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  #1  
Old October 25th, 2005, 08:41 PM
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Cooling system pressure

Isn't the heating hose that comes off the top of the engine into the top of the radiator supposed to be pressurized? I can easily squeeze mine till the sides touch with the engine running.

I'm also hearing something that sounds like bad bearings coming from the front of the engine. I'm thinking maybe a bad water pump? Although the alternator and the power steering pump are also in that vicinity so they could also be making the noise.
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  #2  
Old October 26th, 2005, 10:35 AM
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Yep it should be pressurized. If it is the waterpump I would check behind the pulley on it, there is a weep hole that it might be leaking from indicating it is bad.
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Old October 26th, 2005, 09:16 PM
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The ball bearing sound could also be the pully next to the water pump. Before my water pump went out it made a ball bearing wearing sound, but only weeped a little.

Do both your heater hoses not have pressure?
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Old October 26th, 2005, 09:32 PM
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I only checked the top hose, I'll check the bottom and report back. I just topped off the radiator the other day and I checked the level again yesterday. It was only down about a half inch but I had to fill it on the side of the street that wasn't level so that could account for the difference.
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Old October 26th, 2005, 09:50 PM
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Spray your belts with a little wd 40 if the noise goes away eurika! Also I use my dip stick as a stethascope to isolate issues when they arrise.
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Old October 27th, 2005, 09:07 PM
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My water pump pulley is very slightly out-of-round -- probably because someone yanked on it taking off the clutch fan in the past (there are plier marks on it). I get a bearings-sounding noise, too, but having put on a new water pump *just to be sure* and not seeing any difference.. I would not worry unless the weep hole is weeping...
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Old October 28th, 2005, 01:20 PM
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Can someone describe this bearings-sounding noise?
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Old October 28th, 2005, 01:27 PM
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On my truck, it sounds almost like a squeak, or a whistling, like something is not getting proper lubrication and metal is rubbing on metal. I don't know how else to describe it.
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Old October 28th, 2005, 01:45 PM
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Crap. Just yesterday, I noticed a similar sound. Much like the sound produced when running your finger around the top of a wine glass. I too, dont seem to have any/much pressure in the top cooling hose. Is there any value to looking at alternate water pumps, perhaps electric, and if so any thoughts on what those options are?
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Old October 28th, 2005, 01:48 PM
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Not really as far as I can see, once you remove the waterpump you are left with a pretty big hole to fill. And if it lasts 100,000 miles I am pretty happpy with that! I have heard that you should stick to OEM waterpumps and that the after market ones don't last too long.
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Old October 28th, 2005, 05:38 PM
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More details...

Well I checked today and there seems to be no pressure in either the top or bottom radiator hose. This is after letting the truck run about 5-10 minutes which brought the temp gauge up to the middle, slightly to the left. How much pressure should there be? I checked the shop manual and didn't see any numbers.

THe radiator hoses also were not hot at all, while the hoses running to the heater box were too hot to squeeze. During this saga I have also noticed that the fan blows only VERY hot air even with the switch set to cool. Maybe I need to adjust the cable that attaches to the temp switch on the heater box?

I couldn't find a weep hole on the water pump. Is it visible with the pulley attached? I did notice that the end of the pump that attaches to the pulley seems to be slightly damp although I did not see a puddle of coolant or any coolant leak while it was running.
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Old October 29th, 2005, 10:03 AM
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About 15lbs of, pressure, I would check the expansion tank cap, it is really the only thing that regulates the pressure other then a hole in something. Coolant always flows throught the heater but does not flow through the radiator until the thermostat opens, and depending on the T-stat you have it can open any place between 160 and 195. It is very hard to see the weep hole as it is blocked by the waterump pulley. If there is fluid on the inside lip of the pulley chances are it's from the weep hole.
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Old October 29th, 2005, 07:01 PM
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Well I fixed one possible source of the pressure leak. I was taking off the fill cap today and the top just popped off. I would think there would have been clear signs that this was leaking if it really was. If any of you guys haven't changed your fill plug you may want to get a backup. It's only a $4 part and you can't drive the truck if it pops off. I've taken mine off about 3-4 times over the past few weeks and today the top just came off with the first twist of the wrench.

When I checked the hose pressure I only had the engine running about ten minutes...so maybe the thermostat wasn't open. I thought it would be open at normal operating temperature. I'll check again after I drive it around next. My thermostat has been changed so it's only a few years old and shouldn't be malfunctioning already.

I did not see any coolant on the inside of the pulley so I don't think there is anything coming from the weep hole. Is it possible for the water pump to fail without coolant coming from the weep hole?
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Old October 29th, 2005, 11:15 PM
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The weep hole is designed to leak before failure--so it should be leaking before the pump fails and it is rare (but not impossible) that it would not. I carry a spare water pump so tomorrow I will take the photo of the weep hole as it is very hard to see while installed (although the weeping fluid leaves a distinct trail).
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Old October 31st, 2005, 07:52 PM
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When in doubt, get the system pressure-checked. It takes only a few minutes at a radiator shop and many will do it for free as part of the 'free estimate/inspection'. If not, you can probably pick up a pressure tester.

My hoses will not get rock-hard until the truck is pretty hot, which makes some sense. The cap will blow off pressure at ~15psi, so the pressure in the system has to be less than that if you don't see the cap blowing steam...
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Old November 1st, 2005, 01:33 PM
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I drove for about 30-45 minutes yesterday in traffic in about 80 degrees here in Miami. Still no pressure or possibly VERY low pressure. Even with the hose hot I could squeeze the sides together. I'll just have to get the pressure checked to make sure it's doing what it's supposed to.

Thanks for the suggestions.
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