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The intercooler is indispensable for turbocharging petrol and diesel engines. It cools the intake air and thus increases the efficiency. For maximum performance, this air can not be cold enough. Often, therefore, in combination with a Chiptuning, a turbo or compressor conversion, etc. also installed a new intercooler with.
How does the intercooler work?
A turbocharger compresses the air that is drawn in before it enters the engine compartment. This increases the oxygen density and thus boosts combustion. However, the compression makes the charge air too warm; its temperature can reach 100 to 200 ° C. This reduces their oxygen content again, because the oxygen molecules have less space with increasing temperature and density. This warming takes place shortly after the start. Charge air cooling is required to maintain performance. This task is taken over by the intercooler, which also prevents knocking caused by pre-ignition in turbo gasoline engines. The efficiency of the turbo engine increases with the falling temperature of the intake air. Therefore, the intercooler is located between the turbocharger and the engine. It exists as a Air-to-air and air-to-water systems, which means that the intake air is cooled with additional outside air or with water. More information is available below!
How does a larger intercooler support tuning?
Charge air coolers are rather compact and small ex works. Your task is normally to keep the temperature of the intake air at a level around 10 to 20 degrees above the ambient temperature. How big the difference is depends on the outside climate, but modern charge air coolers even work in the desert. A larger charge air cooler creates even better cooling. A rule of thumb assumes an increase in performance of 3 - 5% per 10 ° cooling. The larger intercooler can use these percentages (and a little more) and is a relatively simple Tuningmaßnahme, depending on the vehicle model between about 200 to 400 Euro costs. Further optimization of cooling can be achieved by using aluminum tubes instead of steel tubes, because (the slightly more expensive) Aluminum in cooling systems basically increases the efficiency. There would be even more measures such as the additional evaporative cooling by more water in the air-water system, by nitrogen or by alcohol. This tuning would be much more expensive and therefore more expensive.
summarized the most important things about the intercooler:
- larger intercoolers are often installed to increase the performance of the car
- the intercooler (intercooler) is installed in the intake tract between the intake valve and compressor of the engine
- the intercooler (intercooler) is a heat exchanger
- the intercooler (intercooler) is either water-cooled or air-cooled
- With the water-cooled LLK, the heat is transferred to its own cooling circuit
- the air-cooled intercooler (intercooler) is also optionally available as a variant for spraying with water (increases the cooling effect)
- Function of the intercooler (intercooler)
- compresses the fresh air
- the compressed fresh air is fed to the engine
- LLK lowers the temperature of the heated air during the compression process (enables a higher amount of oxygen)
- The engine output increases
- Types of charge air cooling
- water-cooled and air-cooled intercooler
- air-cooled intercooler
- often consist of aluminum cooling networks with small channels and lamellas
- Intake air hits a large surface which cools it down
- Tuning-LLK are manufactured with optimized flow
- a tuning intercooler enables a lot of air to be cooled without pressure loss
- Water-cooled intercooler
- is suitable if an air-cooled charge air cooler cannot be installed (e.g. with rear engines)
- water-cooled intercooler consist of 3 individual parts (water cooler, circulation pump, water-cooled charge air cooler)
- The water cooler is installed at the front and cools the intake air for the charge air cooler
- The cooler leads to the water pump (connected to the water-cooled intercooler between the turbocharger and engine)
- Airstream cools the water in the water cooler
- the fins of the water-cooled charge air cooler convey the cold water with the help of the pump
- Advantage: short distances and reduction of turbo lag, better engine response
- Why do you cool the intake air?
- This means that more air gets into the engine compartment
- more fuel can be burned
- more oxygen = more power
- Too warm intake air: the consequences!
- Performance drops significantly
- The thermal load on valves, pistons, and cylinder heads increases
- The engine may start knocking
- Engine damage can result
- Use of the intercooler for tuning!
- Particularly effective in combination with chip tuning and more complex measures such as new turbos, exhaust, intake
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