Want aftermarket radiator and water pump advice

Messages
427
Location
SC
Want some advice on a replacement aftermarket radiator and water pump for my 96 Ford f150 4.9 manual transmission truck. The Radiator needs replacement due to inadequate flow, and im replacing the water pump due to it having 155,000 miles on it. Oem is out of the question as its over $400!. Looking at brands like spectra (2 row) oe style, with plastic tank and neck. I found a Sila (sp) for $230 thats all aluminum including tank and neck. How well will the plastic radiator hold up in comparison? Looking for opinions on that and a good water pump--considering an OE style Bosch for about $40
 
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Messages
2,547
Location
IL
..........In order of Terrible to bad are CSF all metals Radiators(CSF plastic tank rads are ok),Silla,Spectra (SPI) and Reach. These 4 have a huge failure rates, but they are cheaper than OEM. OEM would be my choice, but it depends on how long you intend on keeping this truck. Now aftermarket water pumps are not much better... I would buy brand "X" and buy a new unit, not rebuilt. they all China made now,(ASC?)
 
Messages
322
Location
Virginia
There are some deals if you look on eBay as compared to the discount auto stores. Most of my stuff comes from NAPA and quality has never been an issue with their stuff. When I lived in Arizona, there was quality concerns with the radiators sold through the discount auto stores; buyer beware when dealing with the mas marketing of a lifetime warranty. Avoid cheap reman water pumps and use distilled water to prevent future problems.
 
Messages
22,478
Location
Apple Valley, California
Originally Posted By: Vern_in_IL
..........In order of Terrible to bad are CSF all metals Radiators(CSF plastic tank rads are ok),Silla,Spectra (SPI) and Reach. These 4 have a huge failure rates, but they are cheaper than OEM. OEM would be my choice, but it depends on how long you intend on keeping this truck.
i agree 100%! those are the brands i wont sell
 
Messages
5,091
Location
USA
Spectra premium seemingly is the brand of choice now by Auto value/Parts Plus and some others.Both radiators and fuel pumps.SP must be offering some wicked deals to get coverage like that.
 

Clubber_Lang

Thread starter
Messages
427
Location
SC
well I went with the 2 row Spectra radiator (about $140 shipped) went with the bosh water pump, hopefully it is well constructed and works like OEM (about $40) motorcraft belt tensioner and harmonic balancer, wow I cant believe what I am putting into this truck, but I digress. Thanks for everyones input here. Im a big OEM guy, but there was no way I could stomach a 425 radiator, especially with what Ive put into this 18 year old beast.....
 
Messages
8,598
Location
Florida
Sometimes you can get a Visteon which is often close to the OEM unit. I guess the Bosch pump is okay, but I far prefer using OEM and if that isn't an option, I use GMB.
 
Messages
1,430
Location
NY
i like my spectra radiator i bought for my chevy. i was a little hesitant about the plastic end tanks but it seems fine.
 

Clubber_Lang

Thread starter
Messages
427
Location
SC
After much reading i changed my water pump order to...a gates. Although it was priced low at $23, suprisingly it has a reputation for being a good choice. As for the radiator, i was tempted by some 3 row all aluminum radiators for sale on ebay. They were very decently priced but obscure brands that made them seem like a gamble, but for $200 they were tempting. I just replaced the T-stat 100 miles ago with a stant. While im in there who would change it out with OEM? Im tempted but like i said the stant is brand new, except for being exposed to prestone flush and radiator gunk for the past 5 days in my attempt to revive the old radiator.
 
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Messages
4,942
Location
Kansas
Originally Posted By: Clubber_Lang
After much reading i changed my water pump order to...a gates. Although it was priced low at $23, suprisingly it has a reputation for being a good choice.
Gates water pump pro: lifetime warranty Gates water pump con: 100% made in China (but then, a lot of them now are)
 

01rangerxl

Site Donor 2021
Messages
10,284
Location
Birmingham, AL
I would return the $23 water pump. If that is not an option, put it on a shelf as an emergency back up. No freaking way would I replace a functioning OEM water pump with some $23 China part just because it has 155K miles. The 155K mi OE pump may very well have more life left in it than the China pump.
 
Messages
5
Location
Northern Delaware
Only problem with some plastic radiators is, if cheaply made, thin-walled necks get brittle with age & fail from over-tightening the hoses. My last Toyota went 185,000 miles without a problem, while e36 BMWs (323/325/328) fail like clockwork at around 85,000 miles. .
 
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