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Old 08-31-2008, 01:44 PM   #4
Registered User
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 150
My Ride: 2002 BMW 330xi
Water is nine (9) times more effective for cooling then air is. Think of a stove hot frying pan. Frantically wave it in the air, or shove it in a sink of water. Water is a much better cooling medium. The other benefit of the more effective charge cooler is that it can be smaller. Air-to-air coolers typically loose 2-3psi of boost because of the amount of air it takes to fill the large core and the piping all the way down to the bumper then up to the throttle body. Air-to-water is much more direct and typically looses less then one-forth (1/4) of a psi.

Having pulled this from the Vortech Website and doing my due diligence concerning water alcohol injection I am still just a bit confused by a few forum posts over the web. From own knowledge of science from meteorology and chemistry, I understand how a water alc kit works with an fine high pressure aquamist that atomize as the hot air charge hits it evaporating the water and then burning the methanol when it hits the cylinders. I know and comprehend the endothermic reaction that takes place to the adiabatic cooling rate of water and how much kinetic energy it absorbs when it expands and evaporates and I know how the methanol boosts the octane extremely to help again avoid detonation while maintaining the clean engine.

I can understand that the injection can be a bit inconsistent compared to an intercooler as it is a spray nozzle and it could spray more or less or get clogged etc. but what I don't is why some people on forums say that it is merely a bandaid/cheap substitute or only a compliment well utilized when combined with an intercooler as well. At the same time others boast about the amazing efficiencies of water alc injections and its superior qualities over and intercooler.

One thing that makes sense to me is that the boost will not be restricted or slowed down with water injection because the air is ramed into the apron to the filter in the front of my M3 bumper then straight into the Centrifugal blower motor then through the throttle body to the engine, vs. an intercooler or after cooler will slow down and restrict the boost by so much that if I did add 2 psi of boost I might as well lose that even with a liquid intercooler, so even though the air charge will be cooler now prior to intake the outcome in forced induction to the engine could be the same.

My Question in closing this post:

Since a water/methanol injection system with a variable boost controller like mine and all the upgrades is very consistent and I have a 2 gallon trunk kit, wouldn't this really be more beneficial since it actually cools directly inline after the MAF without slowing down the air charge and it also adds high octane and cleaning to the engine for more power as compared to an intercooler which slows down air flow and does not add an other properties to the air charge?

As for consistencies I know the intercooler pulls through the same cooling ports each time as compared to injections which is just water/meth being sprayed around as a mist into the air intake, but really, why do so many people including s/c companies always say intercooler is better ??

Maybe someone could explain to me how an intercooler works better or provide me a good link to learn. How the air comes in, where it is filtered (is a filter used still??), etc.

Jason Hrissikopoulos
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