Author Topic: Radiator Temps Too Cool?  (Read 4434 times)

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Offline smokin-6

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Radiator Temps Too Cool?
« on: November 04 2012, 08:57:46 AM »
When I am driving around with air temps 55 or lower my coolant temp bounces around at 154-165. I have a 160 T stat and Eric's chip (fan set to come on at 165), is this bad? I mean will my car be able to burn off the moisture in the oil/crankcase and get the oil up to a sufficient temperature :102:
87 T Ported stock heads, 212/212 roller, stock block, ALKY, CAS V4, 6262, 3.5 MAF & Translator, new tranny w/ 9-11
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Offline Steve Wood

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Re: Radiator Temps Too Cool?
« Reply #1 on: November 04 2012, 09:12:03 AM »
160 degs should be warm up to properly expand the pistons for good ring life.  I think it takes some longer distance driving to clear the water out of the oil so more frequent changes are advised.  Ten minutes of driving is not so good.

Which thermostat are you using?  Some of these no name thermostats from the vendors seem to be very erratic from comments this year.  I installed two recently.  I notice that one of them usually does not open until 185 degs and then it drops back to 155 and then tends to level out better but I am thinking of changing it again.

Phil found that Autozone sells a Duralast 3846 thermostat that fits properly....th at is the 160 deg version.  I am going that way next time.  It seems to be working over a much more narrow range as a good thermostat should.

If you are going to drive the car up there in cold weather, then I would put a 180 deg unit in just to have a warmer heater.   You guys seldom have prolonged hot weather by our definition down here so unless you are pushing the boost to the edge of detonation routinely, I don't see a problem with a 180 for a street car.

Eric's chip turns the fan on at 168 so the fan will tend to run all the time in the winter when it does not need to, but, I suspect most cars run at least that hot anyway no matter what the thermostat so that is probably not a matter of concern.

BTW, how is your car running after the work?
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Offline 1KWIKSIX

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Re: Radiator Temps Too Cool?
« Reply #2 on: November 04 2012, 09:43:09 AM »
I had a similar situation this year too. Found my trusted 160 deg T stat with new radiator and my engine coolant was 142deg F to 148deg F range while driving on the hi way. At a stand still, idling, the engine would heat up to 175deg F when the fans would kick on (as per the Extender Extreme Chip settings).  I was concerned about it being too cool as well (engine parts not up to temp so parts not expanded to proper operating tolerances, possible excessive blow by & sludge / condensation in oil from not hot enough).
Decided to change out the stat to a new 160 stat.....found the exact same problem.
Finally put in a 180 stat and had the fan kick on point raised on my chip to 185deg F (left the fan off at the 170deg it was set for).
Now the car runs 170 deg to 185deg F and I'm much more comfortable with that operating range (especially in the spring / fall, when outdoor ambient temps are quite cool....especi ally around these parts).


Seems to have fixed the problem for me.  Since this is a street driven car, should be fine for me, however when I take it to the strip (some day), I'll most likely throw the 160 stat back in.


I do have a small block Chevy 170 stat in my tool box that I'm toying with cutting down and installing in the springtime?   :hmm [size=78%] [/size]

Offline Steve Wood

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Re: Radiator Temps Too Cool?
« Reply #3 on: November 04 2012, 11:44:54 AM »
I am convinced these no name thermostats are a dirt cheap import and they must be using birthday candle wax in the sensor....a good thermostat should start to open a couple of degrees below the rated temp and be wide open a couple of degrees above....we used to always drop them in a pan of water with a cooking thermometer to see if they worked properly...gue ss sometimes the old ways did have some value.

Phil's Duralast unit seems to work right.
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Offline 1KWIKSIX

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Re: Radiator Temps Too Cool?
« Reply #4 on: November 04 2012, 05:28:03 PM »
Hey Steve,


The weird thing is that I bought both of these 160 T-stats from one of the more reputable Buick vendors on the boards. In fact, they even say "Made in USA" on them too. 


The first one had been in my car for several seasons and worked without issue. Only started to have the problems after my new radiator was installed. Maybe it's just too efficient.


Will check out the Duralast 3846 thermostat though. 


Thanks,
 :cheers:
dave




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Re: Radiator Temps Too Cool?
« Reply #5 on: November 04 2012, 06:03:50 PM »
radiator does not have any effect.  There is a ball of wax in the thermostat pellet that melts and when it does, it expands and pushes the blade open....and a good thermostat has a very narrow range from beginning to open to fully open....

I bought two...from two different vendors...one of them a major, and neither had made in the USA as I recall.

I have not driven one of the cars much, but the other one seemed to open properly when I put it in and watched it...but, now, it does not begin to circulate until 185....then it seems to hold it at a lower temp, but, not as low as I would expect in the current weather....

