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post #1 of 32 Old January 7th, 2017, 08:31 PM Thread Starter
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Black intercooler?

I did a search on this site and came up with a thread over 2 years old. Since a lot of time has past and a lot of guys have tried new things, let me get your opinion. I'm thinking about painting my 3 core procharger intercooler black since it is currently off the car. Does a light coat of matt black paint really effects the cooling abilities? Does it have very little effect or major effect? Has anyone done back to back dyno pulls to see any effects? What type of Matt Black paint would you recommend?

I spaced out the intercooler about 3-4 inches off the radiator to promote better air flow. I'm currently ready to reinstall. This is not a track car so I'm not looking for every drop of power for the best time. I just want a black intercooler. If I can get that without affecting IAT to bad and not needing a retune then I'm good. My car is procharged "d1sc", 16psi and 605rwhp "All opinions are welcome"!!!!

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post #2 of 32 Old January 7th, 2017, 09:07 PM
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Id have to find it again but there was a pretty good test done with a bare intercooler and a black one......Needless to say, the black actually had a pretty big effect on cooling. Enough to make me consider doing it this winter. Plus it might help keep things hidden. Not that my wheels or exhaust help with that

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post #3 of 32 Old January 7th, 2017, 09:59 PM Thread Starter
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I seen the video that "Mighty car mods" did but it had a lot of mixed reviews, especially from "Engineering Explained" and "gergimuff". I would like to see some proven facts and not just something on paper.

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post #4 of 32 Old January 7th, 2017, 10:29 PM
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Mine is black powdercoated.


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post #5 of 32 Old January 7th, 2017, 11:25 PM Thread Starter
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SSG Pate, I was thinking about powdercoat but can't find a place local. I'm not in the mood of sending it off to get it done and waiting for it to return. If I got to do all that then I will leave it alone and reinstall as is. I don't have to have it Matt Black. If I can paint it myself while it's sitting on the stand with no major side effects then I would love to do it. I have a white mustang with a matt black roof and black Rovos rims. I would like to blacken the intercooler that's showing through the cobra bumper.

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post #6 of 32 Old January 8th, 2017, 10:53 AM
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My intercooler isn't painted black but my trans cooler is. It sits in the grille so didn't want shiny stuff behind the horse. Trans temps never get over 165 on a 1/4 mile pull or dyno.
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post #7 of 32 Old January 8th, 2017, 12:53 PM Thread Starter
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Blownstang what type of paint did you use to spray your cooler?
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post #8 of 32 Old January 8th, 2017, 02:37 PM
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I have no "proof" that it doesn't affect it but I know many people that have it done with no complaints on any cooling abilities. I'd do it but I like my polished look.
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post #9 of 32 Old January 8th, 2017, 03:24 PM Thread Starter
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I have no "proof" that it doesn't affect it but I know many people that have it done with no complaints on any cooling abilities. I'd do it but I like my polished look.
Would you paint the entire intercooler (front&back) or only face side (3-4 coats on the end tanks and lightly mist the fins)
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post #10 of 32 Old January 8th, 2017, 09:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blown 02 View Post
I did a search on this site and came up with a thread over 2 years old. Since a lot of time has past and a lot of guys have tried new things, let me get your opinion. I'm thinking about painting my 3 core procharger intercooler black since it is currently off the car. Does a light coat of matt black paint really effects the cooling abilities? Does it have very little effect or major effect? Has anyone done back to back dyno pulls to see any effects? What type of Matt Black paint would you recommend?
I have no idea about how much it affects cooling but this is something I know as a fact. If painted it will not cool as efficiently as before. Any insulator (paint) that you put on the intercooler will reduce its cooling effect.

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post #11 of 32 Old January 8th, 2017, 09:10 PM
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I've seen the video/article where they tested the black intercooler and it supposedly did better than the regular bare metal
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post #12 of 32 Old January 8th, 2017, 09:50 PM
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Ive painted my inter cooler twice since i got it, and I think it cools better because the smooth surface allow the air to move through it more effifiency, And that what I keep telling myself LOL.

I feel as if my intercooler does a great job, however every piece of metal has its limitations once it heat soaks in the summer months


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post #13 of 32 Old January 9th, 2017, 03:03 PM
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post #14 of 32 Old January 9th, 2017, 09:00 PM Thread Starter
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I seen that video but to me it's all on paper. I'm not doubting his reasoning and knowledge but its all on paper. He isn't giving any "Real World Proof". All he has done is math which is probably and most likely correct. What I want to know is how much increase in heat. Does temp go up 3-4 degrees or 30-40 degrees? I am looking for dyno proof or proof from someone who has a temp gauge installed in their car and notice a temp increase. Someone who has tested the theory of unpainted and painted intercooler with back to back pulls. I want to know was it a minor or major increase. I can live with a minor increase.

