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Forced Induction FAQ

Old 07-31-2008, 05:15 AM
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Default Forced Induction FAQ

Thanks to GReddy_Civic (Trent) For combining a good majority of the info into one thread!

CLICK HERE for everything you need, may want, etc for building your own "Home Made Turbo Kit"

Sov's in depth Forced Induction breakdown. Thanks Sov!

Okay, so it's time this forum had some good solid answers to the basic forced induction questions, and even the not so basic. Remember, we're trying to design this forum around intelligent discussions and good questions to setups that you want to try. There are many wonderful resources all over this forum and many knowledgable people who would love to answer the questions you have... as long as they're not the generic ones on this following list. Yeah, we get tired of answering the same thing over and over again too. So, to start...

"How much PSI can I run on my engine?"

Common answer = "6 to 8psi." Yes, it's also the wrong answer. The correct answer to this question would be "I have no idea." Why? Keep reading please.

"How many pounds of boost can I run on my stock B16A2 with my T3 Super 60 turbo, tuning on Crome Pro?"

Notice how this question is structured. We need to know AT LEAST 3 things in order to tell you about what you could safely run.

1) What engine you're running, and if it's built (if so, how) or if it's stock.
2) What turbo and as many specs of the turbo that you can give.
3) What you will be tuning with.

Other things that would be great to know would be things like.

4) What size injectors and fuel pump are you running?
5) What MAP sensor are you running?

The truth to the PSI myth is simply this. It doesn't matter. What matters is how much power the engine makes. With good tuning, the following can reasonably be held with these listed engines.

D16Y8/D16Z6 - 225whp - 250whp
D15B/D16Y7 - 200whp
B18A1/B18B1 (LS) - 300whp
B16A2/B18C1/B18C5 - 350whp
B20 - 350whp
K20A2 - 350whp - 400whp
F22C - 400whp (Don't count on the stock S2000 rear holding up to that though)
Built with stock sleeves = up to 500whp.
Built with Sleeves - you better know what you're doing by then.

So, what you need to determine is about how many pounds of boost will get you to your desired goals on the turbo that you have. Smaller turbos will take more boost, larger turbos will take less boost. In the case of the original question, a Super 60 turbo can be maxed out on a stock B16, they're good for about 275-300whp.

Turbo sizing is only one factor to how much boost you can run. You also need enough injector to supply fuel to the engine. Fuel pressure and injector size both will determine what injectors you'll need, but most commonly you will need 550CC injectors for 300whp. There are plenty of injector sizing charts floating around the internet, google them and find out just what size you'll need for your application.

Lastly, along with turbo size and injector, you need to have a MAP sensor that can read the amount of boost you want to run. MAP sensors are measured in units called "bars." 1bar = 14.7psi. The stock Honda MAP sensor = 1.75bar, without going into too much detail the first bar of the MAP sensor is used to read vacuum. The remaining is left for our precious boost. In the case of the Honda MAP sensor, you have a total of about 12psi available until the MAP sensor is maxed and you can no longer tune the car correctly. There are 2, 2.5, 3, 3.5, 4, and 5bar MAP sensors available. Most people use the Motorolla 2.5bar MAP (~22psi) and the GM 3bar (30psi) MAP sensor. These are necessary if you want to boost safely over 12psi. My suggestion would be to only go with what you need, as your partial throttle will suffer the more bars your MAP sensor can read.

"Will this 'ebay link' work well? I like it because it's shiny and they say it's good for blah blah blah."

This is America, we live in a capitalist society and we always have. You get what you pay for, always have, always will. No, it is not good, yes, it will break, yes, it will probably ruin your engine when it does. Stupid question, next!

"What do you mean by "chipping the ECU" and what does it mean to "tune" a car?"

Ok, sit down and learn this. It's very important. First off, if you do not know how a standard internal combustion 4cycle engine works, you need to learn this before any of this will make any sense. Learn it, live it, understand all of it.

As far as chipping an ECU, it basically entails the user installing a programmable 28pin EPROM chip into the ECU. This chip will hold the tuning software and all of the available information for your tune.

Picture from (ECU and tuning services site.)

Doing this allows you to use a free tuning program like Crome to edit the fuel and timing maps along with many many other features that you can not do on a stock ECU. OBD2 (96-00) people will need a jumper harness to "convert" back to OBD1. OBD0 people can either take the steps to convert to OBD1 (check out or you can use a program similar to Crome called Turbo Edit. Chipping services are also available for OBD0 ECUs.

Why is this important. It is important because not only does a forced induction vehicle require quantive amounts more fuel, but it also requires changes to the ignition timing in order to not detonate and cause engine failure. Explanation following.

These programs work pretty much like a table, each cell is dedicated to it's own MAP reading and RPM value.

