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Othermusketeer
06-05-2008, 03:32 PM
Progress; Unrelated to questions:

The fan I I mentioned in my other post managed to keep the bugs away (except for a beetle or two smacking me in the head like a bullet). Since I was trying to make diner at the same time (washing up each time I checked the food, of course), and the second fuel line gave me a hard time, I didn't get much more done that night.

Why is it taking so long? I'm only working on it a few hours a day, and I'm going extremely slow in as organized a manner as possible (reattaching screws after removing a part, labeling every wire, documenting damaged hoses to be replaced, returning tools to a tray to keep them out of the way, etc). Also I'm Bipolar, and have a hard time concentrating when stressful things are going on it my life (and boy are there some stressful things going on). So I double and triple check my intended actions before actually doing them.


On to the questions:

Small amounts of oil in UIM. Likely from the fouled PCV valve. I take it I can not hose out the plenum and dry it in the sun (mineral deposits).

I've heard that cleaning the MAF with liberal shots of carb cleaner can (but only if dirty) improve performance on higher mileage cars. Given the fouled PCV valve and tons of coolant under the valve cover, it may help. However, looking into the TB air intake, it looks like the MAF element and probe are covered by a housing, unlike the two exposed poles I saw in a photo for another vehicle (http://www.fordscorpio.co.uk/cleanmaf.htm). Will the carb cleaner still clean the apparently shielded (seems to be in a housing -- yes I opened the throttle first:LOL") MAF sensor, or would I have to remove the sensor? (I suppose I could remove the sensor, or unscrew the plate in the pic below, but I'd prefer not to mess with an extremely frail and expensive part on just a hunch)

The idiot that repaired the car back in 2001 (among other bone headed things) ran the battery cables over the air intake inlet (part going into bumper) and it was mostly torn off. The shroud is riveted on, and mounting holes (on shroud) are torn off. Since the air passing into the air intake inlet (pre-filter) is cold, I can use a glue gun to reattach the inlet, right?

The manual says to remove the EGR pipe from the exhaust manifold, but there isn't room to move a wrench. How do I remove the EGR pipe in such tight spaces, or should I leave it attached to the exhaust manifold? Isn't it in the way of removing the rear manifold heat shield? (The EGR vavle is removed already, and the UIM is sitting with the other parts in the grey Wal-Mart tub)

Since no one ever answered before: While things are apart for the head gasket change, what else should I inspect/change? I will inspect heater hose, replace t-stat, and I'd prefer not to mess with the "upper o-ring" (?did I remember that correctly) for the oil pump. When I drop the oil pan (removing dozens of parts to get to it; damn Vin M model) I will replace the oil pump screen and wipe away all the old oil.

It occurred to me to check for bearing damage while I'm in the pan, but I'd be really nervous (intimidated for some reason) about adjusting the timing. I don't suppose its possible to inspect the bearings without messing up the timing? (I read the entry on Autozone.com, but am not too sure about the "anatomy"of it all. Do the bearings come in pairs (upper and lower)? If they don't (or if they do, but ALWAYS wear evenly), can I remove one bearing cap at a time (for inspection) and not alter the timing?


http://img213.imageshack.us/img213/5356/img1313edithf1.th.jpg (http://img213.imageshack.us/my.php?image=img1313edithf1.jpg)

Thanks for any/all replies.

Othermusketeer
06-05-2008, 09:38 PM
I quickly uploaded pics to my Flickr account (http://flickr.com/photos/othermusketeer/)....

Coolant gunk everywhere, as can be expected. It looks like the LIM gasket was "leaking out" of the seam near the valve cover.

6 of the 8 LIM bolts were loose enough to remove with a manual bit driver (and only moderate effort).

I found a loose wire (under power steering pump) leading into the engine. I think its a loose ground.

Looks like the LIM gasket was broken/leaking at one of the ports (coolant maybe). There is also charred black stuff in that area, which has me worried.

The lower bolts for the engine mount is far enough away that I need 3 3in extensions to reach it, and then they extensions cause me to loose the efficiency of my "rotational force". All the motor mount bolts are on REALLY REALLY tight. The top two require me to push off the wall to get enough force. (Yes, I used WD-40 on it first) I will have to ask my dad if he has a long single-piece extension. (He's a work aholic though, so I don't even know when he'll get the message) Is there an easier way to get the upper front motor mount bolts off that I am missing??

Update: I bought 2 10inch x 3/8 extensions and a 3/8 swivel. And managed to remove all the visible bolts for the engine mount... It didn't come off, so maybe its behind the compressor which is mounted to the engine mount... Removed all the bolts from the compressor, but it magically stays in place and won't budge. pried, thumped (wood block cushioned), etc. *shakes head* The bugs started flying all over, so I put everything away and decided to tackle the compressor tomorrow.

