Sunday, February 26, 2012

Brrrrrr!!!!

Sometime early Saturday morning the temperature dipped below freezing. How do I know you ask? Each morning one of the first things I do is turn on the kitchen faucet to HOT to preheat our coffee mugs. I like hot coffee, and I like it to stay hot for more than 4 minutes, so preheating the mugs is a must. Well, the water had been running for just a few seconds when the flow reduced to almost nothing. My suspicion was that the there was an ice plug in the hose, and sure enough when I checked the outside temp it was just 34 degrees at 7am! Gradually the plug melted and I was able to get on with my coffee prep....lol!

Since it was so cold there was no way I was going to start pouring coolant until it warmed up a little. Finally around 9am it was warm enough to be outside. I first had to finish attaching the 5th hose, torque the 5/8" bolts, and reattach the fuel filter before proceeding to mix and pour up to 22 gallons of coolant into the giant rear facing radiator. It didn't take long to finish the unfinished business from the day before, and I began mixing a gallon of coolant with a gallon of distilled water. After pouring in each 2 gallons I mixed I would peak inside the driver's side engine door to see if there were any leaks......after 8 gallons there were still none, but after 10 gallons I could see coolant running down around the pump. Of course, I was dismayed at this revolting turn of events! To say the least I was mildly depressed.

Using my small LED flashlight I began to look around the pump to figure out where the coolant was coming from. At first it appeared to becoming out of the area where the pump butts up against the engine block, but I knew it couldn't be the pump as it is a gear driven pump and no water enters the housing area where the pump attached to the engine block, so it had to be coming from higher up. Nevertheless, I decided to drain all 10 gallons out, and undo all the connections to be sure I wasn't missing anything.....like a crack in the pump housing walls, or something catastrophic like that. It did not take too long to disassemble the pump and hoses. After re-checking the pump for any flaws, and noting that the "O"ring was still in the proper position I turned my attention to the hoses where they attached to the pump. It turns out the highest hose connection, a 4" connecting piece had not properly seated to the pump when I put it in the first time. I didn't want to completely remove the pump, so I took my time and "massaged" the hose connection lower onto the pump housing. After I was satisfied that it was in a better position I attached an 8mm socket to my socket wrench and tightened down the two hose clamps on that hose, as well as all the others. Instead of reattaching the fuel filter I decided to leave it out until I was sure there were no leaks.....just makes it easier to see what is going on, and get at any hose clamps that may need additional tightening.

Now the process of re-pouring the 10 gallons back in to see what I had. As I poured in the 10th gallon I said a little prayer, and then went and looked. For a minute all looked fine, but then I began to see a very small, and I mean small, trickle coming down from the upper 4" hose connection. I got out the 8mm fitting and ratchet and began torquing each hose clamp slowly so as not to over tighten and strip the clamp. At last the trickle stopped. I wiped everything off and waited a few minutes. No leaks. Yea! With the leak plugged I proceeded to pour in the rest of the coolant. Finally about 4pm I finished, and still no leaks.

Today, Sunday, I will check first to see if the coolant level has dropped (liquid seeks it's own level, and sometimes overnight it will settle a little requiring the addition of more coolant to top it off), add any if necessary, and then start up the 6V92 and see how it, the 4" hose connector, performs with pressure applied.

We are staying on the property of Elaine's sister while we visit. Elaine's sister works for US Air and is on a trip until this afternoon, so we have been spending time inside the house while she is gone....well Elaine has.....I've had my head inside the engine bay of our "home" for 3 days. At any rate, her brother and sister-in-law brought steaks, and margaritas over for dinner. A very nice way to unwind after an up and down day.

Thanks for stopping by!

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