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  1. #1
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    AIR/water water flow?

    So, I had a thought about air/water coolant flow. I recently changed my heat exchanger to a higher flow design that resulted in lower cruise temperatures for a while but still my water would heat soak. I increased flow of the system by almost twice the original mount. I know that there is a lot of talk about higher flow pumps etc. I was realizing that the water was not getting cooled very much after the heat exchanger. I run from my reservoir to my intercooler to my exhcanger back to the reservoir. So I pinched off the hose to slow the flow down and got a much cooler return to the reservoir. I decided to play with restriction. I came up with a vacuum operated water valve to restrict water flow at low load and then open up at high loads. I am playing with the flow mounts. The restriction also causes higher pressure in the system which should be good. I always see tests about the recovery time in intake air temps after a full throttle pull. But it seems to me that dropping the water temperature would be the greatest benefit even if cruise air temps are higher. My system is all custom so not easy to compare to others as far as parts.

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    Hi, I am not sure exactly what system you are referring to. Do you have an air/water intercooler or are you talking about your engine radiator? Do you have any pictures of your setup? What exactly are you trying to accomplish? Answer these questions and I can help you further.
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    Air to water intercooler. I have a spearco core with a single pass. I have modified a a/c condensor to a single pass setup so it is a large single row radiator basically now. What I am curious about is it seems that maximum flow may not be best for getting rid of the heat out of the water. So I setup a valve to restrict flow at low engine loads and to open at higher loads for maximum flow to keep the water going through the intercooler quickly. I was thinking of setting up a pwm controlled valve in the future to play with this. I just did not know if my theory was sound. I can monitor air temps and was thinking of adding a water temperature sensor to monitor water temp. It seems that getting the lowest water temp at low loads or cruise would be best. And it seems that this may not be same as getting the lowest air temps at cruise.

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    Higher flow is better to move heat. Think about the flow, if the flow gets smaller and smaller then eventually there will be zero flow. And then, the water will heat up to the temperature of the air in the heat exchanger. So in fact, more flow is better, I would remove the restriction.
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  5. #5
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    But slowing the water down in the exchanger lets the water cool more. This is why I was thinking that at low load the restriction should help but open up at high load and let the flow increase to get the heat out of the intercooler. It should work as long as the heat being removed from the heat exchanger is greater than the heat being put in at low load. I just wondered if anyone ever played with this idea. I will monitor it for a few days the way it is and see.

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    I guess I am not understanding your system. You are trying to cool the water down using an ambient radiator? And this radiator is what cools your air/water intercooler water source? And you are trying to increase the cooling effectiveness of the water ambient radiator correct?
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    Yes, that is correct. But only in part throttle to closed throttle conditions. It makes sense as I am not generating a lot of heat from the supercharger at that time. Then when going into high load the valve opens to let the water flow at full capacity for maximum effect in the intercooler core. After I modified my radiator for the intercooler the returning water temps to the resevoir were not being cooled very well. So I thought this might be the best of both worlds.

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    ^ gimme like a day to get back to you, my brain is roasted from work today.
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  9. #9
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    I think what is happening is that his modified AC condenser/now turned heat exchanger is not efficient enough...water is passing through it so fast that it is not having time to cool down, much like running without a thermostat in the cars cooling system.

    By slowing the flow down, you are giving it more time to sit in the exchanger and be exposed to outside air, thus cooling it down more, without negatively affecting the Intercooler heat soak.

    I was thinking about an air/water setup for a turbo M30. I would run lines all the way back to the trunk area and have an exchanger/icebox back there. More water for cooling, plus longer transit times allows it to cool down.

  10. #10
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    Though I doubt that the modified a/c condenser is the best setup what I am getting at is applicable to any setup. I was trying to increase flow in order to reduce maximum temperatures at full load. What I found was that I reduced my cruise temperatures by around 8-10 degrees. But I think my full load temps went up. Now water temp is of course the main contributing factor to all of this. NO heat exchanger is up to the task of removing the heat at the rate it is being put in by the intercooler. So that is why I was thinking that removing the most amount of heat from the water at cruise would be the most ideal. This may in fact increase cruise intake temps though. What I have noticed is that with my valve in that my intake temps will drop a little after opening the throttle and the valve opens to let high flow cool water into the intercooler core. It actually made me think of a system similar to the a/c system that Ford developed. What about having the reservoir on a separate cooling circuit from the intercooler for cruise. And keep the water as cold as possible, near ambient and then open it when it is needed. So two radiators and two pumps. One circuit for cruise and one for under load. May give this a go.

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    If you slow down the flow rate through the condenser, the water spends more time in there and is cooled to a lower temp. The actual amount of cooling is reduced at full load, but the output temp from the condenser is lower. As Matt stated, the problem is that your condenser is not very efficient and it cannot remove the heat as quickly as the heat exchanger can put it in.

    My recommendation is that you use less technology and get more surface area of condenser.

  12. #12
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    My system actually works fairly well. I am just trying to maximize it. My water temps are usually around 20-30 degrees above ambient after about a 30 minute commute to work or longer. There is not really any more surface area to add. I might get a slightly more efficient unit but honestly I think that it would be a marginal improvement. I have used other designs and tested a few other systems on other cars. The simple fact is that the blower generates around 150-200 degree over ambient outlet temps. So on a 80 degree day the outlet temps are in excess of 250 degree lets say. With a cooling air temp on the radiator of 80 degrees. So you need to roughly three times the cooling capacity in the radiator over the intercooler if the temperature differential was equal. But it really is not equal. The the closer the temperature differential the harder it gets to remove the heat. So getting the water temp down the last 10-20 degrees is really hard. It takes a great deal longer to remove that heat than the 100-200 degrees.

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    1 out of 1 members liked this post. Yes Reputation No
    Just get a $10 PWM controller on eBay, and see how slowing your pump down effects IATs... Pretty cheap..... I just ordered one to try on my car.
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  14. #14
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    As a couple people already said, it seems like your flowing too fast through the condenser to give the water time to cool down. Only other option I can think of is a much larger double-pass condenser up front for more surface area.

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