WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Hughes Performance, an International Hot Rod Association (IHRA) contingency partner, is an industry leader in innovation, quality, service and race-winning, record-setting technology when it comes to racing torque converters and automatic transmission assemblies.
Hughes Performance is now offering Pro Series torque converter dump valve kits for both the Powerglide and the TH400 transmissions.
Not all dump valves are created equally, so you definitely want to know and understand what you’re purchasing before you buy a dump valve kit from the various manufacturers who offer these kits. Many kits currently available simply intersect the lower cooler hose and bypass oil back to the pan. These kits don’t offer any true gain or tuning ability with the torque converter; they offer a marginal improvement in loading and premature wear of the engine thrust bearing while staging against the transbrake.
A properly designed dump valve system will not only manage loading and premature wear of the engine thrust bearing, but will help contribute to a notable increase in available stall speed, engine responsiveness, and, in charged air applications, boost response while staging against the transbrake. These benefits are exactly what Hughes Performance Pro Series torque converter dump valve kits offer.
Our dump valve kits can be activated at an point in the run down the track where it may be beneficial. Some combinations respond favorably to the dump valve going actice momentarily during the gear change in order to provide less engine RPM drop on the gear change as well as smoother, more linear driveshaft acceleration.
The dump valve can even be used to help with power and traction management down track as needed. High-HP nitrous cars can benefit from dump valve activation immediately after the transbrake is released in order to take load off the engine and help reduce detonation sensitivity as multiple stages of nitrous go active early in the run. This also reduces how violently the rear tires are hit early in the run.
Our dump valve kits are also tune-able for how much fluid dump occurs. This is achieved through jets included with the kit, and the jetting is externally accessible for easy tuning as needed. The solenoid/valve assembly we use in our kits feature a 0.250-inch orfice I.D., which means the dump valve will never be the point of restriction in the system. This insures maximum dump valve effectiveness.
The whole idea behind a properly designed dump valve system is to evacuate converter charge oil quickly which creates cavitation within the converter, as the converter will no longer be totally full while running when the dump valve is active. The cavitation allows for the increase in stall speed as well as the reduction of forward thrust force generated by the converter against the flexplate, and consequently against the engine thrust bearing.
One trade-off with running a dump valve system is that more heat is going to be generated in the converter and transmission while the dump valve is active. That being said, if the transmission cooling system is properly designed and fitted to the vehicle, and the dump valve is utilized within normal operating parameters and conditions, the extra heat generated is manageable and will not normally have an adverse effect on any components.
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