Engine chip tuning is one of the easiest and relatively inexpensive ways to improve your vehicle performance. Unless, of course, you address the wrong shop looking for the best tuner for 6.4 Powerstroke.
One day you will want to improve your car’s performance. But you don’t have to go to your local service center and overpay for each hour to improve your vehicle’s basic characteristics. You can do everything on your own using a reliable programmer/tuner. With its help, you can quickly and effectively perform independent tuning of the engine. The work of the unit is quite simple – first, a certain program is downloaded (pulled from your vehicle), then it gets adjusted and shoved back.
Here’s a list of high-quality programmers to customize and improve your vehicle performance.
Top Tuners (Programmers) for 6.4L Powerstroke Engine
|Bully Dog 40420|
|Edge Products 84130|
Best Diesel Tuner
|SCT Performance 7015|
|Edge Products 85400 CTS2|
Ford 6.4 Off-Road Tuner
|Edge Products 84030|
For Ford F250 Diesel
|Superchips 1845 Flashpaq F5|
|Bully Dog 40460B|
- Bully Dog 40420
- Edge Products 84130
- SCT Performance 7015
- Edge Products 85400 CTS2
- SCT 5015P
- Edge Products 84030
- Superchips 1845 Flashpaq F5
- Bully Dog 40460B
- DiabloSport 7103
1. Bully Dog 40420 – 6.4 Powerstroke tuner
With the help of this programmer, you can increase your engine power, torque, improve fuel economy, monitor the operation of your vehicle systems in real-time, and get actual data from them. Besides, the set includes a power supply, OBDII adapter plug, windshield mount, SD card reader, SD card, Mini USB cord, power cable, fuse tap/spade. Apart from a Ford’s 6.4 Power Stroke, you can effortlessly tune your Toyota, Infinity, or Nissan with this unit. For the price, the programmer extracts the maximum of useful work from itself.
The GT Diesel programmer opens up more power and torque to meet the most unique requirements for your car. With pre-configured settings, customizable sensors to monitor performance, and a wide range of off-road features, you’ll have the power to conquer the most remote locations on your Ford or improve fuel economy for long highway journeys.
- Different power levels are available (Stock, Performance, Extreme);
- Tire pressure sensor threshold reduction;
- Unit adaptation to new wheels and tire size parameters;
- Enabling or disabling standard vehicle functions;
- Selectable automatic gearbox switching points (for certain models);
- Setting engine speed limits (for certain models);
You can surely add a ton of power and boost your vehicle’s performance with this easy-to-use device!
- Dimensions – 2.25″ x 3.5″
- Weight – 4.8 oz
- OBDII adapter plug
- Windshield mount
- SD card reader
- SD card
- Mini USB cable
- Power cable
- Fuse tap
- Fuse spade.
- Up to 10 custom tune files storage
- Versatility (fits various Ford, Dodge & GM diesel models)
- Large list of parameters to monitor
- Increased HP and torque
- Efficient (fuel economy)
- Various power options
- Trouble code diagnostics
2. Edge Products 84130 – Best tuner for 6.4 l Powerstroke
The Insight CTS2 from Edge helps you monitor and improve your vehicle parameters with its bleeding-edge technology. It’s one of the most popular devices on the market today.
The gauge has a 5″ full-color high-definition LCD (touch-screen) that you can tune (change colors and backgrounds) the way you want, but the best thing is, of course, that it lets you monitor a huge number of parameters (e.g. tire pressure, torque levels, speed, fuel level, engine RPM, urea, intake air temp, soot levels, turbo pressure, etc.) to control your vehicle’s performance in real-time and get the most from your car.
You can also use it to intelligently tune custom audible/visual alerts and maintain your vehicle’s safety. Besides, this easy-to-use friendly device also supports other tuning devices, in case you think it’s not enough for total insight on your vehicle’s performance. The Insight fits various vehicles starting from 1996 or newer.
