This week Off Road Xtreme presents a before, during, and after Jeep JL Edelbrock Supercharger installation project. To help get this over the top Rubicon JLU where we want it to be, we tapped on the experts from Edelbrock, and 4 Wheel Performance to get it done.
Outside of the blower upgrade, the Jeep Rubicon you see on the operating table is receiving a multitude of upgrades on many fronts. Suspension, wheels, tires, external armor, powder coating, lighting, recovery gear, and transmission re-gearing are on deck.
The result: A very capable, totally drivable Jeep with balance by the boatload. It all starts with the JL Edelbrock Supercharger, and a mildly modded fun-having 4×4 vehicle.
JL Edelbrock Supercharger: Wheels Up and Ready for Wrenchin’
When Wichita Falls, Texas based 4 Wheel Performance first got wind that they would be throwing a blower on a 2020 Jeep Wrangler JLU for an ORX feature, they were pretty thrilled. Why? Well, the easy answer is who does not want to soup up the Jeep and increase its overall performance? Second, install an Edelbrock supercharger on a 3.6L Pentastar V6 powered 2018-20 Jeep Wrangler JL is just a small glimpse of what this off-road shop can do and they were happy to prove that.
Constructed to be the Edelbrock supercharger kit for both the Jeep JL and the JT Gladiator, this kit adds 26.9% more torque to the tires, and delivers a phenomenal 46% boost in rear-wheel horsepower thereafter.
However, there’s a quick caveat to consider for Pentastar engine owners. Edelbrock supercharger kit #15284 is NOT compatible with Jeep’s eTorque Hybrid models, so bear that in mind prior to proceeding with that purchase.
That being said, this bolt-on power-adder is still 100% 50-state emissions-legal, is still manufactured in the USA by Edelbrock, and does clear the factory Jeep hood. So in many ways, yes, this is the blower for Jeep JLU and Gladiator crews.
JL Edelbrock E-Force Supercharger Perks
Relying upon an all-new TVS R1320 rotor assembly from Eaton, this unit is engineered to “… deliver peak efficiencies at high pressure ratios and high speeds providing fast response and available boost when exhaust gas energy is low.”
As Product Manager, Forced Induction at Edelbrock, David Page commented about this Edelbrock E-Force Supercharger. “In developing this kit, our vision was to strike a perfect balance between power, reliability, and driveability. I believe we found that balance with a very efficient rotor and air path design, Made in USA engineering and manufacturing, and extensive testing and calibration process.”
Stuffed inside Edelbrock’s bespoke supercharger housing, the blower unit feeds a lower manifold that in turn charges a beastly dual-pass intercooler. Here, an integrated bypass valve reduces parasitic power loss when under light throttle conditions. This also helps maintain respectable mpg gains on-road.
As for additional box contents, here’s a quick rundown of what’s included beyond the aforementioned core components:
The Edelbrock supercharger kit #15284 comes with all mandatory hardware, hoses, and tuning calibrator tech. Being that Edelbrock likes to make installs as easy as possible, you also get a full-color installation manual. The supplied detailed binder notebook manifest the kit contents with play-by-play instructions. Not only does this make the overall supercharger kit installation ultra-easy to comprehend, but it also helps eliminate the risk of catastrophic mis-haps along the way.
Edelbrock Powertrain Warranty
All Edelbrock Superchargers for the 2018-20 Jeep JL/JT are eligible for a free 3-Year/36,000-mile powertrain warranty. However, this warranty can only be implemented when the supplied Edelbrock calibrations are used and the instructions are followed. Also the powertrain warranty is conditional to the E-Force system must be installed/repaired by; a new car dealer, Edelbrock certified installer, or an Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) Certified Technician at licensed automotive repair facility,
So read up and stick with the recommended tuning solution if you value the right to a warranty claim.
