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 Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite

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albertj
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Mon Jan 11, 2010 10:34 am

deekster_caddy wrote:
The 'Yellow Milkshake' definitely indicates coolant in the oil. Fixing the coolant source, and a few oil changes later it should be gone. But that stalactite still scares me. Hopefully you don't have long-term issues from this.

The good news is that you can get 3800 short blocks used for pretty darn cheap. No need to rebuild yours unless you are after a performance buildup. In general, the 3800 bottom end is good for at least 200K miles with only basic care, many have much more than that.

The milkshake on dipstick is moisture in the oil; is it coolant, or is it the result of sucking water in the modified air intake? One of the reasons the OE intake is configured as it is may supposedly be to make the path for water ingress long enough that the PCM, sensing an abrupt stop to airflow (big delta in MAF sensor reading), shuts the car off. Modify the air intake - well, it's possible to shorten it enough so the MAF reading is too late to make the PCM kill the engine, so there's really nothing to stop the engine running long enough to suck up the water through that modified air intake.

I wonder if it is sometimes true that "milkshake" on the inside of the oil cap (but not also on the dipstick) comes from atmospheric condensation? Do not have enough personal experience to know. Could you (Deekster, Rick, ??) comment on how it (the "milkshake")actually gets there - that is, is it foaming off the moving valve train, or agitated by the oil pump, or what? Please advise, thanks.

Albertj
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Mon Jan 11, 2010 11:10 am

Before the circulating machines were invented, dealerships would fill the blocks with diesel, let them sit a few days, then drain and replace oil to desludge the engine while it was still in the car.
If you can spring the 20 or so dollars for a Blackstone UOA, it will help you pinpoint your problem.
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Mon Jan 11, 2010 4:57 pm

Albert the moisture (water/coolant) sits on top of the oil, and gets churned by the running engine (oil pump, moving parts etc). Water tends to evaporate off as the engine gets hot, so isn't usually found in the oil. Coolant will mix with the oil, foam and remain inside.
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Mon Jan 11, 2010 5:00 pm

Wiped off the parts i could reach with lint-free rag and acetone and put on new Clevite pickup from Napa(couldn't buy gasket separately). Oil lines for remote filter looked clear. The oil that drained out of them was dark, but didn't look like sludge or milkshake, no sign of more paper either. Put in new Mobil 1 filter with Valvoline and Seafoam light went off like normal. Was a little nosier then normal for few seconds then quieted down to normal. Just hope there are no hidden clogs, like in the lifters or something. Have to just do few oil changes and wait and see. When it warms up I'll drop the pan to check the screen again.
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Mon Jan 11, 2010 5:04 pm

Curious why you are running a remote filter? I have heard more bad than good about them. What brand/model is your remote filter? I'd like to look at it's specs.
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Mon Jan 11, 2010 5:34 pm

I put it on so i could use a larger filter. It should be less restrictive, less pressure drop across filter should mean it bypass less unfiltered oil into engine. It is also easier to prefill the filter when doing oil change. I can change the oil now with out jacking car up, as long as drain pan is shallow enough to slide under plug.

No kit, I made it from separate pieces.

The remote filter bracket is Mr Gasket. Uses same filter as older ford fullsize trucks with V8 or 4.9 I6. The spin on adapter is Permacool. Both are 1/2in npt thread. The lines are -8 PTFE from Frozenboost about 4' long. 1/2in to -8 adapters are JIC hydraulic fittings (same thread and flare angle as an) from local farm store chain. Filter side has short length of black iron pipe before adater for hose. Mounting bracket made from 3 lengths of 1' square aluminum tube bolted to aluminum STB near alternator.

Most restricted part would be the Mr Gasket filter mount, internal passages are smaller then the hose fittings.
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Mon Jan 11, 2010 10:32 pm

That's cool. I just run the 4.3 S10's oil filter to get a larger capacity than the stock filter. It screws right on to the stock system and is just a little larger.

