Basics of Performance Camshafts

Basics of Performance Camshafts

Most people in the United States start to learn how to drive a car around 16 years of age. Despite the fact that handling a vehicle becomes familiar at such a young age, not too many people can actually tell you what makes a car operate.There are so many pieces under the hood, and most of them are totally foreign to most people. To get a better understanding of what is going on inside your machine, let’s take a cursory glance at a necessary yet widely underappreciated part: the camshaft.

Car Crankshaft

As your car’s crankshaft spins, it rotates a long metal rod known as a camshaft. Along the camshaft, outcrops of metal (lobes) pop out from tip to end, each one lined up with a cylinder on your car’s engine. The rotating camshaft will press a lobe against a rocker arm, which in turn opens its corresponding valve below. When the camshaft keeps rotating, the lobe spins away from the rocker arm, allowing springs to kick it back up, and close the valve. If this process

sounds a little complicated, even in simple terms, keep in mind thatwe’re only talking about one rotation; at highway speeds, your vehicle is probably running 2000+ rotations per minute (RPM), so this entire rotational process is happening incredibly quickly, to say the least.

In summation, the camshaft and its lobes are in charge of opening and closing the right valves at the right time to ensure the engine is running optimally. It is an important and difficult job for one piece of machinery to take on.

Introducing the Performance Camshaft

Automobile modifications usually involve taking a complicated piece of equipment and making it better. But how can something as necessary and seemingly basic as a camshaft be improved? That’s the wonder of high performance auto tuning – everything can be improved!

A performance camshaft will generally have larger lobes that allow the valve to be opened for longer, taking in or expelling air for a greater duration per rotation, depending on if it is controlling an intake or an exhaust valve. There are also custom camshafts that can improve the overall timing of your engine’s rotations, enhancing performance at particular speeds. For example, a standard camshaft might be crafted to provide spot-on rotations at low speeds but falters when you put the pedal to the metal; a performance camshaft will more or less polarize the situation, behaving better at high speeds at the cost of “rough” idling.

If you think that a performance camshaft might be the right upgrade for you and your vehicle, feel free to contact our Houston high performance auto tuning specialists at HP Motorsports. With 20+ years of experience serving Katy and the surrounding area, we are confident that we can get the solution and modification for you and your vehicle. Call 281.231.9950 for a free estimate.


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