Engines are known for making power but what is less though about is the amount of heat that they make. Getting all that heat out of the engine as quickly as possible is vital to prevent the car from overheating. If you notice your car running hot or overheating it may be because of a failed cooling fan clutch. Poor performance from your air conditioning system could also be from the same reason. The clutch could also be stuck on which keeps the cooling going but may decrease fuel economy. There may also be grinding sounds or vibration that may indicate that the cooling fan clutch has failed. The cooling fan clutch is usually connected to the fan, serpentine belt, and water pump. It is often a good idea to replace those components at the same time if you are changing the clutch. Proper cooling of the car is vital to avoid additional engine damage such as warped heads and cracked blocked. An overheating car cannot be driven and since cars never overheat within walking distance of your home, there is a good chance that you may end up stranded on a roadside.
Cooling fan clutches have always been an important part in cooling an internal combustion engine. Most use viscous coupling or electronic control in order to switch on the fan and improve cooling. Oil temperature, air temperature, coolant temperature and AC pressure may change the action of the clutch. Most rear wheel drive vehicles use mechanical fans and most front wheel drive vehicles use electric fans. The clutch and fan run off of the engine's power and they disengage when not needed to preserve engine power. Cooling fan clutches are usually made from medal while the fan itself may be made from metal or plastic. Purchase an authorized repair manual before changing your cooling fan clutch or have a mechanic do it. Some clutch may be accessed from the hood while others may be only accessible from underneath the car. Here are some generic instructions below.