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Engine Oil Cooler

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I am installing an engine oil cooler for my motor and wanted to get ideas from what others have done.

I am going to use CBM's adapter that screws on to where the oil filter goes and then screw the oil filter onto that.

3/4" line to the cooler and back.

The cooler I am going to use is CBR's 0051 Small Oil cooler with fans.

I am going to mount it to my floor under my back seat, drill holes in the floor and have CBR swap out the puller fans and install pusher fans.

CBM's adapter doesn't have a place to mount a oil temp sending unit, so I am going to drill/tap that to install one.

I am then going to hook up that unit to the Aeroforce gauge that I am installing.

cbr-0051-oil-cooler-dimensions.thumb.jpg.4af915cc723b42d2e4dcda0896c555da.jpg

IMG_4143.thumb.JPG.bbcffa75c6a4c11c388810f950578a97.JPG

 

What have others done?

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I was going to install one until I read a few articles on the subject and reized my temps didn't justify one.

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34 minutes ago, SANDPSYCHO said:

I was going to install one until I read a few articles on the subject and reized my temps didn't justify one.

I was wondering the same thing. What is your oil temp? It can actually do harm if the oil is too cool.

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I'm sure you know this, but minimal bent tube fittings are your friend.

If you don't want to tap, you could always run one of these into a 3-way tee:

https://www.summitracing.com/parts/ICE COLD BREWSKIES-an912-12-02a/overview/

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I actually ordered an oil temp gauge yesterday to install and see what my engine is doing. I don't think it has been running to hot but want to check and if the temps are high then will add a Setrab oil cooler. As mentioned above I read as well you don't want oil temps to be too low.

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31 minutes ago, big_daddy_jp said:

I was wondering the same thing. What is your oil temp? It can actually do harm if the oil is too cool.

Usually (80-90% of the time) only a bit higher then water temp and that's with 2 turbos. In the hotter months if I run 3rd 4th gear in the big stuff for an extended time it can get as high as 240. From what I have read still well below harmful temps for oil. Theres is a lot of discussion on the subject. Mostly from guys that track cars and run much harder and longer then a dune run.

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58 minutes ago, Rockwood said:

I'm sure you know this, but minimal bent tube fittings are your friend.

If you don't want to tap, you could always run one of these into a 3-way tee:

https://www.summitracing.com/parts/ICE COLD BREWSKIES-an912-12-02a/overview/

I hear ya.

Ya, I wasn't planning on running any hard 90's or anything.

Thanks for the link.

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An oil cooler is a must in my book. I’ve seen close to 300 degrees on oil temp even though water temp was only 190. You can always turn the fans off if oil isn’t hot enough. 

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27 minutes ago, Blue-Jay said:

An oil cooler is a must in my book. I’ve seen close to 300 degrees on oil temp even though water temp was only 190. You can always turn the fans off if oil isn’t hot enough. 

Wow that is toasty. I have run for years without one but my turbo guy said the cartridge was dark and discolored a little bit. Might be running a tad warm. First step is a gauge to see where this thing is at. Then if so how big to run. https://www.amazon.com/Setrab-ProLine-Engine-Oil-Cooler-Ports/dp/B0011FNKJ6  Personally I would rather be up in fresh air and not have any fans. 

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, lincster said:

I am installing an engine oil cooler for my motor and wanted to get ideas from what others have done.

I am going to use CBM's adapter that screws on to where the oil filter goes and then screw the oil filter onto that.

3/4" line to the cooler and back.

The cooler I am going to use is CBR's 0051 Small Oil cooler with fans.

I am going to mount it to my floor under my back seat, drill holes in the floor and have CBR swap out the puller fans and install pusher fans.

CBM's adapter doesn't have a place to mount a oil temp sending unit, so I am going to drill/tap that to install one.

I am then going to hook up that unit to the Aeroforce gauge that I am installing.

cbr-0051-oil-cooler-dimensions.thumb.jpg.4af915cc723b42d2e4dcda0896c555da.jpg

IMG_4143.thumb.JPG.bbcffa75c6a4c11c388810f950578a97.JPG

 

What have others done?

Looks like a nice unit. I am seeing a $500 bill on Kartek's website.  Curious what the drop in temps would be with that unit buried down low. Even then I really would not have a place for it.

Edited by onanysunday

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i run an oil cooler on my car. its an old school small block chevy 400 block. water temps typically hover around 190-200. oil temps have been as high as 285 under long high rpm runs.  i have a thermostat on the fan control as well.

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1 hour ago, onanysunday said:

Wow that is toasty. I have run for years without one but my turbo guy said the cartridge was dark and discolored a little bit. Might be running a tad warm. First step is a gauge to see where this thing is at. Then if so how big to run. https://www.amazon.com/Setrab-ProLine-Engine-Oil-Cooler-Ports/dp/B0011FNKJ6  Personally I would rather be up in fresh air and not have any fans. 

