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Author Topic: Transmission cooler - where to mount?  (Read 388 times)

Limey57

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Transmission cooler - where to mount?
« on: March 20, 2017, 07:05:56 AM »

I'm fitting the cooler shown below to my Ranchero, where's the best place to mount it?  I'm reluctant to mount it in front of the radiator as it will stop airflow to the radiator, where do you guys usually mount them?  I'm used to running a manual transmission so coolers aren't usually something I consider, the radiator does have an in-built cooler at the bottom but I don't think these are particular effective.



Thanks
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Gary

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Re: Transmission cooler - where to mount?
« Reply #1 on: March 20, 2017, 07:35:43 AM »

That style of cooler is meant to be mounted in front of your radiator to be the most effective. I have a large stack plate cooler from a motorhome mounted in front of my radiator and haven't noticed any increase in coolant temps, my coolant radiator is a larger aluminum unit. You can also use your stock radiator cooler.
Just plumb it from your stock cooler to your new trans cooler then back to the transmission, the extra couple quarts can't hurt.
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Randy

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Re: Transmission cooler - where to mount?
« Reply #2 on: March 20, 2017, 09:55:25 AM »

Gary....Your in-radiator tranny cooler should be just fine. That's what I'm running on mine. (aftermarket radiator). Also, what RMK57 said, that cooler shouldn't interfere with the radiator air flow. I've got a full size A/C condenser and a PS cooler in front of my radiator.
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gasman826

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Re: Transmission cooler - where to mount?
« Reply #3 on: March 20, 2017, 10:16:07 AM »

HEAT!!  The worst enemy of an automatic transmission.  OEM cooler is barely adequate.  With trailer towing in mind, extra cooler required.  Placed in front of your existing radiator shouldn't have any affect to engine cooling.  It is does, bigger fan, shroud and/or radiator was needed anyway.
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Limey57

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Re: Transmission cooler - where to mount?
« Reply #4 on: March 20, 2017, 10:25:10 AM »

Okay, thanks folks.  My concern with the in-built cooler in the radiator was water leaking into the fluid some-how and also whether the water temperature would stop the tranny fluid being cooled.  Seeing as I'll be using the Ranchero for towing I'll mount it in front of the radiator as suggested.
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Gary

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Re: Transmission cooler - where to mount?
« Reply #5 on: March 20, 2017, 06:46:21 PM »

I installed my tranny cooler in front of the radiator. I have had 4 ford 1/2 ton trucks with tow package from the factory and they have all come with tranny coolers in front of the radiator. I think by not routing the lines through the radiator you do loose the benefit of the oil not warming up very fast upon cold start ups, but the benefits to having the cooler oil once all is up to normal operating temp is a huge benefit especially with AOD. I have not had any engine cooling issues with my fairlane with 302. I'm running 180-190 with the ac condensor and tranny cooler in front of a aluminum radiator. I have a stock 5 blade fan with no fan clutch or shroud. Good luck with your decision.
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Jeff Norwell

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Re: Transmission cooler - where to mount?
« Reply #6 on: March 21, 2017, 05:02:12 AM »

I ran the exact cooler on a 32 ford with a 302 and C4 transmission.The cooler was under the floor and inline with the transmission.I also had it run thru the rad as well.Never a problem.
My 460 has a C6 and cools thru the rad.Never an issue yet.
Summers get hot here(Not Arizona summer hot)..but extremely humid and in traffic... heat can be nasty.
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Re: Transmission cooler - where to mount?
« Reply #7 on: March 21, 2017, 05:24:02 AM »

Unless you are towing or running extremely hard for extended periods of time the cooler in the radiator will take care of business.  You must also remember the in tank cooler also warms the fluid.  Cold short runs will build moisture in the transmission.  The fluid needs to get "hot" to remove that moisture. 

Every truck I have owned since 93 had a tow package.  That included an external cooler.  It was plumbed from the transmission to the external cooler to the radiator cooler and back to the transmission.  There is a reason for that, consistent operating temperatures.

