4.7L Radiator Replacement Write Up - JeepForum.com

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post #1 of 7 Old 04-21-2010, 09:13 PM Thread Starter
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1999 TJ Wrangler 
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4.7L Radiator Replacement Write Up

I thought Iíd write up a few tips for the 4.7L owners who need to do a radiator replacement (sorry, no pix). I tried to follow the Haynes Repair Manual but it was totally worthless. I worked on a 2004 Grand Cherokee and bought the $80 or $90 radiator (shipped) sold on eBay.

Drain the system using the drain valve on the lower driverís side corner of the radiator. Connect a piece of hose and drain the coolant into a jug or two.

While the coolant is draining, remove the front grill. There are four or five snap-type mounting tabs on top. Release the tabs and lift the grill off.

Haynes says ďOn 2000 and later models, the hood latch and radiator support do not need to be removed. The radiator support bolts are accessible through the front grill opening.Ē While the bolts are accessible, I could not remove the radiator with the hood latch and support panel in there. Unbolt the hood latch (two 13mm nuts) and remove the support panel. Itís the sheet metal that is just above the front edge of the radiator. It has a rubber gasket/seal around the edge of it and the hood latch bolts to it. Remove this while the coolant is draining. There are four 10mm bolts and four torx bolts holding it on.

Remove the reservoir hose and disconnect the electrical connection near the radiator cap.

Remove the hoses (if coolant has finished draining).

Disconnect the transmission cooler lines. They connect to the radiator on the passenger side with two metal lines: one toward the top and one toward the bottom. Just below the radiator there are rubber hoses coming from the transmission that connects to the metal lines. I foolishly removed the metal lines where they connect directly to the radiator. Itís much easier to disconnect metal lines from the rubber hoses Ė just release the hose clamp and yank them off. Be sure to note witch rubber hose connects to which metal line for the installation. You can remove/install the metal lines to the radiator itself when the radiator is out of the vehicle (more on this later). Fluid will leak out, so have a drain pan handy when you disconnect the lines.

Disconnect the power steering fluid lines from the fan. There are three of them: 2 metal lines that bolt on and one rubber hose with a hose clamp. They are located at the lower back portion of the fan. Again, fluid will leak out so have a drain pan handy.

Unbolt the A/C condenser from the radiator Ė two 10mm bolts on the front of the radiator. Lift the A/C condenser off of the tabs on the lower corners of the radiator.

Remove the two 10mm bolts securing the radiator to the vehicle. They are near the top corners of the radiator.

Now lift the radiator and fan/shroud assembly out of the vehicle. You do not need to remove the fan/shroud assembly to get it out of the vehicle.

After it's out of the vehicle, remove the fan/shroud assembly from the radiator. Four 10mm bolts.

First thing you need to do is check that the transmission cooler fittings on the new radiator are tight. After installing my new radiator I found that the fittings were not tight and they spewed tranny fluid like a stuck pig. So I had to remove the whole radiator to tighten them. They were barely finger tight. I had to do the removal and installation twice. :

Bolt on the fan/shroud assembly with the four 10mm bolts.

Remove the metal transmission cooler lines from the old radiator and install them on the new radiator. Use Teflon tape on the threads. There are notches cut in the fan shroud - be sure the metal transmission cooler lines fit in the notches like they're supposed to.

Put the radiator in the vehicle. Be careful not to damage the A/C condenser or the lines connecting to it on the driverís side. There are two large pegs on the bottom of the radiator that fit into two holes on the vehicle.

Bolt the radiator to the vehicle with the two 10mm bolts.

Slide the A/C condenser into the tabs on the radiator and bolt the condenser to the radiator with the two 10mm bolts.

Connect the transmission cooler lines on the radiator to the rubber lines coming from the transmission.

Connect the power steering fluid hoses to the fan. The two metal lines have o-rings. I didnít replace them and didnít have any leaks after the installation, but it wouldnít be a bad idea to replace them.

Connect the reservoir hose and the electrical connection.

Fill the system with coolant and bleed it properly.

Add some power steering fluid to the power steering reservoir.

Start the engine, let it get up to normal operating temperature and check for leaks. I heard the power steering pump grumble for a few seconds until it pushed fluid into the fan lines. Be sure to check the reservoir to make sure itís full after the engine has run for a while. Also check the transmission fluid level. Mine was fine (not that much leaked out) but check it just to be safe.

If everything looks OK, install the support panel, hood latch and grill.

Finally, crack a PBR and enjoy your success.

John P.

Colorado Jeep Club Member #494

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post #2 of 7 Old 04-22-2010, 12:14 PM
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Holy Crap. I literally just pulled my radiator out 30 min ago. Keep in mind I started it yesterday just after lunch. Took me over 3 hours total. You can save at least an hour by following John's directions, here. I have an official CDJ service manual and there is no mention of taking the top radiator support off. This is KEY.

I went looking for more info online a few times, but didn't find much. This morning I was just my usual due diligence before actually ordering the new radiator. Then I found this post; happy for others that it's here, and very well written. Of course for me, it kinda sucked, since it was 1 F'g day late!

I need to get that new radiator.... I gotta cool down.
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post #3 of 7 Old 04-22-2010, 01:23 PM
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How do you like your ebay radiator? I'm probably not too far off from having to do this.

**1997 Jeep Cherokee SE**
Former Police Car assigned to 54-26, RIP.
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post #4 of 7 Old 04-23-2010, 06:22 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by kadetklapp View Post
How do you like your ebay radiator? I'm probably not too far off from having to do this.
It's been in a few days and it's cooling just fine with no issues so far. It looked almost identical to the stock radiator that came out as well. The transmission cooler line fittings were a bit different but fit the lines fine and were the same diameter. Otherwise it was very close.

This one is from Acella and was $82.28 shipped on eBay. I called the stealership and they wanted $350. When the guy at the dealership told me the price I said "Holy sh** man, seriously?" He laughed and said, "Yeah, I know...."

John P.

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post #5 of 7 Old 03-29-2011, 04:17 AM
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Ahh.. Thanks for the write-up. I'll be taking this on this weekend adn tyhis is exactly what I was looking for on here.

2003 Grand Cherokee Overland, 4 inch Rough Country Lift, upgraded to Rusty's Front Long Arm, JKS Adjustable Trac-Bar

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post #6 of 7 Old 03-29-2011, 07:56 AM
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When I did mine the mechanical fan wouldn't come off the water pump (rusted shaft/nut). I ended up wresting the fan shroud out around the mechanical fan then pulled out the old radiator (with more damage done to it with my wrestling maneuvers...). In order to get it all back together I trimmed down the bottom lip of the shroud (the very bottom, and the lower edge of the hold that the mechanical fan sits in. This gave me just enough wiggle room to maneuver it back in place after I swapped out the radiator.

It was a PITA that took me an extra 2 hours but it works. Just an FYI for anyone who has the same problem.
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post #7 of 7 Old 03-29-2011, 09:02 AM
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there's another write up around here with pictures as well. Check the FAQ. Maybe your write up and that one could be combined?
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