Is a Water/Methanol Injection Kit the Tuning Aid You Need? | Articles | Grassroots Motorsports

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The premise behind water injection is straightforward: Squirt a mix of water and methanol–windshield washer fluid, mainly–into the engine’s combustion chamber to chill the consumption cost and forestall detonation. 

A number of components determine a given gasoline’s detonation level: consumption air temperature, ignition timing and cylinder stress mixture. Cylinder stress will be developed by compression ratio, supercharging or turbocharging. In the event you can scale back one of many three variables, then you’ll be able to improve one or each of the opposite two.

The water/methanol combination vaporizes and cools the consumption cost considerably, permitting you to extend the timing and increase. In layman’s phrases, water injection can produce the identical results as high-octane race gasoline–however with out the fee or complexity of discovering it on the pump. 

This system has been round for many years, nevertheless it has solely turn into a mainstream modification up to now few years. Credit score extra exact engine management techniques with making water/methanol injection sturdy sufficient for on a regular basis use. Moreover, corporations like AEM now supply turnkey, all-inclusive kits for lower than $500. 

Okay, so water/methanol injection is comparatively straightforward so as to add. However is it actually mandatory? Right here’s a helpful information to creating that resolution.

Step 1: Does your engine have a excessive compression ratio? Or is it fed by a turbocharger or supercharger? 

In case your reply is “not one of the above,” then water/methanol injection in all probability isn’t a sensible funding. In the event you do have a number of of these items, transfer on to Step 2.

Step 2: Are you able to modify your ignition timing and/or increase stress?

Putting in water/methanol injection with out retuning your engine will often value horsepower, because the water replaces a few of the combustable air contained in the engine. In the event you can’t advance the timing, improve the increase stress, or each, don’t trouble including water/methanol injection. In the event you can, transfer on to Step 3.

Step 3: Are you prepared to void your guarantee?

Producers aren’t too fond of additional water inside their engines. And their warning isn’t unfounded: If the water/methanol injection tank runs dry–you might have to fill it up at each fuel cease–then detonation and engine injury are seemingly. If there’s a malfunction, the engine may hydrolock. Principally, in the event you nonetheless go to your vendor for oil modifications, water injection isn’t for you. In the event you’re simply cautious, we propose including a failsafe mechanism to your system. AEM provides them with its kits.

Sensible Train

Wayne Presley at Very Cool Components has made quite a lot of journeys to the dyno. He not too long ago used a water/methanol injection system whereas tuning a Dodge SRT-4.


Click on the chart to open it in a brand new window

We had a 2005 Dodge Neon SRT-4 within the store for a recent engine with cast rods, cast pistons, cams and ARP head bolts. It was being fed by an AGP 50 trim turbo with an AGP front-mounted race intercooler. 

After breaking within the motor, the tuning course of on the dyno started with good outcomes. The motor was pulling nicely by 18 psi of increase utilizing 93-octane pump fuel with no detonation. 

After I turned up the increase to twenty psi, the knock sensor began pulling timing to guard the motor, inflicting a drop in energy that’s straightforward to see within the graph under. On the wheels, we had been seeing 341 horsepower and 370 ft.-lbs. of torque. We anticipated extra. 

We had already added the biggest intercooler that would slot in the entrance of the automobile, however we would have liked to chill the manifold air temperature extra. So,I added a water/methanol injection system. This was a system that progressively added extra combine in relation to the increase degree. I set the beginning level to 12 psi and ramped as much as most stream at 18 psi. 

Because of the cooler consumption cost, I used to be in a position so as to add ignition timing in addition to improve the increase to 22 psi. The horsepower and torque climbed as much as 395 and 401 respectively. That’s 54 extra wheel horsepower with zero detonation, all whereas utilizing the identical 93-octane gasoline. The one tools change was the addition of the water/methanol injection. 

I extremely advocate a system that includes a warning indicator or different failsafe to let you recognize if the system stops working for any motive. And use both the premixed water/methanol options or combine your personal with distilled water. The orifices within the spray nozzle are very small, and faucet water may have minerals in it. It will finally clog the nozzle similar to the laborious water does to your bathe head at residence. When that occurs, little or no combine is injected, and that further increase and timing you’ve added to the tune may result in some very unhealthy and costly noises.–Wayne Presley

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Feedback

View feedback on the GRM boards

MrFancypants

Has anybody tried working E100 by certainly one of these techniques?

