How Much HP Does a Cam Add? (Everything to Know)

Do you want a horsepower increase and are wondering – how much hp does a cam add?

We all have been in a situation where you want more engine power. Regardless of the power the engine has already delivered, getting more is a good idea.

You probably have come to think that you can replace your camshaft using Youtube videos and forum discussions. This is a good idea since installing a camshaft with good performance increases the horsepower, but you might ask, how much hp does a cam add?

Here, we will answer the question “How much hp does a cam add?”.  We will also explain how the cam operates and why replacing the camshaft increases horsepower. Also, we will discuss ways in which you can increase the output horsepower.

Read on!

The 50 to 100hp increase can only be achieved using a series of modifications through stage 2 and stage 1 modifications.

Because the camshaft controls the valves directly and also the direction of gas and air, your engine can work much more efficiently and optimally. Having a good camshaft shows that you can sustain your valves for long without ruining the time the parts synchronize or go out of synchronization.

The flow of the blend of fuel and air is what causes the engine to deliver more power, better fuel economy, extended durability, and higher performance.

Having a good camshaft affects the vehicle’s emissions and also assists the exhaust system in functioning effectively without trapping the airways.

Also Read: How Much HP Does a Supercharger Add? (Explained)

How Does the Camshaft Work?

How Much HP Does a Cam Add

Usually, you can find the camshaft either on the top of the engine or at the bottom. It has a couple of specifically machined camshafts, which are timed correctly to close and open the valves.

The cam at the bottom of your engine is a component of the pushrod camshaft system. The cam pushes a couple of rods that are extended towards the valves and work on them.

But if the camshaft is at the top, it is called the overhead camshaft.

You might have heard about the dual overhead cam, it is a system that has 2 camshafts, while one controls the exhaust valve and the other handles the intake valve.

Whenever you hear of a 16-valve 4-cylinder engine, it simply means that your cam has four pairs of 4 cams, and each of them operates the two intake and two exhaust valves.

Does The Camshaft Affect Power?

Your engine produces power by activating the air to fuel mixture as soon it is mixed properly and pressurized. Since the cam closes and opens the intake valve, modifying it can result in a mixture that has more powerful activation and is abundant in oxygen.

The stock of the camshaft has been designed to ensure fuel economy, longevity, and optimal power. There’s an increase of just 10 to 20hp in a high-performance camshaft because it does not affect the quantity of fuel sprayed into your cylinder.

Getting power from your engine is a never-ending cycle of improvements. After you change the camshaft, it would get bottlenecked by fuel injectors.

You will need a good valve and a good fuel injector. Replace them, and you will also need a good exhaust and intake manifold to expel and deliver the air. As soon as you have done all this, you will be able to get up to an increase of 50 to 100hp. At this point, you might ask yourself if this is worth your money at all.

Also Read: How Much Hp Does a Turbo Add?

Why a Camshaft Can Increase Horse Power

We have seen how the camshafts operate in your engine, but it still does not tell us why swapping the camshaft can increase your engine’s power.

You can increase your engine’s power after you swap the camshaft due to the increase in efficiency and mixture of fuel. Bigger camshafts tend to keep the valves open for long whenever it’s pushed.

The more your valves are kept open, the more fuel will reach the combustion compartment.

Putting more fuel boosts the horsepower of your engine and also boosts the stability of combustion.

One good thing that is common with new camshafts is that they do not mess up your engine’s timing. A well-manufactured camshaft keeps your valve open for long without altering anything.

That is how they can increase the efficiency and power of the engine. There is a lot of power expanded by changing your cam; though you fix a new camshaft, it’ll only affect the power a little. This is because the fuel injector of your engine restricts them.

Though the camshafts keep the valves open for long, they will still have to get fuel from the injectors. You can continue to increase the power of the engine by buying a new injector. You might as well get a new valve alongside.

Using both a new injector and a new cam can make a big difference. The camshafts will keep the valve open longer than it should, and the new fuel injector will shove more fuel into the compartment when it is open.

Normally, putting in a new camshaft is not the most efficient method to increase the power of the engine when it comes to money. To see a difference, you will have to change other parts also.

Also Read: Procharger vs Supercharger (Differences, Pros & Cons)

Performance Camshaft HP Gain

How Much HP Does a Cam Add

The performance of your camshafts boosts the power your car generates by boosting the time the valves open, making it accelerate on time.

You will need a rough idle with a performance overhead cam, which offers you the rumble that some people want for their cars.

How Much Horsepower Does a Stage 1 Camshaft Add?

The cam adds just 10 to 20hp. The 50 to 100hp is possible only with a series of chaperoning modifications through stage 2 and stage 1.

How Much Horsepower Does a Stage 2 Camshaft Add?

Stage 2 upgrades the camshafts and simultaneously remaps the exhaust system and the ECU and also upgrades the intake system to complete the first stage.

You can get up to 20 to 25% of power from your engine when you have completed both stages.

How Much HP Does a Stage 3 Camshaft Add?

The third stage will get up to 40% of more power than the normal one. Nevertheless, the stage 2 and 1 modifications have to be finished before you can move to the third stage.

How Much HP Does a Stage 4 Camshaft Add?

The 4th stage upgrade increases the rpm torque and also gives peak power. You can get up to 460whp if you use the right model to find a better set of cylinder heads.

Advantages of Upgraded Camshaft

There are many advantages surrounding the adjustment of the camshafts, and most of these things heighten your vehicle’s performance. Here is a list of these benefits.

