The dog days of the summer have got a new meaning now. The temperatures are shooting through the sky and preparing to beat the heat is the only option at hand. This is the time when most things need that little extra attention. Be it elders or little kids or your hot rod.
Oh yes. Come summertime, we suddenly start to notice cars feeling a little under the weather. They get a bad case of the woozy in the middle of nowhere. Halting at a red light is an excuse for the cacophony to begin. And the worst of them all, the air conditioner conks off when its 108 in the shade.
In most of these cases, what ails the car, is a faulty fan clutch.
A fan clutch has one of the most important tasks in the functioning of a vehicle. It regulates the working of the cooling fans that help to keep your engines from overheating. Under normal conditions, the fan clutch spins very lightly until the ambient temperature reaches a certain high level. Once the temperature crosses this level, which varies from one vehicle to the other, the fan clutch engages fully allowing the cooling fans to perform at their optimum and the temperature to be maintained.
A faulty fan clutch can be one of the most debilitating conditions for the vehicle, especially in summer. And if you are unsure whether the fan clutch is the culprit or something else is to be blamed for the niggles that your car is showing, here are a few tell-tale signs that the fan clutch may need to be replaced.
Symptoms of a faulty fan clutch
A faulty fan clutch can affect your car in more ways than one. Here’s what you need to watch out for.
Overheating: One of the first signs of a fan clutch that has kicked the bucket or is close to doing it, is an overheating engine. The fan clutch may not engage even when the temperature increases beyond the normal levels and this will prevent the cooling fans from working. Soon, the engine starts to get overheated. If you notice this happening repeatedly, it’s time for a closer look.
Noise: If you are hearing a loud noise from the engine even when the engine is cold, a faulty fan clutch may be the reason. Many a time, the fan clutch gets stuck in the engaged position and continues to engage fully even when the engine is cold. This results in a roaring sound that is pretty audible even when the speed is high or even when the car slows down.
Reduced performance: A faulty fan clutch, like the one we mentioned above, can also increase the drag on the engine, which in turn will reduce the power, the fuel efficiency and the acceleration of the car.
When your auto mechanic opines that it’s time to get a new fan clutch in there, do not hesitate. It’s a fairly inexpensive purchase that will improve the functioning of your car by leaps and bounds.
All said and done, replacing a fan clutch is no longer a walk in the park. Most dealerships stock cheap Chinese imports which will conk off in less than a year.
A quick look around the internet reveals thousands of complaints about fan clutches, making it a daunting task to select one. The best that you can do is keep your claws sharp and buy OEM fan clutches at better prices than what your dealership offers or buy aftermarket products that have a proven track record.
OEM fan clutches may cost a few dollars more but will ensure that they don’t go goofy in six months. They are a one-time investment and will outlast most other products. But hey, what are your choices if you cannot afford an OEM?
That’s where we step in folks. We have done all the hard work by speaking to mechanics, technicians, car owners and retailers to find out which fan clutches are worth your money. And we have handpicked the best of the lot for you. Here are the top 5 best fan clutches in the market currently.
1. Hayden Fan Clutch
There’s nothing like a durable automobile part that is made in the USA, perfectly suited for the vehicles and the weather conditions. Hayden is one of the best ones that you can buy. The 2786 Premium Fan clutch is an absolute beast that will keep your engines from blowing their lid off, even in peak summer months.
If you are doing mountains every day or pull a load, then you need a heavy duty fan clutch that can function uninterrupted without dying in the middle of nowhere. Hayden gives you that reliability and assurance. A near 100% customer satisfaction rating doesn’t hurt either.
Why Hayden 2786?
Because a couple of dollars more spent on the fan clutch will save you hours of agony and mediocre car performance later.
The Hayden 2786 is designed for performance in the most extreme conditions. That’s why it is called a severe duty fan clutch. And contrary to what you’d think, this is not solely for the big monstrous trucks either. It is ideal to be used in any vehicle and does a great job at keeping the car cool. The AC performs better, the acceleration is improved and so does the gas mileage.
A few customers have mentioned that the 2786 is a tad louder than the OEM fan clutch. That may differ from one car to the other. A lot of others have also mentioned that it is as silent as a mouse and works just perfectly. So, we will consider that as subjective.
Should I buy the Hayden 2786?
By all means, go for it. This is one of the best replacement fan clutches in the market currently. You cannot go wrong with it.
2. Dorman Clutch Fan
The Dorman 622-001 is a replacement Electronic fan clutch for newer vehicles that do not use the old thermal bi-metal spring fan clutches. This is a lot more efficient fan clutch and as good as the OEM equipment. It is fabricated from heavy-duty metal casting and clutch plate that delivers optimum performance even in the most extreme engine conditions.
The 622-001 is usually considered to be the best replacement fan clutch for GM vehicles and fits the Chevy trailblazer and others cars like a dream. Also, it is compatible with a whole range of vehicles.
