How to Safely Reduce Vehicle Base Weight

reduce vehicle base weightAs you incorporate add-ons to your vehicle, its weight goes up. For performance car owners who wants to own the fastest possible set of wheels, this presents a dilemma. One solution that will compensate for this weight gain is to reduce the vehicle base weight. We’ll list some parts you can remove without drastically affecting function.

Weight Reduction Increases Speed

You can shave about 1/10th of a second off your lap time for every 100-pound reduction in weight. That may seem miniscule, but for avid racers, every little bit makes a difference. In addition, cars will also experience about a one horsepower increase for every 18-pounds you remove.

We do advise car owners to be strategic about what they take out. To maintain optimal handling, aim for an even 50/50 weight reduction in the front and rear. A car with uneven weight may not have maximum momentum when entering and exiting the apex of a turn. Continue Reading →

Enhance Your Truck with a Bull Bar

auto service in EverettHeavy-duty pickup trucks such as the Ram 1500 and Ford F-150 can always use some extra “padding.” This is where a bull bar comes in handy, especially for off-roaders. Can your truck benefit from a sturdy protective bar?

What Is a Bull Bar?

A bull bar is an add-on that goes over the grille. As you can probably guess from the name, it consists of extra-durable steel tubing with a powder coating and polished finish.

The bar protects the grille against fender benders or impacts against stationary objects, such as boulders and tree trunks. Even more importantly, it protects the driver and passengers. In an impact, the bar transfers the collision force away from the front panel and directs it to the frame. The frame contains solid heavy steel that is far sturdier than the softer metal that makes up the panel. By transferring the energy from the panel to the frame, the truck comes to a less abrupt stop. Abrupt stopping from a collision is a primary cause of whiplash injury. Continue Reading →

Should You Upgrade to Wide Tires?

wide tiresYou may have seen exceptionally wide tires on an off-roader or street performance vehicle. What’s the purpose of this, other than making the car look rad? We will discuss the ins and outs of wide tires and whether you should upgrade to beefy wheels.

Definition of a Wide Tire

Look at the tire’s sidewall for a set of numerical and lettered markings. You may see a marking like P225/55R16. The 225 is the tire’s width in millimeters. A tire is wide if it exceeds the width of the original stock tires for your specific car model.

Why Upgrade?

Various factors determine whether wide tires are appropriate for your vehicle. Do you want to improve your Jeep Wrangler’s rock-crawling ability? Do you want to improve traction on the racetracks for your Dodge Challenger? Wide tires prove advantageous in a number of scenarios. For instance, they: Continue Reading →

Popular Ford Mustang Modifications

Ford Mustang modificationsThe Ford Mustang is a time-honored pony car with origins dating back to the 1960s. Are you the proud owner of a vintage or recent-model Mustang? We’ll discuss some popular Ford Mustang modifications that will give your automobile a street performance and race-car feel.

Our Recommended Ford Mustang Modifications

Tires: Choices are endless with respect to tire selection. Drag wheels are great for a hot rod-style appearance. If you’re aiming more for a modern muscle car vibe, then shoot for mesh or drift-style wheels. Yet another choice is Bullit wheels. This pays homage to the iconic Ford Mustang Bullit from the classic 1968 film Bullit.

Louvers: Do you cherish the look of the 1960s/1970s-era Mustang? Consider adding black louvers to the rear windshield. Side window louvers are available as well. Installation is a snap; we can mount it on your pony in an hour’s time. From a functional perspective, louvers help block sunlight and also prevent onlookers from peering inside. Continue Reading →

Four Non-Street-Legal Car Mods to Avoid

non-street-legal car modsLaws regarding car modifications vary state by state. This is why we only stress using car mods from a reputable auto service and avoiding DIY mods. You may be proud of the self-installed aftermarket part, but that very part just might get you pulled over. We’ll list the most common non-street-legal car mods to stay away from.

Non-Street-Legal Car Modifications

1. Lift Kits

We commonly raise suspensions for off-road vehicles to protect the undercarriage from rough terrain. However, a lift of about 4-inches or so suffices. Some people, though, go to extremes, deciding to lift the car by an insane two or three feet. While Washington has no specific lift law limits, lifts cannot be homemade and anti-sway bars are mandatory. Continue Reading →

Three Must-Have Aftermarket Car Gauges

aftermarket gaugesGauges monitor different aspects of car performance. If you have existing modifications on your vehicle, aftermarket car gauges help you keep tabs on overall engine performance. Plus, having more gauges just makes the dashboard look cool.

