Mazda Fan Clutch: Engine Cooling Aid

By: Anthony Fontanelle

A vehicle's engine works in a cacophonous environment. Its tough operation also gives one an idea on the conditions it goes through. During an engine's operation, heat builds up and may damage nearby components if not equipped with a cooling system. Mazda makes sure that their vehicles have efficient cooling system to prevent this from happening.

The cooling system is composed of different parts, each one with a specific task. One such component is the Mazda fan clutch, a small fluid coupling (containing silicone oil) with a thermostatic device that controls a variable-speed fan. It enables the Mazda fan to rotate at an exact velocity to keep the engine from overheating, and reduces drive to the fan when the latter is no longer needed.

When the air temperature inside the radiator increases, the resulting heat commands a bimetal coil spring to expand. This expansion allows small amounts of oil to enter the fluid coupling, causing the Mazda fan to rotate. The opposite happens when the air temperature is low. As the coil spring contracts, the oil leaves the fluid coupling, while the fan slows down, which in turn, reduces fuel consumption. Noise will be lesser and engine power saved.

A Mazda fan clutch is very reliable, but just like any other car parts, it may become defective. One common symptom of fan clutch failure is engine overheating, even when a car is in an idle position. Defective fan clutches can also cause poor performance of the car's air conditioning system. This is because the fan also cools the air conditioner's condenser, which is directly in front of the radiator. To avoid such problems, it is recommended that proper maintenance be administered to the .

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