Hopefully it's not part of your problems.
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Mon Jan 11, 2010 11:29 pm

Remote filter has been on since last spring without any problem and seemed to not have any junk in it. The pressure went out immediately, so I think its good once flushed, assuming no damage was already done. Time will tell I guess.

I was going to put an electric oil pressure gauge on in near future(when weather warms, maybe sooner), was planning on installing 2 senders with a rocker switch to change from sender before filter and sender after filter. That way i would now if how much the lines and brackets are restricting flow. Should also be able to tell when filter is getting filled by increase in pressure drop.

Hard to tell by looking at outside of bracket and fsm diagrams, anyone know if factory pressure switch is before or after filter? I think it is before the filter, but I'm not real sure.

Only 2 ways I can think to check is to take braket off and feed a wire through the hole and see what side it comes out of, or to hook up sender in line before filter and one in factory spot then see if one before filter is higher, if not move it after filter and check if it is lower. Both are too much messing around for the temp. outside, could wait tee shirt weather.
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Tue Jan 12, 2010 2:45 am

I hope it's not before the filter, that would give good readings with a plugged filter and be very stupid... Oh, that's right, these are the people who set their sending units at 2 PSI! mad
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Tue Jan 12, 2010 12:37 pm

It would be even worse on turbo cars. I would sent unfiltered oil to the turbo, all the turbo kits seem to get there oil from where the sender threads in. I remember seeing some import turbo forum complaining about that on some motors. I did some Google searches to find out but found no answer.
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Tue Jan 12, 2010 12:46 pm

I'm assuming you finished cleaning and flushing and all is back together now?
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Tue Jan 12, 2010 12:57 pm

Cleaned, back together, and has pressure. I have drive into town to buy more oil. Planning on doing daily oil changes for couple days, about 20mile round trip from work, store, and home.
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Tue Jan 12, 2010 12:59 pm

Glad it's all back together and working good.
As you said time will tell if any damage occurred.
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Wed Jan 13, 2010 3:48 am

I idles it for awhile in drive way, went to gas station, and started down road. Made it 4 miles then light came back. Pulled over and had car towed back to house. I'm pulling the pan in morning to check for more growths on pickup. Oil on dipstick was light enough it was hard to read the dipstick. I am ordering oil gauge tonight, Then I'll at least see the pressure dropping before it hits 2psi.
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Wed Jan 13, 2010 3:57 am

Sorry to hear you still have oil pressure problems.
You might want to put a master gauge on it first, before dropping the pan again, and read the actual pressure and be able to determine if your oil pressure sending unit is bad.
It could have some of that crap in it and not sensing pressure properly as well.

I would have to believe if the pressure actually drops to 2 psi or lower, you would be hearing the lifters and valve train clacking pretty bad.
But that's just my opinion.
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Wed Jan 13, 2010 5:19 am

Engine wasn't making abnormal noise noise when light came on, but pressure was low for only a few seconds. I replaced the sender with one from Autozone before I dropped the pan the first time. If the sender is clogged I should probably check the pickup anyway. It looks like I'll have to drop the pan to clean the pickup after each oil change while flushing. There most have been alot of paper in motor. It has me wondering if I should install a inline screen pre-filter AFTER the spin-on to catch any paper if another filter ever comes apart. Would provide some filtration when main filter is bypassing too. Not letting Fram extra guard near engine again.
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Wed Jan 13, 2010 3:26 pm

Cleaned pickup again growths were smaller, oil dark when drained, oil on dipstick was still light. guess it was darker at the bottom. cleaned new layer of sludge from bottom of pan, changed oil again with more seafoam. Light came on after about 20 min.
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Wed Jan 13, 2010 3:31 pm

Wow, what a pain in the ass.
I wonder how many times it's going to take to clean it all out for good.
It's a good sign that you have no engine noises though. No lifters got plugged up and no bearing problems, etc.
Keep it up and good luck.
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Wed Jan 13, 2010 3:38 pm

Wow is right...