Paul_VR6 (Forum Supporter)

You’re higher off utilizing pure methanol or a mix from an evaporation, octane and detonation resistance standpoint.

z31maniac

MrFancypants mentioned:

Has anybody tried working E100 by certainly one of these techniques?

Why not simply tune the automobile to run on E85 then? 

From what I perceive most engines can already attain MBT with ~E60, so going all the way in which to E100 is not actually mandatory. 

MrFancypants

In reply to z31maniac :

Ahhh, truthful level.

MrFancypants

Paul_VR6 (Discussion board Supporter) mentioned:

You’re higher off utilizing pure methanol or a mix from an evaporation, octane and detonation resistance standpoint.

So my thought of ethanol is that in the event you reside you may get it on the identical place you purchase gasoline, making it tremendous handy.

slantvaliant (Forum Supporter)

Vigo (Forum Supporter)

The factor i all the time take into consideration when attempting to elucidate detonation is all of the bomb-camera footage from Vietnam. You would fairly clearly see the stress wave shifting away from the middle a lot sooner than the precise flame entrance. I went forward and edited out my political assertion from the center there earlier than posting. 

One other factor that is fascinating a few draw-through turbo setup like that Oldsmobile, or water/meth injection usually, is that at low-ish cost temps your capability to vaporize liquid within the fast-moving cost air is considerably restricted and you’re typically simply including a ‘security margin’, however as your cost temps go up you’ll be able to truly vaporize a lot liquid that you may cease utilizing an intercooler. Appears form of counterintuitive! There are a whole lot of actually quick drag vehicles that inject an enormous proportion of their gasoline pre-turbo and drop their discharge temps from 500f to 200f roughly. After all, 200f is not an important quantity for a avenue automobile on pump fuel, however in the event you’re working excessive octane gasoline and might solely flooring it for six seconds at a time with out dying, it appears to work out! 

frenchyd

In reply to MrFancypants :

That has been my coverage. Tune and  Run E85 with a again up of washer fluid for occasions when the E85 you get is lower than 85% Ethanol. ( E85 will be as little as 51% ethanol on the pump)

 

  At these occasions  when you’ve got a EFI system the place you’ll be able to dial again timing with just a few key strokes, that is what you must do. But when like me you are coping with distributors and carburetors you want a crutch. Therefore windshield washer fluid.   
My Luddite answer can be to easily drive figuring out the restriction and keep away from excessive increase conditions. If that is not attainable I flip on the toggle change and utilizing a Kinzler  dial -a-jet  squirt within the correct combination of WW fluid 

Pete. (l33t FS)

Paul_VR6 (Discussion board Supporter) mentioned:

You’re higher off utilizing pure methanol or a mix from an evaporation, octane and detonation resistance standpoint.

-Paul – 1992 Corrado SLC 3.6 VR6 11.38@120 ALLMOTOR kptuned.com ig:@needavr6

Pure water is itself an anti detonant, as much as 2x the quantity of gasoline injected in extremely pressured induction functions.  Ricardo was working extremely excessive BMEP whereas lean of stoich, with the primary limitation being the stength of his check engine and the boundaries of his dynamometer.

Methanol does a beautiful job of decreasing cost temps (I’ve heard of 30+psi turbo engines on carbureted methanol with froze consumption manifolds after a go) however as a result of it is usually a gasoline, finally it CAN detonate.  What water brings to the occasion is that it’s inert and interrupts the detonation course of, just like EGR.

Apexcarver

Did some wanting into it when researching blower stuff for my Mustang. 

 

Causes to not go straight ethanol or methanol is that the combo they’re utilizing in these isnt flamable by itself, so that you dont have to fret about it as a lot from a security perspective. Noticed a whole lot of articles on testing percentages of methanol and mixing to get it proper, a lot of the washer fluids want a kick up.  Tuning is fascinating as you’re including extra gasoline, so in the event you tune for it you run lean in the event you run out and will injury your motor. 

 

The present stopper for me is that SCCA flat bans it for autocross. I suppose they fear about somebody torturing the choice gasoline potentialities of it and making a flammable combination?  Both that or simply plain guidelines creep, the choice fueling may present a efficiency benefit that will make it a “have to need to be aggressive” factor. 

frenchyd

z31maniac mentioned:

MrFancypants mentioned:

Has anybody tried working E100 by certainly one of these techniques?

