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Discussion Starter #1
Thanks for any input beforehand! I have searched the forum and the interweb and get mixed answers for this issue. Bought used 6.0 with 138K miles, i now have 145 on it. Only used to pull trailers, not a daily driver. At 134 owner had New oil cooler, stand pipes, injectors, sinester egr cooler, and coolant filtration installed, I called shop to verify. He said studs and gaskets were done probably around 100K miles. I just did blue spring kit as well.

Been using it as a DD for last couple months due to work car taking a crap. All of a sudden some mornings it will puff out white smoke on start up. Not always consistent, and a little rough at idle when it does it. Smoke clears instantly and does not show up while driving. Sometimes after its parked for a while after driving it, it does the same thing. Seemed to do it on colder mornings so I figured sticktion. Bought Archoil 9100 and put it in. Did not stop it. Again this is intermittent.

2 weeks ago go to start up, crank no start. No symptoms before hand except this smoke and rough idle. NO CEL. Shop says injector #2 is bad which is why it won't start and reason getting smoke. They replace and I pick up. I used the truck today and damn thing did the same thing!!! Puff on white smoke on start up, little rough, but then runs normal.

I don't think I am loosing coolant but then again I don't drive it every day. Guess i need to put some miles and see if I am loosing coolant. Shop owner out for the week so I am waiting until he returns to take truck back in. I have read some 6.0 drop extra fuel on start up, but that does't explain the light rough idle. Shop said white smoke on start up is not normal. Not sure if they did bubble test for blow by. No coolant is coming out of the degas bottle.

Thoughts?? Just went self employed and this thing is getting close to going on the chopping block.
 

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What does the coolant smell like? Also, you can try the bubble test yourself. You also need som sort of monitor that con show you FICM Voltage. Should. be a nice solid 46 Volts without dropping, not even quickly during KOEO, starting, and driving down the road.

THese things trucks are expensive, even if you do all the maintenance yourself, and manage to avoid throwing parts at it.
 

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Do you know what brand of oil cooler was installed?

The Sinister EGR cooler is not a good thing IMO.

ALL owners of a used 6.0L need a scan tool. It can help you identify problems and hopefully identify them when they are little issues because little issues can often times become BIG issues.

The best system from a cost standpoint is to download ForScan to a smartphone and but an ELM327 OBDII adapter. Total cost of $35 or so. ForScan is a great code reader also.

Then you need to install a fuel pressure sensor and gauge. It may cost $100 or more, but it is worth it. If you have low fuel pressure you can ruin $3000 worth of injectors. If you need help with finding a good fuel pressure gauge system, just ask. Even with the "blue spring", there are multiple ways you can still have low fuel pressure.

Edit - I just noticed that you had low fuel pressure at WOT. This may have damaged more than the #2 injector that you had replaced.

If you start losing coolant, then I would recommend a pressure gauge on the degas bottle. You can actually buy two pressure sensors and just connect the fuel pressure sensor wiring over to the degas bottle pressure sensor if or when the time comes.

I suspect you may have another injector, but you might want to pull the EGR valve and see if it is clogged.

You bought a used vehicle, you have to expect some issues IMO.

Is it an early or late 04 (ie where is the ICP sensor located)?

How much did you pay, if you don't mind me asking?

In another post you say you have put almost $6000 into it. What in the world have you had to do?? Did you or the previous owner install new injectors or was that your expense? What brand of injectors were installed? Was the #2 injector (the one that failed recently) replaced on warranty?

I also saw a post about a new HPOP. What brand was installed?

How detailed were you in checking the truck out before the purchase (ie did you or a mechanic do any detailed tests such as check fuel pressure, do a contribution test, do a compression test, check the oil cooler efficiency)?

I know it is supposed to have a new oil cooler (installed by previous owner), but I sure wouldn't take anyone's word on that!! When you get a gauge system, then post up the oil and coolant temps (on a FULLY warmed up engine).
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Update,
Went out to the truck this morning and coolant level has dropped. damn. I do have the Torque app on my phone to see vitals. Truck also has fuel pressure sensor that'w why I know pressure was dropping.

I did not take owner at his word, I called the shop and had them look up the truck to verify the work they had done. Only reason I purchased to start with. Shop installed all the new parts not the owner himself. Dont know what parts they put in.

