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Old 03-31-2007, 03:29 PM   #1
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Question aux transmission cooler?

I have a 88 345 classic w/ a 454 and turbo 475 transmission. I've been planning on adding an auxillary transmission cooler but noticed that the cooler lines were currently piped into the main radiator. Anyone know it this is adequate. I've 120k miles and so far so good.

If I stick with the factory solution, I've at least thought about adding an aluminum finned pan and a temp guage.

Any advice greatly appreciated.

Thanks,

Nick
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Old 03-31-2007, 04:01 PM   #2
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Talking Trans cooler

Hi, A trans. cooler is always a good idea. Also a deep pan is good.Remember that the trans. oil will not be any cooler than the engine coolent. If it runs at 220 deg. the trans oil will be same temp.The best idea is remove the trany oil from the radiator and run it trough a separate cooler. Usualy buy the biggest you can fit into your engine compartment. Trans oil likes to run at about 180 Deg. You have to remember that the oil in your trans is not only a cooler,lubrican ,and presure hydrolic fluit for your trans. Keep it cool.
Regards Russell in sunny Tucson Az.
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Old 03-31-2007, 04:16 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nickglase
I have a 88 345 classic w/ a 454 and turbo 475 transmission. I've been planning on adding an auxillary transmission cooler but noticed that the cooler lines were currently piped into the main radiator. Anyone know it this is adequate. I've 120k miles and so far so good.

If I stick with the factory solution, I've at least thought about adding an aluminum finned pan and a temp guage.

Any advice greatly appreciated.

Thanks,

Nick
Nick,
Spend the bucks for the aux cooler AND gauge.
A couple hundred bucks could save you thousands on a tranny rebuild.
Don
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Old 03-31-2007, 04:24 PM   #4
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I don't have one one my 454 TH400 combo, nor do I think I need one. But

Quote:
Originally Posted by nickglase
... I've been planning on adding an auxillary transmission cooler but noticed that the cooler lines were currently piped into the main radiator... I've 120k miles and so far so good. ...
What you have outlined will certainly do no harm. But with 120,000 miles you have demonstrated that the original setup works, AND you know how to drive a large load effectively.

If you do opt for an auxillary cooler, be prepared for a lack of installation instructions. While mounting it in a location where it gets cooling air is a no-brainer, the cooler's plumbing is another issue.

In my opinion... I recommend...etc... that you mount the cooler's plumbing ahead of the radiator. In other words, the oil goes through the new cooler before it goes through the radiator.

From what I have read, part of the radiator's job is to warm the ATF as you hit the road because the transmission will perform better and/or needs a certain amount of warming up too.

If the auxillary cooler is mounted after the radiator, any heat absorbed by the ATF might be lost.

Tom
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Old 03-31-2007, 04:35 PM   #5
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A temp guage is a must for the life of your transmission. Heat is the enemy especially if you do any kind of hill climbing. As posted earlier if your rad coolant and the engine in front of the transmission is providing heat, and lots of it, to the transmission.... you could be heading into trouble.
An aux cooler is a great idea.
Also after all of the above requirements have been met... temp guage being the important one.... try switching to a synth. trany lube. Everyone who has reports all around benefits.
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Old 03-31-2007, 04:56 PM   #6
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Keep in mind that my TH400 is not monitored

Quote:
Originally Posted by GlenCoombe
A temp guage is a must for the life of your transmission...
I agree with the sentiment. But much depends on where the gauge's sensor is mounted. Most add-on gauge sensors do not mount where the oil is hottest.

If you go for a gauge, choose a kit that lists an expected temperature range for where the sensor is mounted. While monitoring a myriad of gauges certainly breaks the monotony of driving, it is a good idea to know if the guage is providing useful information.

Tom
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Old 03-31-2007, 05:00 PM   #7
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Not necessarily

Quote:
Originally Posted by GlenCoombe
... try switching to a synth. trany lube. ...
If you have 120,000 miles on a non-rebuilt transmission, I think you would be ill-advised to do anything with the ATF.

I recommend you only change to synthetic oil IF you have freshly broken-in tranny.

Tom
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Old 03-31-2007, 08:14 PM   #8
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I agree, don't mess with a high mileage trans, but an aux cooler is a great idea.
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Old 03-31-2007, 08:27 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nickglase
I have a 88 345 classic w/ a 454 and turbo 475 transmission. I've been planning on adding an auxillary transmission cooler but noticed that the cooler lines were currently piped into the main radiator. Anyone know it this is adequate. I've 120k miles and so far so good.

If I stick with the factory solution, I've at least thought about adding an aluminum finned pan and a temp guage.

Any advice greatly appreciated.

Thanks,

Nick
Nick,
Hayden makes numerous sizes of transmission coolers. They also will provide professional knowledge of what to do to make it work to it's utmost to provide you the best protection possible for your transmission. Where you live, there is not a need to worry about warm ENOUGH fluid. Unless you are planning a frigid vacation, that is not a problem. However, it seems a very moot action to run the fluid through a cooler, and then back through a hot radiator to make sure it is warm. The very time your trans needs cooling, will be the very same time that your engine is being taxed as well. Pressurized water treated with antifreeze can safely go to 260 degrees before boilover! Why would you want your trans fluid to be heated to that temp, especially after cooling it with that new cooler, before introducing it into your trans, which is diligently trying to get you over that mountain, or through that stop and go traffic in San Fran?
Forget the running it through the radiator after the cooler-ask Hayden instead of all us wise guys!
Good luck.
Oh, and change the fluid regularly. Use one of the services that uses a pump to completely replace all the fluid, not just the 30% that is in the pan.
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Old 03-31-2007, 09:24 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TomW
I agree with the sentiment. But much depends on where the gauge's sensor is mounted. Most add-on gauge sensors do not mount where the oil is hottest.

If you go for a gauge, choose a kit that lists an expected temperature range for where the sensor is mounted. While monitoring a myriad of gauges certainly breaks the monotony of driving, it is a good idea to know if the guage is providing useful information.

Tom
My local, much trusted transmission specialist said the same thing when I asked him to install a trans temp gauge in my Suburban. What temp do you want to see, he asked..and what are you going to do when it gets hot in the middle of a hillclimb on I-10....pull over?
My shop recommends regular service, and a sensitive right foot. I was advised that modern transmissions don't burn up as much from overheating or lack of lubrication, as they break form mechanical stress.
I have folowed that advise with good results so far.
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Old 04-08-2007, 11:37 AM   #11
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I added an aux cooler and installed it to the right hand side of the grill away from the radiator, moved the engine oil cooler over there as well, and added an aux electric fan to suck air thru it when necessary. My rig runs very cool. Exhaust headers will also get the heat down under the chasis and not linger in the engine compartment.
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