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Overheating on track; solutions

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Guys I was hit with a major, and unexpected problem today at the track... The car would quickly begin to overheat. The needle on water temp would just fly towards the red during any hot lap sessions. I would only get 5 or so laps before I had to take a cool down lap.

 

What can I do to fix this? Would a high flow grill help? Bigger radiator? Bigger rad fans? This is not something I expected to run into under stock power levels...

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That seriously blows. Hopefully someone has an answer.

 

 

Sent from my jailbroke iPhone using Tapatalk

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The roush highflow upper and lower grills would be a good place to start, then perhaps on to straight water with Redline or Royal Purple additive as a second step.  Of course you'll have to flush the system before it gets cold.  You could also look into a lower temp thermostat. 

 

I wouldn't bother upgrading the fan without also upgrading the radiator and from everything I've heard about the upgraded fan options is they are loud.  If I was going to an aftermarket radiator, I might call up the guys over at Ron Davis and see what they might have.  Mishimoto also makes a radiator for the Mustang, but it and I suspect a lot of the other aftermarket options won't work with auto cars due to lack of transmission hookups.

 

Which brings me to if you haven't yet, I'd strongly suggest looking into a transmission cooler.  With the auto cooling through the radiator as well, the combo is probably more than it can handle.  And while we're on the subject of coolers, you might even need an oil cooler but to determine that you'll need an oil temp gauge first.

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Interesting thread as I want to track my 3.7 select shift myself, I'll follow this and the 170 degree thermostat may help, trans cooler good idea too.

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The roush highflow upper and lower grills would be a good place to start, then perhaps on to straight water with Redline or Royal Purple additive as a second step.  Of course you'll have to flush the system before it gets cold.  You could also look into a lower temp thermostat. 

 

I wouldn't bother upgrading the fan without also upgrading the radiator and from everything I've heard about the upgraded fan options is they are loud.  If I was going to an aftermarket radiator, I might call up the guys over at Ron Davis and see what they might have.  Mishimoto also makes a radiator for the Mustang, but it and I suspect a lot of the other aftermarket options won't work with auto cars due to lack of transmission hookups.

 

Which brings me to if you haven't yet, I'd strongly suggest looking into a transmission cooler.  With the auto cooling through the radiator as well, the combo is probably more than it can handle.  And while we're on the subject of coolers, you might even need an oil cooler but to determine that you'll need an oil temp gauge first.

our cars come with a tranny cooler, can you run 2 or them or something?

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our cars come with a tranny cooler, can you run 2 or them or something?

 

Is it a seperate or integrated with the radiator though?  I guess I assumed it was integrated since the aftermarket racing radiators state only being compatible with the manual transmissions.   And yes, if it's integrated, you can add a small secondary cooler.

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It sounds to me like something is wrong that needs fixed.  I find it hard to believe the factory system would have an issue like that even hot lapping like you are.

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That seriously blows. Hopefully someone has an answer.

 

 

Sent from my jailbroke iPhone using Tapatalk

 

Thanks. Me too!

 

i'm sure a bigger fan may help..

 

Yeah maybe... I will check stock system first as suggested though!

 

The roush highflow upper and lower grills would be a good place to start, then perhaps on to straight water with Redline or Royal Purple additive as a second step.  Of course you'll have to flush the system before it gets cold.  You could also look into a lower temp thermostat. 

 

I wouldn't bother upgrading the fan without also upgrading the radiator and from everything I've heard about the upgraded fan options is they are loud.  If I was going to an aftermarket radiator, I might call up the guys over at Ron Davis and see what they might have.  Mishimoto also makes a radiator for the Mustang, but it and I suspect a lot of the other aftermarket options won't work with auto cars due to lack of transmission hookups.

 

Which brings me to if you haven't yet, I'd strongly suggest looking into a transmission cooler.  With the auto cooling through the radiator as well, the combo is probably more than it can handle.  And while we're on the subject of coolers, you might even need an oil cooler but to determine that you'll need an oil temp gauge first.

 

 

Thanks for the ideas. I know I need gauges, but those will come.

 

Well did you verify your stock setup? Is your fan running? Are fins bent? Hows the fluid lookin?

