Quest for Intercooler heat exchanger air flow

I’ve been thinking about how to make my intercooler heat exchanger more effective before I add more parts.

The intercooler heat exchanger on the 2008 Cadillac STS-V is a small radiator in front of a line of other coolers and the main radiator – item 29 below.

STS-V LC3 Intercooler Flow path & Parts

Air flow paths are key to the performance of any radiator type cooling system. In this case the heat exchanger is facing cool air.

I intended to study the ducting to see what minor improvements could be made — such as sealing air flow to the bottom of the heat exchanger.  However, I was surprised to find that although Cadillac engineered exactly for this item, the plan for my STS-V is not working at the moment.

The way it is supposed to work is that there is a plastic belly pan below the nose of the car, running below the intercooler heat exchanger.  On top of the plastic belly pan is a long rectangular piece of foam that will nicely seal the air flow under the heat exchanger but still allow the water hoses to and from it to pass through.  However, on my STS-V the belly pan is sagging in the middle, and the foam is no longer sealing the lower part of the heat exchanger but rather allowing 2-3 inches of gap for air to flow through.  Since air will always take the path of least resistance, every bit that can is sliding under the car and away instead of cooling my intercooler.

Cadillac STS-V radiator air deflector

My belly pan (item 9) is missing any fasteners #8, which appear to be 14093088 although not shown in this diagram  — so that item 7, the foam bar, fills the gap there.

25802477 DEFLECTOR. Radiator Air
DEFLECTOR,FRT AIR. Required: 01For: DX (2006-2009) (2008 – 2009).

15248340 SEAL. Radiator Support Mounting
SEAL,RAD AIR LWR. Required: 01For: D29 (2005-2011) (2008 – 2009).

14093088 RETAINER; RETAINER FRONT. RETAINER. Front Fender Inner Wheel House. Air Cleaner Intake. Bumper/Fascia. Bumper/Fascia Energy Absorber. Capsule/Headlamp Washer/Wiper. Chassis/Engine Wiring Harness. Cowl Top Vent Louver. Engine Coolant Recovery. Folding Top Compartment. Front and Rear Bumper/Fascia Face. Front Compartment Pan. RETAINER FRT. Grooved. License Plate. Main Wiring Junction and Fuse Block. Mobile Telephone Radio. Radiator Air. Radiator Baffle and Shroud. Radiator Fan Shroud. Radiator Grille and Front End Panel. Rocker Panel Molding. Roof Headlining.

So tomorrow I will check with Pep Boys and Crest and see if I can get 2 retainers and put my intercooler heat exchanger back in the air flow.

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