Like cold fusion or free energy devices, there is a permeating theory that a machine exists that can be easily built in one’s garage and installed with little fuss and is used to increase a vehicle’s gas millage while reducing its emissions. The concept is an old one and yet the jury is still out on its effectiveness or realistic applications.
So, let’s delve into the world of DIY anarchy and take a look at the infamous homemade Hydrogen Converter.
Hydrogen hybrid conversion technology is based on the splitting of water molecules into a gaseous form to provide additional and more efficient combustion of the existing fuel in a motor vehicle. It’s basically the idea that you can take certain chemical bits from water (H2O) and use it like salt and pepper on a piece of steak to spice up the performance of an engine.
Proponents claim the result is greater power, torque and fewer dollars wasted at the pump.
“Vehicles use the resulting gases not just to burn in the combustion chamber by themselves,” says How 2 Save Fuel, “but also to boost the efficiency of the fuel combustion by combining with the fuel vapor, and burning all that fuel that we have been wasting out the tailpipe all these years, polluting our planet.”
The concepts pertaining to hydrogen hybrid conversion date back years, even decades, with some people saying the technology goes as far back as 91 years.
According to one hydrogen converter manufacturer, internal combustion engines are only “20 percent to 30 percent” efficient at burning their fuel. Vehicles normally burn “two gallons of water (found in the atmosphere) per one gallon of gas.” That water is in vapor form and is pulled into your engine with the air and is also used in the combustion process. The carburetors or fuel injectors (in “newer” vehicles) force the fuel into vapor form, and all this is burned together in the cylinder chambers.
Hydrogen hybrid conversion systems use an electrolysis process to separate water into Hydrogen and Oxygen.
It then adds these gasses to the vapors described above and the Hydrogen atoms adhere to the fuel vapors and completely burn “all” the fuel and the Hydrogen. Burning “all” the fuel you wasted before as well as the newly added Hydrogen “increases your mileage” dramatically. So it’s not really burning water so much as burning its parts. Those parts are called HHO or Brown Gas.
Many major science outlets, and even the “Mythbusters,” have dismissed the technology while proponents claim those dismissals are based on the level of corruption and/or oil money being given to said dismiss-ers (Walter King, creating new words since the early 90’s).
Even further, Dave Richards, a 30-year mechanic and blogger, tested 14 of the most popular hydrogen conversion kits and guides and his results were less than surprising.
“The truth was, most [kits/guides] were total rubbish and a few could even be described as ‘scams’,” says Richards. “In fact, out of the 14 that I tested, only two actually worked to improve my car’s gas mileage.”
Be it a coincidence or maybe even destiny for the sake of this very article, I actually have a history with hydrogen conversion kits. My father, bless his soul, played around with hydrogen hybrid conversion as one of his many, many get-rich-quick schemes. He began back in 2007 and created half a dozen prototypes before coming to a design he swore had worked on his Ford Explorer.
He claimed to add an extra 10 miles to the gallon to his fuel consumption savings but, in the several years I spent with him and his SUV, I never once saw him turn it on. His claim was that he needed a special computer chip because his vehicle was “too new.”
When I asked him how he knew he had the fuel savings without any way of actually measuring those changes, he usually said something along the lines of “I can make it to the mall and still have half a tank.” A trip that would normally leave him with a quarter of a tank of gas.
Even now, on the anniversary of his passing, we are still finding those prototypes in his man cave.