I am now seeing 65-70psi on the fuel pressure. I cleaned the EGR valve when i first noticed the smoke to take that out of the equation as well.

Its a late 04 with ICP sensor up top in front.

Entire AC system was shot as well as lower alternator and glow plug #4, That was 4K out the door in Nov. Other 2K have been other small items together.

No warranty on parts as I am not the owner that had them installed.

On warmed up engine I see a Delta between 9-14F. That's probably my clue right there. Never had it go over 15F though. It stabilizes in that range.
 

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Made a bubble tester tonight. Will taker her out for a spin in the morning to get up to temp and do the bubble test. Will look at Delta as well. Called dealership this morning to get ballpark price, $2700 for parts and labor to replace egr and oil cooler. Guess truck will sit until I can get the money.

It has a sinister EGR cooler on it now, don't see a need to replace it if there is nothing wrong with it and the problem is the oil cooler not the EGR cooler. I know guys here say they are junk and to go with bulletproof. We will see what happens. Maybe sinister will pressure test for me? Should I go with OEM oil cooler or aftermarket?

Was really hoping to make it to 225K miles with the previous work done on it. I have a feeling a should have not flushed the system out when I purchased it. I have read it can clog up the oil cooler. DOH!!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Do you know what brand of oil cooler was installed?

The Sinister EGR cooler is not a good thing IMO.

ALL owners of a used 6.0L need a scan tool. It can help you identify problems and hopefully identify them when they are little issues because little issues can often times become BIG issues.

The best system from a cost standpoint is to download ForScan to a smartphone and but an ELM327 OBDII adapter. Total cost of $35 or so. ForScan is a great code reader also.

Then you need to install a fuel pressure sensor and gauge. It may cost $100 or more, but it is worth it. If you have low fuel pressure you can ruin $3000 worth of injectors. If you need help with finding a good fuel pressure gauge system, just ask. Even with the "blue spring", there are multiple ways you can still have low fuel pressure.

Edit - I just noticed that you had low fuel pressure at WOT. This may have damaged more than the #2 injector that you had replaced.

If you start losing coolant, then I would recommend a pressure gauge on the degas bottle. You can actually buy two pressure sensors and just connect the fuel pressure sensor wiring over to the degas bottle pressure sensor if or when the time comes.

I suspect you may have another injector, but you might want to pull the EGR valve and see if it is clogged.

You bought a used vehicle, you have to expect some issues IMO.

Is it an early or late 04 (ie where is the ICP sensor located)?

How much did you pay, if you don't mind me asking?

In another post you say you have put almost $6000 into it. What in the world have you had to do?? Did you or the previous owner install new injectors or was that your expense? What brand of injectors were installed? Was the #2 injector (the one that failed recently) replaced on warranty?

I also saw a post about a new HPOP. What brand was installed?

How detailed were you in checking the truck out before the purchase (ie did you or a mechanic do any detailed tests such as check fuel pressure, do a contribution test, do a compression test, check the oil cooler efficiency)?

I know it is supposed to have a new oil cooler (installed by previous owner), but I sure wouldn't take anyone's word on that!! When you get a gauge system, then post up the oil and coolant temps (on a FULLY warmed up engine).
I totally expect some issues with used vehicles as that is all I buy. I actually try to buy salvaged vehicles when I can to save some money up front. So some work is to be expected. I paid 10K for this thing. Its not in the best cosmetic shape. Im at 16K with various items I have done to it so far. No HPOP work that I know of.

In regards to doing a deep check, you are correct. I purchased it as I have done all of my vehicles, ask questions, take it for a drive. ect... Obviously my concern were the common failed parts like coolers and head gaskets that's why I called the shop to verify what they had done. At days end I know some just have better luck than others. I mean my dad lost his head gaskets on a 7.3 with 150K miles for goodness sakes. I mean that's almost unheard of and he does not beat on the thing.
 

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I was just curious. 6K sounded like a lot of money when a lot of work had already been done. I understand the cost when I see the "entire A/C system" requiring work.

It is a very good thing to have the fuel pressure sensor. There are many things that can cause low fuel pressure. Since you have had low fuel pressure, I suspect you have another weak injector and that is causing the white smoke on start-up.

IMO the oil cooler performance is the first thing to look at when evaluating a used 6.0L possible purchase.