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post #15 of 32 Old January 10th, 2017, 10:35 AM
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as an engineer i can tell you its a minor decrease in efficiency. Black is not actually a color so it does not reflect light it absorbs it which is why it tends to retain heat. By painting the inter cooler your encapsulating the material in a layer of paint, probably laytex. People anodize aluminum all the time, usually but not always when you anodize you convert the oxide layer to be thicker which becomes a protective coating which is porous and accepts a dye. Not much different than painting with respect to the aluminum's thermal conductivity. Look inside a high performance PC you'll see heat syncs that are anodized it protects against corrosion and it makes it look cool all with out really affecting the aluminums ability to dissipate heat. If I were you I would skip the paint and just get it anodized, its usually 80-100 bucks and its by lot not quantity of parts so you could get all your plumbing anodized etc. and it looks a lot better. I have an anodized IC and pushing 425whp and its cool as a cucumber. If you wanted to be really slick you could get your IC and plumbing chromated which enhances the thermal conductivity of the aluminum it comes in four flavors gold, clear, green, and black. The anodizer should also be able to do the chromate finish and it cost roughly the same.
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post #16 of 32 Old January 11th, 2017, 01:16 AM Thread Starter
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as an engineer i can tell you its a minor decrease in efficiency. Black is not actually a color so it does not reflect light it absorbs it which is why it tends to retain heat. By painting the inter cooler your encapsulating the material in a layer of paint, probably laytex. People anodize aluminum all the time, usually but not always when you anodize you convert the oxide layer to be thicker which becomes a protective coating which is porous and accepts a dye. Not much different than painting with respect to the aluminum's thermal conductivity. Look inside a high performance PC you'll see heat syncs that are anodized it protects against corrosion and it makes it look cool all with out really affecting the aluminums ability to dissipate heat. If I were you I would skip the paint and just get it anodized, its usually 80-100 bucks and its by lot not quantity of parts so you could get all your plumbing anodized etc. and it looks a lot better. I have an anodized IC and pushing 425whp and its cool as a cucumber. If you wanted to be really slick you could get your IC and plumbing chromated which enhances the thermal conductivity of the aluminum it comes in four flavors gold, clear, green, and black. The anodizer should also be able to do the chromate finish and it cost roughly the same.
Thanks for sharing your knowledge, I decided to go head and install the intercooler today unpainted. I'm very OK with that. This car is pretty much done with (for as power) and I'm happy with that. I'm just trying to clean up small little issues that should have been done a long time ago.

This year I'm planning on picking up a new toy that I can play with. Not really going after power just a good exhaust note and some staggered rims. Should be a very fun little car to drive.

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post #17 of 32 Old January 11th, 2017, 07:37 AM
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When I had my GTI i had a big turbo on it with a big intercooler, I painted it gold because i just love how black and gold look. Well I only painted the front of it since I was also worried about it not cooling so I left the back unpainted. I made 320 to the wheels at 18 PSI. I figured if it starts heating up then my PSI would drop maybe 1-2psi which would lead to less horsepower. But it never did. I lived in El Paso, TX at the time. On the hottest of days I never FELT any loss of power. On cold days I would gain about 2-3psi of boost. Good luck! I dont think you'll notice any difference.

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post #18 of 32 Old January 11th, 2017, 05:15 PM Thread Starter
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When I had my GTI i had a big turbo on it with a big intercooler, I painted it gold because i just love how black and gold look. Well I only painted the front of it since I was also worried about it not cooling so I left the back unpainted. I made 320 to the wheels at 18 PSI. I figured if it starts heating up then my PSI would drop maybe 1-2psi which would lead to less horsepower. But it never did. I lived in El Paso, TX at the time. On the hottest of days I never FELT any loss of power. On cold days I would gain about 2-3psi of boost. Good luck! I dont think you'll notice any difference.
Thanks for the comment, I might reconsider if I ever have to pull the front bumper again.
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post #19 of 32 Old January 12th, 2017, 09:58 PM
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post #20 of 32 Old January 12th, 2017, 10:02 PM
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I had better AITs with my painted black inter cooler then i did with my raw aluminum inter cooler. I beleive its because the intercooler has less drag.


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