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DOHC - 2.3L Duratec / Mazda L Engines Discussions and Topics specific to the Duratec 4 cylinder engines

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Old 08-09-2015
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Are throttle body spacers worth it?

I've been doing some research on getting the most put of your engine. i came across throttle body spacers but have gotten some conflicting info. some people say they are a complete waste and some people love them. do they work? Will it increase hp? how easy are they to install? thanks!
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Old 08-09-2015
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I've also heard that too big of a spacer can decrease hp. is this true?
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Old 08-09-2015
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I know this a I4 tech but i had one on my old 4.0 OHV It did nothing but drain my wallet.Save your cash for something else.
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Old 08-09-2015
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Since the early 1980's cars and trucks with fuel injection have come with Cold Air Intakes(CAI) and tuned exhaust.

Which means there are no easy bolt on parts that will increase power, save your money.
Car makers have learned from hot rodders and add the parts needed.

And "chips" don't work either, lol

Only way to add power to an engine is to increase the amount of air it can use, this is why a stock 5.0l engine has more power than a stock 2.3l engine, it can use 5 liters of air every 2 RPMs, and a 2.3l can only use 2.3 liters of air every 2 RPMs.

If you add a bigger cam to the 2.3l it can used 2.6 liters of air so gets more power, if you add a turbo charger it can used 4 liters or more of air so more power.

Adding a spacer to throttle body doesn't add more air
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Old 08-10-2015
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what would getting a bigger cam entail? how much does it cost and about how much hp?
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Old 08-10-2015
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You have the 2.3l DOHC Duratec engine so need 2 cams, DOHC = double overhead cams

Have a look here: Camshafts | Aftermarket High Performance Cams | Racing Cams

Stage 2 would be the least expensive option.

There is no black and white horse power number, I would expect 5 to 10

If you are not sure what is entailed in changing a cam I would read a bit more about DOHC engines and I am sure there will be youtube videos on doing this to 2.3l duratec
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Old 08-10-2015
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Ron, Exactly what are you including as "chips"?. If you are including tuners that reflash the computer, I will have to disagree that they don't work. I did some very well thought out performance test before and after retuning with a Superchips tuner that was programmed by BAMA. There was a definite improvement with the retune.

It is not a massive gain but I was able to gain 0.7 seconds from 40 to 70 mph and 0.45 seconds from 50 to 80 mph in 3rd gear. This was with the 87 octane tune. The 91 octane tune showed even better improvements. I don't know if a 4 cyl can gain as much as a 4.0 SOHC V-6 but it should still be able to gain something. I know all tuners are not beneficial. You have to have it programmed by someone that knows what they are doing.

I reload the stock tune for a couple weeks when I have to go in for emissions testing. I can really tell the difference in the way the engine runs. I can't wait to get the performance tune reloaded.
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Old 08-10-2015
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That's not "chips", "chips" are purchased for $50-$100 and do squat.

Tuning an EEC(computer) is completely different but IMO unless you do modifications to the air the engine can use, the results are similar you what you have seen, not nothing but not what many expect.
No manufacturer de-tunes their engine, they do have to meet emissions so that is a factor, so that really isn't de-tuned, lol.

Running higher octane allows more aggressive spark timing but on the 4.0l SOHC you probably have to disable Knock Sensor and I would imagine with the 87 tune the same thing, that 9.7:1 compression ratio that got Ford the extra horse power also made the engine "pingy".
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Old 08-11-2015
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Ahh, you are taking about those resistors that richen the air fuel mixture and can actually rob power while decreasing gas mileage. They erroneously (deceitfully) call them chips.

I am pretty sure the knock sensor is not disabled with my tunes. I talked to the guy that did the programming to make sure the reflash would not effect long term reliability. He assured me it would not effect durability. Pinging is not good for engine durability and I have never heard even a hint of pinging from the engine. I am sure diluting the air/fuel mixture with recycled exhaust gasses (via EGR system) helps to keep the pinging under control also.

I had an 89 2.9L Ranger that would lightly ping under significant load on very hot, dry days. It had no EGR system. I would use 89 octane fuel if I was going to tow across the desert when it was hot. That solved the pinging problem.
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