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Old 04-15-2007, 06:02 PM   #1
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Discussion: Hot Coolant Storage

I can't find the post again... but there was a rather interesting picture of a Prius post crash. It showed a it's coolant thermos that stored hot coolant on shutdown and then pumped it back in when you eventually restarted.

Has anyone retrofitted their cooling system with anything like this? I couldn't find any other threads on this - so I'd like to open up a dialog and see what we come up with.

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The most basic idea I came up with was an inline tank - like a hydraulic accumulator - that was installed on the bypass line so that even when the T-stat is closed, you have fluid flow.

As for materials, my first thoughts are an recycled heater core. Because 1) It's rated to handle the pressure 2) It's compatible with your coolant 3) you can find them at junk yards 4) they are typically small. The drawback is that they are a PITA to get out of most vehicles and they might not hold much fluid as it's optimized for heat exchanging :P

It would also probably be wise to get a heater core from a like make or model... I know my car (Volkswagen) uses a proprietary (but very awesome and expensive) coolant - G12. And I don't know if it plays nice with materials designed for other coolant types...

For insulation - I was thinking of using expandable foam so it gets in all the nooks. Then just sand to the desired shape.

Thoughts, ideas etc? Just trying to get the thought cycles moving



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On a somewhat related note... I just bought a circular pizza baking sheet for "not pizza" :P
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Old 04-15-2007, 06:15 PM   #2
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I think you could just get some sort of good cooler and run it through the coolant system and add extra coolant, and it'd just sit in there when the car was off, *shrug*
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Old 04-15-2007, 06:23 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SVOboy View Post
I think you could just get some sort of good cooler and run it through the coolant system and add extra coolant, and it'd just sit in there when the car was off, *shrug*
I don't know of any cooler that can handle 14psi :P
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Old 04-15-2007, 06:31 PM   #4
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One of the big steel vacuum containers?

You could prolly order the prius part from toyota,
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Old 04-16-2007, 12:02 PM   #5
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I've seen the same picture. I've thought about this a lot. My truck's 4 cylinder engine cools off really fast so if I could keep the heat in the coolant longer it would help a lot. Along with an insulated container, I've also considered a louver type of system that could be manualy closed and opened. This would require building a box around the radiator and fan to mount the assembly on.
As far as the coolant bottle goes, in the Prius design, what keeps the coolant in the bottle from transferring the heat to the coolant that isn't in the bottle? Is there a shutoff valve on the bottle that isolates the warm insulated coolant from the coolant in the rest of the system?

John David
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Old 04-16-2007, 12:54 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trebuchet03 View Post
Thoughts, ideas etc? Just trying to get the thought cycles moving
Well, does the car also have proprietary flexible coolant hoses?

If not, a cheap & simple option might be to get a length of heater hose, coil it around something (the smallest dia. possible to avoid kinks) with as many coils as you need for the "capacity" & size you like, then encase the coil with insulation or foam.
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Old 04-16-2007, 03:04 PM   #7
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I checked ebay for Prius parts and found someone who specialises in Prius parts. I asked about a storage tank and he sent me the following response:

Response from imwoody36
imwoody36( 166)
Positive feedback: 98.8%
Member since: Jun-13-00
Location: IN, United States
Registered on: www.motors.ebay.com

Item: 04 05 06 Toyota Prius right curtain Airbag (130099507264)
This message was sent while the listing was active.
imwoody36 is the seller.

200 for the bottom or 470 for the entire heat storage tank, or 200 for the top ( tank only)

I can't afford it but if there is someone on the list who's interested, just look up the listing above and contact him.

John David
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Old 04-16-2007, 03:44 PM   #8
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A simple steel container, which is connected after the thermostat, before the radiator.

Once the stat opens, coolant (at full heat) will go into the container.

If the container is insulated, then it will keep heat after the engine is shut down.

If the container has two more pipes, a small 12v motor could recirculate the hot coolant into the engine prior to starting up
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Old 04-16-2007, 04:27 PM   #9
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Try this link

http://www.insightcentral.net/forum/...hlight=thermos
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Old 04-16-2007, 07:37 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdham137 View Post
As far as the coolant bottle goes, in the Prius design, what keeps the coolant in the bottle from transferring the heat to the coolant that isn't in the bottle? Is there a shutoff valve on the bottle that isolates the warm insulated coolant from the coolant in the rest of the system?

John David
I'm fairly certain from anecdotal comments that it's 100% isolated and an electric pump moves the coolant around.

To thermally isolate a hombrew inline design - you've have to have your container as the highest point in the system. Otherwise, natural convection will pretty much prevent it from doing it's job :P

Thanks for the link silver! Looks like they are ahead of me :P No worries, though
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