How to assemble a HHO Generator and why it works

Picture of How to assemble a HHO Generator and why it works
How an HHO generator works and helps you save gas

An HHO or Brown gas generator is an interesting and often misunderstood technology.
The Brown gas generator uses electrolysis to split water (H2O) into it´s base molecules, 2 hydrogen and 1 oxygen molecule.
This is why it is often referred to as an HHO gas generator.The HHO in itself is not an alternative to gasoline but a additive
to boost the efficiency of the engine. Gasoline engines are unfortunately not burning gasoline to its full potential. See
The average gasoline engine in a car is about 18% to 20% efficient. That leaves a lot of room for improvement and Brown gas is one good way of improving the efficiency. The reason for this is simple, the hydrogen is highly flammable much more so than gasoline so when your engine ignites the hydrogen the explosion ignites the gasoline with much better results (cleaner, less waste and fewer emissions) than it would otherwise have done.

Some basics the burn speed of hydrogen is 0.098 to 0.197 ft/min (3 to 6 cm/min) compared
gasoline´s 0.00656 to 0.0295 ft/min (0.2 to 0.9 cm/min).

The hydrogen explosion is so fast that it fills the combustion cylinder at least 3 times faster then the gasoline explosion and subsequent ignites the gasoline from all directions  (it is like putting flue on a fire), instead of just a spark in one end of the combustion cylinder, and we would like to do that because the gasoline only has a short time in the combustion cylinder and if its not fully burnt in that short amount of time then it just goes out the exhaust and is lost.It is also preferable to ignite all of the gasoline when it is under maximum compression in combustion cylinder to get the maximum amount of energy out of it (this is a small time window),whonce the piston starts going down the energy transfer from the explosion to the engine becomes less efficient.

The hydrogen´s higher burn temperature and explosive force is such that it cleans the soot that collects in the engine (it is like having the engine consistent maintains) and with a cleaner engine you get better mileage and fewer oil changes .

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coogrrr3 days ago

I still hold to the fact that HHO will (with the right parts) increase your ICE vehicle to some varying degree depending on the components you add to it. I believe Hydrogen the main constituent in gasoline to make energy can be had in other ways than burning gasoline. The real issue isnt the HHO nor the ICE. It is that we are combining the 2 items when they should not be.

I postulate that if we made an engine solely with the purpose of burning HHO fuel and no other. We would have to tackle some issues I am sure - but I believe we would design and built an engine nothing like an ICE.

Diesel is the first example of this. The fuel has different burning properties so we build the engine to match the fuel. If anyone knows the difference in a gasoline and diesel engine then they know why this has to be built differently.

Now if you take HHO as your base and work up from there then you will start to design things like different injection systems including multi-per-cylinder-moment-stroke injection systems. You will design combustion chambers that are meant to burn HHO not gasoline and the list goes on.

Why do I say start from scratch? Because water is much easier and more widely available to use as a fuel. The sun can produce the electricity. We can make "Hybrid" systems that use a combination of 2 engines - 1 diesel/gas and 1 HHO to produce onboard electricity - then use electric drive. Stop hooking these engines directly to the wheels - just plain dumb.

Anyway my 2 molecules worth. Not trying to troll or start an argument - just believe we the people can reinvent around a new (old) fuel like HHO and replace what we are doing in a better way. We just need more research into HHO engines - not gasoline engines burning HHO.

That is where I am headed anyway.

RandyC34 months ago

can anyone here tell me how i can hook up an hho generator, purchased online, to a gas genset utilizing one of the plugs without burning up the generator? I was going to run a plug from an outlet too a 15 amp inline fuse to a toggle switch, to the generator, but thought that would produce too much heat from what i read. also how do i measure current with the voltmeter?

DanniM RandyC31 month ago

buy an amp meter

and do you mean heat in the wire?

DarkStarPDX3 years ago
I'm pretty sure the additional electricity your alternator has to provide to generate the hydrogen outweighs the additional efficiency provided (a.k.a. perpetual motion). Throw some large solar panels on the top of your car/truck to power the HHO generator exclusively and then you might have something.
Actually, modern day alternators are designed in such a way with such thick windings that the average auto owner will never use more than 50% or 60% of the what the alternator is capable of producing. That includes when you have all your lights on and every accessory in the vehicle going simultaneously. Auto makers have put over sized alternators in their vehicles(at least the domestics) since the mid to late 80s. Which consequently is about when they started EFI (Electronic Fuel Injection) as a standard, which an HHO application would require to have any effect anyway. The alternators used in modern vehicle's use electro magnets and voltage regulators in order to be able to restrain the alternators way back as to not over charge the system. Your HHO generator would have to be putting quite a draw to really have much, if any, effect on your engine or fuel consumption.

