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Spitfire 1500 - operating temperature

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Brad.Cogan Avatar
Brad.Cogan Bradley Cogan
RAF Cosford, Shropshire, UK   GBR
1977 Triumph Spitfire 1500 "Wray"
2007 Fiat Grande Punto "Pepper"
I'm going to be upgrading to an electric fan but I don't know what the best operating temperature is for our cars in order to set the thermostat.

My needle sits directly in the centre on the temperature gauge but I don't know what this equates to since there are no units or if it is even the best temperature.



Brad Cogan

1977 Triumph Spitfire 1500 'Wray'
2007 Fiat Grande Punto Active 1.2 'Pepper'

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racer490 Jerry Bryant
Palm Harbor, USA   USA
my fan kicks on at around 90 degrees Celsius. You would have to install a temp gauge or use a laser thermometer to find out temp in you car as the factory one isn't calibrated. Every ones gauge could read a little different.

clshore Carter Shore
Beverly Hills, Florida, USA   USA
In reply to # 1477283 by Brad.Cogan I'm going to be upgrading to an electric fan but I don't know what the best operating temperature is for our cars in order to set the thermostat.

My needle sits directly in the centre on the temperature gauge but I don't know what this equates to since there are no units or if it is even the best temperature.

An electric fan is a good upgrade, but a couple of points:

The fan is there to create airflow through the radiator when the car is idling or traveling slowly.
At speeds more than about 10-15 MPH, the fan is redundant.

Your engine is engineered to operate correctly at temperatures well in excess of 100 C.
The hotter the coolant, the more efficiently the motor and cooling system operates.
That is why it features a pressure cap, as higher system pressure yields a higher boiling point.
Unless your coolant is boiling out the overflow, you are NOT overheating, it is working as designed.

The stock temperature gage is marked C and H, basically it is a mechanical idiot light.
Even if you take the time to calibrate the marks, accuracy and precision are likely no better than 20%.

Setting the operating temperature too cool degrades engine performance and increases engine wear.
The oil is also designed to operate above 85 C.

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trrdster Avatar
trrdster Wayne Tate
Spencer, NC, USA   USA
Alan, it was Spitbits I got it from, sorry to mislead you.

Here go"

http://www.spitbits.com/store/17d-TEMPERATURE-SENDER-ADAPTER-for-use-with-BHA4900-dual-gauge-P2162.aspx


They make them for several cars, so I'm thinking this is the Spitfire one. Might want to check with them.



Wayne
1970 TR6
2000 Jaguar XK8
1949 Triumph Roadster 2000
1978 Spitfire (rust victim)
1971 GT6 (tarp covered for 12 years, rusted inside out)
1980 Spitfire (getting all the good GT6 parts, all poly suspension and Spax shocks)

Brad.Cogan Avatar
Brad.Cogan Bradley Cogan
RAF Cosford, Shropshire, UK   GBR
1977 Triumph Spitfire 1500 "Wray"
2007 Fiat Grande Punto "Pepper"
So setting the thermostat at about 100°C sound about right?



Brad Cogan

1977 Triumph Spitfire 1500 'Wray'
2007 Fiat Grande Punto Active 1.2 'Pepper'

colodad Avatar
colodad Silver Member Calvin Williams
Grand Junction, Colorado, USA   USA
In reply to # 1477283 by Brad.Cogan I'm going to be upgrading to an electric fan but I don't know what the best operating temperature is for our cars in order to set the thermostat.
My needle sits directly in the centre on the temperature gauge but I don't know what this equates to since there are no units or if it is even the best temperature.

Brad, I have a 190F thermostat (88C) the temperature gauge on my 79 is holding to the left of center on the dial. In slow traffic I do see the "fan relay" light come on.

Driving over Vail Pass 4 yrs ago, the engine temp was above 3/4 on the dial when the coolant decided to escape.

100C is 212F.

anyone know what the temperature of the coolant is as it begins to boil out ?