You would expect it to be erratic if there was air in the system keeping coolant off the thermostat pellet, but?

Some days, these cars make me believe in magic.  :D
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Offline phil_long

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Re: Radiator Temps Too Cool?
« Reply #6 on: November 05 2012, 08:43:12 AM »
The Duralast piece that I bought seems to hold up quite well.  Its a lot cooler here in STL, and my temps vary from 158 to 168.  I have a stock fan and an F-body rad on the car.  I'd be pissed to purchase a faulty T-stat from a buick vendor.  That's the reason I was looking for some place local to purchase from so i could avoid shipping hassle, and if it didnt work, I would simply return back to the store.  Made three trips total until i found the right one.  Good luck

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Re: Radiator Temps Too Cool?
« Reply #7 on: November 05 2012, 08:45:01 AM »
And if Im not mistaken, they had a 160 and a 180 version from Duralast

Offline Steve Wood

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Re: Radiator Temps Too Cool?
« Reply #8 on: November 05 2012, 08:58:57 AM »
yeah, they have both...and it was about half the price with no shipping   :D
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Offline phil_long

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Re: Radiator Temps Too Cool?
« Reply #9 on: November 05 2012, 10:51:33 AM »
this is true


Offline smokin-6

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Re: Radiator Temps Too Cool?
« Reply #10 on: November 05 2012, 12:19:18 PM »
160 degs should be warm up to properly expand the pistons for good ring life.  I think it takes some longer distance driving to clear the water out of the oil so more frequent changes are advised.  Ten minutes of driving is not so good.

Which thermostat are you using?  Some of these no name thermostats from the vendors seem to be very erratic from comments this year.  I installed two recently.  I notice that one of them usually does not open until 185 degs and then it drops back to 155 and then tends to level out better but I am thinking of changing it again.

Phil found that Autozone sells a Duralast 3846 thermostat that fits properly....th at is the 160 deg version.  I am going that way next time.  It seems to be working over a much more narrow range as a good thermostat should.

If you are going to drive the car up there in cold weather, then I would put a 180 deg unit in just to have a warmer heater.   You guys seldom have prolonged hot weather by our definition down here so unless you are pushing the boost to the edge of detonation routinely, I don't see a problem with a 180 for a street car.

Eric's chip turns the fan on at 168 so the fan will tend to run all the time in the winter when it does not need to, but, I suspect most cars run at least that hot anyway no matter what the thermostat so that is probably not a matter of concern.

BTW, how is your car running after the work?

I believe I bought the T stat from Kirbans a few yrs back, not many miles on it (3000). When I put in the new engine I also got rid of the original radiator and used a new aluminum one. In the summer it was at 165-170 but I have only about 270 miles on the engine. I wonder if I partially block the air flow for the radiator if that could raise the temps?? Only in the winter of course.
 
With my new setup the car seems to run fine. When I go WOT (only for 3-5 seconds so far) it hits about 22 lbs of boost and my scanmaster only (if any) shows 1 or less on KR, and my O2 at 780 ish,this is with my ALKY. My TPS/ IAC and BL (123-125) seem to be inline but the engine seems to shake at an idle more that the stock motor did, maybe the bigger cam or vacuum leak. I would like to get my boost down but the rod is about an 1/8 inch of tension and my RJC boost controller (lines set tuner style) is almost all the way out. I guess if the heads were not ported it would be much higher.
 
My oil pressure is high even when warmed up (30 at a hot idle) with the 20-50 Valvoline racing oil so maybe I should use 10-30 with this cold weather. :chin:
 
 
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Re: Radiator Temps Too Cool?
« Reply #11 on: November 05 2012, 02:37:11 PM »
I would go to the 10-30.  Too much pressure consumes more power and puts more wear on the front cam bearing, and oil pump drive.  I would use it year round.

You can make it run warmer by blocking air flow, but, I would just put a 180 stat in it and have some nice warm air this winter.

Turning the boost down?  Then you get into trying to reduce the alky to get it to run right.  Instead I would add boost :)
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Offline smokin-6

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Re: Radiator Temps Too Cool?
« Reply #12 on: November 06 2012, 07:11:43 AM »
You're right, if it aint knocking with the boost I have now I will leave it alone. Mother Nature will raise the boost for me with the cold air that is coming.
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Offline Steve Wood

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Re: Radiator Temps Too Cool?
« Reply #13 on: November 06 2012, 08:59:53 AM »
Cold air will lean it out a bit which should not hurt...really should not affect the boost level unless it is quite a bit too rich
Steve Wood

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A lot of broken parts does not make you a racer; it makes you a slow learner.

 

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