Oil cooler for turbo cars

bs009

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So I want to run an engine oil cooler for my Grand Prix.

My turbo is only cooled by oil and I'm thinking it must be wreaking havoc on my engine oil temps especially on long trips and sitting in traffic. I'm planning on taking the car on power tour again this year and want to make sure everything stays as cool as possible.

I'm also hoping the cooler thick oil would help boost the oil pressure some on on a hot day. My oil pressure seems like it's too low once the engine is warm and it sounds like the new LS7 lifters are ticking at idle because of it.
Also IIRC some series 1 cars had them from the factory soooo...


I'm looking at this cooler and I'm noticing that the fittings on the sandwich adapter are only 3/8" of an inch. I know our pumps kinda suck though so I'm wondering if that would be enough?





Anyone here ever run a cooler on theirs and notice any difference in pressure?
 

Ron Vogel

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That looks cheep. I wouldn’t touch a kit with barbed fittings. Sandwich adapters just add another possible leak point also. I had a car back in the 80’s that a system like that failed. Never again, spun 6 bearings.

The oil filter housing bolts onto that block. Someone must make a fitting plate for it. Better off using a plate, terminated hoses, a remote filter housing, and oil cooler. With a remote oil filter you could also use a much larger filter than stock so you can eliminate the bypass
 

bs009

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No ideas what temperatures yet. I'm going to add a gauge this year but I can't imagine they're very good since the turbo relies on oil for all of its cooling.

It is definitely a cheap kit. I get that the barb fittings might not be the most reliable too. I've never had a problem with them though as long as i'm using the EFI style clamps. The adapter has pretty standard fittings though so if I decide I need to spend $300 on AN hoses and fittings down the road though then that would be a simple switch.
I'm not really worried about the oil filter size. I'm using the larger PF52 filter right now anyway and there's tons of room in this car:

Really old picture btw



If I need to replace the oil filter adapter deal though instead of using a sandwich adapter I suppose I could probably fab something for cheap. I'm sure nobody makes shit for these things
 

Ron Vogel

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I’ve made them before, usually pretty straightforward . Just need some aluminum, a saw, and a drill press. Having a Bridgeport would be a big plus. No need for expensive AN fittings . Hydraulic hoses would work, an add some fire sleeve to keep the heat off.
 

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For oil pressure, have you done the spring mod to increase the pressure it opens? That's a great mod to do if you haven't done it.

If you're planning on doing power tour, you really should look into something more reliable than barb fittings. There's a company near Batavia that will make you hydraulic hoses to whatever size you want. They'll both cost you about $150, but they will never fail. That piece of mind for something that will never leave you stranded or out of oil should be worth that small amount of money. I can get you more information on Monday, I have sent a bunch of people there after they made hoses for me. AN stuff works, but I like factory/OE style hoses for anything on my cars that isn't OE. Never have to worry about it.
 

bs009

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I guess I'll have to put some more thought into it then.
There's a lot of things I want to change for it this year so I'll have to figure out what my priorities are.
I've definitely had my fair share of doing things one direction initially and learning that there were much better methods down the road if you can think outside the box a little.
If I can avoid that this time that'd be good :rofl:

I did do the spring mod and am running the 5w30 oil recommended for the series 3's. I honestly don't really think it makes that much of a difference though outside of cold starts. I have it done on my 99 Regal too though.

I'm located closer to the Detroit area these days but I appreciate the thought. I should be able to get an estimate from the local shop that made my A/C hoses though. AN fittings wouldn't really be that terrible though I guess. They do look nice at least lol
 

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Well AN stuff you can do at home, and it's a good choice, usually very reliable if done right, which again, is something you can do at home and it's pretty easy. The -10 which I would recommend isn't that expensive for like 10ft, which should be plenty for you, it's the damn fittings that break the wallet. BUT, it's reliable, and with the power tour, that should be your first priority, because a tow home will probably cost more than a reliable setup and more, right? :rofl: Either way, I look forward to your power tour post and pictures, what you've done is entertaining. I love the thread updates! :bigthumb:
 

DEEZUZ

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Turbos really don't heat up oil
 

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Turbos themselves don't do THAT much to heat up the oil, but the overall system of having a turbo on a car that didn't come with it, especially his car, which was made years before you were even born, does.
 

bs009

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Yeah, I'd be curious to see some more data around that.
To me it just seems like a good idea especially considering how hot everything else got sitting in traffic in power tour last year. I guess getting a sensor would be a good first step for me.
 

GTPpower

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No one does an oil cooler on 3800's. You've done the pump mod from the l32/l26. Run synthetic oil and you'll never have a problem.
 

bs009

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I really don't think anyone has even considered running one or even looked into measuring the oil temps. :rollseyes:

I am running the oil spring mod and synthetic 5w30 and I'm hearing lifter tick with brand new LS7 lifters when the car is warmer in heavy traffic.
 

DEEZUZ

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Since when does lifter tick be come an issue due to oil over temp though
 

bs009

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My thoughts were that cooler oil would be thicker and help with the pressure
 

1quick

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how much oil pressure so you have now? that spring kit normally makes it pretty high like 60ish at idle if i remember right
 

1quick

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you could always just put thicker oil in it if you want to see what that does, its a 3800 they pretty much take anything you can throw at them and dont care
 

DEEZUZ

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Does anyone have any data logs of eot vs ect on these configuration?

I'd like to see what the correlation is.
 

1quick

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Does anyone have any data logs of eot vs ect on these configuration?

I'd like to see what the correlation is.
doubt it there is no oil temp sensor for engine oil from the factory, I ran turbo for a couple years and never even thought to check engine oil temps
 

DEEZUZ

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I figured someone would've had a tapped gauge
 

1quick

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someone probably has, half the fast 3800's are junkyard motors anyway most people try to skimp as much as possible
 

DEEZUZ

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I can't see the oil going hotter than 210ish with a 165 t Stat
 

CHI2000GTP

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I've got an oil pressure and temp gauge on my turbo prix, L67. The temps hover at 200-202 consistently. Running with a 180* t stat. But also no condenser up front so engine stays extra cool. I have never heard or read of anyone putting an oil cooler on a 3800.

Oil pressure will bounce around but stay within 45-55 when cruising. Up to 70+ on cold starts. Idle is around mid-30s.

If anyone remembers I picked up that blue Turbo Prix back in October. After the GTP I spent years restoring gave up. Sourcing an N/A engine for it now... Anyways, interesting thing, previous owner of turbo prix ran Rotella T6 5w 40. So I've continued that.
 

GTPpower

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Why did you switch to ls7 lifters?

Did you measure pushrod length when you did? I'd lean towards that being your lifter tick problem.
 

bs009

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First off, LS7 lifters are drop in replacements and are better than the originals.

Secondly it's only an issue when the oil pressure is low. If it were an issue with the lifters it would be a consistent issue I'm sure
 

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