Aftermarket Parts: Big on Savings Without Sacrificing Performance and Quality

Aftermarket Parts: Big on Savings Without Sacrificing Performance and Quality

The Difference Between a Full Tilt Performance Engine Manifold and OEM

Think you need to stay loyal to OEM engine manifold and other diesel parts for optimum truck performance and horsepower? Think again.

Keyword(s): engine manifold

What if you could give your truck the power it deserves without breaking the bank?

Most car lovers end up throwing countless dollars at the OEM engine manifold and other traditional diesel parts. However, aftermarket parts provide an alternative that saves money without sacrificing power.

Don’t believe us? Keep reading to learn all the juicy secrets!

What Are Aftermarket Parts?

We’ve put together a solid guide for how aftermarket parts will change how you look at tricking out your truck. First, though, we need to establish exactly what aftermarket parts really are.

Most people focus on OEM parts. And OEM is an acronym that simply means “Original Equipment Manufacturer.” This means you are getting parts directly from the company that made your truck.

Aftermarket parts are basically parts made by anybody else. This is when third-party manufacturers make the exact same parts instead of the manufacturer.

Some people swear by using only OEM parts. However, those who are willing to try aftermarket parts can enjoy several really big advantages.

By Any Other Name

One of the reasons some drivers shy away from aftermarket parts is their love of quality. Specifically, they are worried that non-OEM parts are going to be of lower quality.

This is simply not the case. And in some instances, the parts may literally be the same thing!

For example, the truck manufacturer often gets third parties to make many of the parts inside your vehicle. So, the idea of a vehicle being entirely OEM is typically incorrect to begin with.

Also, many aftermarket parts are the exact same as an OEM part but with a different name. And a quality part is a quality part, so why not choose the option that saves you time?

Saves Time

It’s not hard to understand how aftermarket parts can save you a lot of time. It comes down to simple supply and demand.

When you go through a dealership, you only have one possible vendor for the part you need. And if they are out of stock, then you may end up waiting a long time to get the part you need.

With aftermarket parts, there will be multiple vendors selling the part you need. That means that you can take the part home today instead of waiting days or even weeks.

Lots of Options

There are other advantages to multiple vendors than just saving time. For example, you’ll have many options you were not expecting.

With an OEM part, the part is designed to do one thing and one thing only. The manufacturer sees your truck as a puzzle that was only ever meant to be assembled one way.

Aftermarket manufacturers, however, see your truck as an experiment. They are always trying to find new things that can add to the performance and aesthetics of your ride.

Sure, not every option is going to tickle your fancy. But wouldn’t you rather have more options when it comes to tricking out your ride?

Saves Money

Saving time is already a big enough deal on its own. But did you know that aftermarket parts can also help you to save money?

This is basically capitalism 101. When it comes to OEM parts, the price is set by a single manufacturer, meaning that you have no wiggle room on the overall cost.

With aftermarket parts, you have many vendors who are competing for your money. And when pricing is competitive, the consumer wins each time.

Even if the OEM part is not overpriced, it’s worth shopping around the aftermarket. Otherwise, you’ll have no way of knowing whether you ended up paying too much.

Higher Quality

From a quality standpoint, most consumers are happy if aftermarket parts are as good as OEM parts. But did you know that the aftermarket parts can sometimes improve on the original design?

For example, someone may take an original OEM engine manifold design and improve on it. They might add smoother angles, tighter joints, and higher-quality materials.

The end result is a part that is much better than the original. And by putting these quality parts into your truck, you end up with a ride that is better than ever.

The Warranty Myth

The one downside of using aftermarket parts is that you don’t get the warranty of an OEM part. However, these warranties typically aren’t all they are cracked up to be.

Sure, it’s good to know that someone will replace a bad part. But wouldn’t it be better if they weren’t selling bad parts to begin with?

Aftermarket parts allow you to save money as soon as you make a purchase. And you often end up with better parts that are less likely to be faulty or need to be quickly replaced.

