If you are a fan of tuning or the Fast and Furious saga, it is very likely that on more than one occasion you have heard about nitrous oxide or nitro. Although there is a bit of mysticism around, it is a very interesting option if we seek to increase the power of our car (even in a timely manner) without spending too much (a kit can cost between 500 and 800 euros, and the increase in power generally exceeds 60 hp). But like everything, it has certain risks, so today we tell you everything you need to know about nitro.
What is nitrous oxide or Nitro?
Generally speaking, nitrogen oxide is a colorless gas composed of two nitrogen molecules and one oxygen molecule (N2O). Its use is not intended solely for the automobile sector, since its anesthetic properties have allowed it to be associated in many cases with the medical field. It is also known as the “gas of laughter”, because its inhalation causes hallucinations. Despite what is believed, it is not flammable or explosive in itself.
How does nitrous oxide work?
As we are interested in knowing the effects of nitro on car engines, we are going to focus on this aspect. The main objective of the use of nitrous oxide in cars is to obtain more power over a period of time. This is achieved by increasing the amount of fuel burned inside the cylinders through an increase in the amount of oxygen. What happens is that, when we introduce the nitro into the combustion chamber, the high temperatures cause a rupture of the gas molecule, thus releasing the oxygen atoms.
This increases the oxygen available for combustion, which generates an increase in power. On the other hand, the nitrogen released reduces the temperature of the cylinder, thus dampening the thermal effect generated by combustion.
Normally, the increase in power after the use of this gas in vehicles that have not been modified is usually less than 100 hp. In any case, it is necessary to modify certain parameters and parts of the engine to get maximum performance from its use, such as adapting the ignition, changing the spark plugs, as well as reinforcing certain components, provided that high levels of nitrous oxide are used.
Types of nitrogen oxide systems (NOS) or Nitro Type
There are several ways to inject nitro into our engine, these being the following:
Wet system: In this system a mixture of fuel and nitrous is injected between the intake butterfly and the intake manifold.
Dry system: in the dry system only nitrous oxide is injected into the air inlet and the direct injection system is programmed to supply more fuel.
Direct port system: in this case, the system allows the nitro and fuel to be added together by electronic control in each of the cylinders independently. It is usually reserved for high performance engines modified to withstand very high power increases instantaneously.
How to install nitrous oxide?
It is the container that contains the gas under pressure and in a liquid state
2. Feed tube
It is the tube that allows the liquid to travel from the cylinder to the engine, since this is usually located at the rear of the vehicle.
3. Nitrous plate
Nitrous plate is installed between the intake manifold and the intake butterfly and is the point at which the nitro is injected. It is usually accompanied by two solenoids that are responsible for injecting the N20 and gasoline when the accelerator is fully open.
4. Brass injectors
They are small brass cables that allow the injection of nitrogen oxide and fuel through a hole. The size of the hole determines the amount of fuel or nitrous that will be injected, which will influence the power obtained. The injectors are connected to the solenoids of the nitrous plate
5. Electrical connections
In addition to the above, sensors, relays and cables connected to the throttle position sensor are needed to allow the system to function.
6. Opening and discharge valve
The opening valve or flow regulating valve is what allows the flow of nitrous oxide to open and close. Depending on how open or closed the valve is, it will allow a quantity or another of the gas to pass through the system, so it is of remarkable importance. In some cases, a discharge valve is also installed, which although not strictly necessary, allows “purging” the small amounts of gas that have been able to stagnate between the cylinder and the feeding tube.
As regards the installation of the system, the manufacturers themselves recommend that it is a professional who does the whole process. However, this does not mean that it cannot be done, and in fact there are several explanatory videos on how to do it step by step.