Why not simply tune the automobile to run on E85 then? 

From what I perceive most engines can already attain MBT with ~E60, so going all the way in which to E100 is not actually mandatory. 

The issue is that E85 can have as little as 51% ethanol in it from the pump. Trendy sensors can detect and modify mechanically ( if correctly programmed)  however on carbed engines or older EFI  that is not attainable. 

MrFancypants

frenchyd mentioned:

z31maniac mentioned:

MrFancypants mentioned:

Has anybody tried working E100 by certainly one of these techniques?

Why not simply tune the automobile to run on E85 then? 

From what I perceive most engines can already attain MBT with ~E60, so going all the way in which to E100 is not actually mandatory. 

The issue is that E85 can have as little as 51% ethanol in it from the pump. Trendy sensors can detect and modify mechanically ( if correctly programmed)  however on carbed engines or older EFI  that is not attainable. 

I used to be extra curious than critically contemplating it. Simply looks as if an fascinating complement for these of us whose gasoline techniques cannot transfer sufficient fluid to take full benefit of an E85 tune.

I have been contemplating a water solely injection setup to keep away from having to put in an additional 20 lbs price of aftermarket intercooler up to now ahead on the automobile. Clearly the water pump and reservoir have weight, however I can place these wherever I would like. Provided that I’ve a nostril heavy FWD automobile I would want the reservoir to at the least be positioned aft of the entrance axle.

z31maniac

frenchyd mentioned:

z31maniac mentioned:

MrFancypants mentioned:

Has anybody tried working E100 by certainly one of these techniques?

Why not simply tune the automobile to run on E85 then? 

From what I perceive most engines can already attain MBT with ~E60, so going all the way in which to E100 is not actually mandatory. 

The issue is that E85 can have as little as 51% ethanol in it from the pump. Trendy sensors can detect and modify mechanically ( if correctly programmed)  however on carbed engines or older EFI  that is not attainable. 

True on carb’d automobiles. 

However I have been driving since ’98, the one factor I’ve ever owned with a carb is a lawnmower. laugh

mikeatrpi

Apexcarver mentioned:

The present stopper for me is that SCCA flat bans it for autocross. I suppose they fear about somebody torturing the choice gasoline potentialities of it and making a flammable combination?  Both that or simply plain guidelines creep, the choice fueling may present a efficiency benefit that will make it a “have to need to be aggressive” factor. 

Sorry, what’s banned by the SCCA?  I believed so long as you’re <49% methanol and the combination was outdoors the passenger compartment it was okay?

CAinCA

What’s the automobile within the image? 

Apexcarver

mikeatrpi mentioned:

Apexcarver mentioned:

The present stopper for me is that SCCA flat bans it for autocross. I suppose they fear about somebody torturing the choice gasoline potentialities of it and making a flammable combination?  Both that or simply plain guidelines creep, the choice fueling may present a efficiency benefit that will make it a “have to need to be aggressive” factor. 

Sorry, what’s banned by the SCCA?  I believed so long as you’re <49% methanol and the combination was outdoors the passenger compartment it was okay?

Solo guidelines 3.3.3 (security inspections) B 22.”Alcohol will not be utilized in manifold injection or spray bottles”

 

Rallycross guidelines 3.2 R. “Nitrous oxide and methanol/alcohol injection techniques are prohibited.”

 

Avenue ready does enable straight water injection although. You simply cant use Meth. 

Apexcarver

CAinCA mentioned:

What’s the automobile within the image? 

Manufacturing facility 5 818, its a package automobile

https://www.factoryfive.com/818/

 

 

CAinCA

frenchyd

mikeatrpi mentioned:

Apexcarver mentioned:

The present stopper for me is that SCCA flat bans it for autocross. I suppose they fear about somebody torturing the choice gasoline potentialities of it and making a flammable combination?  Both that or simply plain guidelines creep, the choice fueling may present a efficiency benefit that will make it a “have to need to be aggressive” factor. 

Sorry, what’s banned by the SCCA?  I believed so long as you’re <49% methanol and the combination was outdoors the passenger compartment it was okay?