On top of that, you get the part much quicker. And we’d prefer to save time and money and get a better part than settle for a lukewarm OEM warranty!

Getting Personal

So far, we’ve focused a lot on how aftermarket parts can save you time and money. But they do something else we can’t put a price tag on: they make driving feel personal again.

Most of us grew up with fellow “car guys,” and a lot of the fun of buying parts was “talking shop.” However, the manufacturer rarely wants to talk shop with you: they want you to take the part you ordered and get out.

Aftermarket stores, however, are run by the people who love the same things about trucks than you do. Not only will they cut you a deal, but they will help you discover parts and upgrades you never knew you needed!

At the end of the day, we know you love your truck. And we think you should get parts for it from people who share that love.

Aftermarket Engine Manifold: The Bottom Line

Now you know the benefit of getting an aftermarket engine manifold and other parts. But do you know where you can find the aftermarket parts you need?

We specialize in selling truck parts to those who know their vehicle inside and out. To see what we have to offer, come check out our Cummins manifolds today!

5 Signs Your Intake Manifold Gasket Needs Replacing

5 Signs Your Intake Manifold Gasket Needs Replacing

5 Signs Your Intake Manifold Gasket Needs Replacing

Look for these 5 telltale signs that your intake manifold gasket has a leak and needs replacing.

Keyword(s): intake manifold gasket

The age and the cost of owning a used car are going up in the U.S. Among the most commonly replaced parts, an intake manifold gasket could cost you over $600 in parts and labor. There are so many things that can go wrong with the manifold, especially if the gasket is compromised.

This little gasket that sits between the engine and the intake manifold is supposed to be durable. To the dismay to some car gurus, some manufacturers make their intake gasket out of plastic, but most are either rubber or metal. Regardless, this is one part that you don’t want to leave unchecked.

This guide will help you detect problems with your intake manifold and the gasket.

​Is It an Intake Manifold Gasket Leak?

There are a number of red flags to watch out for a gasket leak. We’ll go into each type of leak and the symptoms that accompany them.

​1. Coolant

When you start running low on coolant, you know there’s a leak. If it’s not at the hoses or the radiator, chances are good it’s in a gasket. First, check the head gasket to see if that’s the source of the leak.

If everything looks good, double-check the thermostat before moving onto the intake manifold gasket. Now, this type of leak will leave a very obvious residue all around the seal. An internal coolant leak is a different story, though.

If coolant leaks into the combustion chamber, you won’t see any evidence. You instead need to rely on the faint smell of coolant or traces of coolant in your oil. For the laymen, this kind of stuff is kind of hard to detect.

Some intake manifolds, like PACCAR or Caterpillar, are pretty easy to get around.

2. Air Leaks

A tight seal is imperative for an intake manifold gasket. If there is a leak, the vacuumed air will throw off your fuel mix and cause the engine to run harder. Finding a vacuum air leak isn’t always easy, as there are other gaskets and places of weakness.

It might come from the top of the cylinder, the carburetor, the engine’s exhaust pipe or crank, or the o-ring of the fuel injector. If you suspect a leak, then your Check Engine light will go off. Try not to diagnose a problem on suspicions alone, use an ODB-II scan tool, at least.

3. Fuel Mix

As we just mentioned, the fuel mixture ratio is a huge red flag for a faulty manifold gasket. If more air is being sucked from your leaky coolant intake, more fuel will get sucked by the engine. This can gradually translate to lower mpg and bigger problems down the line.

The engine will start to chug more as misfires happen. If things get bad enough, your car may even start to stall on you while idling.

​4. Engine Overheating

Remember, as the coolant starts to leak, there is more friction and less protection for your engine. Again, this may not leave any evidence at all underneath the car, unlike traditional leaks. Coolant might gradually get siphoned away, internally, so you need to watch to see if your engine is overheating.

The first place you can tell is right on your dashboard temperature gauge. If you’re idling and the temperature is beyond the halfway point, that’s hot. While you’re driving, the needle shouldn’t flirt with the red zone.

