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Discussion Starter #1
Is there anything wrong with aftermarket radiators on Rockauto.com? Are they made well? Do they fit with no modifications? Is the quality there? The AC Delco cost 290.79 dollars and the Spectra brand is $104.79. The Spectra Radiator has a heart symbol next to it which I believe means favorited by customers. Anybody have any wisdom in this? Last thing. AC Delco offers Limited Lifetime on this radiator since 2015. Thanks in Advance.
 

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Plenty of folks have purchased,and used the Spectra.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Plenty of folks have purchased,and used the Spectra.
Thanks for the support 1slow96. I think Im going to go with the Spectra. (Further information for anyone)--I just looked at AutoZone.com and they sell the Spectra for $181.99 with a Lifetime Warranty. Both websites use the same photo. The Spectra on Rockauto is 24 months warranty. Total cost for the radiator itself out the door was $200.64 in California.
 

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Don’t order radiator from rockauto!!
I did on wife’s 2009 charger, and it leaked shortly after install.
Their warranty/policy sucks. They would not offer refund if I sent it back.
Only exchange after sending back.
Can’t have it down that long, so got same one from AZ w/ lifetime warranty for little more.
Lesson learned saving couple $ isn’t worth it.
 

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Don’t order radiator from rockauto!!
I did on wife’s 2009 charger, and it leaked shortly after install.
Their warranty/policy sucks. They would not offer refund if I sent it back.
Only exchange after sending back.
Can’t have it down that long, so got same one from AZ w/ lifetime warranty for little more.
Lesson learned saving couple $ isn’t worth it.
Are you entirely sure about this policy, because it's not how I got a warrantied A/C Compressor.

I went thru the return policy, and at the end had the choice:

1. Return the defective item, and then a replacement will be sent out

OR

2. Pay for the new item. Remove and replace & return the defective item, and once received the payment method will be credited.
 

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Yes, I'm sure.
You can buy a new one, and they will credit you on returning defective/warranty, but still have to wait for it to arrive.
Couldn't wait...leaking too badly needed immediate repair or risk engine damage from overheating.
You also have to eat some shipping costs on warranty returns. I have had to in the past.

Basically it boils down to can you wait if a part fails? With the cheap aftermarket stuff they peddle these days, it just doesn't make sense to save a few $.

The ACDelco condenser I bought from rockauto was junk, made in India, didn't even fit correctly, + arrived bent like a banana. It went back.
When I was replacing all the stuff on my '94 wagon, several brand new parts had to go back to rockauto.
Brand new water pump, junk, had to warranty it.
Rusty brand new ball joints, boxes water damaged, they had to go back.

I could go on and on, I've spent thousands with rockauto, no more, I'm done with them.
Just my .02
 

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Yet many (if not most) of us haven't had a single issue with anything purchased from that site. Unlike AutoZone....
 

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mail order has its +/- vs buying from brick & mortar source

I have had + experience with returns with RA, Summit, Jegs but the "shipping" time is a factor if you need the item right now

I bought a Silla from AZ for my Ford truck. Can't remember if 2 year or lifetime warranty but I needed the radiator so bought it locally. So far it is fine

On non urgent parts RA is typically cheaper. I just bought a motor mount for my Ford at $32 from RA + $7 shipping and AZ was $112 for the same mount...so big $ difference there. A EGR for the same car though was only $3 more at AZ so just compare pricing and if you don't need it that day RA will save $ generally

I did recently bang NAPA to price match the exploding wallet connector for the PS temp sensor from RA. The two wire pigtail was $24 at RA (still fing high $)...but NAPA was.....$42. NAPA had it in stock and reluctantly reduced $ to the RA $ + overnight shipping (counter punk said hey matching what it cost you to get it tomorrow...). This was a China made pigtail
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
I purchased the Spectra. I have the fans mounted. Had to flatten one of the dish shaped washers on left car side bolt for the thread to grab the clip thread. Considering all holes for fans, they line up but not perfect. I will be saving the stock radiator brackets as the Spectra has a wire fastening tab. What it is for? I don't know yet but I used the Spectra ones since its designed for itself. I have a last question...If anyone has the correct answer.

The brass adapter fittings on the left side...Q: Do I use any thread sealant when installing the two fittings into the radiator brass female fittings on the radiator itself? And if so, What kind?

Thanks in advance.
 

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I have never used any thread sealant on oil or tranny line fittings into the radiator
+1, they're pipe threads, and do not require sealant.

They're called specifically, Fastening threads. Both threads are parallel and sealing is affected by compression of a*soft material onto the external thread.
 

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On a seperate note just for shiz & grins, if money is no option, this guy makes some beautiful products. I believe the quote was $1,200 for the Impala setup last I checked.

Ron-Davis-Radiators
 

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Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)
Update on Spectra Installation.

I contacted Spectra Premium Industries Tech Support (1-800-363-8533) to ask if they had a torque specification on the two brass fittings adapters that go in the drivers side of the radiator (the ones that came with my purchase in California Autozone).

He told me about 17 (Seventeen) foot pounds.

I also asked him about thread sealer

He told me a little teflon tape just enough to cover the threads or blue locktite. He didn't sound too concerned with the teflon tape or locktite.

I used blue Permatex Locktite and torqued the two brass fittings to 17 foot pounds like he said. I thought grabbing the outer brass 1 1/8 nut with a separate wrench was needed so I would minimize stressing any sealing within the unit in that area. It (the 1 1/8 nut just kind of easily began to unthread itself and comes loose when trying to hold it. I removed the outer wrench. I torqued to the 17 foot pounds without holding the outer 1 1/8 nut. It all fastened at once. First and both fittings fastened nicely.

I looked in my Factory Service Manual and the Oil Cooler Fittings torque is 20 foot pounds.
 

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On a seperate note just for shiz & grins, if money is no option, this guy makes some beautiful products. I believe the quote was $1,200 for the Impala setup last I checked.

Ron-Davis-Radiators
Ron Davis makes good radiators

I have the FSR, HD 2 row #145398. While it normally would have oil & tranny cooler fittings mine has none (T56/external oil cooler). I bought it used but I believe they are about $600

FSR click Street & Hot Rod tab

Four Season Racing Products Internet Home
 

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That appears to be the radiator for the TBI cars. It is a little different from the LT1 radiators. The input and output for the trans cooler has different size threads.
 
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