Dual Fan Install - Fan Of The Job
Reduce underhood temperatures and wick away power-robbing heat with dual electric fans
From the December, 2011 issue of Chevy High Performance
By Sean Haggai
Photography by Sean Haggai
Whether you’re a street cruiser, weekend warrior, or anything in-between, keeping a vigil watch over the water temperature gauge on your dash is a habit you can’t argue with. When the weather flips triple digits and traffic comes to a standstill, glancing through the various gauges is standard operating procedure. There’s nothing worse than loading up the car, hitting the open road, only to be sidelined by a temperature gauge that’s buried in the red. After all, it could have been prevented.
For us, it wasn’t just a matter of keeping our ’64 Chevelle cooler, instead we had just installed a new front serpentine setup on its small-block powerplant. With the new serpentine belt setup, we had lost our manual fan arrangement. Consequently, we were left without a way to properly cool the engine.
While some say you can’t deny a good working mechanical fan, we can’t help but take advantage of a more advanced setup. Through Derale Cooling Products, we were able to source a dual electric fan (PN 16825, $340) with twin, 265-watt motors, 4,000 cfm of pulling power, and an ultraquiet patented skewed blade design. To manage it all, we added the Derale high-amperage fan controller (PN 16788, $131) with an automatic resetting circuit and built-in air-conditioning override circuit.
Also included is the dual-electric Derale fan setup that comes complete with its own shroud, brackets, and even the wiring harness. We had everything, which made the install a breeze and prevented us from running out to the local parts store for miscellaneous items. We had the entire setup installed in less than half of a day, and at less than $480 for the whole deal, it was a steal to keep our Chevelle running cool.
To get things moving along,...
To get things moving along, Jason Scudellari, our resident tech guru, drained the coolant, and detached the upper and lower hoses. From there, Scudellari removed the radiator from the engine bay.
Included with the Derale fan...
Included with the Derale fan kit was a righteous, custom-built stainless radiator shroud. While it was custom built to our predetermined specifications, we still had to apply the weatherstripping around the entire edge of the shroud. This creates a solid seal between the shroud and radiator.
To fasten the supplied brackets...
To fasten the supplied brackets from the kit, we first installed one threaded tab onto each corner of the radiator where the factory holes were located.
Installing the angled brackets...
Installing the angled brackets only required lining up the holes to the shroud and radiator. For us, we chose to locate the elongated holes against the shroud side, allowing us to adjust the shroud.
Once we had the brackets in...
Once we had the brackets in place with a 3/8-inch bolt, we traced the outline of each bracket to the shroud. We then removed the shroud, lined up our brackets, and used a bolt with a nut and washer combination to lock the bracket against the shroud.
While the shroud was away...
While the shroud was away from the radiator, we inserted the probe between the radiator fins. (The temperature probe can be inserted in any location between the radiator fins.) Once the probe reads a predetermined temperature, it sends a signal to the controller, which then powers up the fans.
With the brackets lined up,...
With the brackets lined up, we fastened them down with the Derale hardware using a 9/16-inch wrench.
From there, it was only a...
From there, it was only a matter of reinstalling the assembled unit back into the engine bay. Scudellari used the same hardware and locked in the radiator using a 9/16-inch wrench.
Next, we installed the fan...
Next, we installed the fan controller. While it can be installed nearly anywhere in the engine bay, we bolted it to the radiator support using self-tapping hardware on the driver side. This area would give us great access to the controller, all the while maintaining a clean look underneath the hood.
To finish the install, we...
To finish the install, we wired the controller to the fans. All we had to do was connect the two fan wires to the box using the large gauge wire (also supplied). Then, we wired the dual ground wires to the shroud. Next, we fed the final “power” wire through the grille and to the battery. This completed the circuit.
We haven’t had a chance to...
We haven’t had a chance to road test our new setup just yet, however, we’re sure we’ll reap the benefits of the dual electric fan setup. This includes lower engine temperatures and a bump in fuel mileage by eliminating any potential parasitic loss on the engine with the mechanical fan. Overall, this install couldn’t have been any easier, and we really like that everything was included with just two part numbers.
3901 Medford Stret