- Size – 5″
- Weight – 12.8 oz
- HDMI style plug
- OBDII port
- 5″ full-color HD LCD (swipe feature)
- Custom color options
- Various parameters monitoring
- Compatibility (supports other tuning devices)
- Exhaustive digital gauge display
- Easy to use (intuitive menu)
- Customizable backgrounds
- Video capability
- Switchable measuring units
3. SCT Performance 7015 – Best diesel tuner for 6.4 Powerstroke
Custom tuning is essential to get the most out of modifications you have done to your vehicle, but even if it’s stock, a good custom tune can increase your HP, torque and improve your fuel consumption. The new X4 calibrator is has a redesigned compact size and is smaller than its predecessor, the X3, and it has no fixed cable connected to it. You just plug the cable into the port under the dash and the other end is plugged in right on top of the tuner.
And then the unit just turns on immediately and you can see all the features (Program Vehicle, Dataloging, Vehicle Diagnostics (to clear found DTC codes), Vehicle Info (for doing custom tuning), Device Info (to know what type of software is in your device and what revisions you have), and Device Settings) available on a large LCD full-color display. It’s really easy to read, especially in bright daylight when you try to do your tuning.
The X4 is fast and it will detect your vehicle model in no time, then you just have to follow the instruction in Program Vehicle mode.
Besides, you also have built-in WiFi, which lets you do the downloads right to the tuner. You can go to the Device Settings menu and change X4’s display brightness and themes to make it even more comfortable. It performs perfectly on 1996-2014 Ford Mustangs!
SCT Performance LLC is a leading supplier of portable automotive programmers for US vehicles, providing improved performance and fuel economy. SCT employees are not only a group of experienced engineers, managers, and salespeople, they are also passionate enthusiasts who create high-quality equipment for our convenience and highest performance of our vehicles. They share our passion for tuning, power, and speed, providing sincere and reliable support for their products.
- Compact and powerful
- Dimensions – 2.5″ x 5.5″
- Weight – 1 lb
- X4 device
- OBDII adapter plug
- USB cable
- Increased HP and Torque
- Wide backlit LCD display
- Easy to install and use
- DYNO proven tune files pre-loaded
- Up to 10 custom tunes storage
- Dual analog inputs
- Clearing DTCs
- User-adjustable vehicle parameters
- Easy Return to Stock program
- Built-in Wi-Fi connectivity (easy updates)
- Fits a wide range of Ford cars
4. Edge Products 85400 CTS2 – Best programmer for Ford 6.4
Re-tune your vehicle’s stock computer with this incredible performance tuner from Edge! A team of experienced Edge engineers has been working on this device for a long time so you could install it fast, adjust your settings, and unlock your vehicle’s secret potential! The Evolution CTS2 can be plugged into your OBDII port with an HDMI style cable (make sure your ignition is off) to save your vehicle’s stock files and upload calibrations into the computer.
With this in-cabin controller you can easily increase your vehicle’s torque and HP, monitor engine data in real-time, adjust TPMS levels, maximize your diesel/gas engine performance/towing/mileage, adjust rev/speed limiter, etc. You can also update the tuner via the Internet. If you open the Performance Settings menu, you will see 4 preset power levels to maximize your vehicle’s performance based on the way you drive.
The Diagnostics menu will let you know about your Trouble Codes to always know what your “Check Engine Light” is saying. You can track routine maintenance with programmable mileage interval alerts by going to the Maintenance Manager menu or monitor miles per gallon in the Mileage Coach menu.
Besides, you can also develop your perfect fuel-efficient driving style, as well. All of the options are customizable to your specific preferences. Fits various Dodge, GMC, Ford, and Chevy models.
- 5″ full-color swipe screen
- HDMI style plug
- Weight – 1.5 lbs
- Easy menu navigation and installation
- Switchable metric measurements
- Performance, tow, mileage, daily driving tuning
- TQ management
- Up to additional 180HP and 440 ft lb TQ on diesel applications
- Multiple layouts
- Full-color high-resolution touch-screen
- Customizable backgrounds
- Sleek design
5. SCT 5015P – Best programmer for 6.4 Powerstroke
Another great calibrator from SCT which lets you switch your power levels on-the-fly! You can store up to 10 custom tunes in this device, plus it has pre-loaded DYNO tune files for maximum flexibility. Just like other models on our list, the Livewire TS+ helps to unleash your vehicle’s hidden power and improve its performance by retuning its computer and extract the most HP and torque, increase throttle response and fuel mileage.
