Best 4l60e Transmission Coolers

Hayden 679 Transmission Cooler - cpt4l60e

Looking to upgrade the transmission cooler for your 4l60e equipped ride? Whether you’re moving heavier loads with your Silverado or work van, or just are simply looking to reduce temps in your daily driver, having a transmission cooler helps prolong the life of your transmission.

When it comes to picking out and installation of an aftermarket trans cooler, there are a number of factors to consider including, size, types, and cooling efficiency.

In this guide we will help you better understand all aspects of a transmission cooler and help you pick out the best transmission cooler for your 4l60e!

Transmission CoolerGVWRType Of CoolerPrice
Tru-Cool Max LPD4739140,000Plate & FinShop Now
B&M 7026424,000Stacked PlateShop Now
Hayden 67930,000Plate & FinShop Now
B&M 7026630,000Stacked PlateShop Now

What Is A Transmission Cooler and What Do They Do?

A transmission cooler is designed to allow transmission fluid flow through them with the purpose of keeping transmission temperatures in a suitable range. Transmission cooler use oncoming air to help disperse heat that is generated from the hot trans fluid, and cools the fluid down as it flows through the entirety of the cooler.

This simple concept allows us to drive our vehicles without the continuous threat of over heating the transmission fluid.  If the transmission fluid gets too hot, it can cause serious damage and even failure.

 

How Does A Transmission Cooler Work?

A transmission oil cooler works by expelling the heat of the warm transmission fluid flowing through its core. For example, tube and fin style coolers will use ambient air to cool via the fins while the fluid flows through the tubes that make up the cooler. 

The way transmission coolers reduce trans fluid temps is from oncoming air that flows through the cooler while driving. Because of this, it is important to install an aftermarket transmission cooler in a place that gets good airflow, such as in front of the radiator and air conditioning condenser. 

Depending on the application, it may be required to mount the transmission cooler remotely. Despite the cooler not being able to get ample air flow, there are options such as installing a dedicated transmission cooler with a fan, or a frame mounted heat sink style transmission cooler. 

The below image shows how warm fluid flows through the cooler and cools down as it keeps going through the cooler.

Benefits Of Transmission Coolers

Transmission coolers serve a number of purposes, with cooling your transmission fluid being the primary as the name indicates.  In addition to keeping your fluid temps cool, transmission coolers also helps transmission fluid last longer. As transmission fluid heats up, over time it will start to break down and become less effective at helping internal transmission functions. 

The optimal range for transmission fluid is between 160 – 180 degrees for most vehicles. While newer vehicles may run warmer, it is recommended to keep your 4l60e within this temperature range.

The below chart shows the the impact that heat can have on your transmission and how long it takes for your transmission to fail. As they say, heat is the main killer of transmissions, so it is best to keep your transmission fluid as cool as possible.

 

Types Of Transmission Coolers

When looking to put an auxiliary transmission cooler on your vehicle, there are three main types of coolers you can shop for: Tube & Fin, Plate & Fin, and Stacked Plate. In addition, there is a forth type of cooler known as a heat sink, or frame mounted cooler. 

Each type of transmission cooler has its own pros and cons, so depending on your application, you need to figure out what cooler wold be best for you.

Read on as we compare tube and fin vs plate and fin vs stacked plate vs heat sink transmission coolers!

Tube & Fin Transmission Coolers

Tube and fin transmission coolers, as the name implies, is a simple type of trans cooler that utilizes a tube design that trans fluid flows through while having external fins that dissipate the heat. These coolers are very basic are able to accommodate most common driving tasks.

Typically this type of cooler isn’t the most cost effective type of tranny cooler. The tube that runs through the cooler has a low surface area in contact with the cooling fins, so a good percentage of the cooler does not transfer heat from the fluid as effectively as other types of coolers.

Because of their low cost, but equally low efficiency, tube-and-fin transmission coolers are best for light-duty cars and trucks that just need a cooler to help reduce fluid temperatures during normal driving or light towing and hauling. 