My dad was trying to convince that all I had to do was just replace the LIM gasket and reassemble without digging deeper, but I didn't listen and will continue on as planned.

CieraSL92
06-06-2008, 09:22 PM
K I'm probably going to miss a few things but..

MAF: You should _NOT_ use carb cleaner to clean the MAF or any other sensors that are dependent on a clean surface. Carb cleaner leaves behind a residue. Fuel injection cleaner would be okay for everything else-for the MAF I bought a can of Mass Airflow sensor cleaner.

Bearings: What timing? Ignition timing is electronic and computer controlled-no adjustments are possible or nessecary on a stock engine. Valve timing is set by means of a timing chain that rotates the cam at a set speed in relation to crankshaft rotation. There is an upper and lower bearing. Lower is removable (may need to rotate crank by hand for access), upper is removable only with crankshaft out IIRC.

The dark red on one of the pushrods.. What the hell is that? Is it rust? I haven't seen that before.

Looks like everythings going to need to be cleaned. I'm thinking the oil passages really should be blown out with something, air oil w/e. I would def drop the pan-infact I would consider that required at this point.

And yes you can use a glue gun-the EGR can be left alone assuming it doesn't interfere with something in removal. With it out of the car, I would clean it though. Carb cleaner is okay here.

Othermusketeer
06-09-2008, 09:15 AM
This is mostly an update of how its going. There are 3 questions in dark red.

------

I got the front head off. The pipe for the EGR valve is giving me a hard time, and I must remove it to move the heat shield enough to get to the rear exhaust manifold's bolts. I can't seem to get enough power on the 7in handle of the adjustable wrench to turn the connection.

After popping the head off... err... I mentally screamed, and exclaimed "S**t"! I admit I don't know much about how they should look, but the blistering and multi-tones look bad.http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3086/2563355724_60c3bca921_m.jpg (http://flickr.com/photos/othermusketeer/2563355724/)(more pics in the photostream (http://flickr.com/photos/othermusketeer/))

Seeing the plugs, it seems that I may have thought I replaced them 18months ago when I didn't.

The front head gasket looked fine; So far only the LIM gaskets were broken/blown. While the LIM gaskets were brittle and fused on the LIM, the front head gasket looked good and fell off upon lifting the head.

The pistons also seem to have blistering an multi-colors. I haven't cleaned either yet, so I don't know if its just "crud" or if its physically altered. The water jackets have that snot-err coolant sludge in them, so I suppose I will have to flush the coolant system after reassembling.
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3009/2562543817_8f98b9119e_m.jpg (http://flickr.com/photos/othermusketeer/2562543817/)http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3158/2562546463_4449f3397d_m.jpg (http://flickr.com/photos/othermusketeer/2562546463/)http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3139/2562552499_fed8b792e5_m.jpg (http://flickr.com/photos/othermusketeer/2562552499/)

I read I am supposed to use lacquer thinner for cleaning the cylinders, but a) I read that carb cleaner is similar, and b) no one mentioned it here (that I remember) and when cleaning the heads said to use "whatever it takes". When cleaning parts with carb cleaner, I have to alcohol (on a rag) the surface down again to remove residues. Do you have to alcohol off residues with lacquer thinner too?

Alright... Seeing the state of the the pistons/heads I really want to check the main bearings and pistons when I drop the pan. However the alldatadiy info lists a long list of instructions for reassembly that seem to refer more to "getting the right feel" as your reassembling, which, if its your first time you don't know "the feel". I know the manuals sometimes make things out harder than hey need to, but... Is pulling, inspecting, and replacing the crank/bearings really that much of an art rather than a science?
also Provided there isn't any damage, is there anything in addition to the crankshaft seal that MUST to be replaced when inspecting things?

Yes, I know... "Replace the engine" or "buy a new car". My options are "get it running again" or "buy a hand cart for carrying groceries since I will not drive a car for many years". This household normally has <$25 left over at the end of each month; buying these parts requires some birthday money combined with very creative grocery shopping. Besides, I keep reading on the forum, and other forums about people buying new engines and then doing nearly as much work with the new one as they would have with the old one... plus the cost of the new engine. Hopefully... Hopefully, cleaning the heads/pistons reveals it is residue and not physical damages.