You can fully customize it and adjust your alerts/warnings and parameters to fit your style. Mount it on your car windshield or dash and change your power levels while driving or monitor real-time actual data.
This thing is very easy to use and it performs great at detecting anything you need. You can just go to the Vehicle Functions menu, press the Read DTC Codes option, and it says exactly what’s going on.
You don’t have to go to your local mechanical shops and spend your money and time just to get those codes when you have the Livewire TS+! It’s simply a must-have to maintain the health of your engine and stay tuned knowing that everything is going smooth, just like it’s supposed to go.
- Size – 4.5″ x 3″
- Weight – 1.7 lb
- Full-color 4″ display
- Windshield mount
- Livewire TS+ device
- OBDII adapter plug
- USB cable
- Allows to monitor various sensor data
- Easy to use and install
- Pre-loaded DYNO tune files
- Stores up to 10 custom tuning files
- Fits a wide range of Ford models
- Built-In Performance Calculator
- Built-in ambient light sensor (auto-adjustments for day/night)
- Reading and clearing DTC codes
- Various data monitoring/logging
- Rearview camera input
- Adjustable warning alerts
6. Edge Products 84030 – Ford 6.4 off-road tuner
And here comes another neat gauge to monitor your vehicle’s performance. Now, this portable device is really small so it perfectly fits in your hand and does not get in the way. The set includes a suction-cup mount to “stick” the gauge to your windshield/dash, an OBDII cable to pull all the info from your vehicle to the linked device, and a USB cable to link the device to your computer and download the newest software available to make sure you’re up to date.
Besides, you also have a few zip ties to button up all the wiring. It has many interesting and useful features to choose from, so you just have to let it know the exact information about your vehicle you want to see, as well as what colors/layouts/backgrounds you want the gauge to show. All is customizable here.
Moreover, it’s a great diagnostic tool that will help get your vehicle run at peak efficiency. It’s able to read and clear Diagnostic Trouble Codes (DTC), so you don’t have to go down to the dealership or local auto part stores and spend your time/money.
You can simply do everything while you drive! Datalog and run live gauges with the vehicle as you’re driving and see what’s going on and figure any small problems you might have. Moreover, the device is EAS (Expandable Accessory System) compatible, which means you can add some different sensors and utility to the tuner and pull out more parameters from your vehicle. An excellent device for diagnostics on your vehicle.
- Weight – 1.3 lbs
- Screen size – 2.4″
- Suction-cup mount
- OBDII connector
- USB cable
- 5 zip ties
- EAS compatible
- DTC reading & clearing
- Speed monitoring
- Rail Pressure Setting
- Injection Timing
- Adjustable alerts and records
- Performance tests
- Internet Updateable
- VGT Setting
7. Superchips 1845 Flashpaq F5 – Best tuner for ford f250 diesel
Now, this little buddy is loaded with Superchips economy, towing, and race tunes. First of all, it’s a great choice for any F150 owner. It’s an affordable handheld tuning device that is can handle the basic task of flashing your truck. Besides, the F5 also loaded with many features that most of the truck drivers are after with today’s modern devices.
This device is CARB-approved and absolutely legal in all 50 states, so you will not run into any issues.
The Superchips F5 is all about fuel economy – it’s simply one of the best devices in the category. As mentioned above, the programmer has some pretty cool features and is a great choice for those who focus on the tunes themselves.
You can get more torque, acceleration, high-end power, and overall performance from your vehicle. If you are looking for an affordable basic device with a few great options to upload those tunes, clear DTCs, datalog your figures, or monitor 4 different things at once – this reliable user-friendly tuner is just for you. It does its job perfectly.
