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Best replacement radiator for a '92 auto

 
Old 06-07-2019, 05:15 PM
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ScottEwine
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Default Best replacement radiator for a '92 auto

Happy Friday All,

My 92 auto is running a bit warmer than it should and I think it is probably the radiator. I bought the car a couple years ago after it sat for 10 years when the optispark failed and the previous owner just stored it during that time. I replaced the optispark, injectors, fuel pump, fuel filter etc and got it running, also flushed the coolant system a couple times including pulling the knock sensors. It runs well but when it is hot out it runs hot when going uphill slowly on winding roads, the temp will get up to almost 240, then down the backside of the hill it goes back to 220 or so. This is in 90+ degree weather. It seems I should replace the radiator as it is probably a bit gunked up. I see I can get OEM radiators for 200+ bucks or all aluminum radiators, but if I just want and easy swap can I get one of the 80$ aftermarket ones, like the ones on Rock Auto? I never run the car very hard, just leisurely drives to take the kids to sports practice, etc.

Thanks, Scott
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Old 06-07-2019, 05:17 PM
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vette196
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Make sure there is no debris between the condenser and the radiator, they are known to accumulate a lot of crap
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Old 06-07-2019, 05:20 PM
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Originally Posted by vette196 View Post
Make sure there is no debris between the condenser and the radiator, they are known to accumulate a lot of crap
Thanks. I got in there with the makeshift pvc attachment and cleaned it out, but I should probably pull it apart and check that before I order a new radiator.
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Old 06-07-2019, 05:24 PM
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I had a new radiator when I bought my car, but I've heard of folks here cleaning out debris that gets lodged in the fins. For what you are doing a stock replacement is fine, higher HP and you might want an aluminum one. I'll let others chime in because it might not be the radiator.

On 2nd thought you flushed the system, it might be air trapped in there
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Old 06-07-2019, 05:27 PM
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Originally Posted by vette196 View Post
I had a new radiator when I bought my car, but I've heard of folks here cleaning out debris that gets lodged in the fins. For what you are doing a stock replacement is fine, higher HP and you might want an aluminum one. I'll let others chime in because it might not be the radiator.

On 2nd thought you flushed the system, it might be air trapped in there
I am pretty sure all of the air is out of the system, I have put a couple thousand miles on it since I had the coolant system open.
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Old 06-08-2019, 10:11 PM
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I have the shroud out and there is not a lot of debris in the radiator, I do not feel like doing this again so I will swap out the radiator, does anybody have any thoughts on which one I should buy or steer clear of?
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Old 06-09-2019, 11:19 AM
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Last edited by ScottEwine; 06-09-2019 at 11:20 AM. Reason: fix url
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Old 06-09-2019, 11:26 AM
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If your '92 has the OEM radiator, it has lasted 27 years - Why not stay with the OEM? Don't cheap out on less expensive aftermarket radiator - like you said "don't want to do again". Good luck with project.
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Old 06-09-2019, 06:09 PM
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Originally Posted by RtStuf View Post
If your '92 has the OEM radiator, it has lasted 27 years - Why not stay with the OEM? Don't cheap out on less expensive aftermarket radiator - like you said "don't want to do again". Good luck with project.
Thanks. I would have agreed with you 25 years ago in general, and maybe on some types of parts today, but for a radiator nowadays I think it is kind of a crap-shoot. The aftermarket may or may not be better than the OEM part and may have come off the same line.
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Old 06-12-2019, 10:01 PM
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Good evening all,

An update on the radiator. I got the radiator today (Spectra Premium CU1052 Complete Radiator from Amazon for $79.79 with free Prime delivery) and it was indistinguishable from the OEM radiator. Installed it this afternoon and the car runs about 20- 25 cooler with the new radiator, so that was the issue. The outside of the radiator was clean, but the internals must have been gunked up.

Scott
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