The heat transfer and pressure drop were experimentally investigated in a coiled wire inserted tube in turbulent flow regime. The coiled wire has equilateral triangular cross section and was inserted separately from the tube wall. The experiments were carried out with three different pitch ratios (P/D = 1, 2 and 3) and two different ratio of equilateral triangle length side to tube diameter (a/D = 0.0714 and 0.0892) at a distance (s) of 1 mm from the tube wall in the range of Reynolds number from 3500 to 27,000. Uniform heat flux was applied to the external surface of the tube and air was selected as fluid. The experimental results obtained from a smooth tube were compared with those from the studies in literature for validation of experimental set-up. The use of coiled wire inserts leads to a considerable increase in heat transfer and pressure drop over the smooth tube. The Nusselt number rises with the increase of Reynolds number and wire thickness and the decrease of pitch ratio. The highest overall enhancement efficiency of 36.5% is achieved for the wire with a/D = 0.0892 and P/D = 1 at Reynolds number of 3858. Consequently, the experimental results reveal that the best operating regime of all coiled wire inserts is detected at low Reynolds number, leading to more compact heat exchanger. (C) 2009 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.