You probably know this already :-) but the difference between a Banks and the other tuners is, Banks is an inline tuner. It sits between the ECM and all of the sensors ; they are emulated to 'fool' the ECM so it runs differently. The factory tune is not touched and therefore you are ensured you are running your existing factory tune with or without the Banks. The safeties are exactly what the factory built in.
The other tuners completely reprogram and replace your factory cal in the ECM and TCM with different calibrations. From what I gathered, the tunes are typically based on very early versions of the factory base program and therefore don't necessarily have the latest bug fixes, etc. One tipoff is the way regen works. If a DPF-on tune idles up to 1200rpm when idling during regen and foot off the brake, it's based on a very early '08 tune. Ford changed that in late '08. OTOH, these tuners get awesome power and likely better mpg gains
FWIW, I calculated regens account for 5-6% of my fuel consumption. With the costs of tuners these days, it'll take quite some time to recoup the cost. Most guys get 5-10% increase in mpg maybe a bit more if they tow heavy due to the heavy use of EGR. While that sounds like a lot, it really means 1-2mpg gain. Get a tuner because you want one, but don't expect to get any earthshattering mpgs from it :-)
I did not know that- interesting. I assumed it was a flash like the rest but used the factory safe guards in its program. So are you saying that if Ford checks your system it will not see that the car has been tuned? Thanks for that info...like I said this is all pretty knew to me....
If you are tuned, it's easy to see what's programmed in the ECM. If it was tuned recently (even by the factory), there is a long list of U-codes that are flagged, but they go away themselves after a while as long as everything is running normal. My Autoenginuity scanner sees all of them :-) Everytime the ECM is reflashed, mileage counter since codes were 'reset' is cleared. Not for me to say, but I don't think anyone will necessarily look for these unless they are out to prove a tuner was present.
It you rolled into the dealer with a blown up engine, and all the codes are set from returning to stock, and the counters have only a few miles on them, it would look very suspicious!
IMO, with a Banks, I think it's a lot harder to see something was there since nothing in the ECM was physically touched.
From what I've read from Senix and others, the Banks is quite good.