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Unread 07-14-2015, 01:00 PM   #1
thebestskibum
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TJ Radiator Cooling

I'm going to share my cooling issue and tests for everyone to learn from...

Background:

2014: The Jeep: 2004 TJ Wrangler Rubicon, AEV Highline, 40,000 ish miles 35" tires, 4.88 gears, ARB stubby bumper, with stock fog lights on bumper light mounts.

Coolant system 100% stock until 2011 when I installed a flex-a-lite black magic fan.

I had 2 overheats both were due to electric fan failure (wires became disconnected, my fault). After the first overheat I flushed the cooling system by using distilled water and coolant flush chemical and driving then refilling with distilled water and driving and then refilling 50/50 HOAT. Shortly after I had the second overheat. Ever since the flush and described overheats the coolant temp gauge would creep up to the line between 210 and 260 when freeway driving with ambient above 90. Before it would never heat up and the gauge was always on 210.

I read many other threads with what seemed like a similar engine warming at freeway speeds. Based on those threads I decided to buy a new radiator after comparing prices and threads on radiator replacement, I wen't with a Mishimoto from Summit Racing, it was only $60 more than the Mopar unit and I figured I could not go wrong with additional coolant and one extra row. After the install I had additional cooling: gauge would be below the 210 line, however on the highway it would still go past 210 but not as bad maybe 220 range. It was the end of the summer and ambient temps dropped below 90 and thus the gauge would not move past 210.

November 2014: I installed Banks Sidewinder Turbo. I figured this might aggravate the heating issue but I had always planned on installing the turbo since they announced it and I wasn't too worried because I figured I could just replace the water pump or whatever else it needed.

After the installation the jeep ran great and never overheated because ambient temps did not go past 45F.

February 2015: TJ6 stretch. I cut the jeep in half and added 15", again something I had planned for about a year.

April 2015: Ambient temps around 70+ air conditioning on, with the hardtop and hard doors: the jeep would warm up driving up hill or on the highway not over heat but the gauge did get between 210 and 260. I replaced the water pump and the thermostat, the jeep would still get warm. I purchased a OBDII reader to get more accurate temps the jeep would get up to 240F. I removed the electric fan and reinstalled the stock fan and clutch, the jeep would warm to 230. I flushed the cooling system the same method as above but with more distilled water cycles. I drove the jeep with distilled water and water wetter this made some improvement however the I could still get it up to 230.

While trying to figure out why the engine would run so hot I installed a oil temp gauge and started watching my IAT(Intake Air Temperature) using the OBDII scanner. I had IAT of 200+ and saw it go as high as 260. Oil temps could get up around 250F+ I saw as high as 270F. I installed an oil cooler and I haven't seen oil temps past 245F.

July 2015: I installed a Inter-cooler and water meth kit from Banks. I also installed a water temp gauge in the return hose from the radiator. This brought the IAT down to 10F+ ambient. After 2 freeway drives I noticed that at 60+ MPH, engine under load, 90F+ ambient the radiator is only cooling by 10-12F. The sensor before the radiator was at 220-225 and the sensor after the radiator showed 210-212

Hopefully that's clear and I covered most the important parts.

My theories:

1. Air flow: the fog lights and inter-cooler are blocking to much air flow.
2. Air flow/ thicker radiator: the thicker radiator of the Mishimoto slows the air down too much to get adequate cooling after all other blockages.
3. Coolant flow/ more row radiator: the coolant is moving to fast trough the radiator to cool down.


The next step is to remove the fog lights that are blocking the grill. I will then post those results.

Feel free to post your experiences and theories or any questions.

Here are some picks of the jeep before the stretch and after:

img_71411.jpg   img_2230.jpg  
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Unread 07-14-2015, 01:29 PM   #2
TJdualsport
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Something as simple as a rad cap can fix your issue. I only use factory caps. Air flow is not an issue at highway speeds unless there's cardboard covering your grill. Also after overheating always replace your tstat with an Oem unit. How are your trans temps??
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Unread 07-14-2015, 01:37 PM   #3
thebestskibum
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I got a new cap from Mishimoto about 3 weeks ago. They have a different filler neck than stock... The thermostat is also new I popped it in during the inter-cooler install. I don't have a trans temp gauge, the one I'm using for the second coolant reading is for the tranny... I just decided to see what the after radiator coolant temps are before i put it in the transmission. Also I have a Derale AUX transmission cooler and for the purpose of testing the cooling of the engine I have bypassed the stock transmission cooler.
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Unread 07-14-2015, 02:32 PM   #4
windkn0t
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If it helps, my issues were due to aftermarket radiators. I initially bought an aftermarket unit and it did not cool as well. Spent more money on an OEM unit and i could once again idle with the AC on.

Also, overheating at hwy speed, replaced my fan clutch and that went away.

I will not ever run anything other than OEM parts on my Jeep. Learned some frustrating and expensive lessons.


EDIT:
Oh yeah, and i have a big *** winch, fog lights, power steering cooler and trans cooler all in front of my radiator. Holds temp fine


Also, this might be worth a read for you. It's not a turbo, but close....

http://www.rubiconownersforum.com/fo...radiators.html
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Unread 07-14-2015, 02:53 PM   #5
thebestskibum
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And I thought I had read every cooling thread... thanks for that. I suspect John's and my issue is the same I just want to put some numbers to it and put the after market radiators to bed.
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Unread 07-14-2015, 03:18 PM   #6
thebestskibum
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Quote:
Originally Posted by windkn0t View Post
If it helps, my issues were due to aftermarket radiators. I initially bought an aftermarket unit and it did not cool as well. Spent more money on an OEM unit and i could once again idle with the AC on.

Also, overheating at hwy speed, replaced my fan clutch and that went away.