 

I took a quick look and it seemed fine but i'll take a more detailed look asap!

 

Yeah start basic like check your coolant level. I found mine was low one day just by accident.

 

Will do this...

 

It sounds to me like something is wrong that needs fixed.  I find it hard to believe the factory system would have an issue like that even hot lapping like you are.

 

 

Lets' hope so!

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The V6's have a trans cooler? Please correct me if I'm wrong but I though the trans cooler only came with the GT w/ Track Pack option.

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Every mustang with an automatic after 2011 had a trans cooler. The track pack will not have one as it would be a manual.

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Every mustang with an automatic after 2011 had a trans cooler. The track pack will not have one as it would be a manual.

 

Hm, ok. You learn something new every day.

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Now the question would be how hot is hot?

Also how hot did the tranny fluid get since it runs thru the radiator?

 

 

Ford in all its wisdom did not offer a trans temp gauge so your guess is as good as mine on that one.

 

As for how hot, normally it's dead in the middle between C and H, as soon as it would get to 3/4 of the way between C and H i would take a cool down lap and it would drop right back to the middle no problem. 

 

 

So I checked and the rad seems to be in good condition... Of course it has some bent fins from highway rock strikes, but nothing major.  Coolant smells like fish... It's weird... Is that abnormal or does Ford orange just smell funny? Also, it's about half way between the cold fill lines on the expansion tank, can I just fill that up with normal distilled water until it gets to the full line?

 

Would you guys recommend I get a coolant flush? I wonder if fresh coolant would help...

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Get a cheap $10 coolant tester to see how your coolant / mix is doing before you decide to flush.  It smelled like fish, but were there any particles floating around in the coolant?

 

Some early 3.7's had water pump issues (mine died at 34k km's) - not sure if they sorted all that out by 2014 model year.  Any signs of leaks there, especially while running?

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Get a cheap $10 coolant tester to see how your coolant / mix is doing before you decide to flush.  It smelled like fish, but were there any particles floating around in the coolant?

 

Some early 3.7's had water pump issues (mine died at 34k km's) - not sure if they sorted all that out by 2014 model year.  Any signs of leaks there, especially while running?

 

 

No particles floating around but I noticed black particles attached to the plastic divider of the expansion tank.

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You got to get a numerical value to see how hot is hot.

 

Also your tranny cooler might not be helping you. Gotta find out those temps also. Maybe a deep pan from PA.

 

Sent from my toilet

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You got to get a numerical value to see how hot is hot.

 

Also your tranny cooler might not be helping you. Gotta find out those temps also. Maybe a deep pan from PA.

 

Sent from my toilet

 

 

Yeah I suspect it's the trans cooler that's killing me temp wise...

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Something does not seem right.

 

On a stock setup you should not see overheating.

 

Check to make sure all the air is our of your cooling system, easy way is to jack up the front end, take the cap off (do it when its cool) the radiator reservoir, start the car and turn the heat on high. Any air should be pumped through the system and out the cap once it goes into open loop. You can also buy a kit at any local auto store to help.

 

Check to make sure you are running a proper mixture of coolant. They have testers that cost $3-$5 that will tell you the level of protection offered by your coolant. If needed empty reservoir and add distilled or ford coolant to get to the proper mixture level.

 

Make sure your fans kick on.

 

Make sure your thermostat opens.

 

Check water pump (more involved but the pump can fail)

 

If all checks out good then start with coolant mixture favoring water (60/40, only use distilled water)

 

Add some redline water wetter, royal purple ice or equivlent. (It helps a little)

 

If you decide to run a lower temperature thermostat you need to get your vehicle tuned to turn on the fans earlier or later (talk to your tuner)

 

Run an external oil cooler (oil gets hotter than coolant and heats up the entire short block)

 

Good luck.

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Thanks for the info Nyke!

 

I think you guys are right about something is wrong as opposed to mods are needed...

 

Two questions, how can one tell if the thermostat is opening, and how would I check the waterpump?

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to test the thermostat you have to remove it and put it in a pot of water and boil it. while the water warms up it should start to open. Use a thermometer (actual glass with mercury) 

 

The thermostat should start to open around 180°F.

 

As for testing the water pump, it has to be removed to really do it right.

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