D-110 Strange Engine Cooling Characteristics - Defender Source
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  #1  
Old December 2nd, 2011, 02:51 AM
NomaD110
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Christian
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D-110 Strange Engine Cooling Characteristics

Hey everyone,

I hope someone can help me because I am at wits end on this one:

Issue:
I live on a vineyard that spans about 1500 feet of elevation across the property. Every day I use my trusty NAS D-110 to visit all the different areas of the property several times a day. Since owning my 110 I have noticed some strange engine cooling characteristics when putting the engine under load climbing these steep mountain roads. The entire truck had a frame off nut and bolt restoration done by Pikes Peak 3,400 miles ago with everything drive train related as bran new with a 4.6. All gauges are VDO with bran new senders and the temp gauge in this case reads accurately as verified with a laser thermometer.

Symptoms:
Scenario 1 - Usually when I leave to head up the hill my truck is sitting outside my office cold at the base of the mountain. The climb starts within let's say 500 feet of my office. I throw the truck into low range and start climbing in usually third gear at about 3000 rpm while the engine is just starting to build water temperature. It does this effortlessly with the CDL locked with no wheel spin. The truck quickly finds its way to 180-190F. The climb is constant and steep with absolutely zero breaks for about half a mile. Within a couple minutes the temp gauge starts to creep up on its own past 200 F and keep climbing to near 220 F. It sometimes pauses or even falls back a bit within seconds and then keeps going up. This is all regardless of RPM and speed. All this time the viscous fan does not engage or roar indicating its not getting hot behind the radiator. The second the truck gets over the first pass and starts leveling off the temp comes zooming down to 185 F in under a minute. On the way down the truck never gets above 185-190 F. The ambient temperature during the climb has been everything from below freezing to over 100 over the coarse of the year with seemingly no effect on the symptoms. Although the temp moves around quite a bit the truck has never even gotten close to overheating while on the road no matter what the conditions, only on this particular climb.
Scenario 2 - This is what makes this interesting...let's say that I have been driving the truck for more then 15 minutes at full temperature on the road headed to the property. If I arrive to the property and just start climbing the hill in the same fashion it will not overheat at any time during the climb! It only wants to overheat when quickly starting out the climb from a cold engine.

What I've done so far:
I've been slowly replacing things and checking temperatures in different locations to try and understand what is going on. The first theory I had was that the thermostat was erratically opening assuming a bad thermostat. I also thought that maybe the water pump wasn't moving enough volume to keep up. I also thought that possibly the radiator was plugged partially. I sent the radiator to be cleaned and boiled and they said it was perfect. I replaced the water pump for a new one and changed the thermostat for a new one. Sadly today after what I thought fixed it for sure, it did the exact same thing in both scenarios. I know there aren't any air pockets in the system because I vacuum filled it and triple checked.

My last idea feels far fetched by I am theorizIng that these thermostats may take a while to open all the way and given my somewhat bizarre circumstances and uses, in scenario 1, I am creating heat faster then the thermostat can open and start using the rest of the cooling system. This would explain why the viscous fan isn't roaring because the radiator isn't getting hot. The viscous does engage properly when getting around 195 F on the road pushing the temp down quickly to 185 F. My laser thermometer confirms that the radiator is fairly cooler then the engine cooling block when the overheating occurs in scenario 1. Also sadly, if I am right then adding an electric fan won't help either. Am I missing something??? Is my theory BS??? I can't warm up my truck for 15 min every time I need to run up the hill.

Thank you in advance.
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  #2  
Old December 2nd, 2011, 07:28 AM
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Did you replace the fan and or fan clutch?
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  #3  
Old December 2nd, 2011, 09:10 AM
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Joe Still
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Lets start by assuming 1) It was designed to do what you are doing without problems and 2) the condition of the new or reconditioned parts are NOT documented.

There are better brands of stat that open and close more reliably- cheap and easy.

In your case I'd hit that radiator top to bottom with dig thermometer when hot looking for the plugged up area. Not all Radiator shops can really do anything with them so if a water hose squirts thru and they don't think you are a candidate for a new one you may not have gotten the best advive.

LR equals heating issues which directly leads to blown head gaskest which cost $2k prox.

I'd factor an aftermakt rad core into my program.

Good luck!!!! js
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Old December 2nd, 2011, 10:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MC22958 View Post
Did you replace the fan and or fan clutch?
Yes the viscous fan is working properly and I did replace it for a new one...first thing I did after buying the truck.
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  #5  
Old December 2nd, 2011, 10:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by red&yellowrovers View Post
Lets start by assuming 1) It was designed to do what you are doing without problems and 2) the condition of the new or reconditioned parts are NOT documented.

There are better brands of stat that open and close more reliably- cheap and easy.

In your case I'd hit that radiator top to bottom with dig thermometer when hot looking for the plugged up area. Not all Radiator shops can really do anything with them so if a water hose squirts thru and they don't think you are a candidate for a new one you may not have gotten the best advive.

LR equals heating issues which directly leads to blown head gaskest which cost $2k prox.

I'd factor an aftermakt rad core into my program.

Good luck!!!! js
I understand what you are saying but doesn't the symptoms of the two scenarios indicate at least a thermostat that seems to be opening slowly. All replacement parts I mention are bran new Land Rover genuine.