LordDurock
06-09-2008, 04:51 PM
It occurred to me to check for bearing damage while I'm in the pan, but I'd be really nervous (intimidated for some reason) about adjusting the timing. I don't suppose its possible to inspect the bearings without messing up the timing? (I read the entry on Autozone.com, but am not too sure about the "anatomy"of it all. Do the bearings come in pairs (upper and lower)? If they don't (or if they do, but ALWAYS wear evenly), can I remove one bearing cap at a time (for inspection) and not alter the timing?


im going to asum at this point you have a touqe wrench (if not you realy need to get one)

okay the timing shoul have noughting to do with te bearing check. that said do this
http://i210.photobucket.com/albums/bb167/lorddurock/DCFC0164.jpg
remover number one main bearing cap check for pitting/ scoring ect. on the lower half of the bearign and the lower half of the crankshaft. if there is not pitting rotate the crankshaft (by hand with a shock on the fron of the crank 180 degress check again. if all looks good put main cap back on to the right touqre spec and move on ot 2 then 3 then 4 ect.
when you have run out of main caps move on to rod caps.(the ones that are on the pistions)

in hte pict you cna see shiny places on hte crank that is the ware the rods go.
to check the rod bearings remover the rod cap check for pits/scores ect (anything that isn ot smoth) on the crank and bearing. rotate crank shaft tell oyu cna see the other sideo f the bearing that is on the rod if all is good put the rod cap back on and trouqe to the right spec.

http://i210.photobucket.com/albums/bb167/lorddurock/my%20motor%20picts%20the%20tear%20down/DCFC0175.jpg
front left to right
pistion
the big hole is called the wrist pin
nexted is called the rod
the last part is called the rod cap

CieraSL92
06-09-2008, 04:52 PM
Blisters? Those marks on the piston that looks like cuts, is that just shit that you dropped into the cylinder?

LordDurock
06-09-2008, 05:48 PM
that just stuff that is on top.......all that will need ot be removed.

Othermusketeer
06-09-2008, 05:50 PM
im going to asum at this point you have a touqe wrench (if not you realy need to get one) Craftsman upto 90lbs. Considering the importance of an accurate reading, I didn't want to skimp here. The lifetime warranty was a seller too. I also had to buy a Torx bit set, 10" socket extensions, an a 3/8" swivel (to compliment my 1/4" one). I got a valve puller from Autozone's loan program (strangely enough, they say buy it and return it). It seems like there is a lot of REALLY PRECISE work to do if you reinstall the vavles, so I will see if I can clean that area with rags and q-tips instead for disassembling.


okay the timing shoul have noughting to do with te bearing check. The repair guides say you have to remove the crank to check it, which would involve removing the timing chain. I figured there was an easier, less work intensive way, to just check the condition. (Rhetorical:) Why must the guides always describe things the hard way?



<...> that said do this <...>
That is how I thought one could do it easier. I was hesitant to defy the manual without someone saying the same.


Blisters? Those marks on the piston that looks like cuts, is that just shit that you dropped into the cylinder?
There was "shit" (lightweight stuff that blows in the wind) on the pistons; I think it dropped onto them while removing the head. The gasket did not stick to either side much, may the head just a little bit (less than the pull of gravity though). When I lifted the head off, the gasket came with the head for a moment and then dropped back onto the block. Since the head was blocking my view, I could not see stuff dropping down.

The piston and the area near the valves seem to have those blisters that appear on plugs sometimes.

LordDurock
06-09-2008, 05:52 PM
This is mostly an update of how its going. There are 3 questions in dark red.

------

I got the front head off. The pipe for the EGR valve is giving me a hard time, and I must remove it to move the heat shield enough to get to the rear exhaust manifold's bolts. I can't seem to get enough power on the 7in handle of the adjustable wrench to turn the connection.

After popping the head off... err... I mentally screamed, and exclaimed "S**t"! I admit I don't know much about how they should look, but the blistering and multi-tones look bad.http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3086/2563355724_60c3bca921_m.jpg (http://flickr.com/photos/othermusketeer/2563355724/)(more pics in the photostream (http://flickr.com/photos/othermusketeer/))

Seeing the plugs, it seems that I may have thought I replaced them 18months ago when I didn't.

The front head gasket looked fine; So far only the LIM gaskets were broken/blown. While the LIM gaskets were brittle and fused on the LIM, the front head gasket looked good and fell off upon lifting the head.

The pistons also seem to have blistering an multi-colors. I haven't cleaned either yet, so I don't know if its just "crud" or if its physically altered. The water jackets have that snot-err coolant sludge in them, so I suppose I will have to flush the coolant system after reassembling.
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3009/2562543817_8f98b9119e_m.jpg (http://flickr.com/photos/othermusketeer/2562543817/)http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3158/2562546463_4449f3397d_m.jpg (http://flickr.com/photos/othermusketeer/2562546463/)http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3139/2562552499_fed8b792e5_m.jpg (http://flickr.com/photos/othermusketeer/2562552499/)

I read I am supposed to use lacquer thinner for cleaning the cylinders, but a) I read that carb cleaner is similar, and b) no one mentioned it here (that I remember) and when cleaning the heads said to use "whatever it takes". When cleaning parts with carb cleaner, I have to alcohol (on a rag) the surface down again to remove residues. Do you have to alcohol off residues with lacquer thinner too?

