F-Series/Bronco: Older Ford Truck Radiator Upgrades

If you have done any modifications to your older Ford truck or you live in a warmer environment, you may find that you have a problem with keeping your engine cool. Cooling of the engine is a key element to the functionality of your truck. Not only does it keep the engine from melting down, an engine with proper cooling will generally have better gas mileage, improved emissions, and it will allow for higher compression and power. If you have an automatic, the new radiator will also help keep your transmission safe by cooling the transmission fluid.

 

Part of the problem is that back in the ’70s Ford was still using the old-fashioned down-flow radiators in its lighter duty trucks. Down-flow radiators are not as efficient as the more modern cross-flow radiators used in newer Ford trucks. Not only were they not very efficient, but they were also too small for the kind of duty that most owners perform with their trucks. Fortunately, there is a relatively inexpensive solution to this problem.

There is the option of upgrading your radiator for many of the older style trucks. This should definitely be your first option when you are replacing a radiator, and should be the first area you look at when you are having cooling issues. These upgrades can be done with little or no modification.

The best type of upgrade is to upgrade the thickness of your radiator. Often, this is measured in rows. Be sure, though, that the radiator is actually thicker. More rows does not necessarily mean more cooling. Cooling is determined, primarily, by the overall volume of the radiator, the materials used, and the number of fins per inch. (A radiator with more fins per inch called a high efficiency radiator
within the industry.)

You want to make sure that you measure the current radiator in your vehicle to make sure it is correct. The most common method of measuring a radiator is to measure the core. The core is the honeycomb portion of the radiator (the finned, metal part in the center).

 Verify thickness. If you are not sure whether the thicker radiator will fit, check to see if you have any spacers behind the fan and remove them. A lot of vehicles have spacers behind them to place the fan closer so it will cool better with a thinner radiator.

All radiators can be ordered through Radiator.com. Radiator.com offers free next day delivery (if you order before 3:30 Monday through Thursday), which is great when you have a radiator blown and you need to replace it right away. All their parts have lifetime warranties, and their offline company has been around for about 20 years. Plus, their price is guaranteed to be low, or they’ll give you the part at the low price and an extra 10% off. I’ve priced a few radiators and, of the upgrades that the dealer actually has available, Radiator.com was between $100 and $300 cheaper.

Be sure to write in the comment field which upgrade you want. I talked to the guys at Radiator.com and they said they leave part numbers out to make it easier on the average consumer. Just be sure to specify they part you want in the comment field. Like if you want the 3 row upgrade, state it in the comments. They were really helpful when I ordered my upgrade radiator for my 79 Bronco.

All the following radiators are going to work for both manual and automatic transmissions. If you have a manual, just ignore the transmission lines. They are in a self-contained module of the radiator and nothing comes out that doesn’t go in first.

Stock Dimensions:

For the best price on RADIATORS, AC condensers, or heater-cores contact RADIATOR.COM. They have been around for over 20 years, they have a lifetime warranty and FREE next day shipping on all their radiators.

 

Stock Ford Radiator

Upgrade Radiator

19 1/4 x26 3/8 x1 7/8

3 row for a 78-79 Bronco V8.

4 row and about an inch thicker. Metal tanks. Part # 132. About a half an inch thinner in length.

27 1/2 x19 5/8 x1 1/2

2 row for an 80-84 Bronco V8 only.

3 row. 3/4 inch thicker. Metal tanks. Part # 561.

27 1/2 x19 5/8 x2 1/4

3 row for an 80-84 Bronco V8 only.

4 row. 1/2 inch thicker. Metal tanks. Part # 1598.

19 1/4 x26 3/8 x1 7/8

3 row for a 66-79 F series V8. Be sure the flange mount is closest to the grill (not facing the engine).

4 row. 3/4 inch thicker. Metal tanks. Part # 132. Be sure top hose is on the passenger side

24 1/4 x26 3/8 x1 7/8

3 row for a 66-77 F series V8. Has center flange mount and rear mount.

4 row. 3/4 inch thicker. Metal tanks. Part # 1501.

24 1/4 x26 3/8 x1 7/8

3 row for a 76-79 F series V8. Be sure that is has a front flange mount (closest to the grill).

4 row. 3/4 inch thicker. Metal tanks. Part # 1502.

19 1/4 x26 1/4 x1 7/8

3 row for a 69-77 F series V8. Be sure the flange is closest to the engine.

4 row. 3/4 inch thicker. Metal tanks. Part # 1280.

19 5/8 x27 1/2 x1 1/2

2 row for an 81-83 F series 3.8 and 4.2. Cradle mount.

3 row. 3/4 inch thicker. Metal tanks. Part # 561.

19 5/8 x27 1/2 x2 1/4

3 row for an 81-83 F series 3.8 and 4.2. Cradle mount.

4 row. 1/2 inch thicker. Metal tanks. Part # 1598.

GO TO RADIATOR.COM FOR ANY OTHER UPGRADE YOU MAY NEED.

 

 

This article was sponsored by RADIATOR.COM.

If you need a new radiator visit Radiator.com for a brand new radiator with a lifetime warranty at the lowest price guaranteed!

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