JL Edelbrock E-Force Supercharger Specifications
- Manufacturer: Edelbrock
- Application: Application Specific
- UPC: 00085347152841
- Vehicle Model: Wrangler
- Gasket Or Seal Included: Yes
- Quantity: Kit
- Mounting Bracket Included: Yes
- CARB Executive Order Number: D-215-118
- Warranty: 36 Months
- Housing Material Cast: Aluminum
- System Type Stage 1 – Street System Oil Capacity: 125 mL
- Center Housing Cooling Type: Intercooler
- Maximum Torque: 272RW (8-Speed Auto Trans)
- With 32.7-inches Diameter LT285/70R17 Off Road Tires
- 4.10 Axle Ratio ft-lb
- Outside Pulley Diameter: 2.625-inches
- Fuel Injector Type: 42 lb/hr
- Maximum Horsepower: 331RW (8-Speed Auto Trans)
- With: 32.7-inches Diameter LT285/70R17 Off Road Tires
- 4.10 Axle Ratio
- Emissions Code EO Number: D-215-118
- Hazardous Materials Warning WARNING: This product can expose you to Chromium, which is known to the State of California to cause cancer or birth defects or other reproductive harm. For more information, visit www.P65warnings.ca.gov.
- Installation Notes: Supercharger systems sold without tuners are only emissions legal when used with the correct Edelbrock program, which can be downloaded at www.edelbrock.com.
- For safety, the Edelbrock supplied program will retain the factory vehicle speed limiter setting.; Calibrations, Tuners, or Programs supplied with supercharger systems are only compatible with vehicles designed for use in the United States or Canada. Edelbrock does not offer calibration support for any vehicle designed for use outside of the United States or Canada.
- Not compatible with eTorque Hybrid models.
- Finish: Black Powder Coated
- Maximum Boost Pressure: 8 PSI
- Pulley Belt: Width 6-Rib
Edelbrock Supercharger Installation: What To Expect
Having successfully installed supercharger kits on a broad number of automobiles over the past 15+ years, 4 Wheel Performance had several notes to share with us once the swap was complete. All of which was positive and very encouraging to hear.
First of all, everyone in the shop agreed that this Edelbrock Supercharger kit is an install that can be easily done at home in the garage over the span of a weekend. Preferably with a buddy, some cold beverages, and a mixture of both hand tools and power tools. All told, time spent on the hardware side of the Jeep JLU’s blower install took about 10 hours to complete. So, unless you are a pro like the guys down at 4 Wheel Performance, expect to add a few more digits to that number if you take the DIY path.
Now, as for the software side of the equation, 4 Wheel Performance has some strong suggestions that those doing this install or any forced induction install for that matter. And it all has to do with PCM shipping times.
Installation Snaps and Some Feedback From 4 Wheel Performance
Before you even begin, first download the stock tune file before tinkering with the vehicle. It’s a royal pain in the ass if you don’t, trust us. Re-installing a PCM, just to download the file that you should have snagged from the get-go, only to remove it again so it can be unlocked is a huge waste of time.
Once you have the stock tune file downloaded from the factory PCM, get the PCM shipped off to HP Tuners in a jiffy as a priority. Details on this process are laid out in the instructions, and a shipping box for the PCM is included in the kit. Edelbrock also provides a prepaid shipping label to and from the vendor (HP Tuners) for the PCM unlock process, making it as easy on the installer as possible.
The Supercharger installation take a lot less time to complete than the PCM exchange. So unless you like sitting around waiting for the mail to arrive, get that computer out the door ASAP.
Intake Air Temperature (IAT) Considerations
Another consideration is the vehicle’s internal air temperature (IAT) sensor. This must be relocated from the factory intake tube location, to a position directly below the intercooler. From there the sensor can sample the temperature of the air as it enters the intake ports. Installing any new liquid-to-air supercharger setup, air may become trapped on the liquid side of the intercooler / heat exchanger system. This could hamper incoming air charge cooling.
To eliminate this issue, 4 Wheel Performance suggests heat cycling the engine several times post install. Once the installation is complete, the software can monitor air temperatures and verify the Intake Air Temperature sensor is reading correctly. The expected temperature reading will vary widely with engine temp, boost level, ambient temp, and other factors.
4 Wheel Performance admits that while taking this extra step may be considered to be a pain in the patella by some, there is no ignoring its significance.
For the sake of both longevity and performance, you will want every last puff of air out of the liquid side of the intercooler system. Simultaneously running the intercooler pump while monitoring the engine’s IAT’s should expose any unwanted air in the system.
With the IAT’s looking good and system running smoother then Dirk Diggler on set in the ’70s, then it’s time to take that Jeep out for a quick test drive. Hell, you might as well log a few dyno pulls too while you’re at it. Which leads us to the next chapter in today’s torque-rich tale.
