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Thread: Overheating caused by transmission cooler?

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    Overheating caused by transmission cooler?

    Engine was overheating under load and going uphill.
    Usually happens during long drives, no problem around town.


    I’m suspecting the transmission is overworked causing excess heat to the transmission cooler which warms the air going to the radiator.


    The transmission cooler is installed parallel to the bellypan right in front of the radiator.


    Do you think that’s the problem?

    Is there a better place for it?
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    Last edited by monkeykongking; 01-19-2020 at 01:39 AM.
    1966 GMC / 292 ci / 700r4 / Air Suspension

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    I don't Know..

    It doesn't seem likely that the trans cooler is causing the overheating issue but I don't know. Certainly our 1st gens need all the cool air they can get and there'll be some heat coming off that cooler but I doubt if it's enough to cause the overheating but certainly may contribute to it. Typically, automatic transmissions generate the most heat when pulling a load, particularly in mountainous areas. If you're looking for an alternative location, perhaps under the van near the rockers along with a small electric fan.
    108VanGuy...
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    I'm curious if anybody else have their transmission cooler mounted at the same place and experience the same issue.

    Ever since the transmission cooler is mounted in front of the radiator, i can feel heat coming in near the feet area.

    I think the rockers is a good spot maybe even a scoop for air?



    Quote Originally Posted by 108VanGuy View Post
    It doesn't seem likely that the trans cooler is causing the overheating issue but I don't know. Certainly our 1st gens need all the cool air they can get and there'll be some heat coming off that cooler but I doubt if it's enough to cause the overheating but certainly may contribute to it. Typically, automatic transmissions generate the most heat when pulling a load, particularly in mountainous areas. If you're looking for an alternative location, perhaps under the van near the rockers along with a small electric fan.
    108VanGuy...
    1966 GMC / 292 ci / 700r4 / Air Suspension

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    Certifiable Vanatic Leroy Jackson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by monkeykongking View Post
    I'm curious if anybody else have their transmission cooler mounted at the same place and experience the same issue.

    Ever since the transmission cooler is mounted in front of the radiator, i can feel heat coming in near the feet area.

    I think the rockers is a good spot maybe even a scoop for air?
    I run my oil cooler and a trans cooler in the cavity for the rocker panels and they have a scoop

    I also put a larger second trans cooler into the cavity just aft of the transmission. There was enough room to cram a 10 inch fan on top of it and still clear the driveshaft.

    But If I recall, your van is notched and lowered on bags. So you might not have the same amount of real estate back there.

    Trans coolers can cause an engine to run hot. What this also means is that your engine cooling system is at it's maximum capacity to shed heat.

    I would look into troubleshooting your cooling system to see if you can get better performance out of it. Is the radiator plugged? Cap holding pressure? Thermostat the right temperature range and is it opening up fully? How is the airflow? How is the airflow through the dog house? Are you running headers? If so, are they coated? Is the fan mechanical? Is the fan clutch working? Ignition timing good? Too advanced and it runs hot. Sometimes you don't hear the pinging, but the temps climb. Too retarded and your manifolds will run super hot. Running lean?

    Also check the stall on your transmission torque converter. If it's too high, it will run hot. A lock-out converter helps, but only when it is on.

    I run a 2500 stall on mine wih a lock-out and I have to have multiple programs in my trans computer depending on where I am driving help keep the heat under control.

    Slow driving through hills is the worst.I have to set my lock-out to engauge in 3rd if the traffic keeps my speeds below 55. Oddly running at 85 mph doesn't heat up my trans nearly as much as slow traffic through steep hills.
    Last edited by Leroy Jackson; 01-22-2020 at 12:03 AM.
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    VCVC Member digz's Avatar
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    You're blocking the only area of direct airflow to the radiator. For a stock type rad setup I'd think the rocker area would be better ,a unit with a fan. Derale makes them I know. I had room for a 30"dual pass aluminum finned tube type up. Never put a gauge to it but hasn't puked the trans in 8 years.
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