Why Dorman 622-001?
For starters, this is a direct fit. You just need to plug it in and you are ready to go. The club that with the multiple quality tests and the great customer feedback rating and you have a winner on your hands. Many fan clutches are marred by the harness wearing out prematurely.
To this end, the Dorman 622-001 features a rubber coated harness and a plastic connector that will perform flawlessly and keep your engine cool even on an extremely hot day.
None that we could find. The Dorman 622-001 is also the #1 selling fan clutch on Amazon and many other retail stores.
Should I buy the Dorman 622-001?
If you are looking for an electronic fan clutch, then the Dorman 622-001 is one of the best choices you have. It is inexpensive, durable and reliable. Has a great customer rating too.
3. APDTY Fan Clutch
There’s only one thing better than an OEM replacement fan clutch. It is an aftermarket one that works equally well and costs less than half of the original. That’s precisely what you get with this electronic EV radiator cooling fan clutch assembly from APDTY.
This is a replacement fan clutch assembly that is quite popular for the amazing quality at a very affordable price point. It looks fits and functions exactly like the original and is manufactured to the same specifications.
Why APDTY 733112?
Because the same OEM part costs at least $100 more than this. Jokes apart, unlike cheap imported replicas, this electronic radiator cooling fan is manufactured by APDTY or Auto Parts Direct To You, who are one of the best suppliers of quality automotive spares.
It gives you the assurance that while you may not be spending a bomb to buy a branded product, you are not flushing money down the drain either.
It fits the Rainer, SSR, Trailblazer, Envoy, Ascender, Bravada and Saab, but may also be compatible with other vehicles.
The APDTY 73112 is one of the very few fan clutches in the market that boasts of a 100% positive customer rating. So, as clichéd as it sounds, this comes across as a flawless product.
Should I buy the APDTY 733112?
If any of your cars have the ‘check engine’ nagging error popping up, then get the APDTY 733112 and get rid of it once and for all. It will also improve the performance of the car and keep your AC blowing cool even on the hottest day.
4. ACDelco Fan Clutch
There are very few fan clutches in the market that are recommended by the manufacturers themselves. The ACDelco 15-4694 is one of them and it is an original fan clutch for GM cars. It is manufactured according to the specifications of the original part and is an exact replica in form, fit and function.
For problems like the unbearable roaring sound or a lackluster AC, your fan clutch may be the culprit to blame. This ACDelco 15-4694 will fit right in like the original one that came with your car and will give it a new lease of life.
Why ACDelco 15-4694?
Unlike cheap aftermarket fan clutches for GM cars which are plagued with problems and can make your car sound like a Jet engine after a while, the ACDelco 15-4694 is manufactured with the best quality components which makes it a long-term solution.
You can try to cut corners and order a cheaper unit but, fan clutch problems will be perpetual. It makes more sense to choose an OEM part that is clearly more durable and effective.
97% positive customer ratings indicate that they are doing something right. This is a flawless component and should serve you for long without causing any problems whatsoever.
Should I buy the ACDelco 15-4694?
Your authorized service center may try to fob you off with a higher-priced low-value replacement fan clutch. If it’s a GM, go for the ACDelco 15-4694. You will thank yourself for the decision.
5. Aisin Fan Clutch
The Aisin group of companies is one of the world’s most reputed manufacturers of automotive spares and replacement parts. The FCT-013 is their engine cooling fan clutch that is an OEM and a perfect fit for a whole range of cars including the Toyota 4Runner, Tacoma Prerunner and more.
The Aiscin FCT-013 brings to you the reliability and durability of Japanese technology at a very cost effective rate. Unlike cheap Chinese clutch fans that start to wear within just days of installation, the Aisin FCT-013 will last for years and help improve the engine performance.
Why Aisin FCT-013?
Toyota 4Runners come pre-fitted with these Aisin fan clutches, which last for years without a problem. To prolong the life of the car and to improve its efficiency and mileage, it is always recommended to choose an OEM part if you can afford it.
With Aisin’s pocket-friendly prices, affordability is no longer a problem. You can get it for almost the same price as a cheaper brand. And you have the brand’s reliability to back it up with.
More than 96% positive customer ratings reveal that there’s hardly a problem with the Aisin FCT-013. It fits perfectly, is easy to install and will serve its purpose.
Should I buy the Aisin FCT-013?
If you own any of the Toyotas, then this should be #1 on your wishlist. It is cheap, it is an OEM and it performs excellently. It will keep your car silent and the AC cool. Don’t forget to hear it engage in a muffled voice as you are driving uphill. Great buy!
These are the top 5 fan clutches in the market currently. To ensure that we are as unbiased as we can, we have included both OEM and aftermarket products in our list. We hope you enjoyed reading it.