JL Edelbrock Supercharger Dyno Data
As the dyno graphs below clearly illustrate, the before and after side of the story is substantial. The GREEN line serves as the stock tune during the engine’s naturally aspirated state. The PURPLE line represents figures post Edelbrock Supercharger install.
4 Wheel Performance reportedly completed eight (8) total dyno runs with this Jeep JLU, five (5) with the N/A motor, and an additional three (3) more once the vehicle had been supercharged. As for the improvements made by this Edelbrock Supercharger and PCM upgrade from HP Tuners, the proof was in the proverbial pudding.
Before, as a naturally aspirated engine, the Jeep produced a maximum power of 219.31 horsepower with 198.71 maximum torque. after the Edelbrock E-Force Supercharger was installed, the maximum power increased to 297.43 horsepower with 254.77 maximum torque. That is bolting-on more than 35-percent more useable throttle sauce!
Notable Performance Gains and Some Side Notes
Install preparation, installation, and tuning considerations complete, we turn toward the performance feel of this all-round modded machine.
Here, it’s worth noting that the Jeep’s owner did not get to drive the N/A vehicle after it had been enhanced with 39-inch sticky off-road tires. However, he did get to hoon his rig on both stock rollers and 35’s alike when it was naturally aspirated, the latter of which resulted in a notable loss of power.
Due to this fact, the Jeep’s owner was thrilled the first time he got behind the wheel of his “recharged” Jeep and went to mash the throttle.
Linear bumps in power from the Edelbrock blower provided the perfect punch to offset the rig’s new (and far heavier) bumpers. There was also a far more useable range of power engagement due to the re-gearing that was completed. Apparently going to a 4.88 from a 4.10 provides the supercharged Pentastar motor with the gumption it needs to get those BFGoodrich KM3 Tires spinning.
Edelbrock E-Force Supercharger Delights 4 Wheel Performance
The entire shop was left thoroughly stoked by the overall ease of the install of this Edelbrock supercharger kit. As for overall impressions of the JL Edelbrock Supercharger itself, practicality plays just as much of a role as performance.
While there is no denying the fact that Jeeps are built to wheel, many of these capable 4×4 vehicles are daily drivers. Therefore, obtaining that balance between performance fun, on-trail traction, fuel efficiency, and street drivability remain the holy grail.
After the build was complete, I was surprised at just how much pedal it had despite the big tires.
With more than enough useable and easily tunable power at the ready, off-road adventures are now easier than ever. Long gone are the interstate merging issues, even with hefty 39-inch BFGoodrich KM3 tires on board. Instead, you will find the distinct whine of an Edelbrock supercharger, and far more responsive throttle pedal.
JL Edelbrock Supercharger Final Departure Angles
Massive 3.6-liter Pentastar motor shortcoming resolved, this Edelbrock reinforced Rubicon readies for its next trail run.
As far as final departure angles, perhaps we’d best leave that to the owner of this freshly supercharged Jeep. From the looks of things, there’s nothing but good things to be said about this Edelbrock Jeep supercharger, as well as about the entire team over at 4 Wheel Performance, and the way in which this build turned out.
Thanks to how nice the Jeep looks, it turns a lot of heads. But it’s even more fun turning heads when I’m passing them on the interstate. Y0u can see the shocked look on their faces say, ‘A Jeep shouldn’t be able to do that!’
There was no detail spared in the planning or execution of this project from start to finish. Dawson and the team at 4 Wheel Performance did a great job making sure that everything was done the right way and exactly how I wanted it. Their work is second to none, and now that it’s done the plan is to hit the trails and put this rig to work!
- 2020 Jeep Wrangler JLU Rubicon in Sarge Green
- EVO Manufacturing – JLU 3”-5” Enforcer Pro Stage 4 Suspension System with EVO Spec KING Coilovers front and rear
- Body Guard Manufacturing – RX Series front and rear bumpers and fenders
- Warn Winch
- Heise LED Lighting
- Rockslide Engineering Electric Steps
- Black Rhino 17×9 Wheels
- BFGoodrich 39 x 13.50 x 17 KM3 Tires
- AFE Exhaust
- Edelbrock Supercharger
- All suspension components and accent pieces on both front and rear bumpers powder coat matched to bronze wheels.
- Front and rear bumper bodies, Rockslide Engineering steps, fenders, and fender liners powder coated Sarge Green.