Bad EGR Cooler... What Damage will it cause? - Ford Powerstroke Diesel Forum
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Old 01-07-2012, 08:59 PM
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Unhappy Bad EGR Cooler... What Damage will it cause?

I have a 2004 Ford E350 6.0 Power Storke with 70K Miles, I noticed that it is eating up alot of antifreeze, Dealer said I need to replace my EGR Cooler, Can I still drive this truck 300 miles to a shop near my house or do I need to tow it?
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Old 01-07-2012, 10:27 PM
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How much antifreeze? Is it smoking out exhaust? If you unplug egr valve you could maybe make it. My egr cooler is moist inside but not smoking, lost a quart in 400 miles. Egr valve is unpluged, to keep closed.
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Old 01-08-2012, 10:23 AM
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do u still have warranty?? if its eating coolant, that can make headgaskets go bad and have to have the heads pulled.
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Old 01-08-2012, 12:13 PM
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What can a leaking EGR cooler cause? You mean besides a really bad running engine?

Hydrolocked engine ($$ depends on what they have to do to fix this)
Blown head gaskets (between $3-6K)
Rusted turbo (cleaning kit 60 bucks, not doing it yourself? 6-800 bucks. If the center section is bad, the unison ring needs to be replaced or the VGT solenoid goes bad, add $$$ to this)
Removal/cleaning intake manifold (couple hundred)

Is it worth all this to try to drive it?
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Old 01-09-2012, 02:19 PM
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Drove the truck home. It only lost about 1/4 of the antifreeze from the antifreeze tank. It drove perfectly fine with no miss fire or hesitation. The only issue I had was that it would blow white smoke out the exhaust at speeds from 0-30 mph, once I got it up to speed the smoke stopped. When I would accelerate at higher speed there would be no white smoke. What do you thing I will need to replace?
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Old 01-09-2012, 02:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joe_r_dog View Post
do u still have warranty?? if its eating coolant, that can make headgaskets go bad and have to have the heads pulled.
Warranty is up
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Old 01-09-2012, 02:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NYC F-350 View Post
What can a leaking EGR cooler cause? You mean besides a really bad running engine?

Hydrolocked engine ($$ depends on what they have to do to fix this)
Blown head gaskets (between $3-6K)
Rusted turbo (cleaning kit 60 bucks, not doing it yourself? 6-800 bucks. If the center section is bad, the unison ring needs to be replaced or the VGT solenoid goes bad, add $$$ to this)
Removal/cleaning intake manifold (couple hundred)

Is it worth all this to try to drive it?
Yes, The Tow quote was $900 + (I'm positive that I made it without any more damage, engine looks clean of any anti-freeze, truck drove without any hesitation- only lost about 1 quart of antifreeze.)
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Old 01-09-2012, 02:32 PM
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Based on the things that I described what do you guys think that I will need to Replace?
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Old 01-09-2012, 02:58 PM
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What you need to do RIGHT NOW, this moment:
Go out and take the cap off the degas bottle to relieve the pressure in the cooling system. If you don't, you risk hydrolocking the engine.
Leave the cap LOOSE, park the truck and do not start it again until after the following is done.

After that, at an absolute minimum:
Egr cooler replacement or delete the egr cooler
New thermostat
Then, you should flush the cooling system and get rid of the bad coolant (what did you replace the lost coolant with????)
Next, you have to tear back into it and replace the oil cooler
You could do the egr cooler (or the delete) and the oil cooler at the same time, BUT you still would have to flush the cooling system to clean out the gunk that caused the whole issue in the first place. Flushing after installing a new oil cooler can drastically shorten its lifetime, meaning you might only get a month or two out of the new one. This is why you have to address the egr cooler failure first, before anything else.

Once the above is done, the next step is to install a pressure gauge in your cooling system. You want to add a "T" in the small rubber hose that goes to the degas bottle from the intake manifold. You want to watch what that pressure is. If it goes above 16psi (and I think it will), your head gaskets are toast.
Here is what that entails:
Remove the heads
Find a machine shop that is capable of milling these heads flat
Have the heads magnafluxed and hardened seats installed
(basically, you rebuild the head from one end to the other)
If milling is necessary to obtain flat, they can not remove more than 0.008" or the head will have to be replaced.
Here is a link to a thread written by a machinist that works on these heads. Read it:
How to Machine the 6.0
Buy a set of ARP head studs. Do not use the stock head bolts again.

I think you blew the head gaskets. All that white smoke you saw? That was coolant getting burned off. Every time the egr valve opened, the engine drank a big gulp of coolant (creating that smoke). Steam pressure created by this is WAY above what the stock head bolts can withstand, and they stretch. This allows the heads to actually lift a bit and blow the head gaskets. There will be 0 indication of this failure on the outside of the engine. The head gaskets blow between the cylinders, you will never see it until you take a head off.
A $900 tow bill is cheap in comparison......

Last edited by NYC F-350; 01-09-2012 at 03:02 PM.
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