- Screen size – 2.8″
- Weight – 0.7 lb
- USB cable
- OBDII connector
- Superchips stickers
- Great for fuel economy
- Easy to use
- Mileage gains
- Improved acceleration
- Speedometer accuracy
- Redesigned interface
- Improved user experience
- 50-states legal
- Affordable price
8. Bully Dog 40460B – Best 6.4 Powerstroke Performance programmer
With this powerful performance tuning device, you will need no computers! The Bully Dog’s GTX Performance tuner operates independently. You will be surprised by its responsiveness and ease of use. It has various, exceptionally helpful features that you can “play” with while driving and improve your vehicle’s overall health.
The GTX Programmer represents the latest hardware and is really quick to start up, in fact, it requires not more than 10 seconds.
Now, this device can hold up to 20 custom tunes, plus, it comes with preloaded multiple Bully Dog tuning levels. It’s an incredible data monitoring solution that provides the ability to control your engine parameters and monitor different metrics.
It has WiFi connectivity, which allows you to download updates and receive custom tunes from any of Bully Dog’s tuning dealers around your city/country and take your trick performance to the next level, and a wide high-resolution LCD for unmatchable user experience. You can log vehicle performance data as you drive and get back to it later using Bully Dog’s LiveLink software.
The set also includes the Grab-and-Go magnetic mounting system which keeps your monitor safe when not in use. And, of course, the GTX Programmer reads/clears your vehicle’s DTCs. It’s a solid device with a 5″ LCD screen that will not let you down and expand your experience and improve your vehicle’s performance.
- Weight – 2 lb
- Size – 3.5″ x 5″
- 5″ LCD Display
- Suction cup mount
- Magnetic cable
- Vehicle interface module
- OBDII adapter plug
- USB cable
- 5 zip ties
- Instruction manual
- Alcohol pad
- Increased tow power and mileage
- Full control of the ride
- Speedometer correction
- Transmission shift point adjustment
- High-quality diagnostics
- Speed limiter adjustment/removal
- Gauge monitoring
- Requires no computer
- Most innovative hardware
- 20 custom tunes storage
- Preloaded tuning levels
- Wide range of engine parameters monitoring
- WiFi connectivity
- Cloud tuning
- Wide 5″ high-resolution touchscreen
9. DiabloSport 7103 – 6.4 Powerstroke race tuner
For over 10 years, the Predator from DiabloSport has been known as the most rock-solid performance tuner ever made! Tuning your truck can only take a few minutes! Now, let’s see what it can do.
You have your Diablo Tune to get the best performance gain available on your vehicle, Diablo Tow, 87 Performance Tune, 87 Economy Tune, Stock with Options, and Stock tune.
You can customize your throttle response/boost, speed/rev limiter, gear ratio, shift torque, shift points, adjust your tire size or TPMS sensor, etc. By the way, keep in mind that raising your speed limiter value does not let you exceed appropriate operating conditions and break traffic laws. Plus, make sure your ignition is off, once you plug the Predator in.
You can rely on this convenient tuner in terms of reading/clearing those DTCs or if you want to monitor your vehicle performance in real-time. You can always check your vehicle information such as the current tuning level, your VIN, as well as whether the Predator is locked to your VIN or not (depending on whether you have tuned your vehicle or not).
This tuner is, obviously, worth its money. Overall, it’s a very easy-to-use tuner that was built to make your vehicle run smooth, and you will feel the difference when you step on the pedal. Perfectly fits Chevy Silverado, GMC Sierra, Yukon, Denali, Suburban, and other GM trucks.
- Screen size – 2.9″
- Weight – 0.9 lb
- USB cable
- OBDII connector
- USB cable
- High-resolution full-color screen
- Easy to navigate (5 buttons)
- Intuitive menu for advanced options
- Sleek design and simplified interface
- Powerful processor
- High-speed OBDII data logging
- Increased HP and fuel economy
- Size, gears, shifting user-adjustable options
- Custom tuning
- DTC reading/clearing
- Performance data logging and tests
- Comes assembled as one piece (simple plug-and-play installation)
- Preloaded tunes for 4.3L, 4.8L, 5.3L, 6.0L, 6.2L, and 8.1L GM trucks and 1999-2017 SUVs.
