Why Did I Decide to Install a Power Steering Oil Cooler?

For those that participate in any kind of motorsports, you will come to found out that your true enemy, is heat. This holds very true for the Power Steering systems. The system on our Mustang was not made to handle such stress and when you add wide and sticky tires, it is a recipe for disaster.

After research into a solution, I came to the realization that this was not going to be an easy or cheap fix. And unless I wanted to keep replacing pumps, I had to do something about it. The problem was that the fluid was overheating as I got higher into the RPM’s and would gush out of the cap. Which is actually a common problem for a lot of SN95’s and Fox Bodies, even some of the older Mustangs. How will I solve this? Cooler.

Why am I installing the Fanpack?

In 2016, the car was beaten and abused around Autocross courses and tracks around Southern California. As I began to get better, the car was abused more and more, to the point that the 22 year old Power Steering pump had enough and quit. New years 2017, after a canyon run at Mulholland Highway, the pump gave it’s first notice. The fluid exploded onto the engine bay and the pump went dry. In February, competing in SCCA, during the 3-4 run, the pump would have its moments of failure. You can see it happen in the videos below: 

During the next events, the car had to be shut down in between runs in the “hot pits” to avoid overheating the fluid. As you can see, the car was driven pretty hard at the Speed Limit Racing Autocross:

Then, the aggressiveness had to start being dialed back a bit during the Hotchkis Cup.

Finally, at an event in June, the pump officially gave its last breathe. Still got a couple of good runs, but the aggressiveness had to be really dialed back. If you listen closely, you can hear the poor pump whining. And you can see that the turning was not great.

What is a good way to solve this problem? There are several options out there:

  1. Convert to hydroboost Power Steering pump,
  2. Convert to the Maximum Motorsports’ KRC Power Steering,
  3. Convert to a Saginaw pump,
  4. Change the pulley,
  5. Keep swapping out pumps, or
  6. Install an oil cooler, such as the Setrab Fanpack (FP113M22I).

Unfortunately, none of those options are financially appealing.

  1. Hydroboost PS pump $60, plus labor and fabrication for mount (for 94/95 and Fox Body).
  2. Maximum Motorsports’ KRC kit is not available.
  3. A Saginaw pump kit will run about $400+, plus fabrication for SN95 mount. Fox Body mounts are available.
  4. Install a larger pulley, which can cost $30+ for a OEM pulley (Ford P/N YR3E-3D673-AA, YR3Z-3A733-AA or E2SZ-3A733-A, or Doorman P/N 300028),  plus the cost of a new belt and labor.
  5. Swapping out the pump cost $150 for labor, and $60 for a remanufactured pump.
  6. Convert to manual steering. Maximum Motorsports’ kit cost $428, AND $320 for a steering rack.
  7. Setrab Oil cooler, $289, plus $30+ for fittings.

After looking at costs and most options were dependent on things I had no control over, installing a cooler was much more appealing. AND, considering that most kits have an oil cooler anyway, I would STILL need to install a cooler. With the exception of the manual steering kit. So why not start there?

After researching and not being pleased with the quality of coolers that I found, I decided to reach out to Setrab USA for recommendation and assistance. I have had good success running their oil cooler for the engine oil and thought it would have been a great idea to reach out and expressed a few concerns about price and placement. Marv answered my email, and helped me find the best cooler that fits my criteria.

If you are NOT going to run a fan, you will need to place the cooler in an area that has good airflow, which for the SN95, will be in front of the radiator. However, that posed an issue for me because I already have a large oil cooler blocking the radiator, and adding another cooler will block more of the direct air flow to the radiator. That was not going to work for me. Marv mentioned that if I would consider running a Fanpack (which adds to cost), it will give me more flexibility in where I can mount the cooler because the fan will provide the air supply. The FP113M22I fanpack was the answer to all my problems. Not only is the Fanpack inexpensive, it is small enough to not limit my options for mounting.

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The placement was chosen for one simple reason, it just made sense.

  • The area was easy to install,
  • Having the cooler in an easy access area will make it better for maintenance,
  • It would not interfere with rotating parts,
  • The location is in a moderate to high pressure area of the front of the vehicle,
  • High pressure area will provide ample air flow to the cooler if you make a ducting opening, AND
  • Because it is directly behind the bumper, you will only need a short duct hose, or none at all.

Once again, it just made sense.

A Thermal Switch was also installed to help with the cooling of the oil. Instead of having the fan wired to a toggle switch, it will be wired to the 180*F Thermal Switch. This is convenient because I would not need to run a temperature gauge, remember to turn on the switch, or perhaps turn it on when it is not needed. The setup that Marv recommended was exactly what I needed.

The FP113M22I Fanpack was introduced to use for DSG transmissions, high-performance street differentials, UTV engine oil cooling, and Formula Drift power steering applications.

What is the advantage of running this pack?

It is very small, however, it is extremely high performing. Because of its size and self-contained air supply you can mount it almost anywhere.

Why is this an advantage?

Because without a self-contained air supply, you will have to mount it in an area with good airflow, which usually means blocking the radiator. However, with a fan blowing 148CFM (at 0 static pressure), you can mount the cooler wherever you have space! And trust me, this Fanpack can fit in a lot of places!

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COMING SOON! Directions on how to install P/N FP113M22I.

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