Long and short, your analysis isn't INCORRECT entirely. There are clearly some variables to be considered in each case. However your line of thinking is more in line with the generators they used to put in vehicles in the 60s and earlier, which had permanent magnets and were affected by every extra voltage draw as opposed to the alternators of today with electro magnets.

Please excuse my rant, I'm by far no chemical expert, I'm just starting my research on HHO generators in automotive applications. I do however know cars and quite a bit about generators and building them, so I just wanted to throw my 2-cents in. Thanks, this rant was fun!

Darkstar is correct, even though an alternator is capable of producing more than what the vehicle needs to run the electronics. It is only generating what is required. There isn't 100 amps of current being generated and simply waiting to get used. As you increase energy demands the magnetic field inside the alternator gets stronger, the engine uses more fuel to overcome the stronger field and in return outputs more energy to meet the demands of the system. The question at hand is, if you have a system that is running at 30A and you add an hho generator that wants and additional 10A. How much more fuel do you have to burn to overcome the additonal load? And how does that compare to the efficiency the hho adds to the combustion process?

Right on the head for the solar panels! Since the govenrment charges us for the water, maybe someday they might charge us for the solar rays we harvest! LOL!

Yeah he's got a rather poorly designed pseudo electric car. Forget the fact that even with a pretty good energy source thees devices can't produce that much gas/minute. producing the same amount of force from thees it take 3 times the mass of water then gasoline. You rarely see one of thees devices with more than a few gallons of water. And again is you have the perfect device at the theoretical best efficiency 94% (best devices ever made are in the range of 70%, I've not tested this device but a device in a lab under perfect conditions are working at 70% this ain't even close.)
lloydrmc lucek2 years ago
That's the spirit!
So u say that electrolysis of water takes up more energy than hydrogen explosions?
Hydrogen burning=Chemical energy harvested
Hydrogen separating=bonding energy destroyed
I know u are applying conservation of energy.
But the energy liberated after burning H was not the energy provided by electrolysis.It is chemical energy,it was already there.
Bond energy IS chemical energy. Breaking the bonds in water molecules requires exactly the same amount as is released when those same bonds form in an explosion. wikipedia enthalpy if you would like to know more.
The problem is though, that alternators are not 100% efficient, and nor is the electrolysis process, due to electrical resistance. Therefore, it takes more energy to split the water you get back from the combustion.
To my understanding, correct me if I'm wrong, but using HHO as a fuel additive isn't as simple as getting only as much energy as the HHO provides, but I think it actually improves the efficiency of the petrol combustion, so you would end up getting more out of your engine despite working the alternator extra hard.
Can someone confirm this?
During electrolysis,H20 separates,so molecular bonds are broken.
during HYRDROGEN explosion,I don't know the actual REACTION EQUATION.So I maybe wrong there.But understanding the amount of energy evolved in a hydrogen gas explosion I don't really think it is supplied by the battery.
Sorry I didn't really understand your response, but am I right in thinking you meant to say:
"Electrolysis supplies energy to breaks molecular bonds. Hydrogen gas explosions release a lot of energy, which was not originally put in by the battery".
If that's what you meant, then this is my reply:

The equation for electrolysis of water is as follows
2H2O + energy => 2H2 + O2

The equation for combustion of hydrogen is thus
2H2 + O2 => 2H2O + energy

It's the exact reverse. Hydrolysis is just a backwards explosion.
If you don't believe me there, here's something to ponder...

