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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 12-07-2005, 03:29 AM
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tranny cooler

hi all.im building a 1928 roadster pickup and up to finding a spot for the tranny cooler so does it matter if it is mounted before or after the radiator

chris

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Old 12-07-2005, 11:49 AM
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In front of the radiator it would get cooler air. Behind it would be warmer air.

Depending on the thermodynamic specialist you talk to, both positions has benefits and drawbacks.

I have mounted them under the floor board and not had overheating.
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Old 12-07-2005, 11:56 AM
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Get a long narrow one and mount it under the floor, inside the frame rails.
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Old 12-07-2005, 04:49 PM
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ok thanx guys for your input
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Old 12-07-2005, 05:14 PM
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Trans cooler importance varies depending on the amount of stall speed in the converter. If you have a low stall speed, then the frame rail coolers work great. If you have something higher (2500+) then I would go for something larger. When you get to really high stall speeds, then a cooler with a fan is the way to go.
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Old 12-07-2005, 05:59 PM
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Like intercoolers, I have seem them laid flat near the bottom of the engine compartment, with sort of an air damn to divert incoming air up through them. Might be an idea if space is REALLY tight.
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Old 12-08-2005, 02:40 PM
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generally speaking between the radiator and the fan is always the best

use a thermostat
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Old 12-13-2005, 10:55 PM
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trans fluid temp

I'm curious, why don't people add a trans temp gauge... it's rather expensive to replace a fried transmission. Wouldn't it be reasonable to monitor the temp and KNOW if the cooler is doing the job or needs to be upgraded?
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Old 12-14-2005, 09:55 AM
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buy the biggest cooler you can find and mount it in front of the radiator. you can't cool an automatic trans too much. cooler fluid means longer transmission life. i've NEVER had a trans fail from overcooling, but i have had them fail from not enough. don't put the cooler behind the radiator, you will have problems with heat (been there, done that. was told to put it there before, caused trans to overheat........fixed trans, moved cooler back to in front of the rad, and no more problems). deeper pans to increase fluid capacity also help in cooling. if you have a cooler that is integral to the radiator, plumb your trans so the fluid goes in the RADIATOR first, then the external cooler second, then back to the trans. anybody that wants to argue this can, but in over 20 years, i've never had a failure plumbing a trans like this. also, look at all the factory vehicles equipped with exterior coolers. goes to rad first, exterior cooler, then back to trans.......
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Old 12-14-2005, 12:36 PM
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I don't believe in putting transmission heat in front of the radiator which makes the engine coolant run hotter.

If the cooler mounted behind the radiator made the trans too hot... then the cooler is too small or the air flow is insufficient.

Now, if you are asking about eliminating the trans cooler inside of the radiator tank..... I say keep it. Come out of it into the trans radiator.... and use a thermostat from Jegs. $ 60. It warms the oil faster, and cools it when needed.

If you use a passive under car cooler, use duct work to make sure it actually gets airflow, a gauge is a must. Looks can be deceiving. Preferably use one with an integral fan motor to insure low speed cooling.

Too cold is a problem too.... condensation in the oil.. always use a thermostat from Jegs.

follow these threads:

What size trans cooler do I need?

What size trans cooler do I need?

Last edited by xntrik; 12-14-2005 at 12:45 PM.
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Old 12-15-2005, 12:54 AM
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got to disagree with the comment of putting heat into the radiator by putting the tranny cooler in front of the radiator, causing the water temp to go up. simply doesn't work that way. unless you've really got a load on, or something is really burning up, the temp of the trans fluid going into the cooler is going to be lower than the water going into the radiator, or, at the most, the same temp. putting the cooler in front of the radiator will not affect how hot the engine runs, cooling is controlled by the t-stat. most aftermarket tranny coolers do not impede the airflow either, as their design is very free flowing to air. as i mentioned before, the best place is to mount it is in front of the car's radiator. factory installations are like this, so if it didn't work, i wouldn't expect them to do it also. keep in mind, air to fluid cooling is much more efficient than fluid to fluid cooling, because air more readily absorbs heat than fluid does. remember, heat ALWAYS flows from hot to cold, not cold to hot. even if your trans temp was around 195, most newer engines run around 210-220 at normal temp. (my 2002 gmc 2500 hd runs right around 205-210, depending on outside temp) if anything, the air coming off the trans cooler will STILL be cooler than the coolant in the radiator. other thing to think about here is airflow. the cooler will be getting air both hitting it from the forward motion of the vehicle, and air drawn through it by the engine's fan, so there will always be air moving across the core. one last note on the whole heating coolant up thing. you have to remember that coolant does not always flow through the radiator. there is only flow when the t-stat opens enough to allow it. once up to normal operating temp, the t-stat will attempt to balance the temperature of the engine's coolant to it's designed setting, but opening and closing in accordance with the ENGINE'S coolant temp. if for whatever reason the coolant temp in the engine gets below the t-stat set point, the t-stat will close, blocking coolant flow in the rad and keeping it in the engine. at this point, even if your trans was overheating at about 225 degrees, it STILL WILL NOT AFFECT engine temp just by the cooler location alone. lastly, in my experience, i have NEVER seen any problems caused by condensation in the fluid of an automatic trans. i've never seen water in an auto trans either that was working correctly, and had the proper level of fluid. only time i've ever seen water in a trans was one i repaired that had been submerged underwater with the vehicle. not saying it can't happen, but i've yet to see it.