That red area on the temperature gauge is specifically for indicating a problem. Don’t drive your car anywhere other than a mechanic when it’s getting that hot.

Smelling Evidence

A hot engine will produce some strong smells. Usually, this will be some combination of plastic and rubber, as these are the first to go. When an engine overheats, it’s like a giant frying pan. Anything nearby is at risk of catching on fire.

In fact, once you detect any faint smell of smoke or see it coming out the hood/cabin: stop your car. Some damage may already happen, but your engine isn’t lost yet. It will sound like it and smell like it, but you have time to fix it.

5. Performance Hit

Before all of these things start happening, if you’re really in tune with your car, you’ll notice a decrease in performance. Your acceleration may lag, it might feel like it takes longer to reach highway speeds. All of these things are noticeable to enthusiasts, but a layman can catch it, too.

If these acceleration hiccups only happen intermittently, then it’s probably the gasket wearing. Momentary losses in air pressure will not result in drastic changes in speed. Unless you’re drag racing on the strip, you won’t detect a huge dip in performance early on.

Intake Manifold Gasket Replacement Cost

It depends on how long you wait until these symptoms start to show up. Early detection might mean less than $500. A last-minute fix will come with extra repairs to other parts.

The gasket itself is not expensive. If you learn how to replace the intake manifold gasket, your out-of-pocket would total $25-50.

Protect Your Car’s Longevity

Hopefully, this short guide on intake manifold gasket leaks has opened your eyes a bit. As you can see, there’s a lot of variables when it comes to detecting a problem. No matter what car make and model you have, the gasket will fail at some point.

It’s one of the most overlooked parts, yet is a source of a number of problems and unnecessary damage. A simple examination every time you get your annual servicing by a mechanic is all it takes. Avoid dealing with lazy mechanics who will only do the bare minimum of changing the oil and coolant.

Stick with premium, USA-made, performance parts to get the best longevity and fuel efficiency. Contact us today to learn about the Full Tilt difference.

Turbo Calculator: How to Match a Turbocharger to Your Cars Engine

Turbo Calculator: How to Match a Turbocharger to Your Cars Engine

Turbo Calculator: How to Match a Turbocharger to Your Cars Engine

Matching the right turbocharger to your engine means understanding the horsepower to airflow ratio. Find out which turbocharger is best with this calculator.

Keyword(s): turbo calculator

As many as 20% of the gasoline and 23% of the diesel engines on the road use a turbocharger. These days turbochargers aren’t just for boosting horsepower.

Vehicle manufacturers are also using them to produce cars that get better gas mileage. Are you thinking about adding a turbo to your engine?

You can’t just throw any turbocharger you want on there. You need to use a turbo calculator to make sure you install the right one. Keep reading for a guide to help you find the right turbo for your vehicle.

What Is a Turbocharger?

A turbocharger is a turbine that uses your engine’s exhaust gases to compress and force air into the combustion chamber. The more air in the cylinder means more fuel can also get added.

The more fuel and air in the cylinder means the bigger combustion and the more power get produced. This significantly improves your vehicle’s weight to power ratio.

Turbo can be used for more than just increasing the horsepower of your vehicle though. Vehicle manufacturers use a turbo on a smaller engine to improve the fuel economy of a car without losing power.

A smaller engine is going to be more fuel efficient than a larger engine. The added turbo allows the smaller engine to produce the same amount of power as a larger engine.

Set a Realistic Goal

If your engine currently produces 200 horsepower, you would probably love to boost it to 600 horsepower. However, this is a bit unrealistic.

You can realistically expect to get about 50% more horsepower by adding a turbo to your engine. While you could get the 300% increase of 200 to 600, you would need a lot more modifications than a turbo. You would also need to fine-tune all of the modifications so they work together.

Choose the Right One

To choose the right turbo, start by deciding what your goal horsepower range is. Be realistic about this goal. It is a terrible idea to buy the biggest turbo you can find blindly.

