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Old 08-11-2021, 03:46 PM
Join Date: Jun 2021
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 279
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The only fan bigger is a 19" Mark VIII. I have one for a V8 truck. Brushless is the way go too. For A/C adaptation, a trinary switch works great for fan activation. An line fitting can add a sensor port. I've added line adapters at the condenser.
'06 X5 3.0i - bought @143,123 miles (12/26/20)
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Old 08-12-2021, 12:42 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Little Elm,Texas. (40 minutes North of Dallas)
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Originally Posted by workingonit View Post
Ever since I started considering the electric fan conversion (now completed), the YouTube algorithm has been sending me more and more video suggestions abut electric fans.

Today, it sent me this one: https://youtu.be/f2M3hdi9BL0

which is probably the best I've seen about fan basics.

Here's another video, which sold me on choosing a Flex-A-Lite 238 puller fan, FYI: https://youtu.be/apmv9p4jajM
Both good videos to watch before installing an electric fan.
X5 4.6 2002 Black Sap, Black interior. 2013 X5M Melbourne Red, Bamboo interior
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Old 08-12-2021, 02:57 PM
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Location: Little Elm,Texas. (40 minutes North of Dallas)
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There are several variations of electric fan installs here. IMO some of the versions are more complicated and expensive than they need to be. I think mods should pass a value test--How much do you have to spend weighed against the benefits. I spent a total of about $300 and the install took about 3 hours. Other methods may be better, but after 6 years from the install with no problems other than the controller I destroyed myself, I would do nothing different than I did then.

I don't think it is necessary to purchase an expensive fan. Nor anything other than a simple variable controller and a probe that goes through the radiator fins. In addition, The fan does not need to cover all of the shroud opening. I calculated the area of the radiator and that of fans to find the fan that covered the largest area of the radiator without modification to the shroud or having to completely remove it. Don't be concerned about running the battery down if the fan runs after the key is off to eliminate heat soak, it won't. As long as you have a variable controller you don't have to be concerned about the accuracy of a probe in the radiator fins since you can set it to come on where you want it to.

However, my goal was to free up HP/TQ and eliminate heat soak. If improved performance was not my primary goal I would have left the clutch fan in place. The electric fan would not have passed the value test.
X5 4.6 2002 Black Sap, Black interior. 2013 X5M Melbourne Red, Bamboo interior
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Old 08-12-2021, 03:39 PM
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Join Date: May 2021
Location: DFW Texas
Posts: 156
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the fan conversion would've been easier if I had waited a bit

I spent over $320 (including unused tools, parts I never used, and some I never should've bought), and probably 9-10 hours (including searching for circuits I had no idea where located or if they were suitable at all).

If I had waited a bit, to investigate further, and to actually learn my X5 and its' systems better, I could've saved money, and especially time spent. But, having spent the funds (on good quality items, for the most part) and my time (not so valuable, in retirement, as it was once, but still limited), I guess I'm satisfied with the results.

I bought a powerful fan, from a brand I've used before, probably more than needed, but I feel good about it. I could've bought less cfm, for much less $$, but more is better, IMHO. Extra, unused stuff will eventually find some use, as all my tons of spares from racing eventually do/did/will. The spare relay I bought is a must-have, as are the crimped/heat-shrunk connectors I used (but already had on hand). My installation will last.

I should've spent more time going over every inch of the car, to learn the modules & their (possible) interactivity with other circuits. I was afraid to tap into some circuit that an unknown module might share with another, not knowing if I needed to put a diode inline or not (I've had backfeed in other applications/cars trigger something unexpected). I am not now, nor have ever been, a qualified electrician.. If I could've waited six months before the conversion, I'm sure it wouldn't have taken so long to install. I did learn a lot from actually taking stuff apart, that looking at diagrams didn't show me (the blocked-over glovebox flashlight connector that became my switched-power, for example. Time well-spent.

And I was afraid that the horribly noisy, deteriorating fan and viscous clutch were going to fly apart, tearing up everything under the hood, before I could justify to the wife that the X5 (that she repeatedly told me not to trade for) was indeed a good vehicle. It'd be just my luck it'd fly apart on her first ride in it. So, I had to rush the install, at whatever cost. I couldn't wait.
2001 BMW X5 - E53 w/3.0i M54,
topas-blau, Leder-Montana grau
(Born on 2001-07-13, Friday the 13th)

Last edited by workingonit; 08-13-2021 at 11:11 AM. Reason: misspelled wording
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