1. Enhances the Low-End Torque

Changing the cams to ensure the camshafts are ahead or behind a little would change the performance of your engine, and it’s for the better if you do it well. How? Increasing the timing activates the amount of fuel that goes through the valve when it opens and closes, thus strengthening the low-end torque. In addition to this, the high-end power is also boosted. Regardless, it will be at the expense of the low-end torque.

2. Strengthen the Efficiency and Power

The upgraded cam lobes can be of various shapes, letting the valves open for a more extensive time regularly.

This guarantees high air and fuel release and also increases power and efficiency, especially if you are using a quality and lighter model.

3. Intensifies Sound

If you are a full motorhead, you might enjoy your vehicle’s sound. But if you want a deep low growl, upgrading your camshaft is a good idea as this would assure you of a throaty and powerful engine sound.

4. A Good RPM Range

Most persons often choose to upgrade the camshaft of their vehicle because they intend to customize their engine to operate optimally, all between the precise RPM range.

How Much HP Does a Cam Add

Is Camming a Car Worth It?

Camming simply means that you are enhancing the duration and timing at which your valves open, or you’re increasing the lift and timing of your valve.

As you go deeper, the timing covers the length required for the lobes to open these valves. The better the lift and timing, the more air and fuel mixture it would receive in the cylinder to get a better result.

Camming your car would be worth it if increasing the power is of importance, as this will surely increase the power.

How Much Does It Cost To Cam Your Car?

On average, replacing each camshaft would cost about $1,348-$1,574. And for the labor cost will be around $864-$1,090. And also, the parts start from $483, with taxes and fees not included.

And know that the precise cost depends on your location and the exact type of vehicle you own. The other expense you should evaluate is stage upgrades and future repairs, which result in additional cost but gives more power.

Also Read: How Much Does a Turbo Cost?

Camshaft Upgrade Cons And Pros

Just like every other vehicle, upgrading camshafts come with cons and pros. These include:

Pros Of Cam Upgrade

There are many pros. The two main reasons vehicle owners upgrade their camshafts are for sound and power.

These two components are increased as a result of an upgraded camshaft since it has a feature to enhance your engine’s horsepower and, in general, the engine’s performance.

Ensure the camshafts increase the timing of the valve, fuel filter, etc. You have to capitalize on quality parts and ensure it fits the camshaft add-ons.

It might include the valve train parts, bigger camshaft, rocker arms, stick heads, and other common parts that could affect the increase in performance and the work of the crankshafts.

Cons Of Cam Upgrade

In some states, getting a new cam could be prohibited unless your vehicle comes with a certification number.

In a situation like this, upgrading the cam might be okay. Another one is when you want to sell or insure your car, you’ll have to outline all the modifications. This could heighten the price and put people off from purchasing your vehicle.

Another con is that it can be costly, though a lot of people believe it’s worth it.

How Else Could I Add Horsepower To My Car?

One significant way to boost the horsepower is by restoring it effectively instead of adding it.

As time goes on, the engine might become rusty, dirty, and, as a result, worn down.

Considering how well you maintain it over the years, for example, a ten-year-old vehicle might probably have up to 50-90 percent of its actual power.

A detailed servicing that involves rebuilding, cleaning, and stripping your engine could restore the power to almost its original power. For example, If your vehicle only works at 50 percent of the initial performance, you can restore it up to 100 percent.

Yes, you can get a 100%hp gain for a nice clean. 

For the time being, make use of high-quality fuel additives and fluids beneath the hood. Ensure you use synthetic oil and try to replace the parts of your coolant system that might get clogged.

Altogether, it would restore your vehicle to its original performance. Instead of a performance cam, most persons consider this option. Nevertheless, it might be an added benefit if you add a performance camshaft to a hardcore petrol head that has a powerful and big vehicle. And if the engine is stripped down already, you should.

How Much HP Does a Cam Add

Frequently Asked Questions – How Much HP Does a Cam Add?

Does a camshaft provide more HP?

A cam adds up to 10-20hp, and it depends on the setup. You will have to replace other components such as the valve heads, injectors, exhaust manifold, and air intake to get a complete high performance.

How much horsepower does a stage 4 cam add?

The stage 4 camshafts peak outcome leads to 568 horsepower, but for the peak torque, it drops a little to 510lb-ft. The wilder camshaft gives more power up to 5,500rpm and would lose it to the milder camshaft below that point.

Does a camshaft make your car faster?

Yes, in most situations, it depends on the model of your vehicle and the custom camshaft it uses. That said, the camshaft from aftermarket is made for top-level performance, so after camming your vehicle, be determined to experience fast speed.

How much horsepower does a Stage 3 cam?

It is rated at 430 horsepower. The hp comes from using the dyno headers long-tube, a bigger throttle body, better fuel, and a better forceful baseline tune.

Does camming a car make it louder?

This can happen, mostly if it has a good lope to it. Cammed cars get louder after your camshaft is added. So, It would certainly become louder.

Are cammed cars dependable?

Yes, they are very dependable, and you do not have to worry if you do not cam that car.

Conclusion – How Much HP Does a Cam Add?

Now you have the answer to the question -How much HP does a cam add?

Swapping your camshaft can be costly since you can’t do it yourself at home, and the increase in power is small. As a result, we suggest you upgrade the camshaft till you need to swap the old one. And while you are doing this, you can upgrade other parts to get the additional power increase you want. The high-performance camshaft alone would not offer you more than a 10% power increase.

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