To figure out your ideal goal horsepower range consider these factors:

  1. What is your car primarily used for?
  2. How much traction can you achieve?
  3. What can your engine and driveline handle?

There are turbos designed to achieve different goals. Some will improve your engine response time.

Others will increase economy. Then some turbos are purely for producing outright performance.

Do Some Calculations

You can use an online calculator or do some manual math. You need to calculate the amount of air your engine uses at a particular boost pressure. Start by finding out these figures:

  • Engine RPM
  • Engine size
  • Volumetric efficiency
  • Boost pressure

What you will end up with is a pressure ratio and three figures pertaining to the amount of air.

  • Amount of air in CFM
  • Amount of air in lbs./min
  • Amount of air in m3/min

Engine RPM

These are the revolutions per minute of the crankshaft that connects to the piston rods. This tells you how many times the pistons go up and down in the cylinder.

Engine Size

This is a measurement that tells you the displacement of the engine. It is usually measured in liters or cubic centimeters. You can look up your engine size by your vehicle VIN number.

The VIN is a unique identifying number that is located on the bottom corner of your windshield. Count eight digits from the left and this is the code for your engine.

Volumetric Efficiency

This measurement is the ratio of the mass density of the air and fuel mixture that goes into the cylinder and the mass density of that same volume of air going into the intake manifold.

What this ratio tells you is how efficient your engine is at moving the charge of fuel through the cylinders. Any flow restrictions in your intake system will cause the pressure to drop.

This reduces the density of the air going into the cylinder. The turbo you want to put on your car’s engine will combat this by forcing extra air into the chamber.

Boost Pressure

This is the increased positive pressure applied to your engine by a turbo. Larger turbos will produce more airflow. They do this at a lower boost level and have a longer lag time to performance.

Small turbos will have less lag time. But they will have to run a higher boost level to achieve the same airflow as the larger turbo.

Why Turbo Matching Matters

If you decide to choose a turbo outside of your engine’s efficiency range, you risk damaging your turbo and engine. While it is ok for a turbo to glow occasionally, you don’t want it to glow nonstop.

By forcing your turbo to run outside of its efficiency, you will cause it to burn out quickly. On top of that, you will force superheated air into your combustion chambers.

This is counterproductive to your efforts to increase horsepower, like that cold air intake you installed. It also puts you at risk of destroying your motor. The superheated air will require the intercooler to work harder.

If the intercooler can’t keep up, then the heat builds and destroys your motor.

Use a Turbo Calculator and Find a Turbo for your Vehicle

You are now ready to calculate the turbo that you can put on your truck. Start by finding out what kind of horsepower your truck currently produces.

Then decide what your horsepower goal is. Now you can use a turbo calculator to figure out what turbo is perfect for helping you meet your goals.

Browse our shop and find the right turbo for your truck today

Driving a Diesel: Diesel Truck Maintenance Tips to Use

Driving a Diesel: Diesel Truck Maintenance Tips to Use

Driving a Diesel: Diesel Truck Maintenance Tips to Use

If you want to keep your diesel truck running properly, then you have to ensure it is maintained. Use our tips for diesel truck maintenance found here.

Keyword(s): diesel truck maintenance

As the warm weather finally descends across the country, you’ll likely want to hit the roads with the windows down. The last thing you’ll want to interrupt this perfect weather is automobile issues.

If you’re driving a vehicle with a diesel engine, there are a few extra steps and precautions you should take to ensure the health of your vehicle.

Diesel technology has come a long way over the past few decades, cutting down emissions and gaining miles per gallon. These advances make diesel engines a great alternative to traditional automobiles. But if you are running a diesel engine, you’ll want to keep it running at peak performance.

Read on, and we’ll walk you through everything you need to know about diesel truck maintenance.

Fill Your Truck Up on Fluids

Just like our bodies, our vehicles need to stay properly hydrated to work their best. If you want your truck to be running at its full potential, you must regularly check up on the fluids. These fluids include engine coolant and oil level.

Coolant keeps your engine from overheating. It’s important to always have enough coolant in your vehicle as you’re driving, or else you could have serious engine problems.

