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Old 09-11-2012, 02:56 PM   #1
jlundy11
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Default I want to get protuned but...

I live in Reno and the closest tuner is NorCal. I don't mind driving there to get it done but the elevation difference is basically sea level vs 4000+ feet above. Kind of noob question but would it matter if I got the protune at sea level but 99% of my driving is 4000+ ft elevation?
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Old 09-11-2012, 05:26 PM   #2
Delphi
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Contact Torqued Performance. He will e-tune you and help you with everything!
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Old 09-11-2012, 06:43 PM   #3
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Getting a tune at sea level could possibly be a problem. I second getting an e-tune from torque performance. Im using their stage 2 tune and love it.
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Old 09-11-2012, 06:54 PM   #4
renosubie
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Look up Mayhem tuning! He's a local tuner in town and does good work!
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Old 09-12-2012, 12:38 AM   #5
Cobb Tuning
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jlundy11 View Post
I live in Reno and the closest tuner is NorCal. I don't mind driving there to get it done but the elevation difference is basically sea level vs 4000+ feet above. Kind of noob question but would it matter if I got the protune at sea level but 99% of my driving is 4000+ ft elevation?
Best results will be from a local tuner or from an e-tuner if a local tuner is not available. If you do get it tuned at sea level, I would make sure they are willing to do updates after the fact via data logs (that you take at your altitude) to make sure everything looks good.

Bill
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Old 09-12-2012, 11:58 AM   #6
jlundy11
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Originally Posted by Cobb Tuning View Post
Best results will be from a local tuner or from an e-tuner if a local tuner is not available. If you do get it tuned at sea level, I would make sure they are willing to do updates after the fact via data logs (that you take at your altitude) to make sure everything looks good.

Bill
This leads me to my second question. In the winter I'm in Tahoe snowboarding almost every weekend. Tahoe happens to 7-8000 feet above sea level. Will I run into more problems going from 4-8000 feet above on frequent basis? Or vice versa? Going from 4000 feet above sea level to sea level, would I encounter any issues? I just want to make sure I can still travel without worry. My last car was tuned at my current altitude and when I went to Southern California the engine had chunks flying out of it. It was a different car with different tuning but it still makes me a little over cautious about stuff like this.

Thanks for all the replies.
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Old 09-12-2012, 11:59 AM   #7
skep18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Delphi View Post
Contact Torqued Performance. He will e-tune you and help you with everything!
x2. He did a group buy tune and flew down to my town. Great guy. Really knows his stuff.
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Old 09-12-2012, 12:48 PM   #8
Delphi
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jlundy11 View Post
This leads me to my second question. In the winter I'm in Tahoe snowboarding almost every weekend. Tahoe happens to 7-8000 feet above sea level. Will I run into more problems going from 4-8000 feet above on frequent basis? Or vice versa? Going from 4000 feet above sea level to sea level, would I encounter any issues? I just want to make sure I can still travel without worry. My last car was tuned at my current altitude and when I went to Southern California the engine had chunks flying out of it. It was a different car with different tuning but it still makes me a little over cautious about stuff like this.

Thanks for all the replies.
If you go with torqued performance he has maps made for your altitude. Just email him and ask (name is Eric) him all these questions. Also id be more worried about getting a protune at 4800' and then going down to sea level. That will throw numbers off in the bad way. Going up in altitude wont. Det will not happen as easily as the air is thinner.
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Old 09-12-2012, 02:28 PM   #9
jlundy11
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Originally Posted by Delphi View Post
If you go with torqued performance he has maps made for your altitude. Just email him and ask (name is Eric) him all these questions. Also id be more worried about getting a protune at 4800' and then going down to sea level. That will throw numbers off in the bad way. Going up in altitude wont. Det will not happen as easily as the air is thinner.
That's what I'm worried about. I don't want to have to change maps every time I travel to lower altitude. The stock map can obviously handle the altitude changes. Since the Cobb OTS maps are considered to be pretty conservative, anybody think there would be a problem using one of those for various altitudes?
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Old 09-12-2012, 05:00 PM   #10
Tripintaz
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If you tune the car properly you can run one tune at any altitude. A good pro tuner will be able to accomplish this for you.
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Old 09-13-2012, 09:16 AM   #11
Cobb Tuning
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Originally Posted by jlundy11 View Post
This leads me to my second question. In the winter I'm in Tahoe snowboarding almost every weekend. Tahoe happens to 7-8000 feet above sea level. Will I run into more problems going from 4-8000 feet above on frequent basis? Or vice versa? Going from 4000 feet above sea level to sea level, would I encounter any issues? I just want to make sure I can still travel without worry. My last car was tuned at my current altitude and when I went to Southern California the engine had chunks flying out of it. It was a different car with different tuning but it still makes me a little over cautious about stuff like this.

Thanks for all the replies.
The factory ECU is perfectly capable of dealing with altitude changes. For example, it will progressively reduce the boost target as barometric pressure drops so that it keeps the turbo within its efficiency range. With a custom tune, although these factory controls are still in place, it really depends on the tune itself (ex. how aggressive it is) and whether or not the tuner considered the regular altitude changes that the car will see (and if they have experience tuning for that).

The main issue with going up in altitude with a custom tune at sea level is going to be:

1. boost control - Boost response is different at altitude and a sea level custom tune may not be optimal for it. That doesn't mean you have to run a different map for altitude - the tuner can still tweak the baro. boost target compensation (for example), so that it works better. But, they would likely need to see a log at that altitude to do that (if they are willing to e-tune the car after the custom tune). The car may run fine (in this regard) at altitude, but boost response may just not be optimal.

2. Lower load - doesn't sound too bad but what happens is that you start hitting cells of the ignition timing/cam timing and fuel maps in the lower load area more frequently that you wouldn't hit as much (or at all) at sea level. For example, your peak load at WOT in going to be lower at altitude and the tuner (at sea level) may have focused primarily on those high load WOT areas and not done much with the "lower" high load areas. Just because the air is thinner and peak load is less doesn't mean you can't have knock.

3. Octane - higher altitude areas can have lower octane fuel available than at sea level. That is fine for an NA car where the octane requirements can drop at the air gets thinner, but for an aggressively tuned turbo car, it can be a problem. If you do get tuned at sea level, bring along a full gas can of your local gas so they can tune on that (that is good practice anyway if you are getting tuned outside your area).

Dropping in altitude (significantly) will cause you to see an increase in load (in areas of the map that may not have been tuned for). For example, you could exceed the peak load of the timing/fuel maps at which point it will continue to use the timing/fuel targets in the last column of the map (when it should be getting richer with less timing advance as load increases). Even if that doesn't happen, you could be hitting cells of the map that were possibly not considered by the tuner. Boost control could also have issues as you go down in altitude a significant amount.

Bottom line is - if you get a custom tune, bring your local gas with you and discuss all the regular altitude changes the car is going to see with the tuner. Make sure they are willing to do a little tweaking after the fact with you taking logs at different (major) altitude changes.

Bill
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