Plate & Fin Transmission Coolers

Plate & fin transmission coolers, unlike tube and fin coolers, utilize parallel plates that run horizontally through the cooler. These coolers may remind you of a traditional radiator. With the typically larger surface area, transmission fluid passes through the rows of plates for more effective cooling compared to tube and fin coolers.

Compared to tube and coolers, plate and fin coolers are a little more costly, but can still be very economical.  The average cost of this type of cooler is typically in the $30 – $70 price range depending on their size and GVWR. 

Some of the most common plate and fin style coolers are made by Hayden Automotive, who has a reputation for producing some of the best transmission coolers at a reasonable cost.

Stacked Plate Transmission Coolers

Compared to tube and fin and plate and fin coolers, stacked plate transmission coolers are the most costly, but cool the most efficiently and are arguably the most popular type of transmission oil coolers.

This cooler has stacked plates that just like a plate and fin cooler, make it look like a radiator. Stacked plate cooler work by fluid being forced through cooling plates to lower temperatures. Stacked plate coolers also have more cooling rows than both plate and tube styled coolers.

B&M is one of the leaders in the stacked plate transmission cooler department. Their products are industry known for being some of the highest quality and provide superior transmission cooling capabilities. 

These coolers can be used on anything from a daily driven sedan all the way up to a vehicle that tows or races, and needs a cooler to withstand and effectively cool the extreme heat.

Heat Sink Transmission Coolers

Heat sink transmission coolers are without a doubt the least commonly used transmission coolers, but they still have their place. Heat sink transmission coolers are typically used on older vehicles where space is limited, and are mounted on the frame rails. 

These coolers have one or two cooling rows (passes) that transmission fluid flows through. The cooler utilizes cooling fins, similar to tube and fin coolers to help disperse the heat generated from the transmission fluid. 

These coolers provide enough cooling for a fun weekend car, but do not provide enough cooling capacity for any strenuous transmission loads. 

4 Best 4l60e Transmission Coolers

Transmission coolers range in all shapes and sizes, and depending on your needs, it is important to do your research to understand what is best for your vehicle. Whether you’re looking to improve the transmission cooling efficiency of your daily driver, need added transmission cooling capabilities for towing or hauling in your truck or SUV, or drag race in your Corvette or F-body, there is a transmission cooler that suites your needs.

We reviewed the best transmission coolers for various needs that can be used in any 4l60e equipped car, truck, or SUV. Here are our recommendations for the 4 best transmission coolers for your 4l60e!

Transmission CoolerGVWRType Of CoolerPrice
Tru-Cool Max LPD4739140,000Plate & FinShop Now
B&M 7026424,000Stacked PlateShop Now
Hayden 67930,000Plate & FinShop Now
B&M 7026630,000Stacked PlateShop Now

Tru Cool 40k – Best Transmission Cooler For Towing & Trucks

Transmission CoolerGVWRType Of CoolerPrice
Tru-Cool Max LPD4739140,000Plate & FinShop Now
Tru Cool Max LPD4739 (Includes thermal bypass)40,000Plate & FinShop Now

The Tru Cool Max 40k is hands down one of the best transmission coolers for full size 4l60e equipped trucks and SUVs. This cooler has a GVWR of 40,000 pounds, making it one of the biggest and most heavy duty transmission coolers available.

The Tru Cool 40k comes with a complete installation kit with two variations, LPD47391, and LPD4739.  The LPD4739 trans cooler includes a thermal bypass.  This thermal bypass is typically used in areas where the climate is much colder, and helps the fluid reach optimal operating temps before completely flowing through the system.

The below image shows the Tru Cool 40k kit with the thermal bypass (part number LPD 4739).

Tru Cool 40k Transmission Cooler LPD4739 with Thermal Bypass - CPT 4l60e
Tru Cool low pressure drop - CPT 4l60e

Tru Cool Low Pressure Drop

 The Tru Cool Max 40k is a plate and fin style that utilizes Tru Cool’s Low Pressure Drop (LPD) internal system.  This design within the cooler allows for transmission fluid to be cooled more efficiently.