The first law of thermodynamics states that "energy can be neither created nor destroyed"
This means that the total energy of the system, in all its forms, must be equal both before and after a reaction. So...
If the system has x amount of energy, provided by the battery to electrolyse the water, where does the extra energy come from which is released by the hydrogen explosion?
The energy has to be in there originally, to be released, so according to your explanation, if you electrolyse water, then combust the hydrogen, electrolyse that same water and repeat 100 times, then the hydrogen would eventually run out of energy because electrolysis doesn't put back in as much as combustion releases...
All you say is right,provided the explosion reaction reaction of hydrogen is the same as you have written.I don't know,though that's logically right(the reaction).
So,yes if thats right then the combustion helps in the fuel burning properly.
:P Thanks :P
brian.ripp3 months ago

Most of these "how they work" things seem to over complicate the matter. It isn't so much that fuel isn't burning completely, it is that the fuel is burning to slowly and only a portion of the energy is released at a useful point. by adding even a little HHO gas to the process you speed up the rate of combustion and have more energy released at Top Dead Center, or on the power stroke. more energy released at a useful point. your not adding energy, your merely focusing its release to a point that harnesses it more efficiently. These systems do work, however it requires more than just slapping one in. there is tuning and timing issues, as well as monkeying with the computer system to prevent it from initiating "limp home" mode when the emission readings are lower than they should be.

It is my understanding that hydrogen has a higher octane rating(130, wikipedia), ergo it doesn't ignite as easily through compression. in modern engines this may cause the electronic management trouble, as combustion engines are tuned for a certain octane rating.
simplistically calculating through ratios, at 20% hydrogen and using 95RON gasoline you end up with a 9RON mix.
The existence or not of problems depends largely on additional factors, for example the sensitivity of the electronics etc.
Anyway this is just some food for thought for anyone thinking about trying this.
The underlying theory in this has it's kinks, and AFAIK fuel is already burnt thoroughly, owning largely to modern design and technical understanding of the whole thing.
Maybe the additional efficiency you notice is due to the replacement of some gasoline with hydrogen, therefore reducing the amount of gasoline used.

just my 2cents.

Here's a penny for a thought.

All petrol fuels are not burnt thoroughly. That's why Bosch invented 4 cathodes for the spark plugs & cold plugs as well. MSD made the "2nd spark" for the ignition of the spark plugs. Another thing is, ever tried using nitrous oxide (75% shot) as additive to a fuel injected car? It excites the air in the combustion chamber, thus a faster car. Ever noticed that if you just started your car's engine & drove off right away? Your car is faster because of colder engine?

I meant 99 RON
heindekock1 year ago

Is there not all ready a shortage of oxygen in the piston? Wont the fuel and the hydrogen compete to bind with the Oxygen? And lets say there is enough oxygen and the higher burn speed does make for more fuel ignition, would the increased pressure not cause a mechanical problem on the valves? I mean I would really like this to work but it seems to not be as simple as described. Increased volume in the piston due to more efficient burn will need the timing to be altered like you would in a race car.

Valves manufactured today are very stiff, but not as stiff in race cars. As for the timing, just advance it 5-10 degrees TDC (Top-dead-center) & change the spark plugs to "Cold plugs". Better yet, (if you the money to burn) install a "twin-screw" Supercharger. It forces air to the engine "Linearly" (the faster you go, the more air comes in).

Reference: Popular Mechanics, Hot Rod & Honda Tuning magazines

Valves manufactured today are very stiff, but not as stiff in race cars. As for the timing, just advance it 5-10 degrees TDC (Top-dead-center) & change the spark plugs to "Cold plugs". Better yet, (if you the money to burn) install a "twin-screw" Supercharger. It forces air to the engine "Linearly" (the faster you go, the more air comes in).

Reference: Popular Mechanics, Hot Rod & Honda Tuning magazines

Valves manufactured today are very stiff, but not as stiff in race cars. As for the timing, just advance it 5-10 degrees TDC (Top-dead-center) & change the spark plugs to "Cold plugs". Better yet, (if you the money to burn) install a "twin-screw" Supercharger. It forces air to the engine "Linearly" (the faster you go, the more air comes in).

Reference: Popular Mechanics, Hot Rod & Honda Tuning magazines

Paw1019376 months ago

I like na-sayers, they can't/want do anything, but they can sure tell you what you should have done.. lol How do they explain this:

Come on, gimmie some logic.................

jj.inc3 years ago
The most efficient, powerful, and money conserving device you can build is a dry cell. (If we aren't talking those high tech membrane machines) It has multiple plates which aren't fully submerged, but instead contain the mixture inside. They are easy to access electrically, and can produce huge amounts of HHO. The most important thing for people to know is that no-matter what, this is going to produce toxic gasses. This can include Chlorine, something formed with chromium, and many others. Hopefully they re-bond to something during combustion and aren't a problem.

