Water Methanol Injection - H2O Power
Water/Methanol Injection For Diesels
Injecting a mixture of water and methanol into the intake of your diesel engine can reap multiple benefits. There is an intercooling effect that creates a denser charge of air. This cooler air has a higher positive pressure ratio and allows for more fuel to be burned without increasing combustion temperatures. The addition of methanol in the fluid acts as an additional fuel for more power.
This is not new science; the injection of water and methanol was actually first evaluated in the '30s and was prominently used on supercharged and turbocharged aircraft during WWII (in 1942, the German Luftwaffe increased the horsepower of the Focke-Wulf 190D-9 fighter plane from 1,776 horsepower to 2,240 horsepower by injecting a 50/50 mix of water and methanol, the American P-51s soon followed).
The water/methanol blend was subsequently used in the automotive arena many times, such as Turbo Corvair, Formula 1 racing briefly, World Rally Racing, diesel tractor/sled pulling and quarter-mile drag racing, and more, and has found a useful home in the performance diesel market.
Snow Performance recently introduced the new Boost Cooler Diesel kit that promises to give more than a 100 lb-ft of torque increase, a 50hp boost, and more than 200-degree Fahrenheit decrease in exhaust gas temperature (EGT)-plus better fuel economy. The reduced EGT is important because that allows you to use full power for longer periods of time, such as towing a load up a long grade. Or maybe you just want to impress your buddies on Dyno Day. Even better, these benefits are had with a fluid (water and methanol) that typically costs less than $1 a gallon.
The Stage-3 Diesel kit from Snow Performance features a new Digital Variable Controller with a 2-D map programmed into its microprocessor that takes both boost and exhaust gas temperature into account in regulating injection. The result is smooth power at all engine loads with no combustion quench, resulting in a true hands-off system.
The controller is dash-mounted and includes LED read-outs for boost, exhaust gas temperature, and pump output for full visibility. This feature means you don't necessarily need boost or EGT gauges. An in-cab on/off switch allows you to deactivate the unit. Snow Performance recommends turning the unit off 5 minutes before you turn the engine off to prevent pooling in the intake.
Priced at $769, the Stage-3 Diesel kit includes a 220-psi high-volume pump, new 2-D mapped digital variable controller that puts just the right injection quantity in during all conditions, specially designed 2-stage nozzles, and all the necessary parts to install on a diesel for an easy installation.
We spent a day installing the kit on an '04 Dodge with a manual transmission and took the time to do before and after testing. It is important to note that our baseline tests on the truck were conducted with a Pacific Performance Engineering (PPE) "towing" program installed, and it remained on the truck for all tests.
The bottom line is that the kit does everything the manufacturer claims. We saw horsepower and torque increases as promised and saw no reliability issues. The way we look at it, water/methanol injection is probably the kind of modification you'd make after already installing a program, an exhaust system, and maybe a new turbo. Or if you tow a lot and live in a particularly hilly area, this could be just the thing you need to keep everything under control.
|Baseline (PPE Towing calibration with no water/methanol injection)|
|(PPE Towing calibration, with one 375ml/min, and one 625ml/min injector)|
|(PPE Towing calibration, with two 625ml/min injectors)|