Pressure in radiator (need help fast) - TCCoA Forums
 
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 10-16-2005, 01:18 AM Thread Starter
 
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Pressure in radiator (need help fast)

OK, it seems I have another big problem. I start my car and the top radiator hose gets hot pretty fast. The metal portion is too hot to hold onto for too long. Not sure if that is normal or not, but it just seems hotter than what it should be. I wouldn't worry about it if there wasn't other problems too.

After a quick run, say 5 minutes or so, or around the block. I can shut the car off wait 3 hours and come back to find that when I open the radiator cap, there is still pressure in the system and coolant squirts out. Again, this doesn't seem normal. There is no flowing of coolant into the reservoir, so I thought maybe my cap is sticking. I tested the cap only to find that it releases pressure at about 12 pds instead of the normal 16. So it would seem that the overflow should be filling up instead of staying on the cool level line.

The engine also seems to be running hotter than it should. My temp guage didn't register at all today eventhough it was working yesterday. I checked the connection and it looked ok. I have two temp sending units near the coolant air release valve. One has a single wire running to it (located on same pipe as purge valve) and the other (located to left of purge valve) has two wires. I am not sure which is the main sender for the gauge. Is there a way to check and see if these sensors are good? I read a post before where someone said ground out the sensor ro something like that.

I just replaced the thermostat and water pump today, but the problem still persists. I don't seem to be leaking coolant since it is still full (except what squirts out). I did a compresison check before I put the engine in (from a Junkyard) and the numbers all turned out excellent. The compression built up something like 30, 90, 150 on all cylinders. I plan on doing another compresion check tomorrow. The oil looked good and black. It still looks clean.

Can an improperly tightened upper intake manifold be the cause? Will this cause the engine to run hot? I don't see how it would since there are no water ports between UIM and LIM. All that runs through this is air and fuel misture. Am I wrong here? The reason I asked is that I removed the UIM and guestimated when tightening it. Tomorrow I will retighten in sequence and torque specs.

Is there anyway to test the radiator to see if exhaust gasses / oils are leaking into the system?

If I open the radiator and start the car will I be able to see coolant flow through the system through the cap hole?

Last edited by CincyT-Bird; 10-16-2005 at 01:53 AM.
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 10-16-2005, 10:05 AM
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calm down.

1st - there are 2 sensors, 1 for the ECU and the 2 is for the gauge. the guage one went bad on me awhile ago and it's not hard to replace. if i'm not mistaken its by the thermostate and has a pigtail end on it. look in your haynes manuel and it'll tell you which is which. or if you don't have haynes or chiltons, go buy one. if the problem persists after you replace the sensors, you may have a faulty gauge. in that case you will have to pull the instrument bezel and replace that guage or the whole bezel. which is also not hard to do. all it takes is removing the panel underneath the wheel and the one infront of it and then unscrewing the bezel to get it out (on my car at least dunno about your 91)

2nd - no coolant flows through your intake manifold (except particular years that there is a coolant passage under the throttle body), but that has no effect on your cooling system. and fuel doesn't flow through the upper intake manifold.

3rd - it is normal for the upper hose to get hot. HOWEVER, it should not get hot right away. once the coolant in the engine reaches a certain temp it opens the thermostat and it starts flowing back into the radiator through the upper hose. so when you get up tommorow morning feel your upper radiator hose, start the car, and hold onto it. once it gets hot (should take a couple minutes) then the coolant has opened the thermostat and it's flowing back into the radiator.

4th - i believe there should be only 14lbs of pressure on the radiator cap (mine may be different). if you think its the cap, replace it they're cheap. also check the hose to your overflow tank, it may be cremped or clogged with crap. if you put some stop leak stuff in your radiator, it could have done it.

hope this helps
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 10-16-2005, 09:33 PM Thread Starter
 
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I checked the coolant overflow tube and it was fine.

My radiator cap said 16 lbs on top and thought that was the original one since it said ford motorsport on it. Either way the one I took off was only holding about 12 lbs so it was bad. Didn't make since that there was pressure build up though since it was only holding 12 lbs. Could it have stuck closed and not let the overflow fill up? But wouldn't the pressure disappear after the car cools down for three hours???



I rented a pressure tester from autozone but it did not have the smaller attachment to hook it up to the t-birds smaller radiator. Does anyone know where I could get one from? I've tried advance and a local parts store. Im in Kentucky / Ohio area. I'd like to check for leaks in the system.
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 10-16-2005, 09:39 PM
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might try napa or carquest
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 10-16-2005, 11:05 PM Thread Starter
 
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Ok. I just drove the car for a longer period of time and here is what happened.

It seemed really sluggish and hesitate. Prob my TPS sensor since I heard some noise from TB (like gears in action). I'll worry about this after the cooling problem is fixed.

I let it warm up with the radiator cap open till flowant start poping out top. It looked ok. There were bubbles coming out top. Not a steady stream or anything but definate bubbles.

I closed the cap and filled up coolant to warm level. Drove it to get gas and around the block a couple times. Temp guage started moving up. But grabbed the upper intake hose metal part and burned my hand almost. It was definately hot.

The water hoses were rock solid by this point.

Only a little coolant went into overflow container. Normal amount after heating up it looked like.


I really need help on this.


Should I call the junkyard back where I got the engine and tell them that it has a bad head gasket and that the exhaust gasses are leaking into coolant?

I have really had a hard time with this particular junkyard. Really long story, but I'm guessing they knew engine was bad all along. First one they gave me was locked up, then tried to give me front wheel drive, then tried to give me 86 engine, then GAVE me a 88 engine. refused to give me a refund. I only have tile next monday for their 30 day warranty on engine. Needless to say these guys are a bunch of pricks.


new waterpump, t-stat, and radiator cap. Purged the air from coolant as specified.

Last edited by CincyT-Bird; 10-16-2005 at 11:10 PM.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 10-17-2005, 06:52 AM
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Could be an air bubble trapped in the system somewhere.

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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 10-17-2005, 06:54 AM
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hmmm. i would try purging the air from the coolant system again as per the the sticky thread. but other than the bubbles in the system. everything sounds normal to me. but i would get an opinion from a certified ford mechanic before i take it back so you have some leverage. also, whatever the ford guy tells you. get it in writing. i would have kicked there *** back when they gave that SHO FWD engine
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 10-18-2005, 11:31 PM
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dont trust the temp gauge it sucks. could be a stuck thermostat even though u replaced it. id take it out and boil in a pot of water to make sure its opening properly. clog in system maybe
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 10-21-2005, 10:47 PM Thread Starter
 
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It was definately the head gasket. Both sides had damp rotting gaskets between the outer most water passage way and the cylinder. The metal ring around the cylinder also was deteriorated. The passage hole was also clogged up bad, as if stop leak had been out in it. The gaskets hole was so clogged that no light comes through that passage hole.

The junkyard even had the balls to tell me that I did this and that the engine was fine. He said I caused all that damage in the week I had the engine. Well after it took me 4 days to put it in (working at night after work), two days to take exhaust off and clean out precats (had rattles in them form lose debris), another day and half changing waterpump / t-stat since it seemed to get pressure in lines the first couple times I started it. So after all that I got to drive the car around the ****ing block. And I burnt the gaskets out.

The wierd thing is that I did a compression test and the compression was fine. The car didnt have coolant in it, or a waterpump / radiator on it, or fuses in it, so I wasn't able to check for coolant leaks. Is it normal for a car to get good compression readings even though it is leaking coolant?
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 10-22-2005, 07:34 AM
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time to go kick some junkyard a*ss
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