It could be clogged already or it could have a cheap (underperforming) cooler installed. The Sinister oil cooler has had MANY problems. No way would I want one under my hood. I feel the same way about the EGR cooler, but the "tube design" EGR cooler they sell might be having a better track record. Still, I have no respect for the quality of their parts.

OEM oil coolers are best, unless you spend big bucks for the air cooled oil cooler from BulletProofDiesel.

Be aware that if an EGR cooler leaks, it can fill a cylinder with coolant and the the resulting "hydrolock" can damage engine components.

Regarding your concern about coolant loss, be patient. The level can actually fluctuate a little on its own and it can change if you park on even a slight slope.

The best way to go about troubleshooting a perceived coolant loss is to install a pressure gauge. The first test is to put about 12 psig on the coolant system and see if it holds. The degas bottle cap is rated at 14 psig typically (I installed a 20 psig coolant cap, but I wouldn't recommend it with the stock radiator). If it doesn't hold pressure, then fix whatever is leaking. Then watch the coolant pressure as you drive and as the engine gets FULLY up to temperature. Make a few relatively hard accelerations and see what the coolant pressure gets up to. Then you can vent the pressure off (do it carefully since the fluid is hot), and drive it. If the pressure rises back up to the rated pressure on the coolant cap, then you most likely have a head gasket leak or an EGR cooler leak.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I was just curious. 6K sounded like a lot of money when a lot of work had already been done. I understand the cost when I see the "entire A/C system" requiring work.

It is a very good thing to have the fuel pressure sensor. There are many things that can cause low fuel pressure. Since you have had low fuel pressure, I suspect you have another weak injector and that is causing the white smoke on start-up.

IMO the oil cooler performance is the first thing to look at when evaluating a used 6.0L possible purchase.

It could be clogged already or it could have a cheap (underperforming) cooler installed. The Sinister oil cooler has had MANY problems. No way would I want one under my hood. I feel the same way about the EGR cooler, but the "tube design" EGR cooler they sell might be having a better track record. Still, I have no respect for the quality of their parts.

OEM oil coolers are best, unless you spend big bucks for the air cooled oil cooler from BulletProofDiesel.

Be aware that if an EGR cooler leaks, it can fill a cylinder with coolant and the the resulting "hydrolock" can damage engine components.

Regarding your concern about coolant loss, be patient. The level can actually fluctuate a little on its own and it can change if you park on even a slight slope.

The best way to go about troubleshooting a perceived coolant loss is to install a pressure gauge. The first test is to put about 12 psig on the coolant system and see if it holds. The degas bottle cap is rated at 14 psig typically (I installed a 20 psig coolant cap, but I wouldn't recommend it with the stock radiator). If it doesn't hold pressure, then fix whatever is leaking. Then watch the coolant pressure as you drive and as the engine gets FULLY up to temperature. Make a few relatively hard accelerations and see what the coolant pressure gets up to. Then you can vent the pressure off (do it carefully since the fluid is hot), and drive it. If the pressure rises back up to the rated pressure on the coolant cap, then you most likely have a head gasket leak or an EGR cooler leak.
I do not think they used a Sinister Oil cooler since when I called to ask about parts installed he specifically only called out the egr cooler as a sinister unit. However no one knows until you take it apart. I am not interested in a hydrolock situation!

I drove it this morning and coolant level fluctuating from Max to Min line. I can only think this is due to expansion when hot. Been sitting all day, Ill take a look tomorrow and see if it has dropped under the Min line.

I did the bubble test this morning after oil and coolant temp were at 190F. I should post the videos somehow, but basically I got some bubbles with truck on which I have read is normal. No velocity to bubbles just one about every couple seconds or so, unplugged turbo vanes, bubbles stayed the same, plugged turbo back in, bubbled didn't change, came out same size and speed. Kind of hopeful.

Just ordered a dial gauge from amazon tonight so I will be plumbing it inline at the top of the degas bottle and running hose into the cab and get some more info.

What is the max psi I should see in coolant system on normal running truck?

Thanks for the help!
 

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I do not think they used a Sinister Oil cooler since when I called to ask about parts installed he specifically only called out the egr cooler as a sinister unit. However no one knows until you take it apart. I am not interested in a hydrolock situation!

I drove it this morning and coolant level fluctuating from Max to Min line. I can only think this is due to expansion when hot. Been sitting all day, Ill take a look tomorrow and see if it has dropped under the Min line.