Alright... Seeing the state of the the pistons/heads I really want to check the main bearings and pistons when I drop the pan. However the alldatadiy info lists a long list of instructions for reassembly that seem to refer more to "getting the right feel" as your reassembling, which, if its your first time you don't know "the feel". I know the manuals sometimes make things out harder than hey need to, but... Is pulling, inspecting, and replacing the crank/bearings really that much of an art rather than a science?
also Provided there isn't any damage, is there anything in addition to the crankshaft seal that MUST to be replaced when inspecting things?

Yes, I know... "Replace the engine" or "buy a new car". My options are "get it running again" or "buy a hand cart for carrying groceries since I will not drive a car for many years". This household normally has <$25 left over at the end of each month; buying these parts requires some birthday money combined with very creative grocery shopping. Besides, I keep reading on the forum, and other forums about people buying new engines and then doing nearly as much work with the new one as they would have with the old one... plus the cost of the new engine. Hopefully... Hopefully, cleaning the heads/pistons reveals it is residue and not physical damages.

1 and 3 on the pict you posted looks normal. but the whiteish crap on 2 needs to be checked.

as i didnt say this ealyer done remove yours pistions. it easy to get htem back in but if you remover them youneed to hoon the walls of the cycderner so the rings will seat again

LordDurock
06-09-2008, 05:57 PM
Craftsman upto 90lbs. Considering the importance of an accurate reading, I didn't want to skimp here. The lifetime warranty was a seller too. I also had to buy a Torx bit set, 10" socket extensions, an a 3/8" swivel (to compliment my 1/4" one). I got a valve puller from Autozone's loan program (strangely enough, they say buy it and return it). It seems like there is a lot of REALLY PRECISE work to do if you reinstall the vavles, so I will see if I can clean that area with rags and q-tips instead for disassembling.

The repair guides say you have to remove the crank to check it, which would involve removing the timing chain. I figured there was an easier, less work intensive way, to just check the condition. (Rhetorical:) Why must the guides always describe things the hard way?



That is how I thought one could do it easier. I was hesitant to defy the manual without someone saying the same.


There was "shit" (lightweight stuff that blows in the wind) on the pistons; I think it dropped onto them while removing the head. The gasket did not stick to either side much, may the head just a little bit (less than the pull of gravity though). When I lifted the head off, the gasket came with the head for a moment and then dropped back onto the block. Since the head was blocking my view, I could not see stuff dropping down.

The piston and the area near the valves seem to have those blisters that appear on plugs sometimes.


i understand that you manul want oyu to remove the the crnak shaft. but if you pull the caps one at a time and find a trashed bearing on the bottom the top is going to be trashed. if you rotate he crank so you can see the other side and there is metal on the crank then the other half of the bearing is trashed. this is a way ot check you bearing with out haveing ot pull the motor.

Othermusketeer
06-09-2008, 07:06 PM
as i didnt say this ealyer done remove yours pistions. it easy to get htem back in but if you remover them youneed to hoon the walls of the cycderner so the rings will seat again
Thank you!! *whew* I did not know that. I only thought you had to machine them when there was damage.

Is there a list of first time "gotcha's" somewhere? You know, like, "Opening the engine generally requires replacing each gasket (minimum $10-$45 each); several throughout the entire engine" "removing the valves requires carefully measuring the precise angle when reinstalling or there can be serious problems" "reinstalling the pistons requires honing the cylinder walls to get the rings to seat correctly" "flushing your coolant system (especially with rust removal agents) can clog your radiator unless you install a special filter before the radiator" "Regardless of how many tools you have, when starting a new repair job you may need a few more" "Old hoses and vacuum lines sometimes tear/crumble when disconnected; be prepared to replace some lines/hoses" "Working on your A/C requires tools to recover the freon and to vacuum/dry out the lines. It also requires special tools for opening/removing some parts." "Always take steps to replace things exactly as you found them. Some parts cause catastrophic damage if replaced out of order"

Things like that. Maybe there should be a sticky with such gotha's.

Jr's3800
06-09-2008, 10:23 PM
I am looking at your pictures, and wondering if you did a compression test before you doomed the head gaskets..

After looking at the Pics I am 100% certain that you had Lower intake gasket failure.. And looking at the block and head pictures I don't see any evidence of a blown head gasket... Did you get a chance to look close at the head gaskets and see if they were indeed burnt or blown?

