Radiator Replacement Recommendations

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Tylerxp2

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2004 ST 4X4
4.0 Liter
A/C
W/ Exterior Trans cooler
Did I forget anything? Probably...

I'm chasing the small leak or leaks and being going to be proactive and not waiting for a roadside failure with a 17 year old Radiator and a unwanted trip to the dealer for a near $1K repair. They already nailed me first a 500.00 alternator. :(

I hate waiting for failure so Im going to get rid of the plastic made for failure Ford radiator.

My question is to all the Members has anyone found a quality Company selling Aluminum Radiator that drops in and fits like factory and factory hoses match up?

No time for making custom mounts.

I'm going to be replacing other front end body parts soon, so why not do it all in one shot.

Just need a Company Name I find on line and if you would share any of your pros or cons you experienced?

Thanks in advance!
 

DILLARD000

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Here's the details of my expereince last summer swapping a
1Core PlasticTanked Radiator to a 4Core AllAluminum Radiator CoolingSpecialist#2173.
It was relatively easy with these 2 minor but notable differences that had to be dealt with
~ 16psi MINI Standard RadiatorCap replaced by larger SAEA Standard RadiatorCap
~ two Factory TransmissionHeatExchanger connections in the left RadiatorTank were DeepFlareFittings
had to be ground down to ShortFlareFittings to fit the new WeldedIn Radiator connections.

Also
~ replaced two 1.5"ID Rubber Hoses with StainlessFlex, providing a little more Radiator cooling capacity.
~ replaced Fan+FanClutch+SerpBelt
~ modified FanShroud from 1Piece to Upper+Lower Sections to ease removal\install
~ replaced plastic ThermoStatHousing with aluminum ThermoStatHousing
~ replaced stock 192f ThermoStat with 183f ThermoStat with modified lower ByPassDisc
to allow wider opening & higher flow capacity to Radiator.

Since these changes, haven't seen Coolant temp above 188f via OBDLink#MX+ to SmartPhoneApp,
driving Summer\Winter, Stop+GoCityStreets or MountainGrades; typically it's steady 183~185f.

Hope this helps. Details here

2001.Ford.ExST_Engi.Cool_Radi.4Row_APFO.2173_4of4.GIF

2001.Ford.ExST_Engi.Cool_Radi.0DXa.GIF
 
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Todd Z

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Only note is on the 01 there were 2 different depth fan shrouds. Worst case you cut the shroud or build a spacer. plastic is fine. But that's again on the 01. On my 03, I used the same all aluminum rad.... Loved it.
 

DILLARD000

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ToddZ,
Yep, old fan shroud should fit if new rad top+bottom channel depths are the same as the old rad.
Used a piece of BlackSoftRubber WallBaseMolding as a radiator top cover, attached with zip ties;
scrouged that up after scratching up my arms & gut on the aluminum channel.
 

Tylerxp2

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Only note is on the 01 there were 2 different depth fan shrouds. Worst case you cut the shroud or build a spacer. plastic is fine. But that's again on the 01. On my 03, I used the same all aluminum rad.... Loved it.
Mines an 04 so I'll have to check the fan shroud depth. Thanks for the insights. Pretty important
 

Tylerxp2

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Here's the details of my expereince last summer swapping a
1Core PlasticTanked Radiator to a 4Core AllAluminum Radiator CoolingSpecialist#2173.
It was relatively easy with these 2 minor but notable differences that had to be dealt with
~ 16psi MINI Standard RadiatorCap replaced by larger SAEA Standard RadiatorCap
~ two Factory TransmissionHeatExchanger connections in the left RadiatorTank were DeepFlareFittings
had to be ground down to ShortFlareFittings to fit the new WeldedIn Radiator connections.

Also
~ replaced two 1.5"ID Rubber Hoses with StainlessFlex, providing a little more Radiator cooling capacity.
~ replaced Fan+FanClutch+SerpBelt
~ modified FanShroud from 1Piece to Upper+Lower Sections to ease removal\install
~ replaced plastic ThermoStatHousing with aluminum ThermoStatHousing
~ replaced stock 192f ThermoStat with 183f ThermoStat with modified lower ByPassDisc
to allow wider opening & higher flow capacity to Radiator.

Since these changes, haven't seen Coolant temp above 188f via OBDLink#MX+ to SmartPhoneApp,
driving Summer\Winter, Stop+GoCityStreets or MountainGrades; typically it's steady 183~185f.

