Installing a Transmission Cooler (Flex-a-lite) (Video)

Stock Transmission Cooler

Stock Transmission Cooler

My GM truck was purchased with a “tow package”, so it had a stock trans cooler.

The stock transmission cooler is rather small, and had almost 190,000 miles on it, so I thought I would retire it.  The new Flex-a-lite trans cooler was not that expensive, and I had the whole car ripped apart anyway, so I decided to replace the stock unit.  That’s the short story, if you want the long story, read the next paragraph

< start long story> When shopping for a dual core all aluminum radiator, I first set out to get the Flex-a-lite.  They have a great reputation, and tons of positive reviews online.  The Flex-a-lite radiator did not have a trans cooler so I ordered the exterior one to go with the radiator.  After a few days, I never got confirmation that the radiator had shipped, but the trans cooler was already at my house.  I came to find out that the radiator was on back order and would not ship for a month.  It was then that I decided to cancel the Flex-a-lite order and go for the Griffin.  The Griffin had a trans cooler built in, so I just kept the Flex-a-lite exterior trans cooler and installed it.  </end long story>

Transmission lines going in/out of trans cooler in radiator

Transmission lines going in/out of trans cooler in radiator

Getting the old one out meant pulling those tiny e clips that hold the hard lines together.  A small pick is the tool of choice and after removal, the lines should come right apart.  I say should because I never got one of them to budge.

The new cooler required some drilling of new holes to get it to sit in place, but was not hard to do.  With the installation of the new trans cooler, the in and out lines were in different places (than the stock unit) so I had to cut the transmission oil lines and re plumb.

New Flex-a-lite Transmission Cooler

New Flex-a-lite Transmission Cooler

The oil follows the sequence as follows:  Leaves the tranny hot –> goes into the bottom of the radiator and gets cooled the first time –> comes out the top of the radiator –> goes in the top of the new (exterior) trans cooler –> comes out the bottom of the new trans cooler –> travels back to the transmission.

All in all, installation was fairly easy and I am thrilled with the performance.  Later, I installed a trans oil gauge (video coming soon) and the trans oil temp range is perfect.

 

So, check out the video, and be sure to check out my other videos, subscribe to my YouTube channel, and like and comment.   Thanks!