Best Tuners for 6.4 Powerstroke – Buyer’s Guide
As you know, modern car engines are controlled by an electronic control unit (ECU) which has a special microprocessor with a program installed by a vehicle manufacturer. The unit ensures and controls the operation of all major systems. It receives data from several sensors installed on different mechanisms and programmed for certain behavior of the engine in various operating modes.
An ECU controls and regulates almost all engine systems, including the direct injection system, con rod, as well as internal combustion chamber air supply. Naturally, changing software leads to certain changes in engine behavior.
In fact, the chip tuning is just an adjustment of electronic programs of car control, so in this case, traditional tools (wrenches/screwdrivers) are not used – only a computer and appropriate software are needed.
The process of flashing a vehicle itself can take only a few minutes, if, of course, you have a high-quality easy-to-use tuning device. Or it can stretch for 5-6 hours and a few $100, if you address a bad auto parts store, depending on the model of your vehicle and “specialists'” expert skills.
The device for flashing ECU allows you to effectively:
- increase engine power;
- reduce fuel consumption;
- eliminate DTCs (Diagnostic Trouble Codes);
- disconnect filters and sensors;
- monitor various parameters;
- deal with other important issues.
It’s a little more difficult to chiptune vehicles produced before 1996. In such cases, it is necessary to use certain connection methods to access an ECU. Moden car models use the OBDII connector for that.
An ECU has information about the planned ignition, fuel supply, and other similar data in different operating modes. As mentioned before, except older cars that do not have the unit, hand-held tuning, using a high-quality programmer, will not be difficult. Such a tuner provides an opportunity to change certain parameters independently, achieving maximum efficiency, fuel efficiency, improved torque, throttle response, horsepower, etc. Auto ECU programmers are a great tool that will help increase engine performance and improve functional characteristics.
The most common question is, what should you use to increase power? There are several reasons:
- “Engineering” safety factor. Most modern engines have a higher design capacity than the real one. The manufacturer is reinsured to ensure excessive reliability, thereby reducing the likelihood of warranty claims.
- Marketing. It is necessary to sell vehicles with different prices, correspondingly – with different power. Sometimes, it is cheaper to design and mass-produce one powerful engine, making less powerful versions of software than to invest in several different engines.
- Ecology. In many countries, taxes depend on the norms of CO2 emissions, and it is much easier and cheaper to reduce it in a small range, reducing the power, than to equip engines with additional expensive neutralizers.
- Taxes. In some countries, taxes and insurance are calculated based on vehicle power – reducing power can significantly reduce the cost of its operation.
- Improvements. Each engine has its own “bottleneck”, and the replacement of a certain element with a more productive one allows using the potential of the whole engine to a greater extent. The reason for “clogging” may be a factory air filter, catalyst, inefficient intercooler, weak fuel pump or fuel injectors, etc. – individual in each case.
In most cases, a significant increase in chip tuning is achieved on gasoline and diesel engines with supercharging (turbine or compressor). Non-supercharged engines have a much smaller growth rate and usually only affect larger volumes (say, from 3.0 liters). Naturally aspirated engines 1.5 liters (without hardware modifications) can usually achieve 3-10HP max, so few people deal with them.
There are other stages, but these three are the most common.
- Choosing a way to increase your vehicle’s performance, try to understand the subject as much as possible – not all the methods are the same, some are even quite dangerous.
- You don’t have to search based on “the cheaper – the better” principal – any engine element breakdown will be enough to “kill” any economy on-chip tuning, not to mention the whole engine failure.
- Do not listen to those “craftsmen” who say they have the same software, and brands just make you overpay for the name – software will be different, and even if you don’t notice any differences right away, they may well come out later.
