The concept of intercooling has been around for many years. Intercooling refers to the use of a heat exchanger to reduce the engine inlet air/fuel temperature therby increasing the AIR DENSITY. Air Density refers to the amount of oxygen present in each cubic foot of air consumed by the engine. When the air is compressed by the supercharger, the air is heated. The heated air expands or it takes up more space. Cooler air takes up less space. Therefore, by cooling, more air (oxygen) can be delivered to the engine. More air means more fuel, more fuel means more horsepower.
The net horsepower gain by supercharging an engine can be substantially increased by cooling the boosted air charge delivered by the supercharger. Independent testing has shown increases of 100 horsepower or more with the use of an intercooler.
These intercoolers are designed to be placed between the intake manifold and the blower. The intercooler assembly will increase the overall height of the blower system by four inches. Installation requires longer blower mounting studs, longer belts and possibly different blower pulleys. Obviously a cool water source is also required. The cooler the water going into the intercooler, the more gain in horsepower.
There are two ways to plumb the water system for an intercooler. The most efficient method is designed for marine systems only (see diagram 1). The second method of plumbing incorporates the engine cooling system into the intercooling plumbing system