i'm not trying to start any arguments here, just trying to provide some information for someone to make an informed decision. there are many right and many wrong ways to do things, and Lord knows, i've done both. i'm not saying that any of the other ways are wrong, but some of the information can be misleading. just got to go back to the basics here, and look at how things work. hope i didn't upset anybody...............
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Old 12-15-2005, 10:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by predator carb guru

i'm not trying to start any arguments here,

just trying to provide some information for someone to make an informed decision.

there are many right and many wrong ways to do things, and Lord knows, i've done both.

i'm not saying that any of the other ways are wrong, but some of the information can be misleading.

just got to go back to the basics here, and look at how things work.

hope i didn't upset anybody...............

************************

like you said, "i'm not trying to start any arguments here, just trying to provide some information for someone to make an informed decision."

1) the hotter the air is going through the radiator, the less cooling you get. Summer vs. winter. ?????

2) trans coolers inside radiators are in the COLD tank side of the core... which are 30* cooler than the coolant temperature gauge readings at the thermostat......

3) coolant thermostats do NOT flop open and closed like a light switch. They can and do run partially open in many conditions, even in very cold temperatures.

4) given sufficient time, coolant transfer temps will equalize

5) forward motion is great for airflow, amen, ..... but most transmissions overheat when stopped or going slow so ram air is almost non existent, and when their torque converters are slipping the most... at low speeds or idling in gear.

6) I have seen rusty trans dip sticks above the oil level because the condensation never gets out of the too cold oil........ water boils at 212* at sea level

7) As I tried to point out.... cool it well and use a thermostat

Like you said, ...... "i'm not trying to start any arguments here, just trying to provide some information for someone to make an informed decision."
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Old 12-16-2005, 12:29 AM
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i can already see where this is going, but i'll clear up a few things first.

1. the hotter the water going through the radiator, the less cooling you will get.
-water temp going into the radiator is a function of the operating range of the thermostat and engine load. the higher the rating of the thermostat, the hotter the engine will run. also, the higher the engine load, the more heat the engine produces. cooling is a function of the size of the radiator, number of core tubes, fin count on the core tubes, airflow across the core, type of coolant used (ie. straight water vs. 50/50 anti-freeze and water, water cools better), and flow rate of the water pump (ability of the water pump to move the coolant through the system). water temp going into the radiator has absolutely nothing to do with how much cooling you will get, unless the radiator is not properly sized to the application (ie. 12"x12"x1" radiator used to cool a 3406 caterpillar).

2. trans coolers inside radiators are in the COLD tank side of the core... which are 30* cooler than the coolant temperature gauge readings at the thermostat......

-i agree with the internal tranny cooler location, they are on the OUTLET side of the radiator. i do not agree with the 30 degree temp difference. typically, the water being returned to the engine is much cooler than that, but water temps are not equal across the radiator core, nor are they the same at the top of the outlet tank (side tank style radiator) as they are at the bottom. don't believe me? take a temp gun to the rad sometime........also, the air coming off the trans cooler will not be the same temp as the fluid in it. there simply isn't enough time to transfer all of the heat into the air. if this were the case, then the fluid going back to the trans would be the same temp as the air hitting the cooler, and the air coming off the cooler would be the same temp as the fluid coming into the cooler. that would also mean perfect cooling, and i have yet to see that in an automotive application.

3. coolant thermostats do NOT flop open and closed like a light switch. They can and do run partially open in many conditions, even in very cold temperatures.