Pushrods heat the oil a bit.

So does the VQ valvetrain.  As does turbo.  Worst offenders are the variable rocker engines (especially if turbo) like the VQ37HR and newer BMW I6s with Valvetronic.  

1 hour ago, onanysunday said:

Looks like a nice unit. I am seeing a $500 bill on Kartek's website.  Curious what the drop in temps would be with that unit buried down low. Even then I really would not have a place for it.

Earl's option:

https://www.holley.com/products/cooling/oil_and_transmission_coolers/ultrapro_oil_coolers/parts/FP219ERL?gclid=Cj0KCQjw753rBRCVARIsANe3o46QZuwzKDtubscPAzRVLFN7ta6xxMWBJ8K-pMhpTNINLbyx4rQQrxIaAnrQEALw_wcB

Have run that guy on other motors with good luck.  

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3 hours ago, onanysunday said:

Looks like a nice unit. I am seeing a $500 bill on Kartek's website.  Curious what the drop in temps would be with that unit buried down low. Even then I really would not have a place for it.

Yeah, I only have room under my seat so that is why I am running a unit with fans.

If I was out in fresh air, I wouldn't bother with fans.

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3 hours ago, Rockwood said:

...As does turbo.  Worst offenders are the variable rocker engines (especially if turbo) like the VQ37HR and newer BMW I6s with Valvetronic...

Ain't that the truth.  I have a N55 in my commuter, and the oil temps regularly run around 230 just driving down the freeway.  Now, most people see that on the dash and freak out a bit (usually because they think it's water temp) but 230 is of course a very safe oil temp.  Still, once you start pushing it hard on a twisty backroad it's very easy to get it up close to 300.  

 

Anyway, back on topic  if I was only seeing 240 oil temps max after long hard runs (the longest and hardest runs at the hotest time of day you every plan to do) I probably wouldn't bother with an oil cooler.  As Sandpsycho said, that is well below the threshold of oil break-down.  Plus, most of us with rails change our oil way more often than a "regular" car due to other causes of contamination.  If I was seeing 280-300 like Kevin and Blue-Jay I for sure would be adding a cooler (or upgrading).  

 

-TJ
 

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I put that same little oil cooler on one of my older cars and it helped lower oil temp by 25 degrees under the back seat. It worked well. 

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Thanks for all the feedback on do it/don't do it, good/bad temps etc.

I was more hoping to see pix of what types of coolers others have run, how they have run the coolers, line size etc.

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for me the water temp has no bearing on the oil temp, I have had the water at 160 and have had the oil at 300, 

it really has to due with load on the motor, I have hit Comp hill at Dumont at 240 degrees oil, and after one pass up it went to 260 with no cooler than another pass was almost 300, and the water went from 160 to 175 on my RacePak

I have a oil cooler mounted but need to run the hoses, I shut the car completely off when it hits 310,   I have hit 310 at 180 degree water temp,

Pretty scary to think of the LS motors with no oil temp gauge,

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, lincster said:

Thanks for all the feedback on do it/don't do it, good/bad temps etc.

I was more hoping to see pix of what types of coolers others have run, how they have run the coolers, line size etc.

We use those CBR coolers all the time. I have one on my personal car for my transaxle. It is mounted under my radiator horizontally with not much natural airflow. They are very small and fit where most won't.  They are very high quality like all the CBR stuff. I do not use the sandwich adapter. We use the bolt on adapter that has 2 ports for pressure and temp. -10an lines minimum. 

Edited by Hondo

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Here is my 2 censts...

I have done many of these on sand cars in the last few years. 

I never thought they were needed, but after seeing some of the oil temps on cars especially with windshields and closed backs I was convinced. I saw 230- 240 degree all the time and 300 ion some cars - I was amazed, and not in a good way.

But you are messing around with a very critical system on the engine and it has to be done right or it can literally be far worse than no cooler.

With bigger cars and more HP and full bodies, keeping temps in line across the board  (engine water and oil, trans oil) is critical.

Every car I work on has both Engine and trans oil coolers, its the cheapest insurance you can get, but you have to use good parts. 

Get a blockage in the oil system and Bye-bye engine, blow a line, same result. 

As Alper says Oil and Water temps are mostly unrelated with an Aluminum  LS.  Even NA engines will run high temps under big loads

The safe "usable" temp range for oil  is really narrow - like 180-230 degrees. Oil that gets over 240 ish degrees for any period of time breaks down and it can kill your engine,  if you hit those temps you should immediately change it. I am 100% sure I can point to a major engine failure recently due to oil temp. 