Cannot be a fireplace subject as a result of even comparatively small quantities of water will stop burning. At The Indy 500 they’ve buckets of water each few ft to throw on fires.  One nicely aimed bucket will put out a alcohol fireplace simply. 

Apexcarver

We had an indycar working a hillclimb I used to be flagging.  Its not so simple as you make it sound; methanol burns invisibly, so we had an entire separate set of extinguishers to make use of simply if it was that automobile with added coaching on simply dousing the motive force with the water extinguisher if he was performing like he was being attacked by bees. 

 

 

Pete. (l33t FS)

frenchyd mentioned:

mikeatrpi mentioned:

Apexcarver mentioned:

The present stopper for me is that SCCA flat bans it for autocross. I suppose they fear about somebody torturing the choice gasoline potentialities of it and making a flammable combination?  Both that or simply plain guidelines creep, the choice fueling may present a efficiency benefit that will make it a “have to need to be aggressive” factor. 

Sorry, what’s banned by the SCCA?  I believed so long as you’re <49% methanol and the combination was outdoors the passenger compartment it was okay?

Cannot be a fireplace subject as a result of even comparatively small quantities of water will stop burning. At The Indy 500 they’ve buckets of water each few ft to throw on fires.  One nicely aimed bucket will put out a alcohol fireplace simply. 

Windshield washer fluid will burn in a fireplace.  You can not begin a fireplace with it, however it’ll fortunately add to an current fireplace.

 

I don’t recall the combo proportion on the jug, I used to be too busy having enjoyable enjoying with fireplace.

frenchyd

In reply to Pete. (l33t FS) :

Relying on temp it may be as much as 20% meth to water most are round 10-15%.  So no it will not burn 

I watched Indy vehicles tear their gasoline cells open and sizzling exhaust would ignite it however 3 gallon bucket of water  dampened it and the second and third bucket acquired it out. 

Pete. (l33t FS)

In reply to frenchyd :

Washer fluid positively will burn.  I’ve completed it.

Good for Indy relating to water, however the flammability of methanol mixtures, even at washer fluid concentrations, is why the SCCA banned its use.

twowheeled

the fustrating factor is the standard of the AEM package, atrocious. The push to lock fittings are continually popping off regardless of trimming recent ends of the nylon tubing for them to chunk every time. I’ve the stream meter. All it does is present you ways grossly inconsistent the stream is every time the controller activates. I get excessive and low alarms on a regular basis. After I bench check the package and plot the output, what ought to appear to be a easy curve truly appears to be like like a shot gun spray. I’ve posted this on each discussion board I frequent, don’t tune for the spray with out some type of failsafe. 

 

https://discussion board.miata.web/vb/showthread.php?t=547179

L5wolvesf

Pete. (l33t FS) mentioned:

Pure water is itself an anti detonant, as much as 2x the quantity of gasoline injected in extremely pressured induction functions. 

Semi off subject. This remark jogged my memory of the kits that had been round within the 70s (possibly earlier) that, as I recall, used a container of water with a rubber hose mounted to the air cleaner housing to attract vapor into the carb. Have been these a crude however related approach of accelerating “octane”?

pilotbraden

Frenchyd, did you utilize the water injection on the S-2?

I used it twice on a Swearingen Merlin 3C. It supplied full torque  on a 95 diploma day 2100 ft above sea degree. With out the water methanol  we might have been ready for cooler temperatures to take off.  I recall that it dropped the egt about 200 levels Celsius . 

Pete. (l33t FS)

L5wolvesf mentioned:

Pete. (l33t FS) mentioned:

Pure water is itself an anti detonant, as much as 2x the quantity of gasoline injected in extremely pressured induction functions. 

Semi off subject. This remark jogged my memory of the kits that had been round within the 70s (possibly earlier) that, as I recall, used a container of water with a rubber hose mounted to the air cleaner housing to attract vapor into the carb. Have been these a crude however related approach of accelerating “octane”?

Kind of, sure.  Folks had been attempting to run 60s excessive compression (for the combustion chamber shapes) engines on more and more poor gasoline high quality.

 

After all, these days it’s nothing to run 13:1, or 11:1 with increase, on 87 octane.  However combustion chamber form and engine cooling idea has come a good distance since then, as has engine administration.

 



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