I will not ever run anything other than OEM parts on my Jeep. Learned some frustrating and expensive lessons.


EDIT:
Oh yeah, and i have a big *** winch, fog lights, power steering cooler and trans cooler all in front of my radiator. Holds temp fine


Also, this might be worth a read for you. It's not a turbo, but close....

http://www.rubiconownersforum.com/fo...radiators.html
Where did you get for fan clutch? I can't even find a part number for OEM...
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Unread 07-14-2015, 03:28 PM   #7
windkn0t
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I used the mopar vendor listed here on the forum. think i paid like 135??? part # 68064765AA


http://moparonlineparts.com/mop-parts/#parts


Give him a call, i remember the part being shown for 4 cyl. but it is the same for both displacements...???
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Unread 07-14-2015, 03:53 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by windkn0t View Post
I used the mopar vendor listed here on the forum. think i paid like 135??? part # 68064765AA


http://moparonlineparts.com/mop-parts/#parts


Give him a call, i remember the part being shown for 4 cyl. but it is the same for both displacements...???
Cool thanks.
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Unread 07-14-2015, 04:37 PM   #9
windkn0t
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Looking forward to your pics and updates on the Turbo thread. Really thinking about pulling the trigger on this kit. when i saw the issues you where having, being that we have the same model year and everything, i decided to wait.

So, be sure to keep us updated on this.
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Unread 07-14-2015, 04:53 PM   #10
Jerry Bransford
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I've yet to see or hear of a TJ with an aftermarket cooling system with electric fan(s) that truly worked as well in all conditions as the OE Mopar system does. What I mainly hear about are issues (I don't really care if they're installer error or not) that occur after the conversion has taken place.
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Unread 07-14-2015, 07:19 PM   #11
mrblaine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thebestskibum View Post
Also I have a Derale AUX transmission cooler and for the purpose of testing the cooling of the engine I have bypassed the stock transmission cooler.
Get your temp gauge for the trans working and I strongly suspect you will change that in short order.

I've got enough input now from at least 5 different rigs with that Derale AUX fan driven crap on there to know that they aren't worth the gun powder it would take to blow them to hell. Across the board, they are a poor investment and have yet to outdo a much smaller cooler mounted in the grill.
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Unread 07-14-2015, 07:23 PM   #12
mrblaine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerry Bransford View Post
I've yet to see or hear of a TJ with an aftermarket cooling system with electric fan(s) that truly worked as well in all conditions as the OE Mopar system does. What I mainly hear about are issues (I don't really care if they're installer error or not) that occur after the conversion has taken place.
I had a good chat with someone almost as cynical as I am over the reason most get an electric being that they can hit a switch to turn it off for water crossings. This was in connection to a recent water crossing he endured with a mechanical fan clutch.

Guess what happened? As soon as the blades splashed water on the clutch, it pretty much went into freewheel mode due to being cooled down and then just slowly waddled through the water that was covering most of the lower half of the blade. In other words, no reason for a switch, the fan clutch works exactly as designed.
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Unread 07-15-2015, 07:35 AM   #13
thebestskibum
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrblaine View Post
Get your temp gauge for the trans working and I strongly suspect you will change that in short order.

I've got enough input now from at least 5 different rigs with that Derale AUX fan driven crap on there to know that they aren't worth the gun powder it would take to blow them to hell. Across the board, they are a poor investment and have yet to outdo a much smaller cooler mounted in the grill.
Hey Blaine glad to see you here and Jerry you guys our like forum legends or better yet TJ legends.

I'm fresh out of space in front of the radiator with the inter-cooler. So the remote cooler is the easiest option. I will say that after bypassing the tranny cooler in the radiator the fan on the Derale unit almost never turns off, even after 2-3 minutes of idle. Before it would turn off after about 1 minute of idle.

Also why do my front brake keep squeaking? I think I've had your pads and rotors for almost 2 years now...
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Unread 07-15-2015, 08:05 AM   #14
thebestskibum
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Here are some pics during driving to work today.

The temps are pretty blurry but they read:
Stock coolant sensor:206
IAT:107
Oil:221
Coolant after the radiator:194
Ambient:74
Speed: about 75MPH
RPM:2500

206-194= 12F of cooling through the radiator...

To me this seems really strange has anyone else ever done testing like this? Mishimoto did it in their engineering report it's about halfway down: http://www.mishimoto.com/jeep-wrangl...tor-87-06.html

I did a run up little cottonwood canyon yesterday (snowbird and alta are at the top FYI if you're a skier). The jeep held an average speed of 50MPH and I was in the boost the whole time (5-10 minutes didn't really time it) I noticed the the temps did the same thing about 10F of cooling. The highest temp from the stock sensor was about 222F so not really near over heat, however I still think that is's too hot.

I also ran an errand with the kidos doing about 50MPH, I clicked the overdrive off and it revved to about 2500RPM, the after the radiator temp gauge went from 174 to 200. Again only about 10F of cooling, about 210 on the stock sensor and 200 after the radiator. Maybe a fan clutch???

Also the fog lights make no difference. As expected.
img_2428.jpg   img_2430.jpg   img_2432.jpg  
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Unread 07-15-2015, 09:05 AM   #15
windkn0t
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Same thing i was experiencing with my radiator barn radiator. I would only see a 10* differential in temps from the top radiator hose to the bottom using an IR thermometer. With the OEM unit, i see about 20 to 30*

I am certain its your radiator...... I chased that one for a Loooong time!


Talking to the guys here at a local radiator shop. They say they see this a lot with aftemarket radiators. They seem to think that the problem is that the water is moving too fast through these units and thats why heat is not being pulled from the coolant.

atleast the OEM mopar unit is spec'd to work with the water pumps flow rate.
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