An engine programmer is a hand held device that the user plugs into the under-the-dash on board diagnostics port (OBD),and it stores an incredible amount of information concerning the make and model of the vehicle it is made for.
With a power programmer, there is interaction. When plugged in, the user answers questions about their driving style, if they have modified their vehicle and, often, what fuel they use. Based on the answers, it uploads new settings that are tailored for the driver’s specific habits. Most engine programmers let you adjust a wide variety of pre-determined programs that were entered into the owner’s vehicle at the factory. Like speedometer calibration, top-speed limits, automatic transmission adjustments, RPM “rev” limiter, and read diagnostic trouble codes (DTCs)
Speedometer Calibration: The vehicle’s computer calculates your vehicle’s speed based on the diameter of the stock tires. If you’ve installed taller or shorter tires, or changed the rear gear ratio, the vehicle’s computer doesn’t know how fast your vehicle is going. As a result, the automatic transmission may not shift correctly and the speedometer readings will not be accurate.
Top Speed Limits: Automobile manufacturers limit a vehicle’s top-speed to match the speed rating of the factory-installed tires. If you have installed tires that have a different speed rating, most engine programmers allow you to raise or lower the vehicle’s top-speed limiter to match the speed rating of the newly installed tires.
Automatic Transmission Adjustments: This could be a couple of different options. Increase in shift firmness to maximize performance or when towing, to reduce clutch slippage and transmission oil temperatures. Or changing the point at which your automatic transmission shifts, for maximum performance, and quicker acceleration.
RPM “rev” Limiter: In today’s vehicles, the onboard computer controls maximum engine rpm. The stock computer is programmed to shut down the engine when it reaches it’s redline. But if you have modified your vehicle to increase its high-speed performance, more rpm means more power.
Read Diagnostic Trouble Codes (DTCS): If the vehicle has a “check engine” light or “service needed” message, most programmers will allow you to read the code and will give the owner the ability to clear the code and turn the “check engine” light off. The owner can then make the necessary repairs to prevent the light from coming back on.
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