Outside of having enough engine coolant present, you should also be checking its level of acidity. Engine coolant can grow to be quite acidic, so much so that it can actually begin to rot away at the interior of your vehicle.

It’s essential that you check and change the engine coolant of your vehicle to avoid this kind of damage.

If your oil level gets low, it can put a large amount of stress on the engine of your vehicle. Your car usually will alert you the moment that your oil level gets below an acceptable amount.

Outside of the above essential fluids, it’s also never a bad idea to check up on your window washer fluid. Running low on window washer fluid can be terrible if you’re about to head out on a long trip.

A dirty or obscured windshield can be a danger to drivers, so it’s important that you ensure your vehicle is ready to go.

A Clean Engine Is a Happy Engine

A little bit of spring cleaning can go a long way. Dirt, grime, and gunk can easily build upon a diesel engine over time. Eventually, this lack of cleanliness can actually begin to affect engine life.

Wiping away this dirt and guck on a regular basis can help ensure positive performance from your diesel engine.

Speaking of cleanliness, it’s also important to keep on eye on the cleanliness of your fuel. Clean diesel fuel promotes a better fuel economy and performance. There’s no reason to use dirty fuel, as you’ll just be hurting your engine and vehicle in the long run.

Keeping your vehicle clean and fresh is the best way to ensure a long and happy life in the future.

Keep an Eye on Your Exhaust and Filters

Your vehicle’s exhaust system is there to help both your vehicle and the natural environment around it. It’s important to ensure it’s working properly.

Over time, damage to your exhaust system is likely. After all, chemicals and road corrosion are passing through it each time you drive your vehicle. The best thing you can do is to keep an eye out for leaks, which are a common signal of exhaust problems.

The moment you think there might be an issue with your exhaust, take your vehicle in for repair. Exhaust issues can be serious and are not worth messing around with.

Another thing to keep an eye on is your air and fuel filters. You need your vehicle to get enough clean air to run properly. Diesel engines use a lot more air than normal gas engines, so this is key.

Many modern diesel trucks have sensors that let you know when your air filter needs replacing. But if your truck doesn’t, you’ll need to keep a close watch on when a filter is no longer fully functional.

Your fuel filter is also essential for optimal performance. Diesel fuel has a higher chance of contamination then gas, so your fuel filter will need to do a good job inspecting incoming diesel.

A good fuel filter is so important to proper performance that you may want to consider replacing filters before the recommended date.

Treat Your Vehicle Right

The way you drive and treat your diesel vehicle has a lot to do with its overall health and life. Be kind to your car.

For example, living in a cold climate requires a number of life adjustments. This includes changing how you treat your vehicle.

In cold weather, give your engine time to warm up before taking it on the road. Cold weather and diesel engines don’t mix well, and this warm-up time can be helpful to the health of your engine.

Don’t leave your truck idling for long periods of time either. Not only is this bad for the environment, but prolonged idling can actually shorten your engine’s lifespan. It puts wear and tear on your piston which can then erode over time.

If you teat your truck respectfully, it’s a lot more likely to treat you well back with a long and healthy life.

Understanding Diesel Truck Maintenance

There a few extra steps and precautions when it comes to owning a diesel based vehicle. But if you understand the basics of diesel truck maintenance, there can be a great number of benefits as well.

Having problems with your diesel engine? Check out our blog for more help.

5 Truck Maintenance Tips to Ensure Your Engine Survives the Winter

5 Truck Maintenance Tips to Ensure Your Engine Survives the Winter

5 Truck Maintenance Tips to Ensure Your Engine Survives the Winter

The colder months can be tough on your truck and especially tough on your truck’s engine. Follow these truck maintenance tips to get through the winter.

Keyword(s): truck maintenance

There are over 51,000 unfilled truck driving jobs in the United States. Many trucking companies are starting to offer large sign-on bonuses to attract new drivers. The key to having success in this line of work is keeping the truck you drive in good shape.