I have never tested one of these thermostats in hot water and see them operate with my own two eyes. How quick do they open up if dropped into 180 F water? Does it snap open or do they take time? How long until full flow can be expected?

I like your idea of an aftermarket race engine style thermostat that opens more aggressively.
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  #6  
Old December 2nd, 2011, 10:29 AM
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I didn't read the whole thing, but which thermostat did you get? Maybe it's opening up around 215 degrees, or you're getting false temp readings through the sender. Shoot an infrared thermo at it to check the true temp when going up the hill.

------ Follow up post added December 2nd, 2011 10:31 AM ------

You posted while I was typing. Pull the thermostat and bring it up to temp on your own and see when it opens up.
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  #7  
Old December 2nd, 2011, 10:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rijosho View Post
I didn't read the whole thing, but which thermostat did you get? Maybe it's opening up around 215 degrees, or you're getting false temp readings through the sender. Shoot an infrared thermo at it to check the true temp when going up the hill.
Thermostat is LR genuine. I did hit it with a digital thermostat right at the sender and can affirm that the VDO gauge is reading quite accurate.
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Old December 2nd, 2011, 10:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rijosho View Post
You posted while I was typing. Pull the thermostat and bring it up to temp on your own and see when it opens up.
Okay I'll try this.
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  #9  
Old December 2nd, 2011, 10:51 AM
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You could also do what I did once and throw a stick in there (and bungy it down).

http://www.defendersource.com/forum/...0&d=1288567762

Note: not a long-term solution.
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  #10  
Old December 2nd, 2011, 11:11 AM
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barry f
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Just curious if you let the truck warm up then hit that first climb does it do it?
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  #11  
Old December 2nd, 2011, 11:24 AM
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Thermostats have a small hole in the base plate. Is yours @ the top or bottom as you installed it ?

What you describe is a classic example of a thermostat being slow to open. If the small air bleed hole is not @ the top allowing any air in the system to pass you will get an air pocket @ the thermostat and it will behave as you describe.
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  #12  
Old December 2nd, 2011, 11:30 AM
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Try checking the ground on the VDO gauge and engine.
I had a similar issue with my tdi only when the battery was charging or alternator working hard.

Try turning the lights on while it is hot. If the gauge changes there is a ground issue.
easy and worth a shot.
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  #13  
Old December 2nd, 2011, 11:48 AM
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To me is perfectly normal and my Tdi does exactly the same starting from cold and going uphill temp gauge would go up to 205 and once T-stat opens cold water from radiator comes in and takes down the temprerature very fast to near 180 and then stabilizes around 190 for the rest of the trip. It wouldn´t do it if I start with a warm engine. Going down hill or uphill I allways get different readings and it´s perfecly normal because the engine "feels" the road slopes.

Cheers,
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  #14  
Old December 2nd, 2011, 12:22 PM
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First few minutes of driving from cold the NAS D110s have a start up procedure where the temp. gauge rises briefly then settles to normal operating temp. At least the manual says this. Are you sure it isn't that???
If you have an infrared thermometer you can check it with that.
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  #15  
Old December 2nd, 2011, 12:46 PM
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RRC fan and clutch will fix all your issues.
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  #16  
Old December 2nd, 2011, 12:54 PM
NomaD110
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon_Winningham View Post
First few minutes of driving from cold the NAS D110s have a start up procedure where the temp. gauge rises briefly then settles to normal operating temp. At least the manual says this. Are you sure it isn't that???
If you have an infrared thermometer you can check it with that.
Yes my truck does exactly this every time on the road. It just does it to an extreme on the hill getting dangerously close to 220. Should I switch it out for a thermostat that opens at 180? What does the stock one open up at?
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  #17  
Old December 2nd, 2011, 01:14 PM
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I would check with the temp with an IR first to see if it really is overheating.
I run 1994 NAS D90 gauge and temp sender, I also have a custom radiator by Ron Davis, and ceramic coated manifolds, but them again I live in AZ
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  #18  
Old December 2nd, 2011, 05:43 PM
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Stock T'stat opens at 192. I'm running a 180 with my 4.6 in the 110 but it's not fuel injected. I'm using the stock radiator and never have had an overheating problem in the mountains or towing. If you have an infared thermometer it will help diagnose the T'stat without taking it out and you can look for blocked sections of the radiator. I'm using the RRC fan in the '95 D90 and it really does help. You should hear the fan roar before the clutch allows it to slow down no matter what the engine temp is. If the hoses are getting really tight and there is a lot of pressure build up then you may have other problems and should be a warranty issue with only 3400 on the clock.
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Old December 2nd, 2011, 08:54 PM
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Can someone give me a part number and a location as to where I can buy a 180 F thermostat? I think that will be the ticket. Pikes Peak told me today they have an 190 F one in my truck and that might be causing the issue. They also said some people drill a slightly larger bypass hole in the thermostat. Anyone here done that?
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  #20  
Old December 2nd, 2011, 09:04 PM
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190 is lunacy, 180 max. NAPA or Autozone should have a thermostat flip the gasket over, you can drill a hole in the top of the thermostat if needed.


Have you ever serviced the cooling system? How old is the radiator? Your getting that thing hot.
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