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1. Make room for an adequate cooling system in the design of your engine compartment.

First things first. When planning your performance vehicle, remember that you're building it to drive, not to sit and steam. Plan adequate space for the cooling system including the radiator, fanshroudoverflow tank, and mounting brackets. Talk with one of our specialists to help you build the system for your vehicle, engine size, and driving habits. Consider the investment compared to the total cost of the car. 


2. Use an electric fan.

 Only choose a mechanical fan over an electric fan if it's your farm tractor. An electric fan is preferred because when you need a fan the most (at idle or cruising speeds) an electric fan is delivering maximum air independent of engine RPMs. Fans that move 2000-2300 CFM's are worth the investment. Preference should be given to a "pull" vs. a "push" fan. Mounted on the engine side of the radiator, a pull fan does not interfere with airflow at highway speeds. All shrouded fans should be on the engine side of the radiator. 


3. Always use the right shroud with your fan.
Fans move air through the radiator assisting in cooling the engine. A fan without a shroud is better than no fan. But, consider this - at idle or cruising speeds, you need the entire cooling system working at its optimum. An unshrouded fan is moving air through only the portion of the radiator equal to the surface area of the fan. For example, on a '32 Ford, the area of a 15.50" fan is about 189 sq. in.; the core of the radiator is approximately 371 sq. in. This means that almost 49% of the unshrouded radiator is not receiving any benefits from the fan. Shrouding your radiator lets the fan pull air through the entire core


4. Consider airflow and how a radiator uses it to cool.
Without adequate airflow, a radiator is just a reservoir for hot water. Coolant transfers heat to the tubes; the tubes transfer heat to the fins; air moving through the fins dissipates the heat from the radiator. You need sufficient openings to the radiator that channel adequate air to the entire surface of the radiator. You must have a radiator design that allows the air to pass effectively through the radiator (wider and taller is better than thicker). You must consider how the heat will be evacuated from the engine compartment. 


5. Use the proper water pump pulley ratio.
To obtain the maximum operating efficiency rate for your water pump at highway speeds, you should overdrive the pump by 30-35%. Most aftermarket pulleys are a 1:1 ratio. For a 30-35% overdrive, the crank pulley should be approximately 7 7/8" and the water pump pulley approximately 5 3/4". This overdrive provides proper coolant flow from the engine and through the radiator. 


6. The pressure cap matters.
The higher-rated the pressure cap, the hotter the water has to get to boil. One pound of pressure raises the boiling temperature by 3°F. A 16-pound cap raises the boiling point to 268°F. If your engine is designed to run at 200°F, a 14-16-pound cap should be sufficient. Running a higher pressure cap to prevent boil over is putting a band-aid on another problem that needs to be fixed. Higher operating pressure places additional stress on the entire engine system and increases the potential of hoses bursting and possible injury. 


7. Understand the operating temperatures of today's modern engines.
All engines have "normal" operating temperatures. Running engine temperatures well above or below recommended temperatures could cause damage. Most of today's engines operate in the 180°-210°F range. Pollution laws, new oil blends and higher combustion gasoline have forced engine design changes that have increased operating temperatures over the past decade. Consider your engine's normal operating temperatures when selecting your radiator's cooling capacity. 


8. Always use a thermostat.
The thermostat controls engine coolant temperature. It stops the flow of coolant through the radiator until the coolant reaches the thermostat's preset temperature. Operating your engine within its temperature parameters reduces wear, helps control emissions and turns any moisture in the crankcase to steam where it is removed by the PCV system. Selecting the right thermostat for your engine's operating temperature range means better performance and longer life.


9. Protect your system with the recommended coolant.
It is essential to use a premium coolant that protects the radiator, other metal parts, and seals. Today's coolants are a scientific blend that normally includes water wetter and corrosion inhibitors. The use of a coolant that contains no silicate is recommended. Silicate is an abrasive and can cause gel formation and water pump failure. A 50/50 mix of coolant and distilled water provides the best overall cooling efficiency. Proper maintenance (regular flushing and changing of coolant) will extend the life of your system. 


10. Spend your money wisely.
If you are having cooling problems, begin by looking at the least expensive fixes first. 1) Add an electric fan. 2) Shroud your fan. 3) Check your belts and hoses. Slipping belts or collapsed hoses mean trouble. 4) Check your radiator cap. 5) Flush and refill with premium coolant. 6) Use the proper thermostat. 7) Clean the radiator of foreign materials. 8) Overdrive the water pump 20-30%. 9) Check your water pump. Should cooling problems persist, it may be time for a new performance radiator from Griffin. Call the Griffin Customer Service Department at 1-800-722-3723 for assistance in selecting the correct radiator for your requirements. 


** WARNING: Improper wiring can cause electrolysis and destroy the radiator. Please make sure radiator is not used as a ground. **