Blogs

On the Road or On the SIDE of the Road this Summer?

     The concept is pretty simple; trucks that are moving make money and those stopped on the side of the road overheating are costing money. As the summer months are upon us and temperatures are rising, our question is: How is the cooling system in your truck?

     Visual inspections are a simple and easy way to catch the first signs of trouble to avoid downtime and expensive fixes. One thing really does lead to another; meaning, when a component of your cooling system is fatigued or compromised it increases the burden to the others. That’s why we refer to it as a “system”. So, take a few minutes to look for the early signs of wear, leaks, cracks, or missing and/or flattened fins. Check the lines to ensure that they are free of clogs and be sure that all connections are secure. Debris is definitely a problem to a system that requires airflow to work properly, so blow it out or power wash to clear away the debris accumulated throughout the months of winter and spring.

     When you see a potential problem, resolve them immediately to eliminate the bigger issues that could come from them. At Truck Radiators we are ready to help you with a fully stocked warehouse of complete, heavy duty radiators, charge air coolers, A/C condensers and more. Also in stock with West Side Radiator Works, home of Truck Radiators, is our private line of aluminum-plastic (A/P) radiators which continues to prove itself as a high quality, competitively priced unit. The customer sales and service professionals at Truck Radiators stand ready to take your call, answer all of your questions and ship the replacement parts you need. Don’t wait until your truck is overheating and sitting on the side of the road losing money – we’re only a phone call away!

4 Row Core? 5 Row Core? Getting the Most out of Radiator Cooling Capacity

     Simply stated, radiators are heat exchangers. In order to cool down the engine, coolant is passed through the engine block where it absorbs heat from the engine. The hot coolant is then fed into the inlet tank of the radiator and distributed across the radiator core. As the coolant is circulated through the radiator tubes on its way to the opposite tank, it cools again. The cold coolant is fed back into the engine, and the cycle repeats. As it circulates through the tubes, the coolant transfers its heat to the tubes which, in turn transfer the heat to the fins which are located between each row of tubes. The fins then release the heat to the ambient air. Fins are used to greatly increase the contact surface of the tubes to the air, thus increasing the exchange efficiency.

     A standard five (5) row radiator core for an over the road truck is made with either 5/8” or ½” tubes on 5/8” centers making up the overall core depth of 3 1/16” or 3 5/8”. Because of size limitations this is typically found in trucks produced prior to the mid 1980’s.

     The standard four (4) row would consist of 3/8” to ¾” tubes on 3/8” to 5/8” centers creating a core depth of 2 ¼” to 2 5/8”. Both normally contain 10 to 14 fins per each inch (FPI) of the core.

     One thing to keep in mind when determining how much overall capacity is needed is that 70% of the cooling is accomplished in the first and second rows of tubes. Also, there are exceptions to the standards when horsepower exceeds 700hp or when hauling loads of over 80,000 pounds. The solution can be found in using a dimpled, rather than a flat, tube when manufacturing the core. Dimples are stamped within the tubes which will cause the coolant to swirl, thereby increasing the heat transfer ability. This type of core is normally referred to as a “high efficiency” (HE) with 5/8” tubes on 3/8” centers and an increased fin count of 14 to 16 FPI.

     Other factors such as the fan, shrouds, and hubs must be considered, however, a well-engineered 4 row radiator will provide as much cooling as an original 5 row using less space. The HE core, therefore, is ideal for trucks from the mid 1980’s and newer. Over the road, heavy duty trucks such as Kenworth, Peterbilt, Freightliner, International, and Volvo have gone through many design and engineering changes over the years to create more efficiency. Keeping up with the cooling needs of these trucks is important to Truck Radiators, Home of West Side Radiator Works and, of course, the customers we serve every day!

Let Freedom Ring

     Picnics, family gatherings, and parades complete with flags, marching bands, and ice cream – yes, that’s what many of us are planning for Monday, May 27, 2013 for our expanded Memorial Day weekend. Memorial Day tends to mark the beginning of summer for us looking forward to warmer weather and maybe even a vacation with the kids. But, let’s remember the real meaning of Memorial Day during our celebrations this weekend.