Failing to provide a diesel engine with the care it deserves will result in it become unstable and damaged. During the winter months, the engine in your truck will be exposed to very unforgiving conditions. Instead of losing money due to a damaged engine, you need to focus on providing your truck with the maintenance it needs.

If you are unsure about how to perform this truck maintenance, hiring professionals is a great idea. A diesel mechanic will have no problem performing the necessary repairs and maintenance a truck needs.

The following are some of the things you need to do to keep your diesel engine running well throughout the winter months.

1. Keeping Your Engine Block Warm Overnight

One of the most important parts of a diesel engine is its fuel system. Most people fail to realize that diesel fuel contains trace amounts of Paraffin wax. As the fuel gets colder, the Paraffin will begin to gel and can cause a number of problems.

If you are going to be leaving your engine at rest for a while, then you need to take proper precautions to avoid this problem. While there are a number of fuel additives you can use to fix this issue, your best bet is to invest in an engine block heater.

With this heater, you can keep your fuel liquified. This not only will help to keep the injectors free of Paraffin gel, it can make your engine run more efficient as well. The money paid for a quality engine heater will be worth it in the long run.

2. Oil Checking and Changing is Considered Essential Truck Maintenance

The diesel engine in your truck has a number of internal components. In order for these components to work as intended, they will need proper lubrication. This lubrication is provided by the oil that is circulating throughout your engine.

The colder the temperatures outside is, the harder it will be for your oil to perform its job of lubricating internal engine components. The cold allows the oil to thicken up, which reduces its effectiveness.

The best way to avoid lubrication issues during the winter months is by switching to an oil that is thinner. By switching to a higher weight oil, you can keep the internal parts of your engine lubricated regardless of how cold it is outside. Consulting with an experienced diesel mechanic can help you decide what type of oil is the best fit for your needs.

3. Get Your Braking Components Inspected Regularly

Driving on an icy road is something most truckers do on a regular basis. The only way to avoid sliding all over the road in icy conditions is to have a functional braking system. As time goes by, the braking components on your vehicle will begin to wear out.

When going in for truck maintenance, you need to make sure the mechanic inspects your braking system thoroughly. During this inspection, the mechanic will be able to tell which components are worn and need to be replaced.

Trying to drive the roadways of America with work braking components can put you and other motorists in a lot of danger. If you start to notice squeaking noises when trying to bring your truck to a stop, chances are it is time for some new brake parts. With the help of a reputable mechanic, getting new brake parts installed in a hurry will be easy.

4. Assessing the Condition of Your Tires

Keeping a firm grip on the road is only possible with good working tires. Most truck drives put thousands of miles on their rigs each year. Over time, the tires on a truck will begin to show signs of wear and will have to be replaced.

Before embarking on a trip, you will need to take the time to check your tire pressure and assess how much tread this vital part of your vehicle. If you notice the tread is almost gone and the tire pressure is consistently low, it is probably time for some new tires. Getting a second opinion from an experienced mechanic can help you decide whether or not you need to buy new tires.

When choosing new tires for your trick, you need to avoid skimping on quality. While higher-quality tires are more expensive, they are definitely worth the money. Having quality tires on your truck will help to increase stopping power and can actually keep you safer while behind the wheel.

5. Getting Your Battery and Alternator Checked

Without a functional charging system, you will be unable to start and run your truck. As time goes by, the cells in your battery will begin to dry out, which makes the battery unusable. Often times, extremely hot or cold weather can make the cells in a battery dry out quickly.

When going in for truck maintenance, you should talk to your mechanic about checking your battery and alternator. The results of this test can help you figure out whether either of these components needs to be replaced. Catching issues with these components ahead of time can help you avoid breaking down on the side of the road.

Working With an Experienced Mechanic is Essential

The best way to avoid mistakes during the truck maintenance process is by hiring an experienced mechanic. These professionals can get this work done quickly and correctly.

Are you in need of quality replacement parts for your truck? If you answered yes, contact us now to find out more about the parts we have in stock.