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electric fan kits?

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by BayouBlazer88, Nov 4, 2002.

  1. BayouBlazer88

    BayouBlazer88 1/2 ton status

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    Has anyone installed an electric fan kit in their truck to replace the factory belt driven fan? Do they really give you more horsepower and gas mileage? What kits fit an 88' K5? How much does a decent kit cost? I'm asking because I'm seriously considering converting to electric fans because it would let me take out the fan shroud and make it a lot easier to access the accessories, and maybe even gain some hp and efficiency. I went to Jegs.com and found a few kits but they only describe the part with blade diameter and amp draw. And they don't say how easily they install. Permacool has a complete kit that bolts right in place but its over 500 bucks, which is way more than I'm willing to spend. Any suggestions?

    Thanks guys,
    Matt
     
  2. imiceman44

    imiceman44 1 ton status

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    That is what you should expect to pay for a dual electric fan setup, or else stay with your stock, it's not that bad.
     
  3. prerunner1982

    prerunner1982 1/2 ton status

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    i know some guys on a different message board that will remain nameless. /forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif that have used electric fans from fwd v6 gm cars, one guy even used one off of an interepid i believe?... at anyrate.. use 2 fwd v6 fans and you should be ok, you can purchase thermostat switch or just wire up your own switch. if you install electric you might consider replacing waterpump with a highflow unit....
     
  4. 85 blazer

    85 blazer 1/2 ton status

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    I know i will catch hel? for this but I work at a FORD garage and I used a dual fan setup out of a Ford Escape, wired to 2 toggles switches 1 for low 1 for high, Last sun on poker run everybody was overheating waiting in line I just watched my guage when hot turn on 1 fan boom down to 160 No overheat for me, Ps if you do just use 2 switches or 1 make sure you use either 10 guage wire or a relay in your curcuit, and a 40 amp breaker!!!
     
  5. Grim-Reaper

    Grim-Reaper 3/4 ton status Author

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    I got no problem with robbing Fords for parts. The late 90's Mustangs and V8 Thunder terds have a MASSIVE electric fan. Keeps those 302 cool and would probably work fine for a SBC.
    I have seen way to many Flex a Lite's fry. Last one I saw eat it all the fab blades broke off. Seen one melt.
     
  6. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    You won't save enough power to worry about. An electric (or two) will likely have a hard time even *matching* a stock 7 bladed clutch fan setup.

    The belt driven fan uses heat to lock up, and has fluid in it so it "stalls" when the engine is at proper operating temp. It will cost you nothing noticeable power-wise even when its "locked up".

    May make it a tad easier to get to underhood accessories, but to do an electric fan install right takes some money (unless you get some great deals) and is more electrical crap underhood that can fail.

    I'm going with electric fans, but thats because my ECM/sensors will control them, and I thought it would be neat. No other reasons. Gotta fab mounts for them, dig up the wiring, find the relays, etc., so its certainly not going to save me money.
     
  7. Sandman

    Sandman 3/4 ton status Author

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    I guess it would also depend on what you do with the vehicle. I am going to go to electric so I can shut them off for water. I have bent several fans in the water.
     
  8. Highlander

    Highlander 1/2 ton status

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    A buddy of mine got two from summit He said he spent two hundred on everything to set it up so far he's real happy with it. I've been thinking about doing the samething someday. A clutch fan will work but they will fail sometimes. Just something think about.

    Eric
     
  9. 85 blazer

    85 blazer 1/2 ton status

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    As far as cost let me see Dual fans-free, wiring from a used electric brake set up from a trade in 10 guage wire-free, 2 switches from Lowes 10.00 connectors,2.00 time to install 2 hours= priceless------- Just remember when your in line or in the swamp or crawling rocks my fan or fans are moving some serious CFM and your "regular" fan is only going as fast as your engine is Just some food for thought!!! /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  10. keith

    keith 1/2 ton status

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    I just got a quote from 4WP(local) for dual 14" for $259.
     
  11. txbluethunder

    txbluethunder 1/2 ton status

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    this is the fan i bought . its been awesome. i wired it in to a 3 way switch. i can toggle full on, full off, or just let the thermostat control it. it fit my radiator perfectly and now i have about 6-8" in between the engine and fan now to work in.
     
  12. TorkDSR

    TorkDSR 1/2 ton status

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    the gm rad is 28 inches across so i used a 16 inch primary, and a 12 inch secondary. the primary comes on automatically, and eventually the secondary one will to. not that ive ever had to use it. the fans were like 80 a piece. just fab up something to screw them to. ive seen bad things with the zip tie things.

    the fan cools better (i didnt have a full shroud cause of body lift) and is way more stream lined, way easy access to water pump etc, and a place to stand when working in the engine compartment

    ryan
     
  13. BayouBlazer88

    BayouBlazer88 1/2 ton status

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    In response to txbluethunder:

    I'm guessing that you purchased the universal mount fan, correct? Also, where did you get the 3-way switch?

