Summer Time Top-Off Troubles

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January 2021

December 2020

November 2020



Next time you perform minor maintenance of the vehicle, or when the driver wants to check due to summer travel, please see if you are replenishing oil or coolant. You may see oil droplets or accumulation of coolant around the oil fill on the top of the oil tank or radiator. In some cases, they may store bottled oil in coolant tanks under the hood or in the luggage compartment. The key is not to ignore the leakage of oil and coolant. In the long run, raising the level is usually much more expensive than repairing a leaking gasket or component. Advising customers that if they refuse to leak the potential damage that the repair may cause is not a scary strategy, it is important that they know the actual price of the decision.

Oil leaks can leave greasy, ugly stains on your driveway, but the real danger is that if the engine's oil is insufficient, it may cause engine damage or malfunction.

If the vehicle has a manual transmission, oil leakage from the rear of the engine may also cause the clutch to slip. If oil drips on a hot exhaust manifold or exhaust pipe, it will also produce blue smoke and unpleasant odors.

After six or seven years of maintenance, the engine may begin to leak oil. The older the engine, the greater the possibility of oil leakage due to the aging of gaskets and seals. As the engine ages, heat will cause the gasket to harden and shrink. Molded rubber gaskets lose their elasticity. Engine oil leakage most often occurs in valve cover and oil pan gaskets, timing chain covers, and front and rear crankshaft seals.

If the crankcase is full or the crankcase ventilation system (PCV) is blocked, it will also build up pressure inside the engine, and oil may leak.

When oil leaks out of the engine, it attracts dust. Therefore, look for grease stains around or under gasket seams and seals. Sometimes, you will see oil dripping out when the engine is idling, but more often, the oil will slowly seep out and cause grease to accumulate near the leak point. If in doubt, steam clean the engine compartment and check for leaks after a day or two.

Crankcase oil additives can sometimes cause aged gaskets and gaskets to swell, thereby helping to slow leakage, but no additives can prevent serious leaks or repair damaged gaskets or worn gaskets. Sooner or later you will have to replace the leaking gasket or seal.

When replacing the gasket, the first and most important task is to ensure that the sealing surface is clean and flat. Clean the aluminum carefully. Scratching with a metal scraper will damage the soft surface. Never use a grinding wheel to remove old materials. Even rough sandpaper can prevent the gasket from sealing. Don't forget to perform a "post-mortem" on the gasket to be replaced, as the old gasket may provide clues as to why it failed.

Different gaskets have different application recommendations and requirements. Most gaskets and kits will include instructions. If possible, do not exceed the recommended range, as the use of modern engines may do more harm than good.

Do not overtighten the lid bolts, as this may squeeze and damage the new gasket. Some washers have built-in steel grommets that limit the extent to which the washers are compressed when the bolts are tightened. Use an accurate torque wrench and follow the torque recommendations of the vehicle manufacturer.

When sealing oil leakage, please use a low-volatility silicone sealant, which is approved for use with oxygen sensors. Certain organic silicon contains chemicals that may be sucked out of the engine’s PCV system and contaminate the oxygen sensor. Keep in mind that RTV is not used in most molded rubber applications. When RTV is needed, the instruction page will guide you through the whole process.

The bonnet gasket needs to withstand higher operating temperature, and needs to be frozen when starting, and still maintain a tight oil seal. Nearby exhaust manifolds, exhaust cross passages in the cylinder head, and EGR systems can all cause extremely high heat, which can severely damage valve cover gaskets. In addition, they are usually the most visible and accessible gaskets on the engine, so traditional materials are often over-tightened.

A compression limiter (stopper) is integrated in the modern gasket design to prevent excessive torque. Choosing the right gasket is essential, so it makes sense to rely on the same parts selected by manufacturers all over the world.

Valve cover gasket.

Any comeback is bad, but having to remove inferior sump gaskets will really ruin your day.

The manufacturing meets or exceeds the standards of global original equipment manufacturers and provides seals that prevent falling on the driveway.

Over the years, the oil pan has evolved from a simple stamped steel pan to a complex engine part, which plays an important role in controlling the NVH (noise, vibration and harshness) of the engine. In later model vehicles, the engine crankcase, oil sump and oil sump gaskets are all designed to form a complete seal and NVH system. Victor Reinz has the expertise needed to ensure full compatibility with the latest models of oil pan technology.

Victor Reinz molded rubber oil pan gaskets are precision molded on a composite nylon or metal carrier using high temperature silicone rubber seals. These materials meet or exceed SAE standards. Depending on the application, some brackets are encapsulated in molded rubber, while others have rubber sealing strips molded on the edges.

All Victor Reinz molded rubber gaskets use polymers selected to resist compression set. This happens when the gasket loses its ability to "recover" on the sealing surface, which can lead to leakage.

To replace the leaking seal on the front of the crankshaft, the crankshaft pulley/harmonic balancer must be removed first, and then the seal can be pried up, which requires the use of a puller. Do not hit the pulley/balancer as this may damage the pulley/balancer. If the surface of the crankshaft is worn, a slidable repair sleeve can be installed to restore the surface. Repairing sleeves usually requires special seals.

The seal of the rear main bearing leaked and the replacement time was very long. Because they involve lowering the oil pan and loosening the rear main crankshaft support cover inside the engine. In applications with an integrated rear main oil seal instead of a split seal, the flywheel must be loosened, which means pulling the gearbox.

