Because of the advanced datalogging and analysis features of the ECU+ engine management system, tuning your car with the ECU+ is a little different than some other devices. Rather than forking out $80 an hour for AWD dyno time at your local shop, or relying on the (patented) performance butt-o-meter, the ECU+ lets you easily and reliably tune your car with just a laptop, an open stretch of road, and a friend. Here's how:
Install the ECU+ in your car, and get a laptop to run the ECU+ Win software. A low-end Pentium II is sufficient, though bigger and faster is always better.
Grab a friend who's interested in vehicle performance. Your friend will be running the laptop while you drive.
Locate a stretch of smooth, flat, deserted road where the speed limit is in the 50-60 MPH range. You'll be doing some full-throttle runs on this road, so be very careful to select a road where there are no residential neighborhoods or wildlife. Late at night works best. Better yet is a dragstrip.
Locate a place on the deserted road where you can do some runs. Find a mile-marker or street sign to use as a starting point.
Have your friend start an ECU+ capture ("datalog"). Then, with your car in 2nd gear, "lug" the car along the road at the lowest possible RPM (make note of this RPM). As soon as you pass the starting point, floor the accelerator and accelerate up to redline at WOT, then coast back down, stop the car on the side of the road, and have your friend stop and save the capture.
Using the ECU+ Win software's "Dyno Analysis," plot the engine's HP and torque from the capture.
Repeat the last two steps until you can get consistent HP and torque numbers on the dyno of the capture. You may want to cool the car down a bit between captures. Use the overlay ability of the software to show multiple dyno graphs on top of each other.
Once you can get consistent numbers, it's time to start changing things. Modify one or two fuel OR timing map values (never both), and make another run. See if the car picked up or lost HP in the ranges you modified and adjust accordingly.
Do the last step several times, and slowly (very slowly) tweak your car for maximum HP and torque. On all of the runs, check the captures for signs of detonation, retarded timing or lean mixture. If you have an EGT gauge or wideband O2 sensor, have your friend watch these carefully while you drive.
When you're all done, take your captures home and take a look at them some more. You may find other spots that could be tweaked. With the ECU+, you can slowly but surely iterate over various fuel and timing values to achieve optimal performance from your vehicle.
With the ECU+, you can actually measure whether your fuel and timing changes are making a difference, all without paying for dyno time. Most ECU+ customers report 20-50 HP improvements with some time on an open road.