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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-26-2009, 07:39 PM Thread Starter
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Transmission Cooler

I need to buy a transmission cooler and I want to buy the right thing from the start but don't want to spend too much. I've seen that both Hayden and B&M make good stacked-plate coolers but they are more expensive. How bad are the $20-$30 autozone coolers? Is a junkyard a possibility? I heard that Fords came with tranny coolers but I'm not so sure I could ever put a ford part in my yota!

- Jesse

1995 4Runner - 3.4 Swap - 33x12.5 BFG M/Ts - BJ Spacers and LC Coils - All-Pro Sliders - ARB Onboard Air -
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-26-2009, 08:52 PM
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I use a Hayden tranny cooler for my hydro assist cooler. It works just fine, no leaks, and was decently prices ($30). I got it from Checkers.
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-26-2009, 09:23 PM
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I think Molly's is a Hayden.

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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-27-2009, 12:01 PM
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I use a B&M 22,000 GVW plate cooler with fan, though I don't remember the price. Avoid the tube type coolers. Also, you should NOT mount the cooler to the radiator like many folks do. the reason is the high vibration and bouncing off road can pull and tear the fins on the radiator and cause leaks. Plus, you will be pulling hot air through the radiator. The rad already has a trans cooler in it anyway (if its like mine) so consider remote mounting with a fan. A little more complex, but much better efficiency. Also, put a trans temp gauge on there too while you are at it. More $$ though.

FYI, when (mostly) stock, the fan kicked in pretty often. So you do NEED one if you want to keep the auto trans alive.

I posed a thread on my setup somewhere.. I think I called it "A340F trans modifications". Im not sure if any of that info will apply to you though.

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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-27-2009, 02:47 PM
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Mine is a Hayden. Dave at All Phaze put it in for me. Was well worth it - with the abuse my 3.0 took driving to Moab with my pig of a rig!




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How many people do you think it'd take to hold Molly down while we cut off a limb? I'm guessing alot, plus ratchet straps, c-clamps, and other misc tools
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-27-2009, 04:04 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by packrat1 View Post
I use a B&M 22,000 GVW plate cooler with fan, though I don't remember the price. Avoid the tube type coolers. Also, you should NOT mount the cooler to the radiator like many folks do. the reason is the high vibration and bouncing off road can pull and tear the fins on the radiator and cause leaks. Plus, you will be pulling hot air through the radiator. The rad already has a trans cooler in it anyway (if its like mine) so consider remote mounting with a fan. A little more complex, but much better efficiency. Also, put a trans temp gauge on there too while you are at it. More $$ though.

FYI, when (mostly) stock, the fan kicked in pretty often. So you do NEED one if you want to keep the auto trans alive.

I posed a thread on my setup somewhere.. I think I called it "A340F trans modifications". Im not sure if any of that info will apply to you though.
Ok thanks.

Where would you recommend mounting the cooler if not by the radiator, under the body somewhere? If I don't purchase a fan at first will it even aid in cooling if put there? (I can't seem to find your thread, everytime I use the search it gives me "no results.") How much would a decent temp gauge cost?

Jesse

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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-27-2009, 06:34 PM
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"extreme mods and wheeling" post date 03/06/09.

I have a taco, so I put it in the bed. I've heard of folks putting it under the body with a fan. Without a fan you would need to get some airflow to it somehow, so better with a fan, then it can go anywhere it fits.Otherwise, as a passive cooler I don't think it would help too much. I don't think I paid more than $100 with the fan, so its not too bad, but that depends on the size of your wallet. If you do mount it in front of the radiator, don't mount it to the radiator, make a designated mount.

