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Old 05-25-2010, 05:11 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question "Top 10" list of mods for beginners - do we need one? What would you pick?

When someone new to EcoModding asks you what types of mods they should do to their vehicle, what do you suggest?

The 65+ mods list is a good resource (and, yes, I'm way overdue adding missing mods to bump it into the ~70 range). But I wonder if it's a bit overwhelming for the noobs and/or the short attention spanned.

Of course the problem with recommending 10 mods is that the answer is always "it depends".

EG. it depends if the noob doing mostly city or mostly highway driving? Is s/he willing to modify driving style? Mechanical inclination? Willing to monitor instrumentation more closely than the average driver?

As far as mods go, I almost always start with:

1) MPG instrumentation, keep a fuel log
2) basic maintenance items (tire press/good running order/lowest applicable viscosity lubricants)
3) partial grille blocking

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Old 05-25-2010, 10:42 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I agree with you that the 65 mods list is a pretty good place to start; maybe put the top ten items first within it?
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Old 05-26-2010, 01:13 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Old 05-26-2010, 03:17 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Maybe with Top 10 we'll already get into advanced stuff. Top 5 may be easier to swallow?
I'd keep tire pressure separate from general maintenance since it's not something you need to go to an autoshop to do. Checking and inflating your tires can (and should) be done every week in your driveway, but not everyone will change their oil or check their brakes and alignment at home. Also, we should stress more often that the suggested door placard pressure is the minimum, because most people (if they even care about it) only fill their tires to the OEM pressure if it dips below. Often, they keep it 2-3 psi below, thinking it's a limit you're not allowed to pass.

1) MPG instrumentation, keep a fuel log
2) tire pressure at or above OEM
3) basic maintenance items (good running order/lowest applicable viscosity lubricants/alignment)
4) partial grille blocking
5) roof rack removal
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Old 05-26-2010, 05:54 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I think we'd end up with different lists depending on the audience.

There's the "What would you recommend Mom do if she asked you?" group i.e. I assume most Moms could be persuaded to have an interest in improving fe but they aren't going to go fab stuff up in the garage. They probably wouldn't run out and get scangauges either. So then the list would look like the usual... tire psi, empty the trunk, driving technique, speed, trip combining, etc.

Then there's the actual "modder" group, that wants to get in there and tear things up, so they want to see grille blocks, rack removals, spoilers and dams, ride height/rake mods, and all that.
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Old 05-26-2010, 09:02 PM   #6 (permalink)
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The first mod should be:
Adjust the nut behind the wheel.

Frank Lee said it first: "drving technique".
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Old 05-26-2010, 09:55 PM   #7 (permalink)
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1)Max Tire PSI
2)Fuel Logging
3)Remove Roof Rack
4)Remove "Junk From The Trunk"
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Old 05-26-2010, 10:05 PM   #8 (permalink)
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The most underrated mod is probably the fuel injector kill switch. It teaches and enables advanced hypermiling techniques. But it's not for beginners.
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Old 05-26-2010, 10:42 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Depends who is the audience...

In my own experience...having little mechanical knowledge...my first time on the site I went to the 100 tips link and picked the ones I thought I could do easily to start. A top 10 list for people in my situation would be very basic. Like psi...drive the speed limit...instrumentation...fuel log...etc. this is really the hook that gets you into the next step of physical mods...in my opinion.

The other audience of new subscribers that have some mechanical knowledge...and access to the necessary tools...might be looking for a top 10 physical mods list.

My 2 cents
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Old 05-26-2010, 10:43 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Depends who is the audience...

In my own experience...having little mechanical knowledge...my first time on the site I went to the 100 tips link and picked the ones I thought I could do easily to start. A top 10 list for people in my situation would be very basic. Like psi...drive the speed limit...instrumentation...fuel log...etc. this is really the hook that gets you into the next step of physical mods...in my opinion.

The other audience of new subscribers that have some mechanical knowledge...and access to the necessary tools...might be looking for a top 10 physical mods list.

My 2 cents

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