Aftermarket Car Gauges: Our Recommendations

Gauges measure various facets of engine performance, including oil and water temperature, oil pressure, exhaust temperature, and more. Of course, your dash only has so much space. If you can only accommodate two or three gauges, then here are our top three picks for high-performance cars.

1. Oil Pressure Gauge

Oil pressure is absolutely important in cars with a turbocharged engine. Insufficient oil pressure means lack of lubrication, leading to a seized engine. We have performed countless auto repairs on damaged turbocharged engines for this reason. Continue Reading →

Four Top Jeep Wrangler Modifications

Jeep Wrangler modificationsThe Jeep Wrangler is the ultimate off-road vehicle. This is why we service this vehicle often. For greater ability to handle the formidable terrains of the Pacific Northwest you’ll need enhancements. We’ll outline some of the top Jeep Wrangler modifications. Adding these will enhance your first off-road adventure for 2018.

Best Jeep Wrangler Mods

1. Winch

A winch can bail you out of emergencies if traveling with more than one vehicle. If the other vehicle becomes trapped in mud or is rendered inoperable, a winch can save the day. With a winch, you can also be a Good Samaritan if you find a fellow off-roader stranded. Continue Reading →

Five Reversible Car Mods

reversible car modsCar modifications can hurt a vehicle’s resale value. Changes and add-ons are also a no-no for leased automobiles. Nevertheless, some motorists can’t resist beefing up their set of wheels with functional and aesthetic enhancements. If you fall into this category, then consider reversible car mods. This way, you can return the car to its factory condition come time to sell it or return it to the dealership.

Car Mods That Are Reversible

1. Tires

Most auto services and maintenance shops can easily remove aftermarket wheels and replace them with standard rims and tires. This also goes for tires on off-road performance 4-wheelers.

2. Window Tint

Window tints give cars an edgier look. Removing the tint is fairly simple, though it should be done by a professional. DIY removal may leave behind residual adhesive. Continue Reading →

Which Truck Bed Liner Type Is Best for Your Heavy-Duty Pickup?

Truck Bed LinersA pickup truck is the workhorse of cars. It’s designed for heavy cargo hauling. This means the bed needs to be strong enough to accommodate immense loads. The stock bed liner, though, may not be sturdy enough for this. For daily freight transport, you may need an aftermarket truck bed liner. We’ll explain the two types of liners and which is best for your needs.

Drop-In Truck Bed Liner

As suggested in its name, a drop-in liner is simply a detachable liner that goes over the truck bed. The liner is made from heavy-duty plastic sheeting. Installers simply remove the stock liner and bolt the drop-in liner in place. You have the choice of covering just the floor of the bed or covering the sides as well. This is usually the more affordable option, ranging around $100 to $400.

Some car owners also request custom drop-in-liners for the cargo area of their Jeeps or other off-road vehicles.

Spray-In Liners

With this option, an auto service sprays a polyurethane elastomer coating onto the bed. Spray-in liners typically have a gritty surface, providing a better grip that prevents cargo from sliding. This can also be a drawback, though, because it also makes it harder to slide a heavy item off the bed. A spray-in is also thinner than a drop-in, so it doesn’t add as much bulk to the bed.

While DIY spray-in liner kits are available, we do not recommend spraying in the liner yourself. Various factors, such as temperature or improper spraying technique, can cause uneven distribution of the coating.

We Install Both Types of Truck Bed Liners

Bring your pickup to Northwest Performance and Off Road. Our auto repair technicians can install aftermarket liners to improve your vehicle’s hauling capability. We supply both types of truck bed liners for private and commercial fleet trucks.

Edited by Justin Vorhees

Truck Bed Liner Installation and Repairs

Passionate auto repair service in Everett, Edmonds, Lake Stevens,Lynnwood, Marysville, Monroe, Mill Creek, Mukilteo & Snohomish

Does a Strut Bar Increase Performance?

strut barYou can modify your vehicle with a number of braces, including fender braces, under body braces, and suspension member braces. A strut bar is another add-on car owners often add for their street performance vehicle. Do strut bars increase performance, and if so, how?

How Strut Bars Work

A strut bar is simply a metal rod that connects the left and right strut towers. Supposedly, making this connection reduces chassis flex by reinforcing the frame. The chassis flexes during tight turns, which causes a delayed steering response and reduced cornering ability. For those that race their cars on racetracks, chassis flex is a major problem that affects lap time. A strut bar nullifies this issue to some degree, hence their demand at auto service stations. Continue Reading →