The temp guage I have is an Autometer, it was under $50 from summit racing if I recall, but remember, depending on where you want to install it, you may also need a gauge pod. I was able to mount mine with a pod on the (tilt) steering column without obstructing vital (unless you consider trip odometer vital) info from the speedo gauge cluster. the LED I installed to let me know if the fan is on or not is fluff, but I like it. I even mounted a switch so that I could turn the fan off, although I have yet to do that. I was not sure if I was going to keep the cooler where it is, so I thought that if I was ever to relocate it low on the truck, like you might have to, it would be nice to turn the fan off during water crossings. But as it is, my cooler is about 5 feet off the ground. If Im ever that deep I 'll have more problems than just my cooler fan.

Summit racing and Jegs were good sources for me on these parts, start shopping there. they were about the least expensive I could find.

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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-27-2009, 07:27 PM Thread Starter
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I read through your transmission mod page. I like the idea of the LED and fan swithc but at this point my wallet is very shallow so I may just have to go with a $50 cooler and change more later on down the road. I understand how the cooler will limit the flow into the radiator but that's really my only option now. B&M makes 2 coolers that I was looking at, one thats 11x7.5in and another, 11x5.75in. They are both the same price, would there be any reason to get the smaller one? (assuming they both fit in the front) Would it be better to have the extra flow into the radiator?

Thanks for all the help!

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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-28-2009, 04:46 PM
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get the larger one to keep the trans as cool as possible, it won't limit air flow to the radiator so much as it will pre-warm the air before getting to the radiator, that's the drawback, it's not ideal, but if there is no other place to put it, that's what you've got to do. But, now you've got a radiator with tranny cooler inside, A/C condensor in front of that, then an aux trans cooler in front of that! Its a big cooling load. So, on hot days limit your use of the A/C on hill climbs or crawling around and you should be fine.

An electric fan would help keep things cool while crawling, but I don't think it pulls more than the factory fan at high rpm/speed. Im not too familiar with 4R's, so maybe you are already electric, I wasn't.

Something else to consider if you find you are running hot, add some vents to your hood to let all that hot air escape. I noticed a difference when I added mine, and it looks cool to boot! Or, you could remove the skirts in the fenderwells, but then mud and crap gets in there. There always seems to be another side to the story.

The major take home is to NOT mount to the radiator, and you should be good to go. It will cost you more time to make the mounting system, but you will be much better off with peace of mind.

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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-28-2009, 05:36 PM Thread Starter
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get the larger one to keep the trans as cool as possible, it won't limit air flow to the radiator so much as it will pre-warm the air before getting to the radiator, that's the drawback, it's not ideal, but if there is no other place to put it, that's what you've got to do. But, now you've got a radiator with tranny cooler inside, A/C condensor in front of that, then an aux trans cooler in front of that! Its a big cooling load. So, on hot days limit your use of the A/C on hill climbs or crawling around and you should be fine.

An electric fan would help keep things cool while crawling, but I don't think it pulls more than the factory fan at high rpm/speed. Im not too familiar with 4R's, so maybe you are already electric, I wasn't.

Something else to consider if you find you are running hot, add some vents to your hood to let all that hot air escape. I noticed a difference when I added mine, and it looks cool to boot! Or, you could remove the skirts in the fenderwells, but then mud and crap gets in there. There always seems to be another side to the story.

The major take home is to NOT mount to the radiator, and you should be good to go. It will cost you more time to make the mounting system, but you will be much better off with peace of mind.
Awesome thanks!

I do not have the electric radiator fan but do have a separate electric fan that is in front of the radiator (I understand only some Toyotas have this). I already try to limit my use of A/C and have never seen issues with the engine temp, just the transmission. The only time the A/T light has shown up is when going up Storm Mountain, it comes on because of the very long slow drive up to the trail. I've already checked for slipping transmission bands, checked the fluid level, and checked the fluid flow. They all seem to be fine so it must just be because of the added strain of that trail. I'm glad that I'm dealing with this now as it will lengthen the life of my tranny!

As a separate question, (and I can search for this if its complicated to explain) why do people do an electric fan swap? I know one advantage is being able to shut it off for water crossings.

