less fuel consumption
  • Better environmental protection
  • Including TÜV

 

Any more questions on chip tuning?

Our team is happy to answer all questions revolving around chip tuning and performance improvement in general. Just contact us by e-mail, give us a phone call or use our contact form!

 

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