If you're still finding new deposits, I guess the only explanation is that one of the
oil filters came apart, probably when that water got to it...
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Wed Jan 13, 2010 3:41 pm

come to think of it,you can for around a $100 or so ,have your engine flushed. its hooked up to a pump that pumps engine safe solvent through the motor. my guess your engine is a prime candidate for this service. if you add all the $ your going to spend on oil changes and what not, you're better off having this service done.
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Wed Jan 13, 2010 4:07 pm

No garage in town, would have to have it towed 7+ miles. I have a SB chevy pump. Maybe able to pump something into the lines driving it with drill. Farm store in next town sells seafoam by the gallon.
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Wed Jan 13, 2010 4:11 pm

do it. don't spend the $ on sea foam. save that $ when the car is healthy. use gunk,its cheap and safe. just don't run it in her forever.make an appointment,if not going to do the gunk thing,and have her towed. this is what your car need right now. you have to get all that crap out the engine or you ll be looking at a new engine bill.
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Wed Jan 13, 2010 4:20 pm

I can't think of any other way to get large particles out of the oil pan. They should come out with an oil change. If you are using a strong enough solvent to get the sludge to move from other parts of the engine down to the oil pan, it should drian out of the drain plug, as long as the engine is hot. You should get some crankcase motor flush and do it a couple of times. Make sure you are doing your oil changes hot.

Hard to say if you are going to get through this without replacing the motor though.

In theory there isn't much more than the oil filter, pickup, and oil pan as collection areas. I would think that with the oil pan off, you could pour some solvent right in the valve covers and anything that's up there should be flushed right down.

I would consider uninstalling your remote filter and removing the oil filter adapter (gasket cost me about $2. last time I had a filter adapter off). Pretty much your only other option will be to pull the motor and disassemble.

So try a bunch of oil changes in a row first, and see how that goes. Make sure you do the oil changes hot. Pray.

Good luck!!

-Derek
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Wed Jan 13, 2010 4:21 pm

We used to use Kerosene years ago. Would drain all oil and slightly overfill the crankcase with Kerosene and run it to loosen all deposits then drop pan, remove valve covers to look for sludge after flushing (You've already done that) . Then install a new oil pump and bring some life back to an old and abused engine.
I'm not suggesting you run the engine with Kerosene because I don't know how the tolerances and bearing materials differ from the old straight sixers.
But if someone else has any experience with doing this on newer cars, please speak up. It could save some time and money, but once again I'm not sure anymore.
We used to do it regularly to rear ends for preventive maintenance and never hurt a ball bearing in the rear end.
I'd be more concerned with the materials used in modern crank and rod bearings, don't know how much in composition they may have changed over the years.
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PostSubject: Re: Low oilpressure, Oil pickup Stalactite   Thu Jan 14, 2010 3:28 am

The sludge seems to be mostly gone, probably not enough left to cause problems. Won't be any left by the time paper is gone. Oil has been changed 3 times since water got in. What is draining out is dirty but normal thickness, no trace of milkshake left.

There seems to be alot of paper though, not sure where its all coming from. Haven't seen any paper anywhere but on windage tray and pickup screen (there was a single strand in corner of block where it met windage tray 1rst time i dropped pan). The pickup growths are getting smaller. Since its the paper that is now the problem, could the drained oil be strained through fine mesh strainer and reused till paper is gone? I don't mean the oil that had the sludge and seafoam in it, just future drainings(they should start being clean soon)

The lines of the remote filter have to come off to drop pan. They looked clear. I'll pull the adapters of and see if anything is in internal passages. I have a fram stock filter I could put on for next change.

Gas station in town sells diesel. I think if i pumped it with external pump into remote filter line that would be similar to flush machine. Engine parts wouldn't be moving so only issue i can see is if the diesel would eat seals or bearing material. I found article on converting sbc oil pump into drill pump http://www.frybrid.com/forum/showthread.php?t=10978
There was also an article in a hot rod magazine(don't remember which on) where they mounted a similar modified pump in a 5gal bucket to prime a Buick big block before starting after rebuild.
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