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post #1 of (permalink) Old 09-06-2002, 03:59 PM
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Coolant Temp guage and Radiator Replace?

While driving in very hilly areas of town at highway speeds the temp guage will make to vertical or a little to the hot side of vertical(when it's around 90-100 F outside). With the air on it starts to approach over-heating.

Two questions:
1) I know that this truck was not very well maintained before I got it so would it make sense to go ahead and replace the radiator and, maybe, the water pump too(although it's quiet with no leaks)? The radiator already has a very, very, very small leak on the passenger-side plastic end tank. The radiator seems to hold pressure fine. I can see flow across the top of the radiator but I'm just not sure that the core isn't gunked up. If yes to replace then suggestions in the $220 and under range? Anything else I should consider here?
2) Anybody have any idea what the range of temperatures the temp guage represents is?

Hehe, guess #1 is really three questions disguised as one. [img]images/icons/tongue.gif[/img]

Thx. [img]images/icons/smile.gif[/img]
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 09-06-2002, 04:20 PM
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Re: Coolant Temp guage and Radiator Replace?

Modine makes a very good replacement radiator.
However, maybe you could get your's to work longer.
Have you flushed it at all? And, the block?
Good place to start.[img]images/icons/wink.gif[/img]
How old is your thermostat?
Cheap to replace.

A water pump, when it's getting ready to die, will start to show signs of over-heating on the hi-way.
It'll run cool around town, but get the revs up, and the load up, on the hi-way, and the pump starts losing efficiency, heating the engine up.
Sorry, no idea what "N" or "O", or anything else in "normal" on the gauge would correlate to.[img]images/icons/crazy.gif[/img]
Mine hangs right on the "N". 99% of the time.

Incidentally, (gees, I like that word[img]images/icons/laugh.gif[/img]) you can fix that leak in the plastic end tank.
JB Weld.[img]images/icons/wink.gif[/img]

Drain the radiator.
Pull the upper and lower rad hoses.
Tape, tie, whatever, some plastic (zip-loks work good) over the outlets (where you pulled the hoses off).
Close the drain.
Roughen up (sand) the area to be repaired.
Mix up the JB Weld and apply.
Now the trick.[img]images/icons/smile.gif[/img]
Stick your shop-vac hose in the top-fill fitting.
Stuff a rag around it, and in the hole to "seal" it.
Turn the vac on.
It'll help "suck" the JB Weld into the hole.
Only need to do it for a minute, or untill you can tell the rad's under good vacuum for a bit.
I fixed several holes in mine that way, before it completely cracked and fell apart. (Hence, knowing about Modine)
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 09-06-2002, 04:27 PM
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Re: Coolant Temp guage and Radiator Replace?

Yeah it's been flushed (almost immediately after buying it(new oil, trans flush, radiator flush)) and the thermostat is brand new(the ^*@#^$*@& inlet bolts are way too close to the back of the water pump)...

Thanks for the JB Weld tip [img]images/icons/smile.gif[/img]
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 09-06-2002, 04:35 PM
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Re: Coolant Temp guage and Radiator Replace?

Another symptom is that the heat just seems to build up....for instance, I drive about 25 miles to work one way each day. The entire trip the temp guage is slowly moving up towards vertical.

Good thing about this board is that If I tell my wife that I need to spend $200 on a radiator she'll look at me like I'm crazy....but if I tell her that a bunch of <u><font color='red'>experts</font></u> [img]images/icons/wink.gif[/img] told me I need to replace it then I won't get as much flak.
post #5 of (permalink) Old 09-06-2002, 05:30 PM
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Re: Coolant Temp guage and Radiator Replace?

Before you do anything I'd install a quality aftermarket gauge with numbers. Trying to correlate the stock gauge to anything meaningful is a waste of your time. This is an upgrade, nay investment, you'll appreciate for years to come. My .02, get some real data and go from there.
post #6 of (permalink) Old 09-06-2002, 05:42 PM
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Re: Coolant Temp guage and Radiator Replace?

Alright..will strongly consider.

What temp ranges does your truck normally run?
post #7 of (permalink) Old 09-07-2002, 12:27 AM
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Re: Coolant Temp guage and Radiator Replace?

To be perfectly honest you could consider me a hipocrite (sp?) I guess because I have yet to install a real temp gauge. I did install a mechanical oil pressure gauge because that's the life of your motor.

The truck has always run at the same temp on the stock gauge, and never overheats, so it has not been an issue yet. Still I consider the stock water temp gauge to basically be an idiot lite, it'll tell me if the truck is:
2)not overheating

and that's about it. So far #2 has not happened. If I suspected the truck was just running warmer than normal the first thing I'd do is move the real temp gauge to the top of the to-do list and get some concrete figures.
post #8 of (permalink) Old 09-07-2002, 01:39 AM
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Re: Coolant Temp guage and Radiator Replace?

What the guys said and...

If you do splurge for a rad, get the rad for an A/C equipped Bronco even if yours wasn't. They're usually bigger and will cool better. I never had any luck patching rads and they always seem to give out in the middle of BF nowhere in front of the biggest ripoff artist garage in that county. AND always at the most inopportune time financially, time wise, in darkness with precious(steal-able) cargo on board.

I run a 205 degree T-stat even in Summer and mine never overheats, but if you want cooler you can get 195s, 192s, 185s, 180s and even 160s. Never mind what the idiot behind the counter says, they are available. Our smallblock T-stat is the exact same T-stat that fits smallblock Mopars from 79 up and countless GM products. Gasket's different, but the T-stat on my 205 degree unit fits in my Mopar and my Brother's 4.3 GMC V-6. I'd recommend you go for the stock heat range in a hi-flow T-stat such as Robert Shaw or at least a failsafe T-stat.

If you really get the green light from the finance dept (spousal approval) then spend the 3 bux and replace the tiny L-shaped water pump to intake hose and the two (strange hard to find in BF nowhere) 3/8" F.I. intake heater hoses while you're at it. You can order pure silicone hoses from Gates that'll outlast you and the truck, but they're 3 times as pricey. I put areoquip 250 PSI high heat 3/8" heater hoses on mine because I never want them to blow again at 55 below zero.

In the hard to get at areas it's new hose clamps, with their worm screws loaded up with anti-seize compound too. I replaced the main 5/8" heater hoses for peanuts and that's 10 more years of piece of mind. Speaking of hard to get at, I permanently clamped a clear 3/8" hose to the drain nipple, at the rad drain pepcock, so I can drain the hose staright into a container and save all that liquid gold. Just tuck the hose up ought sight and away from the fan.

Hope this helps


As for those g-awful T-stat bolts, slip a dye over them and shorten them up to just enough threads and no more.
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post #9 of (permalink) Old 09-07-2002, 11:18 AM
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Re: Coolant Temp guage and Radiator Replace?

Often overlooked item is the rad cap, make sure it is in good condition and holding proper pressure.

I went away from the alum/plastic on the newer ones and bought a copper/brass 4 core made by GDI (goDanIndustries), right at about $200. Truck always runs just left of dead verticle on needle (forget what letter it is next to) once warm.
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post #10 of (permalink) Old 09-07-2002, 11:39 AM
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Re: Coolant Temp guage and Radiator Replace?

Man you guys rock!!

Thanks for the help [img]images/icons/smile.gif[/img]
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