When necessary, the Victor Reinz rear main seal kit includes a rear main seal and a fixed gasket. Victor Reinz valve stem seals are designed for precise control of valve stem lubrication-very complex designs are required, which must adapt to the entire engine RPM and operating temperature.

You may know it by the brand name of non-stick products, but in the world of gaskets, we abbreviate polytetrafluoroethylene as PTFE, which sets a new standard for the sealing of today's engines. Remember that unlike traditional seals, PTFE rotary shaft seals should be installed dry.

The advantages provided by PTFE include:

• Low friction

•Minimum parasitic resistance

• Can be used in dry running or insufficient lubrication applications

• Excellent thermal performance in the working range of -130°C to +200°C

•High chemical resistance

•Small separation torque after standstill

Victor Reinz timing cover set and rear main bearing seal set were supported by Dana to provide products for global original equipment manufacturers. Victor Reinz gaskets can now be purchased directly from North American manufacturer Dana.

Coolant leakage may occur anywhere in the cooling system. In nine out of ten cases, it is easy to find a coolant leak, because the coolant can be seen dripping, spraying, oozing or bubbling from the leaking parts. The first symptom of a malfunction is usually the engine overheating, but the vehicle's coolant indicator light may also be insufficient. If you suspect that the vehicle's coolant is leaking, please visually check the engine and cooling system for signs of fluid leaking from the engine, radiator or hoses. The color of the coolant can be green, orange or yellow, depending on the type of antifreeze in the system. You may also notice a sweet taste, which is the typical smell of glycol antifreeze.

Today, most cooling systems are designed to operate at pressures of 8 to 14 psi. If the radiator cannot maintain pressure, the engine will overheat and lose coolant.

A poor shaft seal can cause coolant to fly out of the vent hole under the water pump pulley shaft. If the water pump is a two-piece device with a back plate, the gasket between the housing and the back cover may leak. The gasket or O-ring on the front cover of the engine that seals the pump to the water pump installed on the cover also leaks coolant. Look for dirt, discoloration, or coolant on the outside of the water pump or engine.

Cracks, pinholes or cracks in the radiator hose or heater hose can leak coolant. A leaking hose usually sprays a stream of hot coolant from the hose. Corroded hose connections or loose or damaged hose clamps may also cause coolant to leak from the end of the hose. Sometimes, leaks only happen when the hose gets hot and the pinhole or crack opens.

The gasket that seals the intake manifold to the cylinder head may leak and allow coolant to enter the intake port or crankcase, or cause the coolant to drip to the outside of the engine.

Intake manifold gaskets need to be more weather resistant than ever before, including exposure to long-life antifreeze (also known as OAT (Organic Acid Technology) coolant).

Intake manifold gaskets are specifically designed to meet today’s challenges, from engine design to coolant formulations to the “undesirable” maintenance practices of many car owners.

The Victor Reinz upper intake manifold gasket set contains the components needed to seal the joints between the upper and lower manifold sections. The lower intake manifold gasket set contains gaskets used to seal the joint between the lower manifold and the cylinder head.

These are the most serious coolant leaks because they are hidden inside the engine and can cause the most damage.

Damaged top cover gasket: internal coolant leakage is usually caused by damage to the top cover gasket. Cylinder head gaskets may leak coolant into the cylinder or crankcase. The coolant leaks into the crankcase, dilutes the oil, and may damage the bearings in the engine. Cylinder head gaskets leaking coolant into the cylinder can clog the spark plug and generate white smoke in the exhaust port. If it is not too serious, adding a sealant to the cooling system may block the leak, but eventually the top pad must be replaced.

Cylinder head gasket failure is usually the result of engine overheating (may be caused by coolant leakage elsewhere in the cooling system, thermostat failure, or electric cooling fan not working). When the engine overheats, thermal expansion can crush and damage certain parts of the cylinder head gasket. The damaged area may then begin to leak combustion pressure and/or coolant.

There are several ways to determine whether the cooling system maintains pressure. One way is to fill up the cooling system, tighten the radiator cap, and start the engine. When the engine reaches normal operating temperature, turn on the air conditioner (to increase the cooling load of the system) and/or drive it briefly. Then check the radiator, hoses and water pump for leaks or leaks.

It is also possible to add a leak detection dye to the coolant itself to make slower leaks easier to detect. Some of these dyes emit bright green or yellow when exposed to ultraviolet light. If the failure of the cylinder head gasket is to be considered, the hole mirror placed through the spark plug hole will quickly show the presence of coolant.

Even the smallest leaks in the intake manifold can cause air-fuel ratio problems. The excess air is unmetered and will lean the fuel/air ratio to check the engine code and driving performance issues.

It can be time-consuming to use your eyes and ears to find leaks in the air intake.

A leak in the intake manifold will draw in air instead of expelling it. Inhaled substances will affect the fuel mix and affect the engine and exhaust system.

Compared with other methods, the fog machine allows you to diagnose multiple leaks in a shorter time. The fog machine can pressurize the intake manifold and put smoke or steam into the system. If there is a leak, you will see smoke.

Connect the fog machine to the vacuum port, such as the supply line for the brake booster. Make sure to plug the throttle body with the correct size plug. In addition, close the PCV system.

Leaking injector seals can cause thinning and misfire codes. Conventional test methods usually involve putting flammable gas or heavy oil on seals and looking for changes in rpm, but this test cannot be performed on engines with restricted access to the intake manifold. The hood can help find these leaks without any disassembly.

Smoke from a fuel dispenser or PCV system without a fire-breathing engine may indicate a leak or rupture at the bottom of the manifold. It can also indicate worn valve guides or seals.

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