Burst Water Pipe - Near Miss

Engines and Engine Systems
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iandvl
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Burst Water Pipe - Near Miss

Post by iandvl » 02 Jan 2019 11:01

Had a near miss with the 4.5 on the way to Pretoria this morning. Was travelling through Harties.

Checked the temperature gauge (I check this very regularly as I'm totally paranoid about overhearing the motor) just before the Total garage where one turns left towards Saartjiesnek. Drove along, past the three way stop.

Smelled an odd "fishy" smell. Did not realise this, but this is what coolant smells like when it is boiling on the block... :rolling: :rolling: Did not think much of it. We've had a lot of rain and there is a regular weird smell in the "dip" before the turn off to Ifafi. Whilst slowing for the next 4-way stop, I noticed steam coming from under the motor. Check tempo again and it was approaching max. This was within 1km from where I'd checked it the last time and is just indicative of how fast these things happen...

I pulled off immediately. Turned the heater to max to hopefully disperse some of the heat and let the engine idle for a few seconds before switching off. Steam everywhere coming out from under the engine cover. Thought I'd possible lost the head (was not aware there was a second water pipe under the engine cover).

Anyways, waited for back in the form of a friend diving the wife's 4.8 to tow me back to Brits. Whilst waiting, I checked the engine oil. No water in it, which I thought was a good sign. The overflow tank was empty. When the motor cooled, I also checked the water in the radiator's expansion tank. It was still full.

Anyways, Etienne arrived with Annalien's 4.8 and we towed the 4.5 to the closes garage. Towing a Patrol with a dead motor is not a fun experience. Anyway who has towed before knows that the back vehicle is supposed to break both vehicles to keep tension on the tow-rope. Without the engine running however, there is no vacuum to assist with boosting brake pressure, so it's even more of a pig when it comes to stopping. The power steering is also dead in the water, and it is not fun heaving a ~3 tonne vehicle around without it. As such, we decided that since the radiator was full, we'd refill the 4.5 and drive it, keeping a very careful eye on engine temperature.

Refilled water, drove over Saartjiesnek. On the way, Etienne (who was travelling behind me with the 4.8) called me to tell me water kept gushing out from underneath the vehicle, and I'd need to stop at the garage just on the other side of Saaartjiesnek. Engine temperatures remained well within reason, but to be safe, I switched off the motor and let the truck free downhill to the next garage. When we got there, we popped the hood and removed the engine cover to spot that the hose running from the thermostat block had split and was pushing water out all over the place.

So we parked the car, removed the offending pipe and drove through to Brits to find a spare...
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A quick stop at the first of the local spares shops provided a spare that would work, and we fitted the thing.
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Next step was refilling everything properly. Filled the overflow tank to Max level. Opened the bleed valve, turned on the ignition and set the heater to max temp. Filled up the radiator until water started seeping out of the bleed valve. Closed the bleed valve. Started the motor and continued topping up with water until everything stabilised. Then bled the final bit of air with the bleed screw until bubbles stopped appearing.

Anyways, this is temporary as I will need to do a proper radiator flush and refill so that I can sort out the anti-freeze levels. Between the original pipe burst, and the drive over Saartjiesnek, I do not think there is much anti-freeze left in the system, so will need to do this asap. However, it was enough to get me back to Brits safely.

Motor runs well and smoothly, so I am very happy to say that I believe I caught this issue perfectly in time and before any mechanical damage occurred. Been a very horrible way to start my first working day of 2019. On the other hand, I did manage to catch it. I'm happy with that.

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Re: Burst Water Pipe - Near Miss

Post by Alex Roux » 02 Jan 2019 11:10

I suspect water pipes are the main cause of Patrol's petrol straight-six failures.
I am thinking one needs to reconsider the replacement regime on all rubber pipes of these engines. I.e. more frequently.
Skilpad & Shortie

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Re: Burst Water Pipe - Near Miss

Post by Alex Roux » 02 Jan 2019 11:15

iandvl wrote:
02 Jan 2019 11:01
Towing a Patrol with a dead motor is not a fun experience. Anyway who has towed before knows that the back vehicle is supposed to break both vehicles to keep tension on the tow-rope. Without the engine running however, there is no vacuum to assist with boosting brake pressure, so it's even more of a pig when it comes to stopping. The power steering is also dead in the water, and it is not fun heaving a ~3 tonne vehicle around without it.
Try do that for two days through 160+ Okovango mudholes!
Thats when Michael towed me in April 2018.
The ECU was dead, so no option to run the engine.

