WARNING: Aftermarket Fan Clutch
There is a product being marketed; a fan clutch for the GM diesels that engages earlier, what this person and his 'salesmen' at the various discussion groups do not tell you is that by doing so will add a lot more load on the water pump and put added strain on the engine as it keeps the fan running longer than GM intended, this also will use a lot more fuel as the added drag on the engine from running the fan longer.
Besides wasting fuel and straining the engine, this also robs a lot of power, it takes a lot of Horsepower to turn that fan and the last thing most of us want is to lose power on a grade when the engine needs all it can muster to get up the hill, but most importantly the added stresses on the water pump shaft could result in breakage.
Having built many high powered engines for many types of vehicles over the years, and ones that have pushed the limits, I have seen firsthand on a customer's vehicle what using one of those wrong kind of fans or fan clutch setups can do to a radiator and other parts when a water pump shaft breaks and the fan goes flying forward, and let me tell you it isn't pretty, and the aluminum radiator for the GM diesels are very expensive.
So one improper fan clutch could cost you
a new water pump, radiator, belt, pulley and maybe even an ac condenser, or
worst yet a new engine! Oh yeah and a fan and another new fan clutch...
hopefully then the choice would be a normal GM version properly designed for
your engine, and you can add some
aftermarket electric fans or
keep engine temps down.
The revised in 1997 fan clutch # 15022302 and last time I checked Full GM retail price was only $99.56 and wholesale is less still, and most of us know how high GM part prices are. Quite often aftermarket fan clutches are only about $30. Frankly the aftermarket "early on fan clutch" being peddled on those forums and Ebay at a supposed 'discounted price' is $250, in my opinion it's a huge RIPOFF..
A high-priced fan clutch that comes on sooner is a waste of money on something that can create more problems than it can solve.
TIP: IF a person really needed to make the
fan come on earlier, that can be done by simply adjusting the thermostatic
spring on the front of the clutch, so no need for a new high priced fan
clutch. But again you really should NOT want it to come on sooner.
Recap: on why a fan clutch that starts early is not advisable:
1) Added stress and strain on the water pump
2) Added stress and strain on the engine
3) Reduces power from the engine
4) Reduces fuel economy
5) MUCH higher price than GM replacement
6) Can do more harm than good and result in breakage or damage of many other parts!
Our professional advice is; stay with the stock fan clutch, if that is not operating properly, then replace with genuine GM parts. Always remember before buying any parts to "fix" a problem, especially one you did not have before is to check everything thoroughly first. If you have a cooling problem like a plugged or dirty radiator then; no fan clutch or electric fans will fix that, just delaying the problem to where it may become more serious.
Proper cooling system maintenance is key, flush cooling system and I recommend removing the radiator to do so, if it has build up then have a profession radiator shop do the job, once that is up to speed than test the fan clutch.
Then and only then, if you still have a high temperature problem like I noticed when my truck was new the first time I towed my boat, what I did was come up with some special electric fans to supplement the stock fan, this worked very well for me.
We do not currently sell the electric fans,
because the cost per dollar for quality fans, compared to the
water-mist-injection is high will less
benefits than the water-mist-injection.
We've noticed when running our water-mist-injection mainly for air charge cooling, is better than an intercooler that there is then NO need for cooling upgrades or added electric fans.
I hope that this notice will help people before they fall victim to an aftermarket fan clutch that can cause more harm than good. <
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