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Electric fan VS manual fan

Mrsalesco

Newbie
Joined
Mar 27, 2014
Messages
5
Electric fans are really noisy. Really, really noisy. I avoid running them unless I have a car that will not stay cool no matter what else I try. The best cooling "mod" I did was I have an extra thick, extra pass radiator (stock tanks but a twin pass core I think) and the Explorer serpentine drive with the Explorer plastic fan in the stock shroud.

I do not make a lot of power but even on the hottest 95 degree days of summer sitting in traffic it sits on 195 and never moves.
What is your engine? I’m running stock (except .040 over) 351W, 2 core(1.25”tubes), aluminum radiator. Idling in traffic on hot summer days hits over 210 degrees then I rev up rpm’s to cool it off. Not good!
 

DirtDonk

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Hey there. Way to go finding an old discussion that’s pertinent to your issue. Good searching. And fun to see an old discussion like that and what we were going through at the time.
But just so we’re clear here, 210 is not bad. It’s not only not overheating, but it is in fact where modern engines tend to run from the factory.
Even though many of our engines had 180° thermostats, it wasn’t long after our trucks were built that they went to 195’s instead. Which is what a lot of us use in our Broncos today.
So you’re not in any kind of a danger zone if you were concerned.

The fact that it cools down when you rev it up is actually a good sign. That means most things are working and your .040” over 351 is not experiencing hotspot issues.
Or at least not bad ones.

Over-boring Windsor engines has been problematic for decades.
Sounds like yours is not one of the problem engines with core shift issues.

Do you know what thermostat you are running? Is it a 180 or a 195?
When you rev the engine and the temperature comes back down, does it go to the rated temperature and stay there as long as you’re driving around?
Maybe a little aux electric pusher fan would be a great thing for the stoplights, but with the limited space that our rigs offer, there are not many options.

Sounds like your set up is pretty nice, but may be a little testing is in order.
If you’re driving around sometime and pull up to your house and idle it, see if the temperature comes up. If it does, pop the hood open and see if it comes down on its own without having to increase the RPM.
If it does then perhaps one of those other options such as the fender skirts, radiator ducting, hood louvers or electric fan would do the job.

If it doesn’t come down on its own, or frankly just to check anyway, you might just verify your ignition timing while you’re at it.
Advance it as far as you can and still have it run right.
That usually helps engine cooling even at idle.

Good luck!
 

DirtDonk

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Probably. Depends on the thermostat and how it runs normally.
If you only want it to come on when there is a special need, you might have it come on 15 degrees above normal and turn back off 5° above normal or something like that.
Lots of possibilities and ways to do it.
 

Timmy390

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Conway, AR
My 2 speed fan is controlled by my SN95 ECM. Don't quote me but I think low speed kicks ar 205 and high speed at 220. Running a 195 stat and it runs a steady 210 when driving. Creaps up to 220 in the summer heat and stop/go traffic but the fan goes on high and she cools back down.

Tim
 

blubuckaroo

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Jun 11, 2007
Messages
11,795
Loc.
Ridgefield WA
Lots of information here. I'll admit, I struggle with an unfounded bias against electric fans. However, in the old days, you would never leave the car idling in 100+ weather with the A/C on while someone went into the supermarket for 30 minutes or an hour. Electric fans made that an option.
However, I just went to a huge car show where there were lots of electric fans, but none had a shroud. Just throwing on an electric fan isn't going to work. It needs the same "full radiator" shroud that a mechanical fan needs.
Also, any functional electric fan is going to require an alternator upgrade.
I've seen this Derale fan with a custom shroud at WH. I'm wondering how this works out with the two speed controller?
https://www.wildhorses4x4.com/product/Aluminum_Shrouded_Hi-Output_Radiator_Fan/Bronco_Cooling_Fans
 

Broncobowsher

Total hack
Joined
Jun 4, 2002
Messages
35,032
If you look at any functional OEM electric cooling fan they have a full radiator shroud just like a mechanical fan. Because that is how you make any cooling fan cool a radiator.
 

Timmy390

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If you look at any functional OEM electric cooling fan they have a full radiator shroud just like a mechanical fan. Because that is how you make any cooling fan cool a radiator.
Yes....All of the OEM's I've seen have a shroud the fan mounts into. The fan is not directly mounted on the radiator. Most aftermarket (including the Derale I run) mount directly to the radiator and are in contact with the radiator.

The OEM style integrated fan and shroud pulls air across the whole radiator where as the direct mount aftermarkets only pull air over the arear in contact. The 17 inch Derale covers most of my radiator.....

Tim
 

pcf_mark

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Jun 11, 2010
Messages
3,594
What is your engine? I’m running stock (except .040 over) 351W, 2 core(1.25”tubes), aluminum radiator. Idling in traffic on hot summer days hits over 210 degrees then I rev up rpm’s to cool it off. Not good!
5.0 HO stone stock. 185 t-stat. Explorer fan tucked inside stock Bronco shroud. Sits at 185 all day.
 

56f100bbw

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Explorer serpentine fan clutch severe duty installed one today it moves a ton of air I love it 4 seasons pt # 46049 off a chevy trailblazer viprtwolf1 gave me the info thank him plus not noisy
 
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73azbronco

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Messages
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Explorer serpentine fan clutch severe duty installed one today it moves a ton of air I love it 4 seasons pt # 46049 viprtwolf1 gave me the info thank him plus not noisy
This^^, there is a plastic fan, but thats the soccer mom explorer, the heavy duty is the v8 one and the towing one.
 