The LPD system directs colder, more viscous (thicker) transmission fluid to flow through the internal thermal bypass at the base of the cooler.  

As fluid warms up and becomes thinner, the fluid will begin to flow through the rest of the cooler. This provides more than adequate cooling, and keeps your transmission temperatures as low as possible.   

Tru Cool 40k Specifications & Information

The Tru Cool 40k features a highly durable double brazen aluminum construction with precise fin spacing to ensure efficient airflow through the body for maximum cooling. With its 13 rows of cooling, the cooler does a phenomenal job at keeping temperatures in check.

It uses 3/8″ inverted hex flare fitting, which allows for the use of 6 or 8 an lines and fittings for a more secure fit and greater fluid capacity.

Cooler Dimensions: 8 1/2″ x 22″ x 1 1/4″

GVW: 40,000 pounds

BTU Rating: 45,000

Fitting Size: 3/8″ inverted flare hex with 5/8″ thread size

Cooling Rows: 13

 

Tru Cool Installation & Mounting

Mounting and installation of the Tru Cool 40k is simple.  The cooler fits perfectly in front of the radiator and air conditioning condenser, as if it were designed for full size GM trucks and SUVs.

The Tru Cool 40k is so widely used that many companies out there are designing installation brackets specifically for these trucks, which makes installation super simple.

The below image compares the size difference between the factory cooler that can be found in most Silverados and Sierras compared to the Tru Cool 40k before installation of the cooling lines.

Tru Cool 40k Pros & Cons

Pros

  • 40,000 GVWR can towing or hauling heavy loads
  • Efficient plate & fin style design
  • Includes rubber line, fittings, mounting hardware & clamps
  • Low Pressure Drop design helps with transmission fluid efficiency
  • Fits perfect in full size trucks & SUVs

Cons

  • Large size makes installation difficult in smaller vehicles
  • May require more fittings and pieces for installation

 

Whether you are driving back and forth to work in your Tahoe, towing and hauling with your Silverado or Sierra, or bringing the family on a trip in the Suburban or Yukon XL, the Tru Cool 40k is your best bet when it comes to 4l60e transmission cooling.

The Tru Cool 40k is the best transmission cooler for your Truck or SUV, and fits like a glove in GM applications!

B&M 70264 – Best 4l60e Transmission Cooler

Transmission CoolerGVWRType Of CoolerPrice
B&M 7026424,000Stacked PlateShop Now

The B&M 70264 is certainly one of the most popular transmission coolers for 4l60e vehicles. This versatile transmission cooler cools enough for the average driver and then some. Between the rigors of stop and go daily driven traffic, light to moderate towing, and street / strip weekend cars, the B&M 70264 is hands down the top rated all around choice for best 4l60e transmission cooler.

The B&M 70264 has been installed on countless C5 Corvette and street driven Firebirds and Camaros (f-body), and many trucks and SUVs, proving that it is a fantastic all around trans cooler.

The following images show the 70264 installed on a full size truck, C5 Corvette, and Ls1 Camaro.

B&M 70264 Transmission Cooler On SIlverado, Sierra, Tahoe, Yukon, Suburban
B&M 70264 mounted dope style on ls1 camaro - CPT 4l60e

B&M 70264 Specifications & Information

The B&M 70264 utilizes a stacked plate design that measures 11.25″ x 7.25″ x 1.5″. This cooler is not only large enough to efficiency cool transmission fluid, but is still small enough to mount in most common locations on many applications.

Cooler Dimensions: 11.25″ x 7.25″ x  1.5″

Cooler Type: Stacked Plate

GVW: 24,000 pounds

Fitting Size: 11/32″ barb

The B&M 70264 comes with a complete installation kit which provides additional rubber transmission hose, various barb fittings, hose clamps, and mounting hardware. This provides a very hassle free installation no matter what vehicle you plan to use this on.

