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Thread: External Transmission Cooler w/Fan for my 1988 Toyota 4Runner

  1. #1
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    Default External Transmission Cooler w/Fan for my 1988 Toyota 4Runner

    How to fit an external tranny cooler with fan on your 4Runner.

    At times my 1988 Toyota 4Runner tranny will heat up on the freeway or especially going slow uphill on dirt trails.

    I've been wanting an external tranny cooler but it looked like none of the regular kind would fit behind my front grill.

    Then this summer on a long road trip I found this cooler at a garage sale in Portland OR. for only $20 bucks brand new. It sells at Jegs for $119....wow!

    It's 18 inches long. I wanted to install it on the underside of my front rock guard pan.

    The stats on it are here at Jegs.

    http://www.jegs.com/i/JEGS-Performan...60345/10002/-1

    I'm not worried about large rocks, I've never hit one yet.

    I did a test fit today and it's going to fit! Yes!

    Needs 4 holes drilled for bolts. Fluid hoses and fan hooked up.

    I just need to get brave enough to do it. I don't want to do something wrong and mess up my tranny.

    Anyone feel like helping? I can do brews and BBQ. I live in Poway.
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    Last edited by Scenic WonderRunner; 08-01-2017 at 11:50PM.
    1988 Toyota 4Runner SR5 4x4 V6 Auto
    4 wheels are taking me farther than 18 ever could!

    .......still Praying for Toyota diesel!

    Treat others on the trail.....like you would want to be treated!..........

    "Hey, life aint always beautiful, but its a beautiful ride."

    "Here's to wonder and runnin'....in the San Juan Mtns. of Colorado!" ~"SWR"

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    Lining up to drill the mounting holes in the skid plate pan.

    The fan appears not to have an automatic thermal on off switch. So I'm going to run an on/off switch to the dash. And install a tranny temp. gauge. If the temp get's high I can turn on the switch/fan. Or leave the fan on the whole time while off road. This will help the fan last longer rather than running 100% of the time.

    The fan has reverse polarity, so you can change the direction of the fan. I want to draw air from the outside in. The fan blade is reversible to do this. Their are vent slits in the skid plate, so air will be able to flow.

    For now I am going to run this new cooler inline with the stock tranny cooler in the radiator.

    I'll look for a matching rocker switch like my TRD electric locker switch seen here on dash.
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    Last edited by Scenic WonderRunner; 08-02-2017 at 06:20PM.
    1988 Toyota 4Runner SR5 4x4 V6 Auto
    4 wheels are taking me farther than 18 ever could!

    .......still Praying for Toyota diesel!

    Treat others on the trail.....like you would want to be treated!..........

    "Hey, life aint always beautiful, but its a beautiful ride."

    "Here's to wonder and runnin'....in the San Juan Mtns. of Colorado!" ~"SWR"

  3. #3
    Senior Member 4RUNAMOK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scenic WonderRunner View Post
    Lining up to drill the mounting holes in the skid plate pan.

    The fan appears not to have an automatic thermal on off switch. So I'm going to run an on/off switch to the dash. And install a tranny temp. gauge. If the temp get's high I can turn on the switch/fan. Or leave the fan on the whole time while off road. This will help the fan last longer rather than running 100% of the time.


    For now I am going to run this new cooler inline with the stock tranny cooler in the radiator.
    Inline is the ONLY way you want to do this, not just "for now". Double your cooling by using both, don't replace the radiator with this one.

    One tip I can offer is to provide power to the switch on the dash from an ignition switched source in the fuse block, use an Add A Fuse to tap into your fuse block. Use the output on the switch to power a relay, which will provide higher amp power to the fan. The reason for this is simple, when I put the fans on my old 4Runner, I just put them on constant power with a switch, and the fans would occasionally drain my batteries when I forgot and left them on.

    If the relay/switch is a bit much to handle, let me know, I just opened up a mobile wiring company here in San Diego called Adventure Wired. And I can hook it up for you.
    Mitch

    I plead the 2nd!

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    Thanks Mitch.

    I've been struggling where to mount the switch. There is no way I would be brave enough to cut a hole next to my locker switch. Plus the wire may be hard to run.

    Now I'm considering a smaller switch and put it on the removable panel below my 4x4 shifter. I want a switch with a light that would tell me when the fan is on.

    Thanks for the great idea on the add a fuse, Mitch.

    The other thing I want to do is leave the new tranny fluid hoses long enough so I can set my skid plate on the garage floor, for when I change the oil. That oil filter is a buggar to get off if you try from the tire well.
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    Last edited by Scenic WonderRunner; 08-03-2017 at 05:38PM. Reason: added more thoughts
    1988 Toyota 4Runner SR5 4x4 V6 Auto
    4 wheels are taking me farther than 18 ever could!

    .......still Praying for Toyota diesel!

    Treat others on the trail.....like you would want to be treated!..........

    "Hey, life aint always beautiful, but its a beautiful ride."

    "Here's to wonder and runnin'....in the San Juan Mtns. of Colorado!" ~"SWR"

  5. #5
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    I got my holes drilled. Got all my hardware and extra hose yesterday. Today I went to install and I finally figured out why I got this cooler for only $20 bucks!

    There is an inlet and outlet nut that accepts a brass threaded fitting with barbed end for your hose and clamp.

    One nut is too close to the end of the pipe so the threads can not make contact with the nut. Factory defect.

    I'm going to cut off the nut and just push the hose on the pipe with a clamp. There is a ridge that will keep the clamp in place. That's how most coolers are anyway.

    So frustrating!

