Factory 6.0 Powerstroke transmission cooler

Treat Your Transmission. 6.0L Powerstroke Transmission Cooler R&D, Part 1: Factory Cooler Options

Yes, that’s right, we are not quite done with product development for the 6.0L Powerstroke. Although these trucks are getting older, our team is finding more and more ways to enhance and improve them.

The factory-equipped 6.0 transmission cooler is relatively stout. In fact, swapping this cooler into the 7.3L is a pretty common upgrade. That said, we think we can provide even greater cooling efficiency and offer an upgrade for 6.0L and 7.3L trucks that tow heavy loads.

Factory Cooler Options

From 2003­ to 2007, the 6.0L came from the factory with two different cooler options, a 26-row cooler and a 31-row cooler. Mounting and line connections were similar on both.

Our shop truck came equipped with the 26-row unit, so we ordered the 31-unit cooler as well for data collection.

Factory 6.0 Powerstroke transmission cooler
Factory 6.0 Powerstroke transmission cooler

Although one cooler is taller, they have the same thickness, as shown below.

Factory 6.0 Powerstroke transmission cooler
Factory 6.0 Powerstroke transmission cooler

Increasing the surface area and the internal capacity of the heat exchanger will improve cooling efficiency. We will also be making some adjustments to the external fins on the heat exchanger. Fins play a huge role in heat transfer, as they connect directly to the fluid tubes and transfer heat from the tubes to the air passing through the core. By creating more contact points, we can improve heat transfer. We achieved this by reducing the height of the fins and designing a tighter pitch, which make the fins denser.

Check out the cooler fins of the factory 6.0L transmission shown below.

Factory 6.0L Powerstroke transmission cooler fins
Factory 6.0L Powerstroke transmission cooler fins

This area of the cooler can definitely be improved.

Initial Data Collection

Before designing our counterpart, we needed to collect some dimensional data from the two factory transmission coolers. Each one was set up on our CMM (coordinate measuring machine) so we could gather accurate data.

Factory 6.0 transmission cooler on CMM table
Factory 6.0 transmission cooler on CMM table
Factory 6.0 Powerstroke transmission cooler on CMM table
Factory 6.0 Powerstroke transmission cooler on CMM table

Coming Up – First Prototype

Once our engineering team completes the design of our 6.0L transmission cooler prototype, we will be working up a unit to test on our truck! Stay tuned for a look at our first unit.

Thanks for reading!

-John

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