I look at it like this.  Ford pays those engineers big bucks to figure stuff out.  If they put it together like they do there must be a reason.  I don't pretend to be smart enough to second guess them.
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gasman826

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Re: Transmission cooler - where to mount?
« Reply #8 on: March 21, 2017, 06:05:37 AM »

That cooler is not big enough to run 'stand alone'.  It should be used as an auxiliary with the OEM transmission cooler.  I ran AC condensers as a stand alone cooler.  I also used a trans temperature gauge.  I'm curious, those saying they have had no problems, do you have a trans temp gauge.  It would be like saying you have no engine temp problems because you have no gauge.  There may have been problems but since the transmission did not puke foam out the vent or completely fail, you don't know.  The transmission is one of the most neglected and ignored components.  The transmission is a very reliable component as delivered.  If the use moves beyond 'grocer getter', cooler upgrade is cheap insurance.  Sever conditions (as defined by OEM) such as performance, taxi, police, or trailer towing, require added cooler and shift kit type mods.  Electric controlled transmissions modify shift points and firmness based on engine temp and load.  Unfortunately, manual transmissions don't have on-the-go performance changes.  All AODs should have an auxiliary cooler.  Heat is #1 AOD issue.  If you don't like transmission work, an ounce of prevention might keep it that way.
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Limey57

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Re: Transmission cooler - where to mount?
« Reply #9 on: March 21, 2017, 08:08:23 AM »

What size would you recommend as a stand-alone cooler?  My transmission is an AOD and I'll be using it for occasional towing.  Over here 98% of cars are manual so my automatic knowledge is limited, but I do know that heat can reduce it's life-span considerably, so I want to get it right!

Thanks for all the input.
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Gary

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Re: Transmission cooler - where to mount?
« Reply #10 on: March 21, 2017, 09:54:59 AM »

At least twice as big but you need a temp gage to know what's going on.  Bypassing the radiator mounted trans cooler will eliminate temperature control.  Trans fluid needs to be a operating temperature to work correctly.  I strongly recommend adding the size cooler in the OP as an auxiliary cooler with the OEM radiator cooler.  The two coolers in one technology has been around forever and failures are extremely rare.  If you cut up a radiator, the transmission cooler is usually much heavier than the rest of the radiator.  I've seen radiators split wide open from ice with no damage to the transmission circuit.  If there was leakage, the transmission pressure is much higher than the engine coolant temperature so leakage would go into the engine coolant where it would do little to no damage.  Big mess...yes. 
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KYBlueOval

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Re: Transmission cooler - where to mount?
« Reply #11 on: March 22, 2017, 04:01:40 AM »

At least twice as big but you need a temp gage to know what's going on.  Bypassing the radiator mounted trans cooler will eliminate temperature control.  Trans fluid needs to be a operating temperature to work correctly.  I strongly recommend adding the size cooler in the OP as an auxiliary cooler with the OEM radiator cooler.  The two coolers in one technology has been around forever and failures are extremely rare.  If you cut up a radiator, the transmission cooler is usually much heavier than the rest of the radiator.  I've seen radiators split wide open from ice with no damage to the transmission circuit.  If there was leakage, the transmission pressure is much higher than the engine coolant temperature so leakage would go into the engine coolant where it would do little to no damage.  Big mess...yes.

Where should the axillary cooler be installed in the cooling circut.........before the the radiator , or after the radiator? I'm thinking it goes before the radiator. Is that correct?
Thanks
John
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gasman826

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Re: Transmission cooler - where to mount?
« Reply #12 on: March 22, 2017, 05:00:12 AM »

in the return line
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Limey57

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Re: Transmission cooler - where to mount?
« Reply #13 on: March 22, 2017, 05:44:11 AM »

in the return line

Thanks for all of your comments, just one more question (so I can get this right once & for all), how do I determine the difference between feed & return in the transmission body?  From memory one is above the other.
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Gary

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Re: Transmission cooler - where to mount?
« Reply #14 on: March 22, 2017, 06:32:27 AM »

in the return line

Gary I have to respectfully disagree.  The external cooler should be in the output line allowing the radiator cooler to regulate operating temperature of the fluid irrespective of outside temperature.  All of my trucks had/have the external cooler in the send line (before the radiator).
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