On the bottom end of the engine I'd be very careful... If you are going to yank the rod bearings and or main caps, I would recommend that you just pull the whole engine and do a proper freshen up...

I would not install new bearings on a crank without being 100% positive that the crank journals are perfectly smooth and true.. If you did not have any oil pressure issues, no ticks or taps you may want to leave it well enough alone... If you do remove a rod bearing to take a peek, do not scratch, or get any dirt on the bearings... And when you install the cap and bearing again follow the FSM 100% on the torque procedure...

Othermusketeer
06-09-2008, 11:34 PM
I am looking at your pictures, and wondering if you did a compression test before you doomed the head gaskets..

After looking at the Pics I am 100% certain that you had Lower intake gasket failure.. And looking at the block and head pictures I don't see any evidence of a blown head gasket... Did you get a chance to look close at the head gaskets and see if they were indeed burnt or blown?


Looks like the LIM gasket was broken/leaking at one of the ports (coolant maybe).


The front head gasket looked fine
Since sometimes multiple gaskets fail, it seemed I needed to check. I had bought the gaskets as a kit, so I already had the head gaskets. (I will try to replace the LIM gasket with the expensive metal one within 20k miles)



On the bottom end of the engine I'd be very careful... If you are going to yank the rod bearings and or main caps, I would recommend that you just pull the whole engine and do a proper freshen up... Its tempting, but a) it seems 10% of any work done to the engine requires replacements (gaskets, blots, etc) or requires special work before reassembly (honing the cylinders, getting specific measuring equipment to perfectly align the valves, etc).


I would not install new bearings on a crank without being 100% positive that the crank journals are perfectly smooth and true.. If you did not have any oil pressure issues, no ticks or taps you may want to leave it well enough alone... If you do remove a rod bearing to take a peek, do not scratch, or get any dirt on the bearings... And when you install the cap and bearing again follow the FSM 100% on the torque procedure...
I hear what you are saying, and will consider it (not looking at the bearings). Before this problem, the only noises were a slight "clank" for the first 10-60 seconds after a cold start and then smooth running. (Well... The muffler came off the exhaust system recently, so its not quiet, but the noise is from that end). After the problem (when I did the oil change to get the tainted oil out), it still sounded good other than it sputtering and trying to stall every so often (every 5-15 seconds).

Many people here are encouraging me to check them, but as you were hinting, if there is no symptoms why chance introducing dirt (it is an open car port) when I don't have to. While I will have to drop the pan (and remove the wheel assembly and various other parts to get to the pan) to clean out the coolant from the pan as well as change the oil pump screen, checking the bearings has nothing to do with the top half. If I want to check them in the future, I just have to drop the pan again.

I'm undecided on whether to check the bearings or not.

Othermusketeer
06-09-2008, 11:38 PM
Can I use a turkey baster filled with clean motor oil to "wash" the crank and other parts down below? That way I won't be using semi-abrasive rags on the delicate parts.

Maybe use that for cleaning the oil "channels" through the block as well?

(I don't have an air compressor, and I don't think I know anyone who has one)

LordDurock
06-10-2008, 03:54 AM
Thank you!! *whew* I did not know that. I only thought you had to machine them when there was damage.

Is there a list of first time "gotcha's" somewhere? You know, like, "Opening the engine generally requires replacing each gasket (minimum $10-$45 each); several throughout the entire engine" "removing the valves requires carefully measuring the precise angle when reinstalling or there can be serious problems" "reinstalling the pistons requires honing the cylinder walls to get the rings to seat correctly" "flushing your coolant system (especially with rust removal agents) can clog your radiator unless you install a special filter before the radiator" "Regardless of how many tools you have, when starting a new repair job you may need a few more" "Old hoses and vacuum lines sometimes tear/crumble when disconnected; be prepared to replace some lines/hoses" "Working on your A/C requires tools to recover the freon and to vacuum/dry out the lines. It also requires special tools for opening/removing some parts." "Always take steps to replace things exactly as you found them. Some parts cause catastrophic damage if replaced out of order"

Things like that. Maybe there should be a sticky with such gotha's.

if the pistions are damged they need ot be replace......your pistions are i can say iwth 99% accutly they are fine.

i personlay think you bearing are fine but it good to check.

LordDurock
06-10-2008, 03:56 AM
Can I use a turkey baster filled with clean motor oil to "wash" the crank and other parts down below? That way I won't be using semi-abrasive rags on the delicate parts.

Maybe use that for cleaning the oil "channels" through the block as well?

