Should I Upgrade to EFI?

by | Jul 5, 2019

If you have a muscle car, classic truck or hot rod that runs on a carburetor and are looking for some direction on whether EFI (Electronic Fuel Injection) would be a wise decision, then you have landed on the right article! Should you upgrade to EFI? Is it worth the expense? What differences will it make in my performance, etc? There are so many variables in choosing the right direction and we’ll make sure to answer those questions and more to help you out!

Are carburetors hard to tune?

Absolutely not, it’s actually the opposite. The carburetors today supplied by Holley and Edelbrock are easy to tune. Many of the old technologies that made carburetors difficult to use in the 80’s, 90’s up to 2010 are now obsolete. Some of the big players in the industry acquired smaller companies with patents to create more innovative designs which brought a more efficient and easy-to-use carburetor to the masses.


Does EFI produce more power than a carburetor?

Yes, but it’s a small margin. It’s very much exaggerated just like anything else in the market, but there is a HP/TQ gain. On average for a small block Chevy or Ford we’re looking at 5-15 HP over a carburetor. Most of the power advantage is in the higher RPM range.

Is EFI difficult to install?

No, it’s pretty easy and usually takes just a few hours to plug everything in and get it fired-up. Most EFI companies have how-to videos on YouTube and they’ll walk you through an installation.

What are the benefits of EFI?

Think of an EFI system as a carburetor with a brain that calculates the exact amount of fuel needed for the environment and situation. There’s more precision involved thus improving fuel economy, consistency of power through elevation changes, and coping with extreme temperatures.


What are the downsides of EFI?

Just like an iPhone or any other electronic, you’ll get glitches, error codes, and defects. EFI systems are becoming more advanced and dependable as the years go on, but if something goes wrong you should anticipate a lot of time spent in the garage and on the phone with EFI tech support.

Is it worth the money?

If you plan on driving long distances, over mountains or live in extreme cold/hot climates then it’s a must-have. You’ll regret not buying one if this sounds like you: You’re at sea-level one day, then the next day you’re in Lake Tahoe where it’s 15 degrees outside, the elevation is 6,500 ft. These changes affect your engine’s ability to breath so it’s sluggish and your fuel economy is 8 MPG.

Now, if you live on the beach or somewhere nice and you just drive around town or maybe a 2 hour trip here and there, then a carburetor will do the job just fine!

What EFI system do you recommend?

Out of all the different manufacturers, we’ve determined that the Holley Sniper is the easiest to install, most reliable, and it’s priced just right. It is well worth the investment and if you purchase EFI from us, it will always be a Holley Sniper.

If I buy an EFI system with my engine, will West Coast Engines dyno it with the EFI installed?

Yes, we will!

If you think of any other questions or concerns you have about EFI, drop us a comment below or email us at Sales@westcoastengines.com. We’ll constantly make updates and add more content as the requests come in!