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Old 11-21-2013, 06:40 AM
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Strange heat problem

Having a hell of a time getting this figured out. Wondering if anyone else has had the same issue and can shed any light.

Backstory -

Bought truck in September with 112k miles on it. DPF/cat delete, intake, and H&S tuner. Had signs of puking out of the degas bottle and was low on coolant, but the price was right so I bought it. Didn't have any issues with the truck except that if coolant was filled in the bottle to the "Cold fill mark" lines, it would puke out. After a while of getting annoyed with that, I set out to fix it. The first thing I did was replace the coolant cap - that did nothing. The next thing I did was flush the coolant system and replace the thermostats. I flushed the system with Cummins Restore, tons of water, and refilled with EC-1 coolant. Didn't have any issues afterwards, but it still puked. The next thing I did was delete the EGR coolers.

After I deleted the EGR coolers, it was still puking, but my heat started acting weird. It would blow hot a few minutes after starting, then would stop, then would start again after a while - like air was trapped in the heater core. I tried putting a funnel on the degas bottle and just letting it run to get the air out, driving it for a few days to get the air out, and no change. Finally I took it to a friend's shop that had a vacuum filler. We drained the radiator, drew a vacuum on the system (Held 15 inches solid, no leaks), and filled it back up. Had to add another half gallon of distilled water to bring the coolant back up in the bottle so I thought we were good to go. That was this past Sunday. Since then, I tested the "new" cap I bought from Ford a while back and found that it doesn't hold pressure. I went to Advance Auto two days ago and bought a Stant cap - that has completely solved my puking issue. However, this morning, the heat acted up again. Was blowing hot at the end of my road, but then I got on the highway for a couple miles, and when I stopped at the gas station it was blowing cold. Shut it off, went inside, came back out, and it was blowing cold until I was another couple miles down the road.

It's acting like there is air in the system, but I have done everything to bleed it. My next step is going to be to drain, vacuum, and refill one more time if nobody here has any ideas.

I thought maybe a headgasket was popped and causing pressure/air to be put into the coolant system, but I tested the coolant for combustion and the test came back good. The truck runs great and returns great fuel mileage, I just can't seem to figure this heat issue out after the EGR was deleted.

Thanks
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Old 11-21-2013, 06:32 PM
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Tee in a pressure gauge between the radiator and degas bottle and go honk the bag off it, look for pressure climbing. Likely got a bad head gasket.

That being said, water pump impellers are plastic and have been known to spin on the shaft.
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Old 11-22-2013, 04:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Angry Hillbilly View Post
Tee in a pressure gauge between the radiator and degas bottle and go honk the bag off it, look for pressure climbing. Likely got a bad head gasket.

That being said, water pump impellers are plastic and have been known to spin on the shaft.
Could be a headgasket I guess, I just have a hard time believing it. Coolant system holds vacuum and pressure, no combustion gasses in the coolant system, doesn't blow coolant out of the bottle, doesn't lose coolant. No typical signs of headgasket failure either - doesn't overheat, no smoke, etc. Waterpump also seems unlikely as the truck doesn't overheat or run hot.

I'm going to try draining the coolant and vacuum filling it again tonight or tomorrow. I think it sucked air in after the last time I did it, since I still had a faulty coolant cap (Didn't hold any pressure, had an audible hiss coming from it when truck was warmed up). The only thing that gets me is that this only started after deleting the EGR - when I flushed the coolant to change from Ford Gold to EC-1, I refilled it without a vacuum filler and didn't have any issues at all.

I hand bled a good bit of air out of the system last night when I got home, but still had the heat issue this morning. Blew warm/hot air until the temperature gauge came up to the middle, quit for a couple minutes, then mysteriously came back.

Last edited by SVTDanny; 11-22-2013 at 04:07 AM.
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Old 11-25-2013, 05:43 AM
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Hey Danny,

Any luck with figuring this thing out yet? I have an 08 F350 that is behaving the same way!
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Old 11-25-2013, 05:49 AM
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Guess I'll concede that it is indeed a headgasket issue. Heating issues were more pronounced with the cold temperatures this morning. The heat would get weaker for a few seconds after every time the boost saw 20-30 pounds or more without fail. I guess it is only pushing past on the compression stroke which seems strange. Oh well.... time to figure out the best way to tackle this job.
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Old 11-25-2013, 08:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SVTDanny View Post
Guess I'll concede that it is indeed a headgasket issue. Heating issues were more pronounced with the cold temperatures this morning. The heat would get weaker for a few seconds after every time the boost saw 20-30 pounds or more without fail. I guess it is only pushing past on the compression stroke which seems strange. Oh well.... time to figure out the best way to tackle this job.
If you were dumping that much air into your cooling system, you would be puking out the degas cap for sure. Plus combustion gas is pretty darn hot, I can't see it making your heat blow cold...