-got to shoot this one down completely. no where did i say that t-stats flop open and closed. my exact quote was: you have to remember that coolant does not always flow through the radiator. there is only flow when the t-stat opens enough to allow it. once up to normal operating temp, the t-stat will attempt to balance the temperature of the engine's coolant to it's designed setting, but opening and closing in accordance with the ENGINE'S coolant temp. if for whatever reason the coolant temp in the engine gets below the t-stat set point, the t-stat will close, blocking coolant flow in the rad and keeping it in the engine.
nope, don't see where it says the t-stat flops open and closed like a light switch. what i see is that the t-stat attempts to balance the coolant temp in accordance with it's designed setting. yes, they do open and close as the engine temp fluctuates. yes, they do tend to remain partially open once the engine reaches operating temp, but they DO NOT STAY IN THAT POSITION. THEY OPEN AND CLOSE AS REQUIRED TO MAINTAIN COOLANT TEMP. this movement is rather slow though, but does take place. and yes, the t-stat will open in extremely cold temps, but not nearly as much as warmer temps. have you ever driven a car in really, really cold weather, had the temp guage read normal, had good heat, and felt the upper rad hose or rad itself and it was cold to the touch? i have........too many times to count. what does that mean? the t-stat is doing what it's designed to do and maintain ENGINE temp. just so you know, coolant is recirculated when it's closed, and still recirculated to a certain extent, even when it's fully open.

4. given sufficient time, coolant transfer temps will equalize

-no, they won't, unless engine load does not change, airflow across the radiator core, and outside air temps do not change. any change in either one of these, and coolant transfer temps will change.

5. forward motion is great for airflow, amen, ..... but most transmissions overheat when stopped or going slow so ram air is almost non existent, and when their torque converters are slipping the most... at low speeds or idling in gear.

-obviously you don't understand automatics. also, you missed part of what i said. i also mentioned air being drawn through the core by the engine's cooling fan. i have run temp guages on nearly every automatic trans in every vehicle i've owned that used one. i do this because i tow alot, and it's cheap insurance. i have never, in my 20+ years of working on cars, seen a trans overheat from idling or at low speed, unless they are under heavy load, such as towing. under normal driving conditions, trans fluid temp will rarely exceed engine coolant temp, and quickly cool back down as load on the transmission goes down, and converter lockup occurs (on transmissions equipped with one). there is very little torque converter slip at low speeds, unless you are standing on it at every stoplight. light throttle and light loads allow torque converters to slip less, as torque input is what causes them to slip to begin with. also, even though the torque converter is technically slipping at idle in gear with the brakes applied, there is very little load on it, and consequently, little heat being built up from that slippage. if it's overheating under these conditions, you have a problem with your trans, or cooling system for the trans. if "most" transmissions overheated under these conditions all the time, we wouldn't be able to fix them fast enough to keep them on the road.

6. I have seen rusty trans dip sticks above the oil level because the condensation never gets out of the too cold oil........ water boils at 212* at sea level

-i have seen rusty dipsticks as well. mostly ones with poor fitting caps or seals at the top of the sticks. but i have NEVER seen a trans problem caused by water contamination, unless it was from INGESTION OF WATER. if condensation was a problem, then you'd see water in the pan every time you changed the filter. i couldn't even begin to count how many i've done over the years, but i have yet to see water in a trans that wasn't dunked. and who cares what temp water boils at at sea level. it boils at 198 degrees at 5280 ft. about 193-194 degrees at 7000 ft. if there is a trace amount of water in the trans fluid, it will be mixed with the fluid (sort of, i know, water doesn't mix with oil), and some will be removed by the filter (unless it only has a strainer screen like older c-6's). once the trans gets up to temp, the water will evaporate off. water doesn't have to boil to evaporate...............hell, water still evaporates here in alaska, even when the temps dip down below zero............just check out a river with an opening in the ice............what do you see? water vapor...............


7. As I tried to point out.... cool it well and use a thermostat

-i'll agree completely on this one...............nothing to add.

Last edited by predator carb guru; 12-16-2005 at 12:43 AM.
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Old 12-17-2005, 11:02 AM
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I have NEVER heard of this one...

I have NEVER seen a trans cooler between the radiator and the fan in a race or street application. Alway under the radiator as part of the radiator or to one side or directly in front of the radiator. I run a trans temp gage and an additional trans cooler in my race car but don't run a high stall torque converter in my street cars so I don't heat up the trans above regular operating temps. I have installed an automatic trans in a car that was originally a stick shift and used the stock radiator with an aftermarket trans cooler in front of the radiator with no problems..summer or winter.


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Old 12-17-2005, 06:19 PM
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TM 454. What temps do you see on the gauge? How do you know what temp range is acceptable? How do the temps vary by air temperature? load? grade of hill?
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