     Originally called “Decorations Day”, it was meant to honor the more than 600,000 fallen men and women during the Civil War. Then, in the 1960’s the name was changed to Memorial Day and was no longer limited to the remembrances of one war. It became, and now remains, a day of reverence to all who lost their life in service of our great country. This is significant and different from Veteran’s Day as that day is meant to honor those who served and survived. As much as we owe our living veteran’s a huge debt of gratitude and are very glad they are still with us, it is different. Memorial Day is for those who paid the ultimate price for the freedoms that we enjoy each day.

     Truck Radiators, home of West Side Radiator asks that you take a moment this weekend to reflect on and give thanks to those who served and gave their life so we may have our picnic, family gatherings and parades. They deserve our gratitude and our respect. After all, they are the ones responsible for letting freedom ring in our lives.

No Bluffing When it comes to Excellence in Customer Service – Again and Again

     You hear and read it in advertising all the time; the various ways that different companies say that you can depend on them - only to find they fall far short of your expectations. That’s why at West Side Radiator Works, Home of Truck Radiators, we love to share the stories of our customers to prove there’s no bluffing here when it comes to excellence in customer service.

     On a rainy Monday morning, one of our customers ordered a 6400-58 for an International truck. As is our normal protocol, the order was promptly readied and sent with one of our dedicated drivers for delivery. Just as our driver returned, this same customer called again with an emergency order. One of their customer’s trucks broke down and they needed a radiator to get it back on the road as quickly as possible. Dave, one of the owners of the company placing the order, had asked for an 8000-06-AP. This radiator is standard for a 2004 Sterling Acterra. As it was already 4:30pm, our drivers had completed their routes for the day so we needed to pull another employee to make this delivery. Our hardworking welder, Joseph, decided to take the drive for the greater cause; to satisfy our customer’s needs. This was no simple task as it is approximately a two hour drive one way from our location in Denver, Pennsylvania. Yet Joseph stepped up to make the trip and delivered the emergency part. The next morning the customer called back again stating that something was not right about the radiator he ordered. Our customer service representative, Angie, looked over the order to try to figure out what was wrong and decided that it might be best to start from the beginning. Asking him for the vehicle identification number (VIN) of the truck, she crossed it and found the part he actually needed was an 8000-20-AP radiator. Angie stated that the application on this part is for a 2005 Sterling A95000 and asked him to confirm her findings. As it turns out, even the best of us can have a mix up once in a while. After all, this particular customer deals in heavy duty parts every day and is very knowledgeable! However, being a reputable yet busy company, there are occasions when notes get mixed up, which is just what happened to Dave in this case. Of course the correct part was put on our delivery truck and sent out right away. Just as we stated, West side Radiator, Home of Truck Radiators doesn’t bluff when it comes to standing by our promise of excellence in customer service. Even when it’s needed again and again!

What Makes Truck Radiators Shine? Our Smiles, Of Course!

     You go into a clean, nicely decorated restaurant, get seated at a well-set table, see wonderful dishes passing by as they are being served to other patrons… then your server approaches you with a look of annoyance and says “what do you want?” and your vision of having an excellent dining experience goes right out the window. Customer service has always been what makes Truck Radiators shine in our business. Sure, having great product, inventory on hand, and competitive prices are always important to our customers. But, what good is all of that if the person who is there to help you has no product or industry knowledge and is grouchy toward you? Surely you would be thinking that you’ve called the wrong number.

     Recently, Rufino Garcia from Florida called for a radiator on his 9900 Series, International truck. Angie, one of our customer service specialists, took his information to identify the right radiator for his truck and immediately sent it on its way. Unfortunately, after further inspection he found that his charge air cooler also needed replacing, which Angie quickly shipped out as well and he received them both in time to get his truck back on the road and make his delivery on schedule. During the follow up call to the customer, Mr. Garcia noted how Angie found the parts he needed right away.

     Having the right technology for part look-up is a key feature in this process for all our parts including the radiators, cores, charge air coolers, A/C condensers, and even stainless steel tubes. Rufino Garcia also said that Angie was so pleasant to work with on the telephone and it was clear that he was smiling when he gave her the compliment. Smiles on both ends of the phone are what we strive for with every call that comes into Truck Radiators!