If you end up draining the coolant again and using the AirLift tool, pull the vacuum up to about 25psi or so and let it sit to test for a leak.

Have you checked your HVAC blend door? the motor going out is pretty common.
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Old 11-25-2013, 12:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by illadvised View Post
If you were dumping that much air into your cooling system, you would be puking out the degas cap for sure. Plus combustion gas is pretty darn hot, I can't see it making your heat blow cold...

If you end up draining the coolant again and using the AirLift tool, pull the vacuum up to about 25psi or so and let it sit to test for a leak.

Have you checked your HVAC blend door? the motor going out is pretty common.
My thinking is that it's pushing past on the compression stroke. The air that gets into the coolant is going straight to the heater core and causing a vapor lock. Tested again on my way home, and without fail, every single time the boost reaches 30 pounds or more, there is a significant temperature change in the heat. The longer the pull, the longer until the heat returns to normal.

At idle the heat is hot to where it's slightly uncomfortable to hold your hand in front of the vent for very long. At highway speed, the heat is scalding hot. After a hard pull, the heat feels like it does at idle, then will return to normal. Last night I filled the coolant bottle to the top line, by some off chance that it would help. Today it puked that extra amount out, and has returned to its "comfort level" right below the bottom line.

I'm not sure how this relates to my issue with the heat cutting off completely for a few minutes after it comes to temperature. Perhaps when the thermostats are closed, the air buildup gets trapped behind them, then finds it's way to the heater core once they open. Sounds a little far fetched, though.

My next steps are to try draining/refilling with the vacfiller, and sticking a pressure gauge on my coolant system. I'll keep this thread updated with my findings.
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Old 11-26-2013, 04:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SVTDanny View Post
My thinking is that it's pushing past on the compression stroke. The air that gets into the coolant is going straight to the heater core and causing a vapor lock. Tested again on my way home, and without fail, every single time the boost reaches 30 pounds or more, there is a significant temperature change in the heat. The longer the pull, the longer until the heat returns to normal.

At idle the heat is hot to where it's slightly uncomfortable to hold your hand in front of the vent for very long. At highway speed, the heat is scalding hot. After a hard pull, the heat feels like it does at idle, then will return to normal. Last night I filled the coolant bottle to the top line, by some off chance that it would help. Today it puked that extra amount out, and has returned to its "comfort level" right below the bottom line.

I'm not sure how this relates to my issue with the heat cutting off completely for a few minutes after it comes to temperature. Perhaps when the thermostats are closed, the air buildup gets trapped behind them, then finds it's way to the heater core once they open. Sounds a little far fetched, though.

My next steps are to try draining/refilling with the vacfiller, and sticking a pressure gauge on my coolant system. I'll keep this thread updated with my findings.
Yeah if you are puking from the bottle, and deleted, there is a good chance you have blown head gaskets. Although I am not convinced that is the cause of your heat issue inside the cab.

Like I mentioned with the vacuum filler you can pull up to around 25psi and let it hold over time to see if you have a leak before you even fill it back up. If it holds OK, fill it back and make sure to increase the vacuum mid way through once or twice. I didn't recharge the vacuum on mine and I still had air. I didn't know you could stop it and increase the vacuum again, so all the air did not come out of mine.

Also visually check your HG, mine had slight visual signs of leakage. It puked on me, but I really had no other signs of HG failure besides a failed pressure test.
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  #9  
Old 12-10-2013, 06:21 PM
tim4runner
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I'm in head gasket denial as well with the exact same symptoms.
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Old 02-12-2014, 06:35 AM
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Any update here? I am having some of the same issues. Planning on trying to bleed some of the air out of the system tonight. Do you need to totally start over and drain then fill the system up with coolant on a vacuum? Can you just hook it up, pull a vacuum on it, then top it off?
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