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tranny cooler blocking air flow to radiator?

Discussion in 'Truck & Equipment Repair' started by bribrius, Aug 26, 2008.

  1. bribrius

    bribrius PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,609

    2000 1500 chevy no plow prep


    truck going in transmission shop to have front axle seals replaced. picked up a new tranny cooler for them to install (the motor home type 26000 kind) while its there. truck was running hot last season from time to time.

    but....dealer told me the tranny cooler was causing it to run hot since it blocked the radiator from air flow???????????????
    so im wondering if me putting on this big one will make it worse??? have to do something though i cooked my tranny fluid last season too.

    dealer also didnt believe me it was running that hot. told me they had problems with the six litres but not the little 4.8 litres like i have.

    the big tranny cooler goes in wednesday, just not sure if it will cause my engine to overheat now..

    bit confused
     
  2. bribrius

    bribrius PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,609

    basically it ran good last year but the motor temp gauge creeped up and up as i plowed. when i went any distance between drives i kept my blade low while driving and it came back down. but it was creeping up pretty good and like i said, tranny fluid burnt. that is why im skipping on the 13000 cooler and going to the 26000
     
  3. B&B

    B&B PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,777

    You have a low speed airflow issue Bri, and the cooler isn't causing it. It's probably contributing to it, but not causing it. The fact that it only runs warm at low speeds is a clear indication that either the fan clutch is weak or the rad fins are blocked with crud. And both of those will cause a low speed warm condition...or of course it can be a combination of both. The burnt trans fluid is also a very clear symptom that the cooler you added isn't doing its job due to the insufficient airflow.

    1) Go ahead and install the bigger cooler. Bigger is better on a plow truck.
    2) Replace the fan clutch with either the oem GM plow prep clutch or a fresh aftermarket extreme duty clutch
    3) Clean the radiator fins out. Flush thru the core with a garden hose from the backside toward the front. If it's been a long time (or never) since its been done you'll be surprised at the crud that comes out. :nod:
     
  4. bribrius

    bribrius PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,609


    heavy duty cooler is in
    radiator fins are fine. no crud. it was flushed last fall. tranny fluid was changed twice in last year and had tranny flushed in spring.
    the new cooler installed and takes up a good chunk of space in the grill so i may end up looking for a new fan clutch even though this one is working fine (i checked it). truck is running great right now but im not plowing right now either. lol.
    thanks for the advice.
     
  5. B&B

    B&B PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,777

    How did you dertermine that the current clutch is working fine Bri?
     
  6. bribrius

    bribrius PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,609

    spun the fan when cool. then warmed up truck. spun fan again. more resistance when warm.
    thats right, .... right?
     
  7. B&B

    B&B PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,777

    Used to be the way to check them Bri, but it's not at all an accurate indication of the clutches ability to spin the fan.

    Fan clutches wear slowly over time like many parts. In fact the clutch fan manufactures specify that most clutches lose 100 RPM of available rotation for every year they're in service. If it's the original clutch from 2000 don't hesitate, change the clutch. And with one previously described. It'll fix the low speed cooling problems. :nod:
     
  8. justwheelit

    justwheelit Member
    Messages: 46

    just scrap the clutch fan and go with dual electric........ more engine power and better cooling efficiency
     
  9. elite1msmith

    elite1msmith 2000 Club Member
    from chicago
    Messages: 2,762

    i read somewere that goin gto electic fans is the single most "cost effective" thing you can do to improve milage in alot of cars/trucks. the cost of the kits are cheap , easy , and it really does work
     
  10. bullforge

    bullforge Junior Member
    Messages: 3

    Follow B&Bs advice. I have been a tech since 1985. He has you on the correct path. I would throw in a new GM thermostat as a preventive measure. You do have a t-stat in there ? I have seen people remove them and end up with this issue.