For all the nay-sayers please explain why a super and or turbo charger benefit your car.
elstev0 jj.inc1 year ago
They increase the volume of air. elstev01 year ago

I'm aware of that, it was a semi-rhetorical statement touching on the idea of if using your engine to power a device which will increase its power which is already proven.

StevenR1 jj.inc6 months ago

Yeah but superchargers make it so less of the fuel evaporates into the atmosphere. In an HHO generator, you have a circular process, which in a perfect world would bring you back to where you started, but when you take into account the added friction created by the generator's added weight to the wheels and whatnot, your ending up with a loss.

TruFord jj.inc11 months ago

Actually the toxic gases come from how you make the electrolyte for the electrolysis process. If you use basic table salt then yes. If you do the chemical formulas and equations you will find you actually only get hydrogen and a toxic gas (I think chlorine if I remember) However, if you use ______ (I cant remember the chemical...I want to say potassium hydroxide but iam not positive) The chemical reaction/exchange only gives off oxygen and hydrogen. So this does not always give off toxic gases but you should be careful when working with things like this ....with chemical reactions. I just dont want people getting scared/turned away from this cause they think its always going to be toxic. This can actually be rather safe and fun to work with. (although the gases are maybe its not the safest thing in the world...but its still fun)

frollard2 years ago
Here's my back of envelope calculations that I have a problem with it...
According to (someone who clearly knows what they're talking about and not inflating numbers) states for about 160 watts you get 1 litre of hho/minute. 10.6V at 15 amps in a strong electrolyte and good catalyst.
1 litre per minute. At 35 amps as per this instructable, you should get about double the output. maybe triple. I'll be totally overkill fair and say 3 litres per minute of hho.

A naturally aspirated 2L engine near idle (say 1000RPM for easy math, best case scenario for this thought) breathes 2 litres per 2 revolutions (4 stroke), Thus, it consumes 2000/2 = 1000 L/m of air (and fuel, which as a mist is only a few mL, negligible)
At high revs (say, 5000rpm) it's consuming 5000L/minute of mostly air.

Air, is
Chemical % by volume
Nitrogen (N2) 78.08
Oxygen (O2) 20.95
Argon (Ar) 0.93
Carbon Dioxide (CO2) 0.033
Other trace elements 0.007
Source is

780 litres of nitrogen
210 litres of oxygen
10 litres of argon
3 litres of CO2

If you take 1000 litres of air, and add 3 litres of HHO, the percentages go to
780L Nitrogen 79.3%
211L Oxygen 21.5%
10L Argon 1.0%
1.8L Hydrogen. 0.18%
982.8 total
The lower explosive limit for hydrogen is 4% Until you get 4% (to a max of 75% in air) hydrogen will not even explode. An explosion is what makes an internal combustion engine run. It will not increase the burn rate of the air fuel mixture in any measurable way.

At high RPM it's ridiculously lower difference as a percentage.
Yes, the new 'fuel' and 'fuel additive' nature will happen -- straight gasoline will be .2fps, and hydrogen will be .4...but the difference is in the hundredth of a percent.

The difference is so astronomically low that it simply won't change the chemistry of how the fuel burns.
Compound the inefficiency of the engine to extract that as mechanical energy (20-30% at best, coupled with the alternator 70% at best, coupled with the HHO generator (I don't know but I suspect since it gets hot 50% at best), you have a 9% efficient system aimed at increasing efficiency. Correct me if I'm wrong, (these are loose quick numbers) but it says a lot.
RamaM frollard7 months ago

I am totally with you on this frollard. It makes naff all difference. If hydrogen generated is above the LEL limits maybe the technology stands a chance. The technology is an order of magnitude off-target.

pawsintime9 months ago
The comment section always makes me laugh, so much time spent writing comments and posting this or that. Life isn't meant to be so complicated take a big deep breath and enjoy it as it was meant to be. And no I'm not Omnish.. I'm sure a lot of you will have great comments about the one I just wrote. That's OK I'm going outside.