(I don't have an air compressor, and I don't think I know anyone who has one)

rag will work fine to clean the bearings. a peice of wire should workto clean the oil channels.............but sure to put everything back to gether with oil it makes things eayer to trun

Jr's3800
06-10-2008, 03:15 PM
Just adding, these 3100 Vin M engines are notorious for piston slap on cold start...

Is that what you had? Start the car cold and get a short amount of tapping and once the engine was warm you never heard it again until the next cold start?

CieraSL92
06-10-2008, 03:42 PM
Just curious, assume all goes well (it won't, theres always several snags) what's the projected completion date?

Othermusketeer
06-15-2008, 06:12 PM
Just curious, assume all goes well (it won't, theres always several snags) what's the projected completion date?
<emotion="dry and unamused">Aha. Aha. Verrry, funny.</emotion> Yes I know its taking me freakishly long. Just another example of me being a screwup.

I didn't get to work on it again until today/Friday (afternoon). I had many things to take care of (the other members of the house are either mentally or physically not able/willing to do much on their own).

My mind is nowhere near optimum functioning (I often find that I've been staring blankly for a while and have to remember what I was doing); some days are worse than others. I've run into parts that did not want to move; it take an hour or more to get it for finally come loose. Also, I keep starting around noon to 3pm; far too late in the day to get much done.

Heads are off. I tried cleaning the block's mounting surface as best as I could (scrapper and solvents), but it still "looks" filthy. Running a finger or finger nail across it, it feels as smooth as a mirror, and some of the black/gray areas even shine (has me scratching my head), but it looks nothing like what I'm told I'm supposed to get it to look like. After it wouldn't come cleaner, I went over it several more times with no results. So, for all intents and purposes, "They are clean". The other mounting surfaces of the other parts are having something similar, except its only "spots". It almost seems like its extremely shallow pits with dirt in them (LIM gasket surfaces).

I took the wheel off and climbed under to look at the task involved in removing the bottom of the engine (AKA oil pan) and then rechecked the instructions... I narrowly escaped freaking out. I will definately have to support the engine for this, despite the instructions not calling for it. I will be removing parts that the engine rests on. After looking at it, I really really wanted to skip this, but then I thought about the oil sludge and coolant goop possibly clogging oil flow, as well as it running through all those parts I cleaned up. *sigh* (Even the lifters looked like someone had shoved them up their nose during a head cold. And yes, I lubricated them.)

I think I will avoid touching the bearings, given the amount of dust/dirt that flies around the carport on windy days (and its been a little windy lately).

Still no word on that sensor on the top of the engine block?... below where the power steer pump mounts (its in previous pictures)? The wires connect to a pug that runs in front of the the front valve cover and then join a large harness of wires on the front drivers side. There are three wires at the plugs, so that red wire must be used. I know the car ran all this time without the red wire attached, but I really wanted to fix it before reassembly. (No, CieraSL92, that isn't a cue for you to say I'd have a year to figure it out then)

Does water/coolant flow past a stationary water pump? After I get the heads and Intake manifold back on, can I leave the thermostat out (attach the housing as a spout), put a garden hose into the radiator hose leading into the water pump and flush out the coolant in the block that way. I've replaced water pumps before, but I never noted if their design prevents water from flowing past them or not.

CieraSL92
06-15-2008, 06:21 PM
Hmm. I'm not sure that is a sensor. I haven't seen anything like that before. Perhaps a ground? Both pictures are difficult to make out except that theres a wire, and it seems to go somewhere.

There design doesn't allow for full flow, I suspect most of the water you put into the upper hose would circulate through the manifold/heads/block and exit through the heater hoses. Older manuals used to have diagrams of how the coolant would circulate but I haven't seen that in anything written after 1990.

This will probably hurt a bit more if you have to take it to someone-but do you know how, or have you checked the cylinder heads for warpage? You should also check the mating surface on the block (where the head bolts)

Othermusketeer
06-18-2008, 06:33 AM
Well... I'm screwed.

Summary: Dropping the oil pan seems out of the question. Can't get the engine support, bigger jack, and additional parts till July (financial problems continue to worsen from family member actions). The work has lots of potential for screwing up other systems. I doubt I can do the job. I know not doing it is asking for trouble. Flushing is dangerous too. Garden hose flushing sounds crazy and counter productive. Pouring oil through sounds too ineffective. Do I skip it (do an oil change only), repeatedly pour oil through (gentle wash/flush), garden hose it (insane), or wait (no car use) till next month and _try_ to drop the pan (risking injury to other systems). (Maybe I've just lost my confidence)

Thanks everyone for your help, but it seems like all the researching and parts cleaning will be a wasted.