Thanks for the help,
-Jesse

1995 4Runner - 3.4 Swap - 33x12.5 BFG M/Ts - BJ Spacers and LC Coils - All-Pro Sliders - ARB Onboard Air -
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-28-2009, 06:52 PM
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Something else to consider if you find you are running hot, add some vents to your hood to let all that hot air escape. I noticed a difference when I added mine, and it looks cool to boot!
I need to do this before it gets hot ... an ignitor a year is starting to suck.

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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-28-2009, 07:29 PM
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The only time the A/T light has shown up is when going up Storm Mountain, it comes on because of the very long slow drive up to the trail. I've already checked for slipping transmission bands, checked the fluid level, and checked the fluid flow. They all seem to be fine so it must just be because of the added strain of that trail.
Odd, I've run that with my auto tranny and not had the light come on. When was the last time you flushed the tranny (perhaps I missed it?)

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As a separate question, (and I can search for this if its complicated to explain) why do people do an electric fan swap? I know one advantage is being able to shut it off for water crossings.

Thanks for the help,
-Jesse
I'm going to be doing this on my 85 build. I'll be using a for ford taurus fan (2-speed) wired with a temp sensor for auto on/off and a secondary switch for manual off and high speed in the cab. If you search for ford tauras fan you'll find quite a bit of info. Those fans are powerful and cheep.

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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-28-2009, 08:38 PM Thread Starter
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Odd, I've run that with my auto tranny and not had the light come on. When was the last time you flushed the tranny (perhaps I missed it?)


I'm going to be doing this on my 85 build. I'll be using a for ford taurus fan (2-speed) wired with a temp sensor for auto on/off and a secondary switch for manual off and high speed in the cab. If you search for ford tauras fan you'll find quite a bit of info. Those fans are powerful and cheep.

The first time I ran it, I had not checked the oil level and It was low. The second time I ran the trail I had checked the fluid level but not while the engine was running (so the level was still a little low). Since then I've learned exactly where it should be. I may be heading up Storm again this weekend so I'll have to see if it comes on again.

My Dad and I replaced the filter on the Transmission and did not flush the entire system but put in about 5 quarts if I remember right. The oil looked pretty good when we pulled the pan off. When the light came on I could feel heat in the metal at the bottom of the gear shifter. When I went up Bunce School here not too far back, the light did not come on but there was still heat working its way into the handle. It would appear that I do not have a second problem, but that this wheeling just heats it up pretty good.

That Taurus fan mod sounds interesting. It cools much better than the stock fan then?

Thanks
-Jesse

1995 4Runner - 3.4 Swap - 33x12.5 BFG M/Ts - BJ Spacers and LC Coils - All-Pro Sliders - ARB Onboard Air -
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-02-2009, 09:35 PM
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Quote:
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As a separate question, (and I can search for this if its complicated to explain) why do people do an electric fan swap? I know one advantage is being able to shut it off for water crossings.
I can think of three reasons. One you just mentioned, the next is (maybe) a power increase since you are not using engine power to run the fan. the counter argument to that is you have an extra load on the alternator, which puts an extra drag on the engine. So that's why the 'maybe' on the power increase. In my experience, you won't notice a seat of the pants whiplash event after the swap.
The third reason is that it will pull more air at low engine rpms than the pulley driven fan. So it helps to keep cooler at crawling speeds and rpms, (which is harder for an auto trans truck to do). Also, the warm up in winter is quicker.

I used a flex-a-lite twin fan unit. they list one specific for the tacoma, but I got the universal unit which was identical in size and specs, but $100 less, came in choice of red, blue, or black (the taco specific one is black only), and was very easy to mount with the universal kit it came with. It is thermostatically controlled and you can vary the 'on' temp as well. I've been very happy with mine.

I did not switch it to the dash. My past experience with that is it can get turned off inadvertantly. So, if I encounter a big water hole Id have to pull its fuse, which you might think would be pain.... but if I drive up to a big water hole, Im getting out and probing it, looking for winch anchors in case I get stopped in there, and generally trying to think ahead. Hopefully, I'll remember to pull the fan fuse.

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