Tonyfixit Avatar
Tonyfixit Tony M
Duncan, British Columbia, Canada   CAN
Calvin, the fact that you are living up in the stratosphere also likely has an effect.

At sea level I would guess 120 C or perhaps a bit more.

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Greg1835 Avatar
Greg1835 Greg S
Rudolph,WI, Sebastian,FL, USA   USA
Seems that would depend on altitude, anti-freeze mix and system pressure. 50/50 anti freeze moves boiling point up to around 223F.

skyking1231 Avatar
skyking1231 Silver Member Frank Strobel
Mt. Sinai, NY, USA   USA
1975 Triumph Spitfire 1500 "Lil' Rose"
If I was to take a temp reading with an ir temp guage/meter. Where would be the best location to point it at ? If am thinking the thermostat housing cover ...that is near the temp sender probe.

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colodad Avatar
colodad Silver Member Calvin Williams
Grand Junction, Colorado, USA   USA
the water pump is always circulating coolant, but block the air from the fan across the gun, mine kept miss reading till I did that.

Yellowhawk Valley Avatar
walla walla, washington, USA   USA
1969 Triumph Spitfire "Walla Walla"
1969 Triumph Spitfire "Portland"
1972 Triumph Spitfire MkIV "Spokane"
1975 Triumph Spitfire 1500 "Dayton"    & more
Not sure why you need to upgrade to an electric fan if your car is only running half gauge now and is ok. That is well within normal. The factory thermostat recommendation is 180F/82C. For cold climates, whatever that is, it is raised to 190C and 88C.
It will start to puke water when the pressure inside reaches a point higher than the thermostat will hold back and expands to the point it has to go somewhere. That could be less than boiling point, but is usually much higher as is mentioned above.

Brad.Cogan Avatar
Brad.Cogan Bradley Cogan
RAF Cosford, Shropshire, UK   GBR
1977 Triumph Spitfire 1500 "Wray"
2007 Fiat Grande Punto "Pepper"
Releases 5-10% of your parasitically lost horses apparently, puts less pressure on your engine so reduces wear quite a lot, better cooling when running into traffic after blasting it (my temp creeps up in these circumstances) and gets to operating temperature far quicker.



Brad Cogan

1977 Triumph Spitfire 1500 'Wray'
2007 Fiat Grande Punto Active 1.2 'Pepper'

clshore Carter Shore
Beverly Hills, Florida, USA   USA
In reply to # 1477361 by Yellowhawk Valley Not sure why you need to upgrade to an electric fan if your car is only running half gauge now and is ok. That is well within normal. The factory thermostat recommendation is 180F/82C. For cold climates, whatever that is, it is raised to 190C and 88C.
It will start to puke water when the pressure inside reaches a point higher than the thermostat will hold back and expands to the point it has to go somewhere. That could be less than boiling point, but is usually much higher as is mentioned above.

The water thermostat does not regulate the coolant temperature.
It only sets the temperature where it opens and allows coolant to flow through the radiator,
instead of internally recirculating through the motor.

Doug in Vegas Avatar
Doug in Vegas Douglas D
Las Vegas, Nevada, USA   USA
In reply to # 1477283 by Brad.Cogan I'm going to be upgrading to an electric fan but I don't know what the best operating temperature is for our cars in order to set the thermostat.

My needle sits directly in the centre on the temperature gauge but I don't know what this equates to since there are no units or if it is even the best temperature.

There's a difference between a gauge and an instrument.

A gauge is a bit better than an idiot light.

Born Loser Avatar
Born Loser Silver Member Matthew Taylor
Land O Lake, Florida, USA   USA
For what its worth, I have a calibrated temp gauge, in degrees F. My Spit runs as low as 190 in the winter (thats the T-stat closing to keep it up), and about 205 in the hottest part of the day, in the summer - sitting. So, about 100c would be very close to where I am actually running now.



Matthew
1960 Triumph TR3a
1970 Triumph Spitfire MK 3
2012 Mini Cooper SS Convertible

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