B&M 70264 Pros & Cons

Pros

  • 24,000 GVW
  • Stacked plate design provides great transmission fluid cooling
  • Includes transmission line, fittings, mounting hardware & clamps
  • Compact design help fit in most vehicles

Cons

  • Large size makes installation difficult in smaller vehicles
  • May require more fittings and pieces for installation

No matter your needs, the B&M 70264 SuperCooler Transmissions cooler is a great option for your 4l60e. Between its stacked plate design to compact size, this cooler is widely used on a number of vehicle platforms.

When it comes to buying and installation a transmission oil cooler in your car, truck, or SUV, the B&M 70264 is the go to.

Hayden 679 – Best Transmission Cooler For The Cost

Hayden 679 Transmission Cooler - cpt4l60e
Transmission CoolerGVWRType Of CoolerPrice
Hayden 67930,000Plate & FinShop Now

If you’re in need of a transmission cooler that provides great temperature control without breaking the bank, the the Hayden 679 should be your choice.  This cooler is rated at 30,000 GVWR, so it can handle most tasks.

This cooler would be perfect for your daily driven large or mid-sized SUV, or lighter duty truck use.

This video demonstrates how Hayden’s fluid bypass system within their transmission coolers allows transmission fluid to heat up before flowing through the entire cooler.  This is very similar to the Tru Cool Low Pressure Drop system.

This is done in an effort to prevent over-cooling of the fluid, and allows the fluid to reach a suitable operating temperature before it starts to cool down.

Hayden 679 Pros & Cons

Pros

  • 30,000 GVW to handle daily driving. towing or hauling heavy loads
  • Efficient plate & fin style design provides great transmission fluid cooling
  • Comes with universal install kit that includes transmission line, fittings, mounting hardware and clamps
  • Fits great in most vehicles

Cons

  • Large size makes installation difficult in smaller vehicles
  • May require more fittings and pieces for installation

B&M 70266 – Best Transmission Cooler For Racing

Transmission CoolerGVWRType Of CoolerPrice
B&M 7026630,000Stacked PlateShop Now

This B&M SuperCooler 70266 is a heavy duty cooler designed to endure intense transmission cooling needs. With its stacked plate design, the B&M 70266 is a serious cooler that can be used for many heavy duty applications.

This cooler is a great choice for those looking to drag race.  Not only because of the the design, but the size of the cooler allows for maximum heat displacement. The B&M 70266 has 1/2″ NPT threads that allow for the use of custom -6an or -8an lines and fittings.

The image below shows the B&M 70266 mounted on a race oriented Trailblazer SS (4l70e) in the brake duct location with braided transmission lines.

B&M 70266 Pros & Cons

Pros

  • 30,000 GVWR
  • Heavy duty stacked plate construction
  • Comes with 1/2″ NPT threaded fittings – Great for custom lines
  • Low Pressure Drop system to help fluid cooling efficiency
  • Great for heavy duty applications

Cons

  • Large size makes installation difficult in smaller vehicles
  • Does not include installation kit

If you’re looking to race with your 4l60e, then look no further than the B&M 70266 for your transmission cooling needs. This cooler’s efficient stacked plate design and heavy duty construction are able to handle all the rigors associates with drag racing and heavy duty transmission cooling needs.

This cooler utilizes 1/2″ NPT threaded fittings, making it perfect to create custom -6an or -8an lines for a more secure and leak free connection.

Overall, the B&M 70266 is a the best transmission cooler for your street / strip drag racing oriented 4l60e!

Conclusion

When shopping for a new transmission oil cooler, there are a number of aspects to consider such as:

  • Size
  • Fitment
  • Type of transmission cooler (plate & fin, stacked plate, tube & fin, or heat sink)
  • Cost
  • GVW rating

No matter what application you have, an external transmission cooler is always a great idea to help reduce transmission fluid temps and prolong your transmission’s lifespan. As we all know, heat is the number one killer of transmissions.