Unsuccessfully trying not to go (more) insane from all this,
DJ



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The details, but 99% of people dont want details:


Errands have kept me from the car again, but I've been thinking about the car the whole time... I don't think I can remove the oil pan. The procedure (it sounds bigger than working to the heads was):

Oil Pan
3.1L Engine (VIN M)

See Figure 5

1. Disconnect the negative battery cable.
2. Remove the serpentine belt.
3. Unbolt the upper A/C compressor bolts, if equipped.
4. Raise and safely support the vehicle.
5. Drain the engine oil.
6. Remove the right front tire and wheel assembly.
7. Detach the right inner fender splash shield.
8. Remove the engine mount strut from the suspension support.
9. Remove the cotter pin and castle nut from the lower ball joint and separate the joint from the steering knuckle.
10. Unbolt and remove the right side sway bar link.
11. Disconnect the ABS sensor from the right subframe.
12. Remove the right side subframe mounting bolts and remove the right side subframe and control arm as an assembly.
13. Remove the lower A/C compressor mounting bolts and position the compressor aside. DO NOT disconnect the refrigerant lines or allow the compressor to hang unsupported.
14. Remove the engine mount strut bracket from the engine.
15. Remove the engine to transaxle brace.
16. Remove the oil filter.
17. Remove the starter.
18. Remove the flywheel cover.
19. Remove the oil pan flange retaining bolts and the oil pan side retaining bolts. Remove the oil pan.


While my jack stands are huge (they extend to something more than 2ft), my jack extends to about 15" or less. At 15" I can't operate a torque wrench (my face is 1" from the frame/parts"). An engine support is $60 and up, not too bad alone, but it adds up with eveything, and the family member keeps over drafting their account and taking out loans while saying I need to get the car done. I'm sure there would be at least $40 in parts that would have to be replaced upon assembly (its hard to tell, since it references many other systems being opened/removed). Alldatadiy is notorious for broken information, but browsing similar work for the other years/engines as well as the systems/parts that are being worked on, it seems there are lots of serious precautions to take to avoid screwing the other systems. And I find my mental reserves (ability to focus/concentrate) completely tapped (mostly do to household matters).

When asking my dad if he had a larger jack I could use, he came by _without_ the jack and proceeded to convince me _not_ to go through all of that. His work truck and car also have difficult to reach oil pans. He said he... I find it amazing that it "works"... that he puts a garden hose up to the oil drain to clean it out with water, and then lets it sit for several days to dry out. Cleaning with the enemy sounds ludicrous - I told him that several times. He said he's never had a problem.

I've also read about using an oil solvent (running the solvent past the main bears sounds mad). I think one method mentioned elsewhere, pouring oil down the galleys (is that the right word for the ports on the top of the block?) to _gently_ wash out gunk from the pan without breaking loose the big stuff sounds the safest.

I DO KNOW that not cleaning out the pan is playing with a loaded gun. That is why I've been finding myself grinding my teeth day and night, and why I toss and turn all night.

I also know that "flushing" can break loose big pieces (that normally would have stayed put) and that they cause massive, engine destroying damage. However, leaving everything alone (no flush, no dropping the pan) posses the same risk.

My friend used to own an Ciera of a few year ealier in model (90-93), and he said his uncle (who works as a mechanic) found the job to be "a complete bi***".

Maybe I've just lost my nerve, but I don't think I can do this. Both from a parts/tools perspective, as well as doubting I can perform the tasks.

So, should I "finish up the car without worrying about the oil pan", "drain and then repeatedly pour in oil to gently rinse it", "use the hose (it sounds ludicrous)", "use an oil flush (lots of bad stories)", or "wait until I can get the tools and nerve to do drop the pan (July maybe)"?

CieraSL92
06-18-2008, 08:55 AM
I've never had to remove an oil pan on these motors. It did not look pleasant, but I would say getting the heads off is even more unpleasant.

Water is counter-productive. I suppose if you got all of the water oil-difficult in itself-it would be okay, but water would have zero cleaning effect by itself. Flushing it with a solvent could clog the oil pump pickup, then you would have no choice but to remove the pan-unless you cared to operate it with no oil pressure.

Given what you've seen in the oil passages, if you want the car I'd say dropping the pan is a nessecity. You could chance it sure, but that shit will continue to circulate with your oil. Could you take a picture of the pan? I'd kind of like to visualize it, I can look at mine but it's a 3300 V6 and I'm unsure of the differences.

Interesting procedure, was that a Haynes writeup? This isn't the end of the world by any means. It's removable. My intial thought was yeah the cradle could be in the way, but instead of screwing around with the likely frozen subframe bolts you could unbolt the mounts and raise the motor a bit.

Also, I would not be so concerned about getting a torque wrench for the pan bolts. I'm not sure if you can feel when its about right, but its the same procedure for a transmission pan and I've never used a torque on one of them in my life.