RODRIG3911

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Messages
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Tucson
NOTHING is better then the explorer mechanical fan with clutch. Plus it gets you a 4G alternator, serpentine and more room... I've tried a 2 speed electric fan from WH with Volvo Controller, didn't work good enough in my desert climate (Sonoran desert in AZ). Also, WH full circle shroud was a HUGE help
 

ba123

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CA
I keep going back to the electric fan idea...I just like it, I like how it looks, the customizability and that I can have it come on when I'm going slow. no doubt that the mechanical fan cools better when the engine is revving, I've been around mechanical fans lots and you never forget that feeling when you're close.

BUT....I don't really need that. I don't expect any cooling issues (fingers crossed), I will mainly drive around town as it will be too nice for any crawling for a while...

I'm considering the WH fan with shroud #5044 (https://www.wildhorses4x4.com/product/Aluminum_Shrouded_Hi-Output_Radiator_Fan/Bronco_Cooling_Fans)

Or the Volvo/Taurus fan, which is only like $90 from Rockauto (I don't want junkyard) --but not sure what to do about a shroud. I'm sure I could make one that works, but would it look good? Who knows.

I could prob have someone make a shroud, but I could always make the Volvo one fit in the shroud from the WH fan if it's not good enough, I'd bet.

I searched around and this is tempting...It's got to be total crap, but radiator looks like it's all welded, comes with fan and shroud and only $200 for radiator, shroud and fan???

Anyone need something cheap and wanna try?

EFI:

Stock:
 

nvrstuk

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Just a Bronco driver for over 50 yrs!
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8,904
ba123

$200 for radiator, fan & shroud?

Not trying to be a jack-@$$ but why would you waste your money and more than likely your outing with a radiator, fan & shroud for the price of a good shroud? There is NO way this stuff could be used reliably unless it's purpose is to look nice inside someone's climate controlled storage area.

I mean really, $200. Choice should be obvious. BTW, the Exploder fan will cool your ride just fine at idle. I read posts almost every day in the summer for the last 25 yrs from electric fan converts who also think their new electric fan combo will cool their ride fine at idle- and they don't at idle or at speed.

I would believe that the WH setup is miles ahead of the $200 setup.
 
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ba123

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Haha, you’re not being a jack@$$ and I wouldn't put that on mine but just thought I’d pass on the info. Might be someone who needs something and is tight on funds…how bad could it be?
 

nvrstuk

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My only concern would be you'd "take" my msg the right way. ;)

BAT would be a great place for it!!
 

ba123

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I was planning on the Howe radiator from Graveyard.

I'll try the WH kit.

Thanks!
 

Steve83

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Jul 16, 2003
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9,021
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Memphis, TN, USA, Earth, Milky Way
...an unfounded bias against electric fans.
Even if you don't understand why yet, there are real physical reasons why an e-fan is NOT better on an antique vehicle (or any vehicle NOT originally engineered to have an e-fan).
Also, any functional electric fan is going to require an alternator upgrade.
That's one... And it hints at the main reason that most people don't seem to grasp. Even if an e-fan were exactly as efficient as a mechanical fan (in transferring energy from the engine to the air coming through the radiator), it would require EXACTLY as much load(resistance) on the belt as a mechanical fan takes. The only change would be that that load would be applied at the alternator pulley instead of the WP/fan pulley. But any 1st-year physics/thermodynamics student will tell you that it's impossible for any e-fan to be nearly that efficient. The alternator loses heat (which comes from the belt/engine/gas tank); the wiring loses heat (from electrical resistance in the wires, relays, & connector terminals); and the fan motor loses heat (from its electrical resistance AND its bearings). So all that heat being lost comes from the gas tank by way of the belt. A mechanical fan DOESN'T - it rides on the WP bearings and (when the thermal clutch is locked) has no mechanical or electrical loss to reduce its efficiency at moving air. Its blades are not designed as well as most e-fans' blades, but that's not enough to make up for all the other losses. And a clutch fan is far less-likely to fail & destroy the engine than an e-fan. That's why Ford vehicles that were engineered with e-fans have failsafe-cooling technology built into their PCMs. You can't do that at home.
 

ba123

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That's great info!

I don't have an original Bronco engine but regardless I very well remember the days of being a kid and seeing overheated vehicles all over the side of the road. On the way to Yosemite is a great example... there is a steep road called Old Priest's Grade and there are turnouts on the road and people would always leave out bottles of water on it because cars would always overheat on that steep grade. I love that road and take it every chance I get--I'll never take the longer less steep way.

Anyway, my point is that you don't see those overheated cars on that road anymore, nor on any road anymore or at least rarely and cars these days do not use mechanical fans.

I'm not arguing that an electric fan cools better, I'm just claiming that if everything else in my setup is good that the electric fan should work great for me and my needs. I've got a high flow Flowkooler water pump, High Flow Robert Shaw thermostat, I'll have a new high quality radiator and newly rebuilt roller Mustang 5.0 HO that's only bored 30 over and cannot imagine having any issues at all.

If I do, then the first thing I'll do is either try the Volvo fan or go back to mechanical but I'd bet money I won't have any issues at all. There are so many electric fans out there and I understand you can't just buy a cheapo one and expect it to cool a large engine. I also understand the electrical system needs and already have a 250 amp alternator so def no worries there.
 
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