 BUT too cold oil is just as bad or worse over time - under 150-160 you will get moisture in the oil (bad) and have thick oil  (bad)

This is why I have learned to Only use a Thermostat in my cooler systems  unless the engine is an LSX based  big cube stroker  with priority oiling and cooler has a fan set over 190 then you can squeeze by without one since its always gonna run high oil temps . The other big thing is running the Right oil pump is critical - this is really hard with LS engines - the Gearoter pump on the crank is great - but its low speed performance sucks

Unlike a small or big block chevy (and others) it runs at crank speed where SBC's and BBCs ran at cam speeds (2 the speed) the pump runs slow and pumping action is limited- at higher speeds it increases and High pressure pumps  produce no more pressure at low speed than high pressure pumps - the Bypass spring is the only difference - so you have to get to bypass pressure first ( that means RPM) so low speed always suffers.

But blueprinted pumps are better because they don't cavitate as much (no foaming and inconsistent pressure and volume at higher RPM)  

The fix would seem to be tha High Volume pump that pushes 10-20% more volume - and really is good for remote coolers etc especially because its impossible to avoid so resistance (90- 150 degree fittings etc)  but with the normal LS F Body Camaro low profile oil pan almost everyone uses, you can easily suck the pan dry on an extended high speed run, then turn into a bowl or run the hill right after and you will run out of oil (bad)  some the LS oil pump is at best a compromise situation

Its also super important to only to use a high flow cooler, or you will have real problem (like ebay china stuff that looks good has so much back pressure). The CBR is really and costly,  I  use Setrab personally its a great value IMO. 

You also should always run temp sensor on the fan and only turn it on at 180 or higher - I like the Setrab inline sensor, that is the best way to control the oil temp range IMO. You can change out the sensor cheaply and easily to adjust and keep temps in the right range.

Checkout  the improved racing thermostat and remote  - it does  not get better than that IMO, Earls makes a similar one I am using now

http://www.improvedracing.com/oil-cooler-adapters/low-profile-oil-cooler-thermostat-for-ls-engines-p-209.html

 

 

 

 

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, lincster said:

Thanks for all the feedback on do it/don't do it, good/bad temps etc.

I was more hoping to see pix of what types of coolers others have run, how they have run the coolers, line size etc.

Here’s a couple pics on how I did mine. I put it under the back seat and switched the fans to blow as well so they wouldn’t pull sand in. Only difference is I had a perforated floor in my car so you may want to raise the cooler up off the floor an inch or two of you have the room.  I ran -10 lines on a twin turbo ls1 with no issues but theoretically -12 lines will be better especially if your going longer than 3 or 4 feet on your lines. 

0FEA2417-3CD9-4BE5-953A-65F18AD745D4.jpeg

9A560243-C2A0-493C-B25C-B474C88E4C8B.jpeg

Edited by Blue-Jay

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6 hours ago, fullthrottleguy said:

Here is my 2 censts...

I have done many of these on sand cars in the last few years. 

I never thought they were needed, but after seeing some of the oil temps on cars especially with windshields and closed backs I was convinced. I saw 230- 240 degree all the time and 300 ion some cars - I was amazed, and not in a good way.

But you are messing around with a very critical system on the engine and it has to be done right or it can literally be far worse than no cooler.

With bigger cars and more HP and full bodies, keeping temps in line across the board  (engine water and oil, trans oil) is critical.

Every car I work on has both Engine and trans oil coolers, its the cheapest insurance you can get, but you have to use good parts. 

Get a blockage in the oil system and Bye-bye engine, blow a line, same result. 

As Alper says Oil and Water temps are mostly unrelated with an Aluminum  LS.  Even NA engines will run high temps under big loads

The safe "usable" temp range for oil  is really narrow - like 180-230 degrees. Oil that gets over 240 ish degrees for any period of time breaks down and it can kill your engine,  if you hit those temps you should immediately change it. I am 100% sure I can point to a major engine failure recently due to oil temp. 

 BUT too cold oil is just as bad or worse over time - under 150-160 you will get moisture in the oil (bad) and have thick oil  (bad)

This is why I have learned to Only use a Thermostat in my cooler systems  unless the engine is an LSX based  big cube stroker  with priority oiling and cooler has a fan set over 190 then you can squeeze by without one since its always gonna run high oil temps . The other big thing is running the Right oil pump is critical - this is really hard with LS engines - the Gearoter pump on the crank is great - but its low speed performance sucks

Unlike a small or big block chevy (and others) it runs at crank speed where SBC's and BBCs ran at cam speeds (2 the speed) the pump runs slow and pumping action is limited- at higher speeds it increases and High pressure pumps  produce no more pressure at low speed than high pressure pumps - the Bypass spring is the only difference - so you have to get to bypass pressure first ( that means RPM) so low speed always suffers.