HAHA! "Im going outside". Thats glorious!

guyfawkes177610 months ago

Another thing to consider is that the LAWS OF THERMODYNAMICS are a mathematical theory that was put forth by James Clark Maxwell... The same Maxwell that spoke of anomalies in the mathematics which he called Maxwell's Demon. Maxwell's Demon allows for the possibility of anomalous energy gain irrespective to the processes being utilized. In the chain reaction of a nuclear explosion the total energy output is much higher than the measured energy and material input to the device.

guyfawkes177610 months ago

Angelo Morgado invented the M.Y.T. (Massive Yet Tiny) Engine which has a much higher efficiency rating than the I.C.E. (Internal Combustion Engine). Moreover there are many other alternative energy systems... Earth Electron Captors, the N-Machine, Electrostatics (Methernitha Machine), Thorium Molten Salt reactors, bead bed reactors, toroidal electron vortex generators, and many others. Many of these Inventions have been proven to work and have already been awarded patents.

The problem with devices like these lies primarily within a flaw in the capitalistic system that we operate within. When an infrastructure has been established that in itself constitutes a large portion of the fiscal and employment market any system that opposes or threatens the stability of said infrastructure is often opposed with vigorous zeal. A good example is how it took the educational infrastructure over 25 years to make textbook changes that supported quantum theory despite the fact that many theories put forth by quantum physicist had already been proven through laboratory observations. Hell... If you read textbooks today they still tell kids in school that Christopher Columbus discovered America. Read the book America B.C. and you will find that many cultures and societies lived in and discovered the Americas long before Columbus.

guyfawkes177610 months ago

First... to the goose stepping morons who site laws of thermodynamics whenever someone theorizes an alternative to the mainstream. The world is not flat... that used to be a law. The solar system is not flat... Look up the Rosslyn Model of the solar system. As far as the comments from squiggy and others... Crude Oil and the associated extraction process is highly inn=efficient and wasteful. Exxon Valdez and BP oil spill disasters aside, crude oil extraction requires massive infrastructure and logistics. Rigs, drills, pumps, millions of miles of pipework, refineries, shipping facilities, gas stations, and a workforce large enough to build over 4000 manhatten projects. Lets not forget that in the United States our OIL IS SUBSIDIZED heavily. In fact If taxpayer money didnt subsidize Oil and Gas we would be spending about $12-$16 per gallon at the pump. Also much of the HIDDEN price of oil is in the cost of blood and bombs we throw at the other oil bearing nations,

With that being said it is a no-brainer that localized Hydrogen Electrolyzers will be a viable source for energy because even with the cost of production. Personally I have already ran a car on electrically disassociated water. The military has been using these systems for years. My father worked at Lockheed Skunkworks San Jose an has personally seen the military Hydrogen systems.

HHO works very well. you need a computer efie controller chip for map/ maf, intake fuel temp. etc. under 79$ to 99$ depending on make and model of car or truck; also works very well on diesel; natural gas; propane . I have used wet and dry cells for years. I usually sell these to retired; or low income. persons .with . my experience resulted in improve fuel economy 28% to 40% or more. Very good work. don't be discouraged by nay Sayers. Persons like you keep to world go round. PS were did you get the container. FOREVER3589

heindekock1 year ago

So what happens to the water formed when the 2 x H molecules combines back with the O? Wont it mess up the piston?

demoss1 year ago
The Hydrogen Economy has Started.

With all the solar that has been mass deployed around the world government have now realized that if they are placed on or near river or water bodies they can add electrolyzers and make and sell hydrogen on the spot.

You better start to learn how to make your own before that happens
All plans advice parts and examples are on

PLease support and Join us to change the world
Energy cannot be created or destroyed,but converted from one form to another.So using this or anything that uses your system's energy to do work that is again converted to energy (car alternator is turned by the engine, a part of its output breaks h20 and creates the HHO that then gets combusted with the fuel..) will not ultimately increase the syste's energy. That being said, it CAN increase POWER- that is just the energy released in a given amount of time. Think of a keg of beer with a tap.Open the tap fully, and you get more beer per second, but unfortunately the same amount as opening it half-way but waiting longer. If anything, provided this partial concentration of hydrogen is enough to act as a catalyst- it theoretically could INCREASE the fuel consumption BUT ,theoretically again, give you more POWER- again,keeping the same energy, thus a shorter time between refills. Just as a turbo: more power, more consumption- same energy, shorter time. But more power, yaay! and more trips to the gas station- even with HHO....
crazypj1 year ago
Really like the idea of PWM.
I'm going to make a small unit for motorcycle and see if I get a performance boost
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