Glad this ended well.
Skilpad & Shortie

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Re: Burst Water Pipe - Near Miss

Post by iandvl » 02 Jan 2019 11:19

Alex Roux wrote:
02 Jan 2019 11:10
I suspect water pipes are the main cause of Patrol's petrol straight-six failures.
I am thinking one needs to reconsider the replacement regime on all rubber pipes of these engines. I.e. more frequently.
I imagine that is probably the case. It's also a reason why I had my radiator hoses replaced very recently, and also travel with a spare set. Did not know about this little pipe. Maanouwat. It has been replaced now...

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Re: Burst Water Pipe - Near Miss

Post by iandvl » 02 Jan 2019 11:20

Alex Roux wrote:
02 Jan 2019 11:15
Try do that for two days through 160+ Okovango mudholes!
Thats when Michael towed me in April 2018.
The ECU was dead, so no option to run the engine.

Glad this ended well.
Believe it or not, this exact thought crossed my mind in my brief ~1km towing experience to the garage this morning. :rolling: :rolling:

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Re: Burst Water Pipe - Near Miss

Post by Peter Connan » 02 Jan 2019 14:22

I understand that Madman makes a special gadget that only monitors water level (and gives an audible alarm), and have wanted to fit it for a while now.

The concern is that the water temp.sensor is fitted at the highest point in the cooling system, and if it is not in contact with water, it is measuring the temperature of the metalwork around it...

I also had a bit of a scare recently when I discovered that my radiator had developed a leak on the 24th of December. Since everyone was closed I had to make do with a Pratley Steel repair.

Will be fitting a nee radiator asap...
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Re: Burst Water Pipe - Near Miss

Post by Jules » 03 Jan 2019 06:49

Peter gaan jy n 4.2 of 4.5 radiator insit? Laat maak jy een of koop jy vanaf die rak?

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Re: Burst Water Pipe - Near Miss

Post by johanp » 03 Jan 2019 07:46

It seems that a few of us had water leak problems recently.
On 22 December at 4h00 in the morning I filled up with petrol in Vryburg. Went to the restroom and on return found my car standing in a puddle of water.
There is a water outlet on the right hand side of the engine with 2 hoses connecting to it. The thick hose connects to the oil filter housing and I am not sure where the thin hose connects. It goes up through the intake manifold. We found that there is a small hole where the thin pipe on the outlet connects to the thick part. My son and I removed the outlet (not an easy task) and fixed the hole with Q-bond and a couple of layers of stretch and seal tape. We started driving again and the car immediately started to run hot. I stopped and called Graham who helped me to get the bleeding screw on top of the engine. Thank you again Graham.After bleeding out the air the car ran fine for the rest of our trip of 3500km (I will write a trip report at a later stage later). I still have to replace the outlet and I also want to replace all the hoses.
Not long after leaving Vryburg, I saw Ian and his dad on the road. Ian, I was in the white Patrol.
Water outlet.jpg
Water outlet description.jpg

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Re: Burst Water Pipe - Near Miss

Post by iandvl » 03 Jan 2019 08:50

johanp wrote:
03 Jan 2019 07:46
...
Not long after leaving Vryburg, I saw Ian and his dad on the road. Ian, I was in the white Patrol.
...
Johan - was this the white Patrol we saw between Kuruman and Vryburg with the rooftop tent ?

I was wondering who that was. Posted a question on the Whatsapp group wondering who it was...

Nice "meeting" you. Was a little late to flash lights, but I did wave.

Lekker dag.

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Re: Burst Water Pipe - Near Miss

Post by johanp » 03 Jan 2019 12:17

Hi Ian
Yes, that was me. I was also a bit late seeing you because I was constantly looking at the water temp gauge.
It was not a rooftop tent but Tentco bags on the roofrack.

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