I did the bubble test this morning after oil and coolant temp were at 190F. I should post the videos somehow, but basically I got some bubbles with truck on which I have read is normal. No velocity to bubbles just one about every couple seconds or so, unplugged turbo vanes, bubbles stayed the same, plugged turbo back in, bubbled didn't change, came out same size and speed. Kind of hopeful.

Just ordered a dial gauge from amazon tonight so I will be plumbing it inline at the top of the degas bottle and running hose into the cab and get some more info.

What is the max psi I should see in coolant system on normal running truck?

Thanks for the help!
I drove until the truck was warmed up, vented the cap to get rid of the thermal expansion, then towed my trailer. I saw about 3 PSI, but got to 6 PSI up steep extended grades. You don’t need to tow, I was trouble shooting a whistle that only appeared towing heavy. For my failure points, I was looking for 16 PSI. If it got there quickly, would have pointed to head gaskets; slowly, would have been EGR. If it spiked high below 16, I’d suspect a cap venting early.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I drove until the truck was warmed up, vented the cap to get rid of the thermal expansion, then towed my trailer. I saw about 3 PSI, but got to 6 PSI up steep extended grades. You don’t need to tow, I was trouble shooting a whistle that only appeared towing heavy. For my failure points, I was looking for 16 PSI. If it got there quickly, would have pointed to head gaskets; slowly, would have been EGR. If it spiked high below 16, I’d suspect a cap venting early.
Thanks for the info! Hoping to get a gauge on it today and romp around in it. Coolant level has held at MIN line in bottle but I have not driven it for a couple days. Again, not a daily driver. Ill report back once i get some numbers. I reached out to sinister and the sales guy said he has never heard of one of their coolers cracking.

If I pull my egr valve and it is gummy wouldn't that imply a cracked cooler? The stupid part about this was that this truck had the egr completely deleted but past owner had to put it all back on after CA passed the diesel smog law. He paid to remove it and then to reinstall it. Ridiculous !
 

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I drove until the truck was warmed up, vented the cap to get rid of the thermal expansion, then towed my trailer. I saw about 3 PSI, but got to 6 PSI up steep extended grades. You don’t need to tow, I was trouble shooting a whistle that only appeared towing heavy. For my failure points, I was looking for 16 PSI. If it got there quickly, would have pointed to head gaskets; slowly, would have been EGR. If it spiked high below 16, I’d suspect a cap venting early.
Well I Tee'd in a pressure gauge to the line going to the top of the degas bottle. Truck was fully warmed up, about 190F coolant/oil. Drove it 15 minutes home and I got to WOT a handful of times. I could not get the pressure over 4psi no matter how hard I got into it. This relieves my stress on head gaskets for the moment.

I figured I would park truck nose down tonight so drove up on some 4x4s and pulled the egr valve. I just cleaned it about 2 months ago but the bottom of it was gooey. When I looked down in the manifold and put my finger there it looked and felt like oil pooling up. The top half of the EGR valve was dry. I did not see any coolant in there. Ill check in the morning to see if any coolant has dribbled down or if level in degas is below MIN lever. Is the oil caused by the CCV hose going to the manifold?

Lastly noticed smoke coming out of the dipstick tube because the top of the dipstick handle is broken. Is this normal?
 

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Before concluding that there is "no head gasket issue", make sure that the coolant system is leak free and capable of staying pressured up to say 14 psig for at least 8 hours. Pressure up a cold system and let it sit. Hopefully you don't lose more than 1 psi.

SOME smoke from the dipstick tube or oil fill spout is normal. Take a video of it and post it - we won't be able to make an assessment otherwise.
 

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Before concluding that there is "no head gasket issue", make sure that the coolant system is leak free and capable of staying pressured up to say 14 psig for at least 8 hours. Pressure up a cold system and let it sit. Hopefully you don't lose more than 1 psi.

SOME smoke from the dipstick tube or oil fill spout is normal. Take a video of it and post it - we won't be able to make an assessment otherwise.
Well I kept the truck pointed nose down all night and not a trickle of coolant in the manifold. So that's positive. Like i mentioned is was oil in the bottom I wiped out.

Looks like Ill have to rent a pressurizing kit from autozone and give it a try to see if I have any leaks in the system. Ill have to take a video of the dipstick smoke and post a youtube video for you guys to see. I have read to take off the fill spout cap and flip it over or to remove it and hit the throttle. If the smoke waffs out then no blowby, if it shoots out with some velocity then you know you have an issue.

