Need a GOOD aluminum radiator
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RWD 19xx-1984 DeVille and Fleetwood,
1985-1996 Fleetwood and Brougham Forum Discussion, Need a GOOD aluminum radiator in Past Cadillac Vehicle Discussion; I have a 1970 DeVille Convertible. Installed a new factory style radiator. Then dropped a cylinder. Did a total rebuild. ...
  1. #1
    jc4now is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Need a GOOD aluminum radiator

    I have a 1970 DeVille Convertible. Installed a new factory style radiator. Then dropped a cylinder. Did a total rebuild. The thing is she runs to darn warm! Once she warms up, she will not cool down. In the summer, idle at stoplights at 235-245+ degrees...Get her moving...215-220 is as cool as she gets, once she gets up that high. I am looking at upgrading to an aluminum radiator. (I notice that ALL the muscle cars at the summer car hops have them. Big Fat Aluminum Radiators...with electric fans.) Anyone know of a good one with a trans cooler tank, that will fit? How about Dual Pass Radiators? Anyone try an oil cooler? I hear an oil cooler can effect up to 60% of an engine's cooling.

    Thanks

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  3. #2
    YoshiMan's Avatar
    YoshiMan is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Need a GOOD aluminum radiator

    If you do, make sures its got a good amount of rows in it, at least 2-3.

    I had an old 89' Landcruiser for ages that always ran a little on the hot side with the factory radiator on the inline-6, but i threw in a 3-row aluminum radiator and it made a world of difference.

    Have you checked the fan clutch? it may be totally worn and therefor the fan will not be pulling in much air.

  4. #3
    cadillacmike68's Avatar
    cadillacmike68 is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: Need a GOOD aluminum radiator

    You might want to try a pusher fan in front of the Condenser first.

    You can also have your brass tanks redone into 4 cores. I had to do this after overhauling my 1968. It still creeps, but the manual says it's "normal".

    These cars weren't designed to sit in heavy traffic in the hot weather here in FL. Moving down the road, it'll cool right back down, but sit in a big jam, and it creeps into the danger zone.

    A lower temp thermostat probably won't help, because you are simply not getting enough air flow through the radiator.

  5. #4
    The Ape Man's Avatar
    The Ape Man is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: Need a GOOD aluminum radiator

    Your engine is a modern thinwall casting with very good cooling.

    A factory radiator should have no problem cooling the thing in the worst of weather.

    Are you sure the fan is moving enough air and the coolant is flowing ok?

  6. #5
    jc4now is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    There is NO clutches on the fan. Fan blades are good with no visible cracks. I put a temp gage on it and thermostat opens right at 180. I removed the AC condenser completely. To make sure I had good air flow. (AC didn't work anyway). The factory radiator shroud is intact. IF there is some kind of flow blockage I have no clue. Like I said the temperature gets up high and it just can't seem to get back down to a decent level. It's SO frustrating.

  7. #6
    drmenard is offline Cadillac Owners Enthusiast
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    Re: Need a GOOD aluminum radiator

    The one thing I would suggest is to get a flow cooler water pump or a water pump or a pump with a solid impeller. I'm not saying not to get a good 3 row aluminum radiator, I got mine on ebay... On that water pump the impeller is round , not saw tooth shaped... This will make a big difference. MTS sells them.

  8. #7
    The Ape Man's Avatar
    The Ape Man is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: Need a GOOD aluminum radiator

    I would check radiator airflow temperature with a hot engine. With an overheated or close to overheated engine the air should be very uncomfortable to keep your hand in. If it isn't really hot or the isn't a lot of air moving the engine isn't being cooled.

    Water pumps cam lose impellers to rust. There could also be a restriction in the lower radiator hose.

    How are you determining overheat condition? Gauge or is the radiator boiling over?

    Is the radiator clean inside?

  9. #8
    MrHolland's Avatar
    MrHolland is offline Super Moderator
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    Re: Need a GOOD aluminum radiator

    I've had good luck with Afco, and BeCool,,,,only if you want to spend some money though.

  10. #9
    rodnok01's Avatar
    rodnok01 is online now Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    I would ditch the fan and go puller electric before I swapped the rad. Good point on checking the lower hose for collapsing. Also don't overlook rad cap being bad.