    I'm using 1/4" bolts. The spacer works perfect to lift the cooler off the skid plate supports. The largest washer goes on the outside of the skid plate. I'm using a lock nut with plastic insert. I'm thinking about sealing the nut in with super glue so it won't bounce loose.

    I did find some interesting switches on ebay. This one says "cooling fans".

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/1x-12V-24V-C...RZI-LZ&vxp=mtr
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    Last edited by Scenic WonderRunner; 08-08-2017 at 07:36PM.
    1988 Toyota 4Runner SR5 4x4 V6 Auto
    4 wheels are taking me farther than 18 ever could!

    .......still Praying for Toyota diesel!

    Treat others on the trail.....like you would want to be treated!..........

    "Hey, life aint always beautiful, but its a beautiful ride."

    "Here's to wonder and runnin'....in the San Juan Mtns. of Colorado!" ~"SWR"

  6. #6
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    It's Always Something!

    So today I tested the cooler by touching the wires to the battery terminals. I wanted to see if I could change the fan direction by switching the wires like the instructions in the box said.

    Nope! The fan goes the same way no matter which way you touch the wires to the battery. It blows down to the outside, not up from the outside like I wanted it.

    The instructions also said I can flip the fan blades over and reverse polarity to make it blow the other direction.

    Nope! Can't flip the fan blades over!

    I think the instructions Hayden threw in the box are for additional auxiliary electric radiator fans that they sell. Those are different than this fan.

    This cooler is called the Hayden Dawg, if anyone can help me look it up and figure it out.

    So what to do now?

    I will probably only use the fan while off road.

    Will pushing hot air from the engine side going to be able to give enough cooling for my tranny?

    Or should I just sell it on Craigslist?

    I did finally realize that I have room for a tranny cooler on the engine side of the radiator (but the front grill side it most efficient, no room there), just take the fan shroud off. But not sure how I would mount one there. I don't want to mount with those slip through plastic keepers. I always thought they would break off with all the bouncing off road.

    Projects always seem fun in your head, until you open the can of worms!

    Rube Goldberg would be proud of me! lol

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rube_Goldberg
    Last edited by Scenic WonderRunner; 08-18-2017 at 09:19PM.
    1988 Toyota 4Runner SR5 4x4 V6 Auto
    4 wheels are taking me farther than 18 ever could!

    .......still Praying for Toyota diesel!

    Treat others on the trail.....like you would want to be treated!..........

    "Hey, life aint always beautiful, but its a beautiful ride."

    "Here's to wonder and runnin'....in the San Juan Mtns. of Colorado!" ~"SWR"

  7. #7
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    Lightbulb New tranny cooler installed or bust!

    OK wait. I tried the fan again.

    Yes it does reverse but it makes a very strange air flow because the fan blades are not facing the proper direction. And you can't flip the fan blades. I held a napkin over it to test the reversed air flow. It's very bad, and even still blows back down!

    But tonight I just had a brain storm!....

    I can flip the entire cooler upside down and make longer/taller spacers for the bolts out of 1/4" pvc pipe and cut to fit for the right height so the spinning fan bolt does not hit the skid plate!

    The fan will now be underneath next to the skid plate. Reversed from what you first saw. This will blow in air from the outside through the skid plate vents.

    I just need longer bolts, about 4 inches and I can make this work.

    By flipping it upside down, the mounting plate sits taller. That's why I need taller spacers for longer bolts.
    1988 Toyota 4Runner SR5 4x4 V6 Auto
    4 wheels are taking me farther than 18 ever could!

    .......still Praying for Toyota diesel!

    Treat others on the trail.....like you would want to be treated!..........

    "Hey, life aint always beautiful, but its a beautiful ride."

    "Here's to wonder and runnin'....in the San Juan Mtns. of Colorado!" ~"SWR"

  8. #8
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    Success!

    Hopefully it will fit this way when the skid plate is bolted on. Looks like I can lower it about another 1/2" if I need to. I cut 1/4" pvc pipe to make new taller mounts for the flip.

    Now the fan is blowing the correct way, from the outside in.

    Cooling fan switch on order.

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/322526075219
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    Last edited by Scenic WonderRunner; 08-18-2017 at 09:18PM. Reason: added fan switch link
    1988 Toyota 4Runner SR5 4x4 V6 Auto
    4 wheels are taking me farther than 18 ever could!

    .......still Praying for Toyota diesel!

    Treat others on the trail.....like you would want to be treated!..........

    "Hey, life aint always beautiful, but its a beautiful ride."

    "Here's to wonder and runnin'....in the San Juan Mtns. of Colorado!" ~"SWR"

  9. #9
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    I picked out two gauges and a two hole pod mount for my pillar. Water Temp and Trans Temp. Now I will know what's actually happening. And when to hit the fan switch.

    Glow Shift gauges. $52. You can buy direct from Glow Shift and get a 1 year warranty.

    https://www.glowshiftdirect.com/blac...erature-gauge/

    The pillar pod was found on eBay for just $8 bucks! So now you know you don't have to pay big bucks for pillar mounts.

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/52mm-2-Carbo...RVqfNh&vxp=mtr
    Last edited by Scenic WonderRunner; 09-25-2017 at 07:27PM.
    1988 Toyota 4Runner SR5 4x4 V6 Auto
    4 wheels are taking me farther than 18 ever could!

    .......still Praying for Toyota diesel!

    Treat others on the trail.....like you would want to be treated!..........

    "Hey, life aint always beautiful, but its a beautiful ride."

    "Here's to wonder and runnin'....in the San Juan Mtns. of Colorado!" ~"SWR"

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