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Long time no talk guys!

I did the radiator bypass on a 2007 Xterra (now at 125,000 miles) to prevent SMOD about 6 months ago and all has been well. I did not install an aftermarket cooler. I live in Southern California where there are no extremes when it comes to weather, so I felt pretty good about performing the bypass.

I've been driving trouble free so I think my issue is more of a mental one. I can't help thinking one day my wife will be driving the car with our kids in the backseat and the tranny dies on the freeway. Also, I'm not sure if this is a recent issue or if this has been there all along, but when I'm cruising around 30-45mph (estimation) and I press on the gas pretty quickly, the car jolts.

I got a quote from the dealer to completely replace the radiator with a newer one and the quote wasn't as bad as I thought. Will be about $650 with a transmission flush. I could either use a bit of assurance from those who performed the bypass and have been going strong without a cooler or a kick in the butt to take the car into the dealership and have them do the job right. Any advice would be much appreciated.
 

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jeff_redx did a great write up / analysis on transmission temps associated with by-passing.

Here's the link: http://www.thenewx.org/forum/showthread.php?t=65980

You can come to your own conclusions based on Jeff's analysis. Personally I'm not a fan of the by-pass. By-passing mitigates the risk of SMOD, but its a trade off: slow death by increased temps vs catostrofic failure (via SMOD).

The right way is a new radiator. The band-aid is the by-pass, and the compromise is the by-pass with an extra cooler. All those are better than SMOD. Just depends on what your budget can afford and how long you plan to keep the truck.

As for the jolt, could be old fluid, drive train slop, or U-joints that are wearing.
 
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