I'd wait until I could drop the pan to proceed. Half-assed internal engine work usually doesn't have good results.

Edit: Previous to pulling it apart, you ran the motor with no coolant but clean oil for about a minute? How'd it look when it came out? I guess I'm trying to establish what the oil picked up on its way through?

This might be considered half-assed. Depending on what the oil pan is made of, you could cut it off and perhaps have it re-welded. That may be more expensive though..

One more thing: These steps as follows

. Remove the engine mount strut from the suspension support.
9. Remove the cotter pin and castle nut from the lower ball joint and separate the joint from the steering knuckle.
10. Unbolt and remove the right side sway bar link.

12. Remove the right side subframe mounting bolts and remove the right side subframe and control arm as an assembly.

are the most difficult. 9 being relatively easy, except that it's typically frozen. Pickle fork works well here. 12 is the most difficult. A large breaker bar or something will leverage is a big help to remove the subframe bolts. In addition to be torqued to some crazy 200ftlbs, they sieze.

Once 9 and 12 are out of the way it's just typical hand-tools.

It's not that bad. Wait if you have to, but don't quit.

Othermusketeer
06-18-2008, 06:58 PM
I'd love to meat the designer of this car in a dark alley while I'm carrying a baseball bat...

3300? Your listed procedure is a relative cakewalk.
3.3L Engine

1. Disconnect the negative battery cable.
2. Raise and support the vehicle safely.
3. Drain the engine oil.
4. Remove the transaxle converter cover and starter motor.
5. Remove the oil filter, oil pan retaining bolts and oil pan assembly.

The procedures (the 3100 and the 3300) are from Autozone.com. They claim to be from Alldatadiy, and when I have seen excerpts of alldatadiy online they were nearly identical (maybe formating was different) to Autozone. You can easily see what is says for my car by entering the specifics at that site: 95, olds, cutlass ciera, v6 3100 Vin M

It seems that Vin M may be the biggest pain of the "GM Celebrity/Century/Ciera/6000 1982-1996" group listed on the page.

I will have to get a torque wrench under the car for the other bolts. And come to think about it, I will need another torque wrench as mine goes up to 70ft-lbs.
To install:

20. Clean the gasket mating surfaces.
21. Install a new gasket on the oil pan. Apply silicon sealer to the portion of the pan that contacts the rear of the block.
22. Install the oil pan and install the mounting bolts finger-tight.
23. With all the bolts in place, tighten the oil pan flange bolts to 18 ft. lbs. (25 Nm) and the oil pan side bolts to 37 ft. lbs. (50 Nm).
24. Install the flywheel cover.
25. Install the starter.
26. Coat the seal on the oil filter with clean engine oil and install the filter on the engine.
27. Install the engine-to-transaxle brace and tighten the mounting bolts to 68 ft. lbs. (93 Nm).
28. Install the engine mount strut bracket. Tighten the mounting bolt at the engine bracket to 85 ft. lbs. (115 Nm).
29. Install the A/C compressor in the mounting bracket and tighten the lower mounting bolts.
30. Attach the right side subframe and control arm assembly. Tighten the subframe mounting bolts to 89 ft. lbs. (120 Nm).
31. Install the right side sway bar link and tighten to 22 ft. lbs. (30 Nm).
32. Connect the ball joint to the steering knuckle and tighten the castle nut to 48 ft. lbs. (60 Nm). Install a new cotter pin.
33. Connect the ABS sensor from the right subframe assembly.
34. Connect the engine mount strut bracket and tighten the mounting bolt at the frame to 89 ft. lbs. (120 Nm).
35. Install the right inner fender well splash shield.
36. Install the right front tire and wheel assembly and tighten to specification.
37. Lower the vehicle.
38. Install the serpentine belt.
39. Fill the crankcase to the correct level.
40. Connect the negative battery cable.
41. Start the vehicle and verify no leaks.

I was told to leave the new clean oil in until I was done with removing and cleaning things. I was going to drain the oil soon, so I can tell you then.

9,10, and 12 are what bothered me the most. Especially when it came to reassembling. I don't know if it applies here too, but the other engine size that mentioned the steering during pan removal gave warnings that you could have loss of steering if you didn't take precautions. The procdure for the ball joint and steering knuckle for my car mentioned special parts (some sort of protector) to prevent damage to surrounding systems while working, but the oil pan procedure doesn't talk about it.

My dad, in his 60s, doesn't work on his own vehicles anymore and even if he did, he only has a few hours a week when he is not working. So, I will have to see how much one of my friend's uncles would want to charge to help me with the job.

I'll try to get pictures of the pan, but it dark under there and flashes dont work well at 1-10 inches.