Water to Air Intercoolers - Pro's/Cons

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Mehrts
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Water to Air Intercoolers - Pro's/Cons

Postby Mehrts » Sat Dec 02, 2017 8:33 pm

Hi guys,

I've been throwing the idea around for a while now about replacing my current factory Daihatsu front mount intercooler on the Bitsalux with a water to air unit. I'm running the stock turbo at 14PSI on a 2.8L 4 banger diesel if that helps.

Main reason for this is to reduce the chance of punching a branch or something stupid through it while offroad. Plus it'll expose more of the radiator to fresh air as it covers roughly half the area of the radiator.

Has anyone had first hand experience with these? Are there certain brands/types to go for or avoid? Are they even worth the extra effort for installing associated hoses, radiator/fan etc?

Cheers,

Mehrts
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tweake
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Re: Water to Air Intercoolers - Pro's/Cons

Postby tweake » Sun Dec 03, 2017 8:34 pm

had a look at it years ago and spoke to a number who had them.

performance wise (with a good one) they are slightly worse than a front mount air-air for on road use. tho better with slow speed 4wd use.
with a diesel you still need a big radiator so you still have half your radiator blocked. small radiators which come with the kits are for petrol engines where your not on high boost for long.
pump need to be mounted down low, need space and protection for it.
getting one to fit under the bonnet can be an issue.
reliability of the intercooler core and the effects of it failing is something to consider.
big downside is sheer cost for any good quality ones.

plus is it can reduce lag a bit as a lot shorter pipe runs.

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Re: Water to Air Intercoolers - Pro's/Cons

Postby Mehrts » Sun Dec 03, 2017 9:57 pm

Thanks for the reply Tweake.

I'm aware of the potential for core leaks. I can live with inspecting it more often for signs of water in the intake before it has the chance to become a major issue. Could even get serious and make a water trap with float switch to alert when total failure has occured (Probably not worth the hassle).

I was thinking about mounting the radiator for it up behind the cab, while I know there's less natural air flow there, it'll be out of harms way. I've got a fair amount of room to play with in my engine bay. A lot of space is currently taken up by the existing air intake piping to/from the front mount intercooler.

The Daihatsu engine having a non-crossflow head i.e. Exhaust and intake ports on the same side of the head make the turbo pipework easier to deal with.
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muddy
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Re: Water to Air Intercoolers - Pro's/Cons

Postby muddy » Mon Dec 04, 2017 5:54 am

Hi Biggles,
Maybe a top mount and bonnet scoop from a Pajero or Bighorn with fan assist for low speed stuff would be easier / cheaper?

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Mehrts
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Re: Water to Air Intercoolers - Pro's/Cons

Postby Mehrts » Mon Dec 04, 2017 9:19 am

Hi Trev, I think anything else would be both easier and cheaper haha.

At the end of the day, my current setup isn't causing any issues. I'm just having a think about other options at this stage.
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Clint
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Re: Water to Air Intercoolers - Pro's/Cons

Postby Clint » Mon Dec 04, 2017 10:10 am

I helped put a Subaru water-air intercooler setup on a mate's Safari years ago, maybe a bit undersized for the TD42 but it worked well & AFAIK it's still going strong today.

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churchill
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Re: Water to Air Intercoolers - Pro's/Cons

Postby churchill » Mon Dec 04, 2017 2:36 pm

I've been looking at them as well. The only real note I have is you'll need a radiator larger than the intercooler you would use in an air to air situation as there are now 2 heat transfer processes so you loose efficiency. They are more complex but its often easier getting 2 x 3/4" lines out of the engine bay compared to 2 x 2.5" pipes.

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Re: Water to Air Intercoolers - Pro's/Cons

Postby tweake » Mon Dec 04, 2017 4:25 pm

Mehrts wrote:Thanks for the reply Tweake.

I'm aware of the potential for core leaks. I can live with inspecting it more often for signs of water in the intake before it has the chance to become a major issue. Could even get serious and make a water trap with float switch to alert when total failure has occured (Probably not worth the hassle).

I was thinking about mounting the radiator for it up behind the cab, while I know there's less natural air flow there, it'll be out of harms way. I've got a fair amount of room to play with in my engine bay. A lot of space is currently taken up by the existing air intake piping to/from the front mount intercooler.

The Daihatsu engine having a non-crossflow head i.e. Exhaust and intake ports on the same side of the head make the turbo pipework easier to deal with.


not sure if non-crossflow will be any easier as you have to do a big loop. will depend a bit on what IC cores you can get.

radiator at the back would be ok if your running fans. might be a pain noise wise. however it does mean you could put a very big radiator (wide and thin) and use slow speed fans.

pump needs to be at the bottom of the circuit. even with radiator up high it needs to be lower than the IC.

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Re: Water to Air Intercoolers - Pro's/Cons

Postby Jafa » Tue Dec 05, 2017 8:12 am

Mehrts, I have a 450hp PWR kit for sale, all yours for $600, ill post up some pics when I get to my home pc. It has a rad about 300 square with a Davies Craig fan, a Bosch water pump and a PWR Barrel style intercooler, it's pretty good setup for offroad I think, mount the rad behind the cab easily mounted cooler under the bonnet, few water lines and you're all go! :)
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Re: Water to Air Intercoolers - Pro's/Cons

Postby Diorama » Wed Dec 06, 2017 7:55 am

I installed one in my 80 series landcruiser and am very pleased with the change in the truck. I got mine from frozen boost. Went for the biggest one I could fit and it covers the hole grill area of the radiator. Also have a trans cooler between the intercooler and the radiator that covers half that area. Haven't noticed any difference in engine temps. I did alot of research before buying and ended up going water to air. It was also going to be a real problem routing the pipes for an air to air. I am now running a G turbo at 20 psi with fuel wound up and it has really unleashed the power.

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Re: Water to Air Intercoolers - Pro's/Cons

Postby Mehrts » Fri Dec 08, 2017 4:10 pm

Hi Jafa, cheers for the response, I'm thinking an intercooler with inlet/outlet on the same side would be a better fit in my engine bay than a barrel type one, but I'll keep your kit in mind.


Diorama, did you import the Frozen Boost kit setup, or was there a supplier in NZ that you went through?
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Diorama
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Re: Water to Air Intercoolers - Pro's/Cons

Postby Diorama » Sun Dec 10, 2017 10:47 am

I imported it. Just jump on there web site (they have all different types and sizes)and purchase. It arrived in about a week. My son also imported one for his mu. Very pleased with them. I was advised to stay away from the barrel type which was what I was originally going to put in for ease of installation but heard they aren't that effective compared with some of the others. Comes down to size really. Put maximum size you can fit in and you won't be disappointed. The more heat you can transfer away from your intake the more boost and fuel you can run. Makes a huge difference.

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Re: Water to Air Intercoolers - Pro's/Cons

Postby Mehrts » Sun Dec 10, 2017 8:41 pm

Thanks for the info, I'll look a bit more in-depth at their different intercooler options as they allow a lot of variety with regard to inlet/outlet angles etc
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