But blueprinted pumps are better because they don't cavitate as much (no foaming and inconsistent pressure and volume at higher RPM)  

The fix would seem to be tha High Volume pump that pushes 10-20% more volume - and really is good for remote coolers etc especially because its impossible to avoid so resistance (90- 150 degree fittings etc)  but with the normal LS F Body Camaro low profile oil pan almost everyone uses, you can easily suck the pan dry on an extended high speed run, then turn into a bowl or run the hill right after and you will run out of oil (bad)  some the LS oil pump is at best a compromise situation

Its also super important to only to use a high flow cooler, or you will have real problem (like ebay china stuff that looks good has so much back pressure). The CBR is really and costly,  I  use Setrab personally its a great value IMO. 

You also should always run temp sensor on the fan and only turn it on at 180 or higher - I like the Setrab inline sensor, that is the best way to control the oil temp range IMO. You can change out the sensor cheaply and easily to adjust and keep temps in the right range.

Checkout  the improved racing thermostat and remote  - it does  not get better than that IMO, Earls makes a similar one I am using now

http://www.improvedracing.com/oil-cooler-adapters/low-profile-oil-cooler-thermostat-for-ls-engines-p-209.html

 

 

 

 

Some GREAT info and food for thought here.  I agree, it's not worth doing if you're not going to do it absolutely right.  

 

One place I don't totally agree is the oil-temp issue.  With a modern high quality oil 240 is pretty average and not "instant oil change" time.  Again, I have a N55 (2015 335i) and it runs 230-240 oil temps all day long.  People do make lower-temp oil tstats (or just open replacements) and obviously for people that track oil cooler upgrades are a must, but that is because the oil temps will quickly exceed 300 degrees on a road course.  BMW engineered these cars to run at ~240 oil temp and they have an over 10k oil-change interval (it's determined by the computer, and I always do mine a little early, but even when I change it around 8k the computer will still say 3k+ miles left).  Now, the car does call for sync, which is a part of it, but most people misunderstand what synthetic oil really is anyway (which is a whole other topic).  With how often we change the oil in our rails even on a high quality conventional like VR1 I think 240 is perfectly acceptable and safe, and if it was the highest I ever saw I wouldn't bother with an oil cooler for all the reasons you outlined. 

 

-TJ
 

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When I first built my my car I saw 280 degrees and that's enough to cook conventional oil.  

I did exactly what you're doing expect one double like you have didnt quite get it done so I added a single in addition to the double as that was all that would fit back there. 

 

I run 225 maybe 240 once in a while.  

 

They are all (3) on a T stay.  Cant remember the temp for the T stat.  

 

Tim

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6 hours ago, tjZ06 said:

Some GREAT info and food for thought here.  I agree, it's not worth doing if you're not going to do it absolutely right.  

 

One place I don't totally agree is the oil-temp issue.  With a modern high quality oil 240 is pretty average and not "instant oil change" time.  Again, I have a N55 (2015 335i) and it runs 230-240 oil temps all day long.  People do make lower-temp oil tstats (or just open replacements) and obviously for people that track oil cooler upgrades are a must, but that is because the oil temps will quickly exceed 300 degrees on a road course.  BMW engineered these cars to run at ~240 oil temp and they have an over 10k oil-change interval (it's determined by the computer, and I always do mine a little early, but even when I change it around 8k the computer will still say 3k+ miles left).  Now, the car does call for sync, which is a part of it, but most people misunderstand what synthetic oil really is anyway (which is a whole other topic).  With how often we change the oil in our rails even on a high quality conventional like VR1 I think 240 is perfectly acceptable and safe, and if it was the highest I ever saw I wouldn't bother with an oil cooler for all the reasons you outlined. 

 

-TJ
 

TJ

Agreed certain Oils - I based it on data sheet from the Bob's on VR1 conventional 20w-50 which is what most of us run due to the high Zinc content, and even that choice is highly debatable with better oils today

They recommend 200-230 - super narrow range

Load carrying capacity drops significantly with temps above 230

23% drop in load carrying capacity from 230  to 275 degrees

Lubricity is maintained unlike older oils that turn to varnish over 250, but under heavy load (RPM) its not sufficient IMO with either high compression or any boost

 

 

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I am really curios what my car has been running all of these years. I took the factory VQ35DE oil cooler (Altima, Maxima, 350z 3.5) and welded fittings to run coolant through it like the factory. $527 to buy a new factory unit so not cheap to build. I always wondered how it could do much cooling with no air or fan blowing across fins.

20190830_215200.jpg

21305-8J12A-g.jpg

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Did a google search for boosted 350z and found this thread.  Interesting read. I wonder if the engine not being under a hood and in the open helps oil temps. I do have the spacer so 6 quarts total. From reading some other info online I am betting I have been running on the hot side.

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