- Google while you choose your solution. See reviews, look for complaints about failures and problems, look for competition achievements of vehicles with such tuning.
- Having made up your mind, check out the Сontacts sector on the official website of the manufacturer to avoid running into the impostors.
- If your vehicle is already “upgraded”, but you doubt its proper operation – you can do a free diagnostics test at any official dealer and check the parameters of the engine under stress by yourself. To exclude accusations of bias – the dealer will provide you with a log file, and you will be able to show it to other company representatives or discuss it on a car forum with enthusiasts.
- Good chip tuning means fresh bright impressions of your vehicle, reliability, and security comparable to factory ones. Choose any of proven solutions, and you will like it!
If you have already addressed some auto repair shop and doubt the success of the work performed, perhaps, the following list will help you to understand.
What is EGR?
Exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) is a nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions reduction technique which is used in gasoline/diesel engines. The EGR system reduces combustion temperature by diverting a small portion of exhaust gases back into an intake manifold.
What kind of fuel mileage does a 6.4 Powerstroke get?
The 6.4 has had some problems with fuel economy back in the days. You can improve the mileage by changing your worn brake pads (for that, you should first check them for rubbing by removing each wheel and tire from your truck), changing oil (engine/transmission), replacing a dirty paper air KNN filter with a performance filter, inflating all your truck tires to the same extent and maintain the air pressure, etc. You should avoid prolonged idling, rapid starts, and hard braking as well as exceeding 65 mph on the highway. Depending on if it’s stock or tuned, it’s 15 mpg on average (no towing) for the latter.
What is the MPG of a Ford F250?
14.6 mpg (stop-and-go-traffic drive in a city) and 15.5 mpg on the highway.
How many miles can an F250 diesel last?
A diesel truck has a longer lifespan than gasoline-powered truck and can run from 500.000 up to 800.000 miles.
How much horsepower does the 6.4 PowerStroke have?
350 HP at 3000 RPM in stock. 511 HP and 972 lb-ft (with an intake, exhaust, and Innovative Diesel’s race tune uploaded to the SCT programmer).
What is a performance chip?
Today’s vehicle engines are controlled by computers that have “chips” that tell the computers when/how to adjust your car’s timing, fuel-to-air ratio, turbo boost, etc. Performance chips, sometimes called “Superchips,” are aftermarket chips that adjust these parameters, often increasing engine power and torque. Well, that’s how it was.
Modern vehicles don’t have removable chips. Instead, new software is used to update them through the diagnostic link connector (OBD2) and a tuner/programmer + a laptop computer (if needed). So when firms sell a “performance chip” they’re in fact selling customized software to bypass the car manufacturer’s operating limits to “gain more power” from the same engine.
How many MPG does a diesel truck get?
14.5 mpg on average.
How many miles per gallon does a Ford f250 get?
14.6 mpg on average (city stop-and-go-traffic driving).
How much HP can a performance chip add?
Manufacturers claim their chips can add up 35+ HP. And that number is even greater in diesel or turbocharged engines.
Each type of ECU type has its tuner which connects to the on-board computer using a special cable (OBD2) and after that, you can perform direct actions on its flashing, i.e. update and check results.
The principle of work of the onboard computer is practically the same as with casual PC, except for new versions that use several kinds of memory (Flash, Eeprom) that can record data even if there’s no power supply.
Very often, novice drivers go a free version, which can be downloaded from the Internet. But advanced masters almost all buy an improved commercial version.
Depending on the programmer’s level of capabilities, you can read data or change existing parameters. In some cases, you can even get access to closed processes.
Any influence on an ECU can be called chip tuning (and it doesn’t matter if it goes as a separate improvement or a part of complex vehicle tuning improvements), but it includes different approaches, principles, and results which vary significantly.
We have faced a lot of mistakes and examples of poor quality chip tuning, so for us, it’s essential to let everyone interested in car tuning know about reliable products so you can make a conscious choice. We hope that people in the know will be able to clarify and supplement this information – your comments are always welcome here, so, please, feel free to leave your thoughts on the subject.