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Do-It-Yourself Projects
Fan Upgrade
By Mike Bumbeck/
Printable version
Degree of DifficultyDifficult
Estimated Time240 minutes
240 minutes
Fanning the Flames
Adding more cubic feet per minute of flow capacity to the existing fan setup helps the stock radiator to work more efficiently by helping it to get rid of heat faster. In the same way that a bigger fan will help cool off a hot room faster than a tiny one, a radiator fan upgrade can help your radiator get rid of heat quicker. Another good reason to upgrade an existing radiator fan system is if the stock electric motors have lost their spunk, or are about to quit altogether. On and off action, combined with operating in the mechanical sauna that is your engine compartment, can eventually cause the stock electric motors that power the fans to get tired and give up. A dead radiator fan or fans on a hot day can result in overheating and expensive engine damage. A set of performance replacement fans can be a great alternative to stock replacement and can also help out if you find yourself towing heavy loads or running around the racetrack on a hot day.
Keep in mind that even a thousand fans won't cool off a malfunctioning cooling system. The radiator, water pump, thermostat and all associated parts must be working properly first before deciding that a fan package is the answer. If the cooling system checks out, but you're still running hot, there are a world of aftermarket replacement upgrades out there from easy bolt-in solutions to universal fit packages that will help keep you and your engine running cool.
The first step is to get the radiator out of the vehicle. Take note of stock wiring if replacing existing fans.
Get the Radiator Out of the Vehicle
In this case, the stock thermo-sensors were left in place. Fan upgrade kits with external sensor kits are also available.
Stock Thermo-Sensors Were Left in Place
Test-fit the new fans on the radiator and measure for clearance. Here, an inch of clearance was gained over stock.
Test-Fit the New Fans on the Radiator
A small notch or two may be required to clear hoses, power steering pumps, and the like.
Small Notches May Be Required to Clear Hoses and Pumps
Follow the wiring kit instructions, or wire things up the same way they came from the factory.
Follow the Wiring Kit Instructions
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