BD Diesel Double Stack Cooler And Diesel Race Parts Allison Cooler Lines
Is your truck used primarily as a daily driver? Weekly towing workhorse? Or maybe a competition-only drag racer or sled puller? In any case, it’s certain that the automatic transmission used to transfer all of that horsepower and torque to the ground has undergone its fair share of abuse. Stop and go traffic, long steep mountain passes towing 15,000 lbs or hot, quick laps at the drag strip can all be extremely hard on a transmission and lead to hot fluid temperatures. In both stock and built transmissions, extreme fluid temperatures can lead to premature parts failure such as burnt clutches and fried torque converters, so keeping transmission fluid temperatures in a “safe zone” can pay dividends in the long run.
BD Diesel Double Stack Transmission Cooler
The newest transmission cooler system from BD Diesel of Abbottsford, British Columbia, Canada, should fill a large void in the performance diesel market, offering a completely universal system for both daily driver and weekend tow rigs, along with full competition-only drag and sled pull trucks. Using their already popular Xtruded core design from their air-to-air intercoolers, the Double Stack Xtrude transmission cooler comes complete with a 800-cfm electric fan, wiring harness, hoses, fittings and universal mount brackets. The unique stacked design allows for the use of two identical coolers to be mounted in a relatively compact system for maximum cooling surface in a minimum space. The electric fan kit is wired into the system to be triggered on/off as needed, based on transmission temperature, offering excellent cooling even at low speeds when consistent outside airflow across the coolers doesn’t exist.
The universal brackets supplied by BD allow endless mounting options to fit any vehicle’s specific requirements. While most will find the space needed under the truck inside the frame rails, the coolers could also be mounted inside the truck bed on drag race and sled pull applications. With more than 260 square inches of surface area and 40,000-btu/hr cooling capacity, the Double Stack cooler can offer up to a 350% temperature drop compared to a stock cooler, according to BD. BD claims their Micro Extruded bar technology offers efficient airflow across the core and turbulent oil flow inside, which offers the best cooling characteristics. The 5/8-inch inlet and outlet offers maximum flow with little restriction to fluid flow and ensure a leak-free connection tested to 300-psi of pressure.
Diesel Race Parts Allison Replacement Cooler Lines
Since the factory GM Allison transmission lines are prone to failure and leaking after racking up thousands of miles of on- and off-road abuse, Diesel Race Parts, an affiliation of Alligator Performance Diesel, developed their own resolution with a complete replacement performance hose kit. Using your choice of either ½- or 5/8-inch extremely heavy-duty 2,325-psi rated hose and the required fittings to connect your Allison to the factory cooler, leaks can be a thing of the past. Using quality AN-style fittings with O-ring and washer style junctions, once installed and secured, your stock or built Allison can keep moving your truck down the road worry free. DRP offers kits for both the 2001-05 and 2006-10 Duramax/Allison-equipped trucks, and while they’re designed to install directly to the stock fluid cooler, they can also be used with some aftermarket coolers depending on their mounting location and fitting sizes.
By running the larger high-volume 5/8-inch cooler line repair kit from DRP and mounting the new BD Diesel Double Stack cooler in the factory location (custom mount brackets had to be fabricated to do this) the two kits matched right up together and made for a relatively easy install that was completed in just one day out in the garage. It should be noted that, while the installation of the replacement cooler lines is fairly straightforward, be prepared to make a mess on the shop floor. Dropping a tarp under the truck may help, but with oil being trapped inside the factory cooler lines, when it comes time to remove the lines all together you may cause some fluid to be lost and spilled all over the place. Unfortunately, there just may be no way to get around the messiness of this job.
The 2002 Chevrolet truck that these two kits were being installed on had previously been upgraded with an Alligator Performance Stage 5 transmission kit (now with more than 30,000 trouble-free miles above 500 hp) so the high-volume 5/8-inch lines will offer the best flow and further increase the transmission and cooler’s performance. While the BD Double Stack system mounts easily under the truck inside the frame rails with a universal bracket system, the test truck had a larger than stock Titan replacement fuel tank that took up the space needed to install the new cooler, so it was decided that with some minor modifications, the Double Stack core would fit nicely behind the grille in the stock cooler’s location. Since this location offers great airflow across the core, the electric fan was removed before installation and some small metal brackets were fabricated out of some strap steel to hold the new cooler from the factory mounting holes.
Before installing the new Double Stack cooler kit and DRP cooler lines, data was recorded so a true before and after temperature comparison could show just how much improvement the system upgrades would have. Under normal day to day city and highway driving, the test vehicle’s transmission fluid had been running around 110 degrees above the outside air temperature and had seen as much as a 145-degrees over ambient. So during the hot summer months at 100 degrees, it was nothing to see transmission fluid run in the 208 to 230-degree range, and this was in normal city driving, not towing. After installing the new BD cooler system and replacing the leaking factory cooler lines with the high-flow lines from DRP, fluid temperatures have dropped an average of 60 degrees, where a much more manageable 150-160 degree fluid temperature is common during daily driving. The extreme abuse of heavy towing has also shown a substantial drop in fluid temperatures, where while even traveling slow up slick mud/snow roads during hunting season, the Allison kept under 200 degrees with 14,000 lbs behind the truck. Cool enough! DW