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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My son has a '95 mustang 3.8 and he bought this resistor from a supplier on ebay that says to install it in the female end of the IAT sensor plug and then leave the other end of the plug unplugged. It's "supposed" to give better throttle response and more power. I think it's all BS if you sask me. What exactly is this process doing for him..if anything?

It's literally no more than a simple $.50 resistor that he paid $10 for to plug into the IAT sensor. I tried to tell him that it's not the way to make real HP but what do you expect from a 20yr. old I guess...
 

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If I remember right it fools the computer into thinking that the air temperature is something that its not, in order to richen the air/fuel mix for better power.

If there is a gain here I would think it would be pretty subtle. But I can't speak from experience there...
 

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If I remember right it fools the computer into thinking that the air temperature is something that its not, in order to richen the air/fuel mix for better power.

If there is a gain here I would think it would be pretty subtle. But I can't speak from experience there...
 

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At least it'll be easy to disconnect when he gets tired of buying more gas...
 

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Here is a link to a discussion of this mod on a Ford 3.0 v6 in a Ranger. The author of the article concludes that a better mod is to move the IAT sensor into the air filter box or front bulkhead adjacent to the radiator. In another place on the site, he concludes that in addition to moving the sensor, increasing the base timing is also beneficial. The author drove this truck for several years & seems pretty diligent about reporting problems with modifications he made. He didn't seem to find any long term problems with this as long as the extra timing did not lead to preignition or detonation.

5HP for 99&cent!
 

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Waste of time.

Not much can be done to a 3.8 to "bolt on" power. Aftermarket isn't all that great for them. Now the late 3.8/3.9/4.2 split port heads will bolt on but they aren't all that great either, plus the intake has to be changed too. '96 through '98 windstar stuff goes right on, but then it's going to need a tune more than likely. Used to be a blower kit for the single port 3.8's but those aren't cheap usually. Aside from intake & exhaust, I haven't seen anything worth doing. Intake and exhaust might get 10-15 HP and even then, above 4000 RPM and nothing in the "normal" RPM range. And they sound like poopie with exhaust on them. Leave the stock pipes. Cold air might help some. Makes more noise and usually drops fuel economy a little.

Sell it to a college girl and get a 5.0 or even better a later 4.6.
 

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The resistor your son purchased may not be the optimum value, but fiddling with the data the IAT sensor supplies to the ECM can potentially lead to some improvements - a bit more low end torque & somewhat better driveability, especially at part throttle (probably the equivalent of re-curving a distributor & maximizing the air fuel ratio on an emissions controlled carbureted vehicle). This mod is probably not going to lead to an increase in maximum horsepower or torque. Defining goals before you start, changing one thing at a time & evaluating the change before changing something else is usually the most likely way to end up with something that you'll be happy with.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Waste of time.

Not much can be done to a 3.8 to "bolt on" power. Aftermarket isn't all that great for them. Now the late 3.8/3.9/4.2 split port heads will bolt on but they aren't all that great either, plus the intake has to be changed too. '96 through '98 windstar stuff goes right on, but then it's going to need a tune more than likely. Used to be a blower kit for the single port 3.8's but those aren't cheap usually. Aside from intake & exhaust, I haven't seen anything worth doing. Intake and exhaust might get 10-15 HP and even then, above 4000 RPM and nothing in the "normal" RPM range. And they sound like poopie with exhaust on them. Leave the stock pipes. Cold air might help some. Makes more noise and usually drops fuel economy a little.

Sell it to a college girl and get a 5.0 or even better a later 4.6.

I will have to disagree with some of the stuff you said there Mav. I have a '00 mustang 3.8 and the previous owner did the Winstar intake upgrade, with 65mm TB, CAI, duel exhaust with MAC mufflers (dont know which ones) but at idle it does sound like a V-8 and actually sounds nice when on the gas. I don't know what he had to do afterwards to get all that to work correctly but it was done right. He even installed a GT rear bumper with the duel exhaust cut outs for the pipes. I'm sure it now has a little over 200hp now since it came stock with 193.
 
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