Hope this helps. Details here

View attachment 1664
View attachment 1665
Dang, that's awesome I like the larger radiator hose. A few months back I replaced the Upper and lower radiator hoses. Also mine has the exterior trans cooler. Just FYI less work. That's one clean and documented install. Thanks!
 

Tylerxp2

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I went with a Aluminum 3 row from Evil Bay hoping for a drop in fast replacement. I'm just to old and my patience Is to thin for customizing or modifying anymore. Plus I need to drive it almost daily. I'm a Cranky old guy now and I've still got a to replace All for wheel brakes from a freezing cold concrete floor.
Sorry got off track...
Anyways it should arrive by the 15th and thanks for the link and advice to everyone so far!
Always looking forward to other people's experiences.
 

DILLARD000

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I resemble your remarks: old cranky guy with stiff joints & cramped muscles from laying on cold concrete!
Good luck & keep us updated.
 

Doug Kaye

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the first time I saw a plastic radiator was in my 98 Sienna, couldn't believe my eyes.. why would anyone do that ?
the plastic top had split open..
Replaced with another plastic and that went another ten years, was still fine when the rest of the van had crumbled around it.

Last summer my 2004 plastic radiator went bad, not the plastic but the metal fins were leaking. I put in another plastic one, figured if it lasts sixteen years like the first one, I'll be happy to replace it again ;-)
 

Tylerxp2

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the first time I saw a plastic radiator was in my 98 Sienna, couldn't believe my eyes.. why would anyone do that ?
the plastic top had split open..
Replaced with another plastic and that went another ten years, was still fine when the rest of the van had crumbled around it.

Last summer my 2004 plastic radiator went bad, not the plastic but the metal fins were leaking. I put in another plastic one, figured if it lasts sixteen years like the first one, I'll be happy to replace it again ;-)
My plastic hasn't gone bad yet...

But I do travel a lot and I'm only paying a bit more for peace of mind. I'm approaching the 100k mark on my mileage and my ST is starting to show its age. She's been great and I just want to keep her in good running condition. Plus I know if I pressurized the system that radiator will split open like a dropped Watermelon.
I've learned what most of the trucks weaknesses are now from reading on the site.
I'm just being proactive. I did look at the plastic one on Evil Bay but for the money I went for the Aluminum one.

Dang I just talk to much sometimes ..
Sorry about that.
 

Tylerxp2

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I resemble your remarks: old cranky guy with stiff joints & cramped muscles from laying on cold concrete!
Good luck & keep us updated.
Yup only thing I can't repair is myself.
And I'm pushing the 100k mark like my truck.
 

EddieS'04

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I resemble the old guy remarks...At 71 I'm thru with the Mods of that sort...LOL
Just sell me a quality replacement part.
 

EddieS'04

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I went with a Aluminum 3 row from Evil Bay hoping for a drop in fast replacement.
I looked at what was offered. I got really confused over which one was a direct fit. No mods to hoses and and trans lines. Was yours and which one did you choose.?
 

Tylerxp2

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I looked at what was offered. I got really confused over which one was a direct fit. No mods to hoses and and trans lines. Was yours and which one did you choose.?
Here's the link to the seller


I tried to link to the actual radiator But Evil Bay just kept giving me my tracking information. There are a ton of sellers with 3 row for 150.00
I chose a west coast shipper [California] to save a week on delivery. Anything East coast takes for ever to me.
I checked the dimensions to the stock and they matched up the same. I'm happy and my truck was on the list of vehicles its made for.
 

Tylerxp2

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I looked at what was offered. I got really confused over which one was a direct fit. No mods to hoses and and trans lines. Was yours and which one did you choose.?
I looked at what was offered. I got really confused over which one was a direct fit. No mods to hoses and and trans lines. Was yours and which one did you choose.?
If you want to wait until mine arrives I would be happy to send photos side by side for comparison. Here's photos of new from Evil Bays
 

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Lester Durst

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Fellows. Some what off topic but pertains to the cooling system. My '02 plastic cooling fans has developed cracks between the blades at the hub. A mechanic "friend" told me he sees this often on "older" vehicles using plastic cooling fans. Not to worry about it.......

The cracks have existed for many years/miles as I first saw them along time ago. I know I can replace the fan but I'm wondering if I do, if the new fan will develop right away thus negating the reason I replaced the fan.

Should I be "overly" concerned about this????? I realize that's hard to give me "advise" on without seeing the cracks but give me your best shot.
 

EddieS'04

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My '02 plastic cooling fans has developed cracks between the blades at the hub.
My '04 has had the same cracks for years. Not worried, The fan looks to be well molded to the metal hub.. No cracks at the fan blades.
 

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