I'm starting to think this white smoke is a fuel thing because it typically coincides with a really mild rough idle symptom that typically goes away as the day goes on while driving.

Unfortunately all my dials from torque pro app just completely disappeared when i closed the app last time. got to redo them
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
Ok took her out for a drive today.
Here is the blowby at operating temp. Seems like to much for a truck with 144k miles. Funny no one who has worked on it in the last year has mentioned anything.

I have about 9lbs of pressure in the cooling system from driving around. I tried the AutoZone kit but couldn't get any of the caps to seal correctly to build pressure. Figured I would go about it a different way with natural pressure. We will see how much pressure there is in 5 hours. Coolant level in Degas bottle has not changed at all.
 

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Before concluding that there is "no head gasket issue", make sure that the coolant system is leak free and capable of staying pressured up to say 14 psig for at least 8 hours. Pressure up a cold system and let it sit. Hopefully you don't lose more than 1 psi.

SOME smoke from the dipstick tube or oil fill spout is normal. Take a video of it and post it - we won't be able to make an assessment otherwise.
Please see video above. What do you think Bismic?
 

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Well in 4 hours time the coolant system has gone from 9 lbs to 0!! Son of gun.... Must be a leak somewhere in the system but I have never seen it drip coolant even after towing a trailer. As mentioned no coolant drop in degas bottle and no coolant being pushed out of the degas bottle. I am getting closer to the edge with this thing. haha
 

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That crankcase smoke is excessive, especially for 145k miles. With the loss of coolant pressure and potential injector issue, I would advise checking the oil for water and fuel content. Send an oil sample to Blackstone Labs (other companies include Polaris, Butler, MRT). If possible, taking an oil sample is always best after a reasonably long drive to get the engine fully up to temp.

A little white smoke on start-up is somewhat normal, but by a little I mean a slight puff that is not very visible.

Try the bubble test on the fuel system, and I would add a fuel pressure gauge. even though you did the regulator spring upgrade, there are many other ways that fuel pressure can drop below the needed 45-50 psig minimum.
 

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Well in 4 hours time the coolant system has gone from 9 lbs to 0!! Son of gun.... Must be a leak somewhere in the system but I have never seen it drip coolant even after towing a trailer. As mentioned no coolant drop in degas bottle and no coolant being pushed out of the degas bottle. I am getting closer to the edge with this thing. haha
That pressure loss does mean a leak, but for 4 hours, it probably is a small one and could be from the cap. I would try to track it down though.
 

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If you have bubble test fluid, or mix some up with regular dish soap, it will show the leak when sprayed on the hoses, degas bottle, etc. Also, since there is no fluid leaking at the time, I suspect it is coming from something with air in the system, which ought only to be a cracked degas bottle, the cap, or perhaps a loose small hose from the bottle to the radiator. You can also pressurize it to 15 PSI and perhaps you’ll hear it leak.

On another vehicle, I pressurized to 15 PSI, and overnight it went to 10 PSI, and I looked carefully and found the leak. On the same vehicle, a different leak turned out to be a micro fracture in the degas bottle that bubbled when sprayed. The commercial fluid is better, but mixing it yourself works also. I forget the ratio I used of soap to water for the bubble fluid.
 

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If you have bubble test fluid, or mix some up with regular dish soap, it will show the leak. Also, since there is no fluid leaking at the time, I suspect it is coming from something with air in the system, which ought only to be a cracked degas bottle, the cap, or perhaps a loose small hose from the bottle to the radiator. You can also pressurize it to 15 PSI and perhaps you’ll hear it leak.

On another vehicle, I pressurized to 15 PSI, and overnight it went to 10 PSI, and I looked carefully and found the leak. On the same vehicle, a different leak turned out to be a micro fracture in the degas bottle that bubbled when sprayed. The commercial fluid is better, but mixing it yourself works also. I forget the ratio I used of soap to water for the bubble fluid.
Oh man, when I first read that I was thinking, why they heck would you put soap in your coolant?? hahaha don't do that! Great idea making a soapy water mix with a squirt bottle. Next time I drive it around ill make sure to squirt down all the coolant hose connections and see if there are any bubbles formed. Thanks!
 
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