Q How do you know it's working?
Possible DIY (Do It Yourself) tests include:
1) Idle speed
The idle speed will pick up in an non-ECU (Electronic Control Unit) engine i.e. Those having a carburettor
Cars with an ECU will not show any increase even though a decrease in friction has occurred.
Start using a magnetic sump plug:
Make a note of how much metal collects on the sump plug normally (or take a picture) and then check how much you get after adding Xcelplus.
Put a drop of oil on a piece of filter paper and see how dirty it is before and after. Filter paper makes it easier to accurately determine how dirty oil is. The difference in colour is sometimes quite dramatic (black v's clear) and can be easily picked without the aid of a filter paper.
3) Fuel Economy
Use the same type of fuel each time (E10 (ethanol), octane ratings 91, 93, 96, 98, etc...) preferably bought at the same service station and using the same pump. Fuel can vary even if you use the same chain to refill e.g. BP or Shell.
E10 (10% ethanol) in particular can have a marked effect on mileage (~10% less than petrol without ethanol).
Gas (LPG) is normally a mix of butane and pentane but that mix can vary significantly e.g. 100% Pentane (which is not very common) will give significantly better mileage than a mixture of both gases.
Test across all cylinders and write the readings in your log book before treatment. Repeat compression test after treatment.
Make a note of engine noise noting the location and type of sound. Use a sound meter if possible.
Machinery often shows the biggest improvement in this area but some engines become whisper quiet.
Vibration meters are used on equipment (like compressors) to indicate when they are about to fail. These meters can be used to quantify any reduction in vibration. The improvement is often very obvious even without a meter.
Note how long it takes to start the vehicle before and after (number of turns)... or how hard it is to turn the engine over.
Cold starting is significantly enhanced: Starting on cold days drains the battery more than on warm days
Measuring amperage or starting voltage is often a simple way to establish easier starting i.e. lower voltage or lower amperage means easier starting.
8) Exhaust emissions
Note the colour of your spark plugs before & after. The lighter the plug the cleaner the burn.
Note the amount of carbon collecting at the end of your exhaust pipe. The less carbon the cleaner the engine.
Note the amount of smoke your vehicle blows and the colour (blue or black) before & after.
Your local mechanic probably has an emissions tester which can measure levels of:
02 (oxygen), CO2 (carbon dioxide), CO (carbon monoxide), NOx (Oxides of Nitrogen) and total level of HC (unburned hydrocarbons).
N.B. If fuel efficiency is improved then emissions have decreased
Engines become more responsive and have more power after treatment
Does the engine pull heavy loads more easily?
Does it go up steep inclines faster?
Does it make less noise? N.B. Quieter means more power!
A dynamometer is the most accurate way to test.
Engines become a lot more responsive after treatment.
This means the power comes on earlier/sooner.
Raceboats and cars often notice their lap/race times improve.
Dyno's objectively measure this improvement.
If you keep a log book you should log any breakdowns before and after.
Many electrical parts last longer because they are less stressed e.g. Brushes in starter motors last much longer as it takes less power to turn an engine over and less turns to start.
Batteries will last longer because it takes less power to turn over an engine.
Spark plugs can have a longer working life if they are burning cleaner.
Keep a log book and compare your vehicle to similar vehicles to see if the incidence of problems is reduced.
The temperature gauge will drop from top 1/3 back down to normal (typically bottom 1/3). This typically happens quite rapidly (within ~60 minutes).
N.B. Testing temperature is easiest on air cooled engines (or engines without a thermostat). On a water cooled engine the thermostat will work to keep the temperature constant. Thus car temperature gauges will usually not tell you if the temperature/friction has dropped.
Air cooled engines have the greatest potential for a reduction in temperature because their oil temperature (often 130 - 180˚C) normally runs much hotter than the oil temperature of water cooled engines (~80 - 100˚C).
Some engines glow because they run so hot. If they stop glowing then the temperature has decreased e.g. headers on rotaries
Some engines are too hot to touch. If they can be touched after treatment then the temperature has dropped significantly e.g. motorcycle crankcases
The engine will smell less if it is running cooler: It's probably the oil you are smelling
If the noise has dropped then so has the temperature
This list is there only as a starting point. The type of measurements you undertake can reflect the kinds of problems you encounter and the type of engine or machine you are treating.
Make sure you give the treatment enough time to work before testing.