You do not want a race car in the red. It could blow. Oh you ready to blow?

Vincent Vega, from Pulp Fiction, said it best – “You do not want a race car in the red. It could blow”.

The last event was a rude awakening. As I began to progress in driving ability and increase lap time, my car was feeling the additional stress and I was not taking care of her. The entire cooling system on my car is stock. The coolant was last flushed 27,000 miles ago. The fan, radiator, and oil cooler are OEM and are around 65k miles old. It was time for a new system. For starters, I went on a message board and started to do my research. I quickly discovered there were a few things that could be done:

1. Remove the cowl that is in front of the fan/radiator/ac condenser/oil cooler. Item # 2 in this picture

2. Clean the a/c condenser (which sits in front of the radiator)

3. Clean the radiator

4. Test the clutch fan. If it has resistance, don’t worry about it. If it spins FREELY then it needs replacement.


I wanted to avoid a complete overhaul as my budget is tight right now. I decided to go after the easiest component first. The cowl.

I got the front of the car in the air and put the car on jack stands. I removed the wheels and the 3 8mm bolts on the fender liner on each side and the 2 8mm bolts underneath the bumper. Pulled off the bumper. While the bumper was off, I drilled self-riveting screws through the bumper and through the brake ducts. This will keep those ducts in for a long time to come.

In order to remove the cowl, I had to remove the front carbon fiber bumper support beam. There are 3 10mm bolts and 2 13mm bolts that hold this beam on. Once the beam was off I removed the windshield wiper tank, since it had been disconnected all this time. I also screwed in some ballasts to the bumper beam for my Lightwerkz Quad Projector Retrofit. Now I won’t ever have to worry about those ballasts coming loose or looking like a mess when my bumper is off.

To remove the cowl, there are 2 phillips head rivets on each side of the cowl. You have to unscrew them and use a pair of pliers to pull the rivet out. Once you do so, the rivets will look like this:


Here is the cowl. The rectangular piece is the bottom of the cowl. I removed it first because I thought I could remove the cowl without taking off the bumper support.


Here is how it looks w/out that cowl there:



Here is how it looks like w/the cowl in place


As you can see the cowl does block a large area of air that could go through the fan into the radiator.

After all that was done, I removed all this rubber that was stuck in the barrel of my wheel.


And goofing around, wanted to see what the Enkei wheels my friend has would look like on my car.


Not too bad!

I did a brake inspection on my front wheels and I am going to have to replace my brake pads before the 3 day event in August. I am thinking of going for PFC 06. I wish that I had noticed the pads sooner. I think the heat really killed the pads last time. If anything I will move the rear pads up front, and put fresh 01s in the rear. And make sure to swap the pads after the 3 day event.

Next up is taking my car to a mechanic of mine to install the Ground Control Adjustable Rear Control arms and replace the OEM Fuel Filter. I also ordered a direct oem replacement larger oil cooler from VAC. It should be here this week and I want to install it by next weekend.

Thanks for reading! and hopefully this will help the cooling issue.

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