This is a screenshot of the software Crome. These values are placed onto the writeable EPROM chip and placed into the ECU, the ECU then reads each cell individually according to the sensor readings. This picture is my high cam ignition timing, so when the MAP reads 10.7psi and the RPMs are at 7500RPMs, the ECU ignites the spark plug 19 degrees prior to TDC.

These systems allow you to have full control over how much fuel the engine has through the entire map and also timing as well. With correctly sized injectors you will be able to inject enough fuel to be stoich at idle, and rich at boost. This is part ONE of tuning, part TWO is much more important.

TIMING. Timing is what makes and breaks an engine. If it's not dead on, the engine will detonate, and destroy a piston or throw a rod. Nope, not a good thing. You may have heard of the of the acronym called "TDC" or "Top Dead Center." This refers to the piston being at the very top of it's stroke. This would read as 0 degrees on the crank pulley. So I'm sure you're asking yourself "well why wouldn't you want to make the spark happen at TDC?" Simple, ignition and fuel burn is not instantaneous, the flame front will follow the piston down the cylinder and you will lose an immense amount of power.

You need to ignite the fuel in the cylinder BEFORE the piston reaches TDC, that way when the fuel reaches full combustion the piston has reached just beyond TDC and recieves a very efficient and powerful push back down the cylinder. The numbers in the cells in the picture above is the degree on the crank pulley from where TDC exists and the TDC mark actually is. The crank rotates 360 degrees, 19 degrees before 360/0 the spark ignites the fuel.

A GREAT visual reference of what I mean is found at this link here.

You can watch as the spark plug ignites the fuel as the piston is still coming up, and then after the piston reaches TDC full combustion occurs and the flame front strikes the top of the piston. Unfortunately there is no downstroke but I would assume you can figure it out from there... the piston goes down!

Now, if the fuel is ignited too far in advance, full combustion will occur before the piston reaches TDC and effectively slam into the piston

The myth of low compression with high boost by Fiirkan

I have been hearing recently that in order to use high boost on supercharged application (I am assuming that this implies turbos as well) with Honda engines you need to rebuild to a lower compression ratio. But it has just come to my attention, that this is in fact false. I was reading in my Honda tuning magazine this week, and found a letter from someone who wanted to supercharge a B16A, and Hondatuning told that that it is not always necessary to run low compression in a boosted motor. and they then go on to explain that the myth of using low compression originates from the days of old school muscle cars with horrible piston and chamber designs that were prone to detonation at low boost levels with average compression. With Honda motors we have the luxury of some of the best designed heads in the world, and it is ok to run 10-11:1 compression in a well tuned supercharged motor. Honda tuning actually supercharged a stock TypeR Integra not too long ago, and the stock ITR has 11.5:1 CR. and it is in fact ok to run 12 psi of boost on a 10:1-11:1 CR on a stock motor. You would even be able to use forged pistons if you want, and retain that high CR and then increase the boost even more... I for one found this interesting. Hope that it answers some questions for people too

Turbo or Supercharger? My Experiences-SovXietday

This question pops up a lot, in fact, more often than I care to continue to see.

"What is better, supercharger or turbocharger?"

First off, better is a very very broad term. You need to decide what you are going to use it for. A turbocharger may be better for some things, and a supercharger for others. It all depends on how you drive your car, where you drive your car, how often you drive your car, etc.

I have PERSONALLY owned and driven both a supercharged Honda Civic and a turbocharged Honda Civic, the following is my conclusion.


How it works - Superchargers are crank driven. The crank turns, which turns a belt, which turns a pulley attached to the nose of the supercharger, which rotates two rotors inside of the casing forcing air into an intake plenum and creating what we call "boost." Boost is just about instant in a supercharger, the intake plenum is fairly small in volume so it doesn't take long to pressurize and the rotors are turned directly by the crank. This also means that it takes torque to make power, the supercharger is extra load upon the engine.

IMO, this leads to one small problem, especially with a Honda. 1.6/1.8L of high revving efficiency does not make productable torque, that's why they're high revving in the first place. Since it takes torque to spin the supercharger, it's sapping what precious power the engine already has. Obviously, the supercharger makes up for it by pressurizing the intake on cue and therefore creating a lot more power, but it's still taking power to make power.

The number one biggest problem is cooling. With the compression of air happening 5" from the intake valves, where in the world would you place a cooling device? LHT introduced their intercoolers, which basically run a core of cold air through the intake plenum. This is a very expensive mod, about $2000+ after it's all said and done. By 10psi, the M45 unintercooled will be pushing almost 300* intake air temperatures, which if you haven't guessed, is extremely dangerous.