Boxes of Quality and Experience for 35 Years


Ordering products on the internet can be a bit worrisome at times even when you’ve done the research, read through the item description, and sized the picture of your prospective purchase as large as you can view on your monitor. Then, there’s some tension until you finally open the box to see if the product will live up to the portrayal given. This is an even more stressful venture when it comes to over the road, heavy duty radiators because time is always a factor and downtime is not an option. Today, Truck Radiators would like to tell you what you’ll find inside our box – every time.
Recently a customer called regarding his 2010 Peterbilt radiator core with an apparent split tube. After a few questions about the truck, our inside salesperson was able to identify and price the core he needed. Finding that this was all very agreeable to this gentleman, he then stated that he did not have a shop available to re-core his radiator for him. To his surprise and delight, the salesperson informed him that Truck Radiators is also a shop that can do the re-core if he would like to send the radiator in.
Truck Radiators’ repair shop has been in operation since 1978. In those 35 years, two of our service techs have been on the job for more than 25 years each. Also, we have two “young bloods” on staff giving all four techs the benefits of sharing years of hands-on experience, together with new technology and methods. Truck Radiators has also been a long standing member of the International Heat Transfer Association (NARSA). The NARSA Association offers the opportunity to become Heavy-Duty Certified for both the shop itself and for the technicians. This requires a process of application, showing proof of heavy-duty capabilities and experience, as well as testing prior to being approved. Truck Radiators is proud that we have been NARSA Heavy-Duty Certified for many years.
There are many opportunities to purchase over the internet or by telephone for heat exchange parts such as a radiator, charge air cooler, or AC condenser – but, what will you get inside that box when you receive it? If it’s from Truck Radiators you will have 35 years of experience, NARSA Heavy-Duty Certification, courteous and professional sales staff, and a full understanding that downtime is really not an option. So, what happened to our Peterbilt owner? He shipped his radiator to us. Rich, one of our heavy duty techs, pulled a new, high quality core out of the box and put a priority on having the re-core completed as quickly as possible. The customer happily had his radiator back in the truck in a total of 2 ½ days from when he picked up the telephone to give us a call. Not a bad time-frame when you consider two of those days were in shipping!
A box is just a box unless quality and experience is found inside – find yours at Truck Radiators. For more information about the NARSA Association or NARSA Heavy Duty Certification, please see www.narsa.org.

The Best of the Best Heavy Duty Truck Radiator


It used to be that in the world of over the road, heavy duty radiators they were all created equal. That is to say that they were made of copper and brass. As all manufactures have different philosophies regarding the exact makeup of the radiator, there were some variations, but still the same basic concepts. Then, the engineers of the original equipment manufacturers (OEM) were tasked with designing the truck radiators to be lighter, more efficient, and less costly. In their quest to achieve this end, history has shown us that they had come up with some successes as well as failures. The problem is that from an engineering standpoint, probability is centered upon. Meaning no disrespect to the engineers, but what they really need to do is either listen to the person driving the truck or spend some time running down the road themselves.
At Truck Radiators, our 30 years of carefully listening to our customers is what has given us the knowledge and confidence to really look into and assess the design of each radiator. The copper and brass radiators are subject to failure at the solder joints along the sides, the headers, and even the necks. Plus, they are heavier, which adds a burden to fuel consumption as well as being more expensive overall when a replacement is needed. Although the OEM’s have now moved toward radiators made of aluminum with plastic tanks, there has been evidence of specific wear or fit issues.
Truck Radiators has evaluated all of these issues and has taken bold steps in tweaking the design of these radiators by now offering its’ own line of private labeled, aluminum/plastic heavy duty, over the road truck radiators. These cost effective, high quality radiators are in stock for most Mack, Freightliner, Kenworth, Peterbilt, Volvo, International, Western Star, and Sterling models and carry a full, two-year warranty. Who says you can’t have the best of both worlds? Call Truck Radiators today to see how we’ve started with good… and then made it great!

