Radiator Fan Swap was a 97% Success!!

Decided to get my lazy ass off the interwebs and see if I could tackle the removal and installation of my new(used) radiator fan. Here’s what happened!

The fan I bought was only $50+shipping, and only took 3 days to get here! :)

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(You can see the old 3-blade fan on the left found on early(‘83-85), and my new(used) 6-blade on the right found on later cars(‘85.5-91).)

The removal process was fairly simple. Jacked the car up, and removed the 6 10mm bolts that hold the fan assembly to the radiator. The bolts are 30 years old and required some PB Blaster to cleanly get out of place. The bottom 3 are easy to remove, the top 3 are quite the adventure; they’re blocked by the upper coolant hoses and they had to be pushed out of the way to get the first 2. The third required my removing of the airbox to have enough room to use my socket wrench.

Then, cut the zip ties that hold the electric connectors to the current fan. Wriggle the fan assembly out from the bottom, and prepare for the new fan. I got some degreaser to clean up the one that’s going in. It was a bit of a struggle getting the new one in, but it fit just like a glove and bolted in just like the old one! Now, I haven’t ziptied the connectors in place yet, but I went on a quick test run, and they’re absolutely perfect! much quieter, and cools much more efficiently as well! Before, my car sounded like a Landspeeder when the fans came on, now, it’s more like a desk fan. :)

Now, I did say it was 97% sucess for a reason, I did run into one minor issue... I kinda did expect this, but the passenger fan is rubbing on the lower radiator hose from the water pump. Fortunately, I disconnected that fan so it won’t slice the hose to death or kill itself in a most unusual case of mutually assured destruction , but aside from that, all is good! The fan/hose rubbing can be mitigated by either shaving about 1/4” off those blades, or getting the later-style lower radiator hose; but to remove that hose, you have to drain the coolant, and since I’ve done that at least three times in the past week alone....Ima shave those fans instead!

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Seriously, this car gets more and more easier and funner to work on every time I tinker with it!

All in all, a “must do” if you have an early(‘83-85) 944 with the early-type fan.

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