Superchargers are rumored to be "more reliable" as well. I disagree, the long complex pulley system of the supercharger is prone to malfunction. The Jackson Racing idler pullies have seizing issues, which on an SOHC setup will throw a belt and fail to rotate the alternator assembly. Basically the car becomes completely undrivable, and the idler pulleys are a serious pain in the *** to replace, excuse my language. The belts also tend to walk off the pulley systems, and when tightened to combat the issue, introduce exessive strain on the blower assembly.

Another issue, the aftermarket has never been very strong for them. Parts are expensive, and often yeild little results. They're also limited to psi they can push, like I said, by 10psi the M45 unintercooled becomes literally a flamethrower for an engine. M62 (Bseries) has seen 14 before that issue occurs.

You're probably asking, well why the hell do people buy these things then? There are less moving parts than a turbo, often times that can get confusing and often intimidating. It's bolt on, no custom fabrication or any of that. It's nice to have instant torque at the push of a pedal, the car is very predictable and a nice intercooled or low boost setup is GREAT for autox/road racing. For daily driven reasons, hills are conquerable in 5th gear with ease, and it's a lot easier to merge in and out of traffic. Oh, and it makes a really cool sound too!


How it works - Exhaust gases are pushed through the exhaust side of the turbo. The gases push a turbine, much like wind would a windmill, and exit out of the car. The turbine is connected by a shaft across the "compressor" inlet. The compressor turbine spins drawing in air through the turbo, and expelling it into a length of tubing called "charge" piping. Often times this piping runs out infront of the car, through an intercooler, and back to the throttle body. Now, a turbocharger turbine can spin upwards of 70,000rpms, this sucks in a LOT of air, and it is all then compressed through the charge piping creating boost. As you can see, the amount of volume that a turbocharger setup has to pressurize is quite a bit more than what a supercharger has to pressurize, this is what causes that turbo "lag." It's basically the amount of time that it takes for the turbo to mash enough air into all of that tubing so that it is pressurized.

There are a lot of parts on a turbocharger. The turbo manifold, the turbo itself, wastegate, charge piping, intercooler, blow off valve, etc. Turbo's are also susceptable to things like boost spike. This normally happens when a wastegate is poorly placed and cannot relieve enough of the air to keep the turbo from creating more and more boost. If you're not tuned for something like this, it could easily destroy an engine.

"Turbo setups aren't reliable." WRONG. Are you going to tell me that Mitsubishi, Subaru, and Audi are making extremely unreliable cars to sell to the consumers? A turbo setup on a Honda can be just as reliable as any of the stock cars you see on the market today, you just need to spend the right money on the right parts. The most overlooked of which is tuning. A good fuel setup, a good tune, and spending the money on good reliable working parts will make your turbocharged Honda that much more reliable, and that much more fun to drive.

Turbochargers are also a lot easier to up the boost with. Swap out the wastegate spring, or simply just slap on a boost controller and boost away. Obviously this all needs correct tuning procedures, but it's not swapping out pulleys like the supercharger.

Aftermarket is also HUGE for turbocharged Honda's. Everything and anything you could ever want turbocharged is available, and often times can be had used for fairly cheap.

What about a vortech supercharger?

It's basically a turbocharger that instead of being driven by exhaust gas, is driven by your crank pulley. It's also a lot more expensive than both the JRSC or a nice turbocharger setup. So in my opinion, overpriced and no good.

So what is better? Supercharger or Turbocharger.

In my experienced opinion, for a Honda, turbochargers. Unfortunately the superchargers have to use our little torque to make boost, and although low end torque sounds great, the benefit is gone by 3K. Throw a T25 on your Honda, you'll make more power and you'll have it by 3K. Throw a T3/T4 on your Honda, and although you'll have to wait a bit longer for the fun, but you won't even be able to look back.

And of course, here's what I have personally experienced through dynosheets. Both dyno's were done with a 100% stock D16Y8 engine and very similar PSI.

JRSC 6psi pulley, rising to 8psi by redline.
146whp and 118wtq

T3T04e 57trim at 7psi
210whp and 167wtq

That is a 64whp and 49wtq INCREASE in power at virtually the same PSI level. Granted I am using a fairly large turbo, but it's clear just how much power the JRSC is sapping due to it's leeching qualities and tendency to superheat the intake air.

It seems clear to me that turbochargers are a superior technology, and when researched and tuned correctly will make significantly more power with great reliability.

Why you donít buy SSAUTOCHROME-Marty

This is what it ends up being folks.

1.R & D = money and time spent by the company
2.Materials = money spent by the company
3.Advertising and promotion = time money spent plus the time spent locataing/signing retailers up for product dispersement.