A Tribute plus Special Values on International and Freightliner Radiators


Every day drivers climb into their heavy duty, International and Freightliner over the road trucks to complete a job. They’re thinking about whether the load they are entrusted with is secured behind them and about the best route to take to get to their destination. They’re experience braces them for their time on the road knowing what pitfalls may lay ahead and they are ready to meet each one of them head on. Then, they’re thinking about getting back home with their obligation satisfied.
They are also thinking about the truck that works for them to accomplish a safe and successful trip from start to finish. Oftentimes, it’s an International 9100i, 9200i, 9400i, or 9900i truck that they’re depending upon and they know they can after overseeing scheduled maintenance and filling up the fuel tank. Or, it could be a Freightliner Century Columbia or M2 with its 70 years of experience and innovation behind it that creates the feeling of security the driver gets sitting behind the wheel.
Truck Radiators applauds International Navistar and Freightliner truck manufactures for their years of history creating a driving experience that is safe, secure, environmentally friendly, and makes the driver’s job a little easier while running down the road. Now, Truck Radiators would like to offer a special value of just $395 on the heavy duty radiators that help to keep these amazing trucks cool while doing their job. Part numbers included in this offer are 6400-03-PTR-V, 8000-07-PTR-V, and 8000-22-PTR-V with shipping just $25 on local deliveries or $99 beyond local delivery points (established business addresses only). More savings can be found on orders of 3 or more at $350 each and free shipping! See our website for identification of your heavy duty radiator by using a part number or application search. Or, give us a call and our friendly, professional staff will locate it for you.
Why do we love these trucks? Because the manufacturers have dedicated themselves to make the best truck possible just as Truck Radiators strives to supply the best heavy duty parts to keep them at their peak performance. Check out the attached links to find out some things that you may not have known about the truck that keeps you safely running down the road.
History of Freightliner Trucks 70 Years of Innovation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AZf8TarDMz0
Navistar International Truck & Engine Brand Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V7rJlUqWWio

Heavy Duty Strength – Agricultural and Fork Lift Radiators


Whether you call it a forklift truck, pallet truck, fork truck, or a tow motor, the first forklift was introduced by the Pennsylvania Railroad in 1906 (battery powered) to move luggage at the train station located in Altoona. The two World Wars, like so many other developments in industry, had a direct influence on the evolution of the forklift to advance it to the modern version around 1960 and not much has changed since then.
Similarly, the tractor was designed to have a lot of muscle at a slower pace than say, an over the road truck. Most often they are used in farming or you’ll find them at a construction site. Charles Hart and Charles Parr initially named the machine a “tractor”, which actually means “to pull”, in 1903 when they released their two-cylinder gas engine in Charles City, Iowa. (Not sure if the city was named after Charles and Charles.)
Over the years these powerful pieces of equipment have been helping us to move, store, ready fields for planting or new building and saving many backs by being the strength we need behind us. As a country always on the move, the progress they have afforded us through the years is immeasurable. This tells us of the true value behind these mighty machines.
Truck Radiators is proud to announce its new line of agricultural and forklift radiators. Those difficult to find or dealer only radiators for your John Deere, Agco Allis Chalmers, Massey Ferguson, Ford New Holland, and International tractors are in stock and ready to ship. They are also available for Komatsu, Mitsubishi, Clark, Hyster, Toyota Tiesa (and more) fork lifts. These high quality radiators are offered as the right fit and the right price. Visit us at TruckRadiatorsPA to begin your search for your agricultural or fork lift radiator or, as always, give us call at 1-800-301-3420 to locate it for you.

Very Special Delivery Trucks


At Truck Radiators when we think truck, we’re usually thinking about some pretty big, over the road type trucks – Volvo, Kenworth, Peterbilt, Mack and Freightliners just to name a few. It’s somewhat of an occupational hazard because day in and day out we are working hard to service our many fleet customers and keep their trucks on the road making money where they belong.
But… what about those special delivery trucks? You’ve seen them all around town; FedEx, UPS, the US Postal Service, local delivery companies and more. It’s probably a good bet that their drivers are breathing a collective sigh of relief now that the holidays are behind us and some of the pressure is off. Most wouldn’t call them a big truck, unless of course you’re trying to get around them. As difficult as that can be sometimes, we know those drivers are doing their best to be courteous on the road to others. And aren’t we happy to see them when the delivery is for us?!
This unique truck comes with its’ own set of challenges for the radiator and overall engine cooling, however. Think about the many starts, stops, and idle time they endure with the engine temperature going up and down. Unlike a heavy duty over the road truck, they aren’t out on well-kept four lane highways – they’re hitting the back roads full of pot holes and sometimes even without paving subjected to extreme vibration. These trucks are worked hard and put away wet for the night just to start over again the next morning.
The FedEx and UPS Vans have been made by various manufactures over the years. Most commonly, they are built by Freightliner and International-Navistar with their “S” Series M/T. Truck Radiators most definitely carries the heavy duty radiators to keep these special needs delivery trucks working hard on the road to keep our Holiday… maybe even Valentine’s Day wishes coming true when they bring your next special delivery!

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