    Ok, now I'm looking at the Permacool high performance electric fan. Should I go with a 16" primary and a 12" secondary like TorkDSR did? Or can I get away with just using a single fan like the 18" or 16" since I hardly do any off-roading? Also, the main reason I want to go to electric is for easier access to the front of the engine and the accessories. I don't care too much about extra hp or mileage especially since the gains are next to nothing.
     
  14. jms

    jms 1/2 ton status Author

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    Here's my experience:

    '85 Jimmy, 350 w/ Vortec heads and headers; 195° T-stat; Stewart water pump; tranny no longer plumbed through the rad (3-row, condition ?) but directly into big tranny cooler; two 14 inch PermaCool fans from Summit, temp relay; minimal aluminum shroud (just a 2 inch strip around each fan). Total cost for fans, temp relay, wiring and inline fuses: around $220. Used the thru-the rad nylon strap mounts and one angle brace for each fan from the top of the rad.

    Power increase: maybe, but it's easy to be biased. Noise level definitively decreased, which I really liked. Fuel economy: maybe 1 mpg better. Since the factory shroud is gone, I have no longer a place to sit when working on the top of the engine, like carb etc.

    Cooling efficiency:

    Summer in Omaha, city traffic, 102°F, AC on high: temp at top of intake: 210 to 215°F steady. Lower outside temps, mixed driving: 200 to 210°F.

    Moab, Blazer Bash; Hell's Revenge, Gold Bar Rim, Poison Spider trails; really rich running engine due to a carb problem; outside temps 90 to 100°F: intake temps 215 to 235°F (shut it down at 235°F). Was a pain to hold everyone up on the trail. Got a bit better when I took the temp relay out of the equation and wired a switch to turn the fans on permanently; not closing the hood completely also helped. Can't really say whether the fans weren't moving enough air, or whether the excessive heat under the hood was due to the extremely rich condition.

    I'll stick with electric for now, also with the temp relay. Not sure yet what I'll do for my next Moab trip; I'm mulling over going back to the stock setup.
     
  15. txbluethunder

    txbluethunder 1/2 ton status

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    yes, i just got the universal kit and you can go to any electronic store and get a 30 amp 3 way switch. i started with a single 16" and it would not hold the temp down when i was wheeling hard and barely moving.
     
  16. HarryH3

    HarryH3 1 ton status Author

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    Get rid of the zip-ties through the radiator. Vibration will eventually cause them to saw through the cross tubes that they're resting on. /forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif They're just a really bad idea.
     
  17. jms

    jms 1/2 ton status Author

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    Right now, the weight of the fans is carried by the brace from the top. I agree, the zip ties are not a permanent solution; as the foam pad goes thru heat cycles, it softens, and the fans are getting too close to the rad. When everything is hot, the flex blades can make ever so slight contact with the rad - not good. So I think a solution will be a shroud that can carry the fans, or more bracing; there were some very nice pics of a custom aluminum shroud posted on here a while ago.
     
  18. ratlover

    ratlover 1/2 ton status

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    I've installed a dual fan set up outa a windstar mini van in my 83. I think its a 95 or so....I havent gotten a chance to run it much since I am still in the process of swaping my motor. I do know of quite a few people running some mean bigblocks(a 540 in a 70 Chevelle in texas for instance) that are kept plenty cool with this setup. Beings its ment for a mini van I'm sure it was designed to be reliable

    My set up fit the radiator in my 83 like it was made for it(just had to slice 1 plastic support on the fan)I have it set up on a 3 position switch. Auto(of a thermoswitch) off and on. I run each fan off it seperate relay. I did it mostly so I could keep from slinging water all over my engine when crossing stuff. Power and fule economy might be a bit but a fan dosnt creat much drag till the higher rpm. Water pump should last longer though and I have better controll of my cooling system. Scrounging the junk yard for a fan will alwow you to to the swap for 100 bucks or so. If you need sites for relays and such(my radio shack was a waste of time /forums/images/graemlins/mad.gif ) leme know
     
  19. BobK

    BobK 1/2 ton status

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    I run two 14" Perma-Cool fans mounted to a aluminium shroud I made.I have two 30 amp circuit breakers feeding power to each fan and two 30 amp relays that turn them on.One is controlled by a t-stat threaded into the head(primary fan) and the second comes on with the A/C and is also wired so I can turn it on at will.
    Between the fans,wiring,relays and breakers It cost approx.$200.00.

    Fans on custom aluminium shroud.You can see the relays mounted under the 1st fan.
    [​IMG]

    Mounted and wired 30 amp ciruit breakers
    [​IMG]

    Here it is installed.
    [​IMG]
     
  20. 4x4dreamer

    4x4dreamer 1/2 ton status

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    That is downright Snazzy!!!!
     

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