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What's Running Rich?

This is a discussion on What's Running Rich? within the General Help forums, part of the LSx Technical Help Section category; I was told my car is running rich. What are the advantages and disadvantages if any? I know when you're ...

  1. #1
    SS#430 1 of 74 7camaro7's Avatar
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    Question What's Running Rich?

    I was told my car is running rich. What are the advantages and disadvantages if any? I know when you're running lean you stand the chance of burning holes in your pistons. correct me if I'm wrong.

    I need to know more about running rich.

    Lean is not enough gas so rich must be too much...?

    I don't know

    Teach me.

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    Senior Member Orcus79's Avatar
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    Can't offer too much on rich, other than you will, foul plugs, plug the cats and get pooor milage and throttle responce. It all depends on how bad and where you are rich and why.

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    Member Empatho's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 7camaro7 View Post
    I was told my car is running rich. What are the advantages and disadvantages if any? I know when you're running lean you stand the chance of burning holes in your pistons. correct me if I'm wrong.

    I need to know more about running rich.

    Lean is not enough gas so rich must be too much...?

    I don't know

    Teach me.
    yeah rich is too much gas
    2002 Z28 Auto (3.23 gears)
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    Rich and lean describes your air/fuel ratio. I think mine runs about 12:1 (so 12 parts air to one part fuel). As previously answered, running rich uses more fuel in the mix hence less MPG. Can gum plugs, cats, O2 sensors and in some cases leave a residue on your bumper above your exhaust.

    Lean I'm pretty sure will cause your combustion to be hotter, causing pitting of piston crowns and valves.

    Although I'm told there is a little room to adjust before you suffer too much from either...

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    Member DaddySS's Avatar
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    Rich (too much fuel in the air/fuel mixture) robs power, wastes fuel, washes the cylinder walls of oil and leads to wear and burns off some of your oil.

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    SS#430 1 of 74 7camaro7's Avatar
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    damn these long tube headers. So all I need is a dyno tune, huh?

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    At part throttle if you were running rich you would get a trouble code--the car's computer adjusts the AFR to 14.6 all the time at part throttle-- the LTFT's will adjust the AFR up to a point of -25/ +25 % in order to correct it to 14.6 - it can't adjust anymore than that and will throw a code.At WOT the stock AFR is already rich at about 11.1 to 12.1. With long tubes it will richen the WOT even more----So to get all the HP you can from the headers and the already stock rich AFR you need to get a tune and set it up to about 12.6 to 12.9 at WOT and adjust your LTFT's as close to "0" as you can
    Last edited by tblu92; 02-21-2007 at 08:51 PM.

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    SS#430 1 of 74 7camaro7's Avatar
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    I have no cats but I should expect damage to spark plugs and stuff like that?

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    do you have something to delete your rear 02s? It could be the reason you're running rich

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    the plugs won't be damaged--just will have a tendency to foul out----especially with a lot of idling or city driving----Without cats the only thing left that could be affected would be the 02 sensors--they could foul also with a extended perioid of an overrich condition----There are some other problems it would create but not in the short term--like washing down the cylinders of oil---creating lots of carbon build up----

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    Grand Imperial Wizard Sarge's Avatar
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    At idle in closed loop I am running around 12-1....WOT I am running 11.5-1...cruising down the highway at 75mph running 1800 RPM I am tuned to run 15-1....I have a dual wideband I watch closely....did the lean blow up thing already

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    Member SSpdDmon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2manycis View Post
    do you have something to delete your rear 02s? It could be the reason you're running rich
    Rear O2 sensors don't do diddly for fueling. Now, if he's not running the front O2's, then he'd be running open loop and most likely lean.

    Headers actually lean the car out as with any modification that helps the engine to breathe better (ie pulling the filter). As stated above, the computer maintains a stoich AFR using the NB O2 sensors' feedback for part throttle. Fueling is adjusted through fuel trim percentages. Positive FT's increase part throttle fueling...negative FT's subtract fueling. This happens constantly, over and over again like it's stuck in a loop. Therefore, we call it closed-loop (CL) operation. The only AFR targeted in CL is 14.7:1. Under heavier loads & WOT, extra fuel is added through power enrichment (PE). This is outside of the NB O2's range to provide feedback because they're essentially blind to AFR's much above/below 14.7:1. So, the PCM is now calculating fuel without knowing what the results are. This method is called open-loop (OL) operation.

    Since it doesn't know the results during OL, it assumes that if lean conditions (positive FTs) are seen in CL, they will be seen in OL as well. So, they are transfered and added to the required fueling in OL.

    From the factory, AFR's are usually in the 11.6:1~12.0:1 range. However, peak performance is usually found in a leaner 12.5:1~13.0:1 AFR. Because headers lean out the engine by allowing it to breathe better, you get positive FT's in CL. Those fuel trims are then added to the WOT fueling essentially keeping you richer than the optimal 12.5:1~13.0:1 AFR. This can hurt power. But, most likely won't cause damage to any of your parts. If you were running that rich, then I'd say it's time to replace the NB O2's and clean the MAF sensor because it's most likely an error in fuel calculation.

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    Member SSpdDmon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sarge View Post
    At idle in closed loop I am running around 12-1....WOT I am running 11.5-1...cruising down the highway at 75mph running 1800 RPM I am tuned to run 15-1....I have a dual wideband I watch closely....did the lean blow up thing already
    That must burn your eyes at idle!

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    Grand Imperial Wizard Sarge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SSpdDmon View Post
    That must burn your eyes at idle!

    I love the smell of 105 in the morning!

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    We'll be back... GatorSS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sarge View Post
    At idle in closed loop I am running around 12-1....WOT I am running 11.5-1...cruising down the highway at 75mph running 1800 RPM I am tuned to run 15-1....I have a dual wideband I watch closely....did the lean blow up thing already
    You must get some great highway MPG.

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    Grand Imperial Wizard Sarge's Avatar
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    We do...that is why we run 15-1...I get about 25 MPG ....in a beast like this GTO now that is some tuning

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    I have tuned several cars after header installs including 2 of my own--and I have yet to see one go towards lean--All have gone rich--In theory it should make it lean--but it hassn't for me--I guess thats why they say every engine is different and needs to be tuned accordingly.

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