This company(SSAUTOCHROME) is able to put such cheap kits on the market cause

1.There is no research and developement that has gone into their products this is why the mani's dont fit,piping is not right,turbos come apart,cracks,leaks,and all out failure comes with these kits.
2.The materials speak for themself.Manifolds seperating,boost controllers leak,**** comes apart at random for the most part.
3.Advertising....they have none.All their advertising is word of mouth,countless ebay names,and two websites.

If you are a true enthusiest you will see this company is nothing short of a scam and a joke.You simply do not take shortcuts when doing such a major mod to your car and yes a turbo is a major mod requiring fuel maps to be changed quite a bit and your cars reliability depends on the componets not failing.What happens when your runnin 10 psi on a t3 super 60 on a stock D series engine making around 210whp and your boost controller fails and lets you spike to 15/16psi.......your engine is toast more times than not.

It is simple,when buying any kind of turbo kit;you get what you pay for end of story.So dont throw your money away on this crap.

If you would like proof of this to be able to make this a sticky let me know cause I can get pics of mani's broke in half,turbo's split down the middle,piping not fitting and so on

Also SSAUTOCHROME likes to try and fool people

Here is a add from SSAUTOCRAP---

and another one---

This is a "non ssautochrome add" [sm=badidea.gif]

Notice the pics,products,and so on are the same.Notice they dont say who makes the manifold....there is a reason for this.No company with any good standing in any market would put their name on that.I mean who would put their name on a manifold that cracks cause of the weight of the turbo alone

Turbonator Finalized by Nail Bunny we got about the billionth thread on this thing. id like to put it out there once and for all that the turbonator DOES NOT WORK. it sucks power from your battery and gives you nowhere near as much power as it claims. here are some threads on this thing:


Looking to turbo an 01-05 D17? By Sov

This post is for those of you that want to turbo your 01-05 EX/DX/LX Civic equipped with a D17. Unfortunately the D17 is the engine with the least amount of aftermarket support. It is also not backwards compatible with the previous gen D16 and D15 powerplants. This poses for many problems, most of which I will address here and some of which I have limited knowledge about. So, please read and take into account what you want, how much money you want to spend, and how much time your willing to throw into researching and understanding how everything works.

First and foremost, before you even start looking at turbo kits, you need to know what you have available for tuning fuel and ignition as ultimately that will be what is most important in the entire setup. Since FMUs will ultimately blow your engine, it's not worth even mentioning. If you plan on using one, go slam your head in a door. It will be more productive, and it may teach you something... that you're an idiot. Mmkay?

Your two other choices, one which will "do" and the other which will work great, are as follows. ECU piggyback system and ECU stand alone.

Unlike the previous gen D16 options, you cannot revert back to OBD1 and chip the ECU. It doesn't work, so basically that eliminates Uberdata, Crome, Hondata, Neptune, and any other chip or program that runs off the OBD1 ECU. Your cheapest option would be using some form of Piggy back system, IE Greddy Emanage, the SAFC/VAFC, or similar products. Most of these products are ok, they will work for mild setups but may have trouble idling larger injectors and they really don't do well with timing control. IMO, not having good timing control will cause premature engine failure quickly. Your best bet is going to be going with a standalone.

A standalone unit completely replaces the ECU in the car, and takes full control. AEM EMS is a perfect example, and better yet, it has FULL timing control. Timing needs to be retarded with boost and you can maximize the power that you make by playing with timing. It will also control fuel input, so not only will you have enough fuel during full throttle boost, but you'll have good fuel when you're just cruising around town. Best option, but also expensive option. Honestly, there is no expense too great for tuning, the better your tune, the more power you will make, and the longer your car will last.

Next, you will need to either find a company that makes a good solid turbo kit, or decide to piece together one yourself. Do NOT buy the Ebay kits, yes they are cheap, yes they suck, and if you need to be resorting to an ebay kit then start considering what you really have money to do. Tight budget
+ turbo = problem.

As for a turbo kit, look around. I've heard Apexi made one, but I'm not sure if they still do or not. As for building your own, you will need to have a custom turbo manifold made, as there are no companies (that I'm aware of) that mass produce these manifolds. Piping, downpipes, etc are also almost always going to be custom anyway. You will need larger injectors, and probably a new fuel pump. I'm not sure off hand if you can get a Walbro intank for those cars, but any inline can be set up correctly. Oil lines will need to be run just like always.

After all of that, you're still stuck on a stock engine. It's debatable how much these engines can handle before blowing, I'd say that with a stand alone unit you could push around 200whp before running into any issues.

So, now you know what needs to be done for an 01-05 Civic. They will cost a lot more to turbo correctly than the previous gen counterparts, so take this into account before you try and blow up your engine.


Here's a post written by one of our members who put together a D17 and made over 400whp.

Last edited by trustdestruction; 02-24-2010 at 12:09 PM.
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