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Discussion Starter #1
I have read several incidents where drivers got stranded and car got damaged when radiators fail and ATF mixed with coolant. Since I do not tow or drive in very hot days all the time, and I replace my ATF every 30k miles, I do not feel like I need an external ATF cooler. Just need to replace a faulty radiator very early should be enough. So I am wondering whether anybody is aware of some good places to look so that a failing radiator can be spotted early on. Thanks!
 

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If you don't want to by pass the radiator warmer with a cooler you can just by pass the atf warmer altogether.. you just need 2 male to male fittings and a 1ft tube to bypass it.
 

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I've seen this type of failure in a lot of different brands and there's usually not much warning. It's an internal failure of the cooler/radiator. Unless you check the radiator fluid daily for signs of contamination or stop every time it shifts funny, you probably won't get much warning. Doesn't take much radiator fluid mixed to take out a transmission.

If it's something that keeps you up at night, the bypass or radiator swap is the way to go. With the bypass you have to worry about your homemade parts failing and dumping all your transmission fluid. With the exception of some vehicles that have known manufacturing defects that can cause the coolers to fail, I think the rarity of it just isn't worth dealing with the bypass. That's just me though. My Nissan had a known radiator defect that could cause this and I just swapped out the radiator at 100k miles as a precaution. It had close to 200k miles on it when I sold it and no problems.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I've seen this type of failure in a lot of different brands and there's usually not much warning. It's an internal failure of the cooler/radiator. Unless you check the radiator fluid daily for signs of contamination or stop every time it shifts funny, you probably won't get much warning. Doesn't take much radiator fluid mixed to take out a transmission.

If it's something that keeps you up at night, the bypass or radiator swap is the way to go. With the bypass you have to worry about your homemade parts failing and dumping all your transmission fluid. With the exception of some vehicles that have known manufacturing defects that can cause the coolers to fail, I think the rarity of it just isn't worth dealing with the bypass. That's just me though. My Nissan had a known radiator defect that could cause this and I just swapped out the radiator at 100k miles as a precaution. It had close to 200k miles on it when I sold it and no problems.
Well, maybe I will just order a radiator from rock auto. i cannot imagine that i have to do this to a honda/acura. your nissan is frontier, right?
 

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Well, maybe I will just order a radiator from rock auto. i cannot imagine that i have to do this to a honda/acura. your nissan is frontier, right?
Pathfinder. Same thing. I think I paid $350 for an OEM radiator...aftermarkets were maybe $200. Seems like a no brainer if it's a known issue. I don't think the MDX is anywhere near the level of problems Nissan had because they extended the warranty on them.
 

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Discussion Starter #6

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Got the denso rad from ebay from a reputable seller for less than $280 shipped in the DENSO box. Had it installed with the timing belt service.

No real symptoms to look out for, it's either working or failing due to the way the failure happens.
 
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