  11. #10
    csbuckn is offline Cadillac Owners Master
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    Re: Need a GOOD aluminum radiator

    Quote Originally Posted by drmenard View Post
    The one thing I would suggest is to get a flow cooler water pump or a water pump or a pump with a solid impeller. I'm not saying not to get a good 3 row aluminum radiator, I got mine on ebay... On that water pump the impeller is round , not saw tooth shaped... This will make a big difference. MTS sells them.
    I think this waterpump would be a good choice. I have the MTS waterpump, a clutch fan, no condensor and a stock two row radiator and I stay around 2-210 for temps. I havent got stuck in traffic though. I have the low compression 500.

  12. #11
    Jeff R's Avatar
    Jeff R is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Need a GOOD aluminum radiator

    My 70 doesn't seem to have a problem--at least the light doesn't come on. Nothing has been done to it that I know of. I admit is is my only reference but this is what I have noticed. First tho, a couple of questions. It does get hot under there as there is a lot of metal to cool. Is it just hot or really hot?
    The first thing I thought of for your situation was already posted-how do you determine it is running hot? Does the water temp light come on? How about the engine metal temp light? Also wondering if you have you checked the standard stuff, timing,etc? I think there is something that retards the timing when it senses that the engine is overheating. Maybe the timing is off on your rebuild??
    Check the flow. When you open the radiator cap and open the water valve to the heater core, how much flow do you show? The heater hose return line comes in right at the radiator cap. When I open the cap on mine there is a very strong flow that I can see thru the cap opening from the heater line. There is no doubt that the water is flowing. Is yours like that? The water from the heater core return line should also start flowing immediately when you start the engine. If there is a delay then you have a blockage, air in the system,etc. Also, how long does it take for the water to heat up? From a dead cold, open the cap and start the engine. Check the water at the return flow from the heater core. How fast does it get hot? If it gets hot really fast there is some sort of blockage. If it gets hot in what you would consider a normal amount of time then the flow is probably OK. All the hoses should be the same temp when you touch them. If the top hose or only 1 heater hose is hot and the others are cool then there is a problem.
    Just a few thoughts, Good Luck,
    Jeff

  13. #12
    cadillacmike68's Avatar
    cadillacmike68 is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: Need a GOOD aluminum radiator

    How are you measuring temp? Did you install a temp gauge because 1969 & later Cadillac removed it? You mentioned that it doesn't cool back down when moving, have to replaced the thermostat?

    All 1970 Cadillacs used a fan with no clutch, so yours is correct.

  14. #13
    coodeville is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Need a GOOD aluminum radiator

    I had horrible luck with aluminum radiators on my '70. I spent the money and got a brass one.

  15. #14
    jc4now is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    It's been awhile and thanks for all the replies.
    To start. Way back when I replaced the rotted radiator with a replacement copper 2 core. (I mistakenly got a 3 core but had to send it back as it was to fat and wouldn't fit.) I installed a 180 degree thermostat and a after market water temperature gage. The temperature gage kicks up right at 180 so I know the thermostat opens and closes. Both upper and lower hoses are new. (Within 2-3 years)
    I know the water pump is not correct because it is a single belt unut and I need a double belt unit. The second belt JUST won't fit because the pump housing is a tad to fat in an area where the belt travels past.
    I have flow because I can see it when I start the car to add more if needed.
    When a take a trip and come home and park...the radiator will boil and over flow the reserve tank a little.
    The factory temp light works but only came one once when I threw a pump belt. And she was Super hot then. But that was a LONG time ago before the mentioned up grades.
    I think I covered most of your questions and points.
    I'm looking at buying a Griffin Exact-fit 2 core aluminum radiator with a dual electric fan kit. But it's not cheap.

  16. #15
    Big_Al1911 is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Need a GOOD aluminum radiator

    If you installed a shorter extension between the water pump and the fan, would the three core copper rad fit? Most of the alum radiators I have seen are pretty thick, so there is the potential you will have the same issue you had when you got the 3 core by mistake.

    One other thing I have noticed...Lower radiator hoses used to come with a spring inside that prevented them from collapsing due the suction produced by the water pump. None of the hoses I have bought in the last few years have come with the spring. I always transfer the spring to the new hose, if I have one. The lack of a spring appears to be a cost saving measure, not an improvement, as far as I can tell.

    Lastly, don't overlook replacing the radiator cap. A weak spring will lower the pressure, and also lower the boiling point of the coolant.


    Big Al

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