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Major Radiator Flaw?

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
So I was laying in bed the other night, when I usually have my moments of genius, I was thinking about how the water-cooling loops work and how people use heater cores out of cars as a radiator.

Well then I thought about how a radiator works and then how a heater core works in a car and why they are designed differently.

Heater_Core.jpg
Well, heater cores are designed with both the inlet and the outlet on top, they allow hot water to flow in, fill it up then only carry water across the top portion to keep the fluid inside warm (to create heat in your car when a fan blows across the warm core) You see the core will just fill up from the top and then water does not have to flow from the top to the bottom then back up to the outlet so it can be cooled.

radiator2.jpg
Now a radiator in a car on the other hand works in a different fashion, water comes in the top hot then must flow across the length of the radiator and out of the bottom (usually the opposite side) which means all the water that comes into the radiator must travel across the center section to be cooled by the fans before exiting.

In looking at my rs360 radiator I noticed that all pc radiators inter and exit on the same end and there is no seperation in the middle to force water to travel through the core to be cooled, therefore water will simply fill up the core and flow across the top and back out of the outlet (the path of least resistance)

Now I want to do some experiments with a different radiator to plug the outlet and place an outlet at the bottom opposite side and see what differences are made in overall cooling to the fluid.
Edited by PLeXuS4200 - 5/12/11 at 4:38pm
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post #2 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by PLeXuS4200;13482833 
So I was laying in bed the other night, when I usually have my moments of genius, I was thinking about how the water-cooling loops work and how people use heater cores out of cars as a radiator.

Well then I thought about how a radiator works and then how a heater core works in a car and why they are designed differently.

HeaterCore.jpg
Well, heater cores are designed with both the inlet and the outlet on top, they allow hot water to flow in, fill it up then only carry water across the top portion to keep the fluid inside warm (to create heat in your car when a fan blows across the warm core) You see the core will just fill up from the top and then water does not have to flow from the top to the bottom then back up to the outlet so it can be cooled.

radiator2.jpg
Now a radiator in a car on the other hand works in a different fashion, water comes in the top hot then must flow across the length of the radiator and out of the bottom (usually the opposite side) which means all the water that comes into the radiator must travel across the center section to be cooled by the fans before exiting.

In looking at my rs360 radiator I noticed that all pc radiators inter and exit on the same end and there is no seperation in the middle to force water to travel through the core to be cooled, therefore water will simply fill up the core and flow across the top and back out of the outlet (the path of least resistance)

Now I want to do some experiments with a different radiator to plug the outlet and place an outlet at the bottom opposite side and see what differences are made in overall cooling to the fluid.

I think there is a path of coolant flow so it travels the entire length of the WC radiators, if not that'd be kinda dumb, lol. Anyway I get hot air across the enter radiator, not just the few inches on my 360 rad
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post #3 of 16
1st of all there are a couple rads out there that flow across like the cars rad.
2nd you may not see it but there is a separator in the tank that directs the water flow threw the fined tubs so that it is allowed to be cooled, you just don't see it. if there wasn't one then how would the temps be if the water just skipped going threw then how would the computers stay cool? also most rads flow side to side meanwhile the black ice GTX series flows front to back.


there are ports on here on ether side like the cars rad.
RAD-3135_01.jpg
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post #4 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by steadly2004;13482892 
I think there is a path of coolant flow so it travels the entire length of the WC radiators, if not that'd be kinda dumb, lol. Anyway I get hot air across the enter radiator, not just the few inches on my 360 rad

is there a noticeable difference in the temperature of the tube coming in vs the tube going out?
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post #5 of 16
I suggest you test your theory by taking that heater core and cutting it in half. smile.gif

What you will find is a row of tubes running the length of the core which allows water to travel the entire length of the cooler, the same as in a radiator. A heater core mounts in a vehicle most often sideways, not up and down. the inlet and outlet pipes are on the side, not the top. Inlet and outlet locations have little to no bearing on cooling and design. They are where they are because someone decided to put them there a long time ago and no one ever saw a need to change them. Also because the heater core get water from the cooling system through the firewall, better to have one hole in your firewall than two on either end.

Trust me,I'm a gearhead. wink.gif
Edited by Thumper - 5/12/11 at 4:48pm
post #6 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper;13482973 
I suggest you test your theory by taking that heater core and cutting it in half. smile.gif

What you will find is a row of tubes running the length of the core which allows water to travel the entire length of the cooler, the same as in a radiator. A heater core mounts in a vehicle most often sideways, not up and down. the inlet and outlet pipes are on the side, not the top. Inlet and outlet locations have little to no bearing on cooling and design. They are where they are because someone decided to put them there a long time ago and no one ever saw a need to change them. Also because the heater core get water from the cooling system through the firewall, better to have one hole in your firewall than two on either end.

Trust me,I'm a gearhead. wink.gif


I am also a gear head, been in several radiators and heater cores and most cores do have tubes to hold heat in and allow air to blow across them (the fins) and I know that radiators are designed with different numbers of flues to allow multiple passes etc. just keeping it simple here for the non gear heads out there (notice my avi) but I can stick a string right from inlet to outlet of my pc radiator leading me to think it will not be very efficient.
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post #7 of 16
No need to cut it open, shine a flashlight down one port and poke your eye in the other.

There is a divider, some are better sealed than others, but generally there is a fairly sealed divider that forces the flow down the tubes on one side and back up the other for two pass operation.
    
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post #8 of 16
Most lucid dreams are best left unarticulated. tongue.gif

395951.jpg
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post #9 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Caleal;13484201 
Most lucid dreams are best left unarticulated. tongue.gif

I don't know, there was that one about being a hot tub repair guy at a bikini convention... cool.gif

Ahem. Moving on. blushsmiley.gif

Here is a quick sketch of the layout of most WC rads that I did earlier:

attachment.php?attachmentid=210254&stc=1&d=1305250736

Definitely a flow path that takes the water all round the rad.

Also, there will not be all that much of a noticeable difference in water temps between in and out in a properly set up loop. It should be in the region of 1-3°C depending on the flow rate and how much heat (in W) is being dissipated.
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post #10 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by PLeXuS4200;13482929 
is there a noticeable difference in the temperature of the tube coming in vs the tube going out?

I imagine the coolant has a noticeable difference in temp, but to my clumbsy fingers there is no difference, at least not with the plastic tubing, or the single piece of metal that is the side of the radiator.
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