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  #11  
Old 02-21-2010, 09:02 AM
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A leak down test is pretty simple. Bring the cylinder to be tested to TDC on the compression stroke and install the tester much like you would a compression tester. This is easier to do if you have a valve cover off. Remove the radiator cap, oil filler cap and if possible prop open the throttle body. Attach an air line and pressurize the cylinder. The gauge closest to the air line coming in (typically on the left) shows how much air pressure is going to the cylinder and is controllable with the regulator on the tester. Personally, I use 100 psi to make the math easier. The second gauge tells you how much of that air is staying in the cylinder. If you have 100 psi going in and 80 psi staying in the cylinder that cylinder is said to have 20% leakdown. I don't like to see more than 15% leakdown in a cylinder although 20% is generally considered tolerable. There should also be no more than a 20% variance between cylinders.

If the leakdown is unacceptable, you'll want to see where the air is going. If you hear it coming from the throttle body, you have an intake valve issue or a crack in the head going to the intake runner. If you hear it out of the tailpipe, expect a similar problem on the exhaust side. Bubbles coming from the radiator indicate a crack leading to the cooling system or blown head gasket. Air coming from the oil filler would point toward a problem with the piston and/or rings.

If you don't have access to a leak down tester you can get a general idea of ring condition by putting a couple of tablespoons of clean engine oil into the suspect cylinder, cranking it over for a few seconds and rechecking compression. If the compression has come up from the initial reading, you have a ring problem. If it remains the same or close to it, you can pretty much bet the problem is in the head or head gasket.
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Old 02-21-2010, 09:22 AM
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Thanks again for all the help. I will do the leakdown and and let you know what I find.
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Old 02-21-2010, 02:26 PM
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I've always found it easier to just remove the rocker shafts . Alot of times when you inject the air into the cylinder the motor spins and then the valves open . So I don't fight it . It's just a couple of bolts and the valves will stay closed by pulling the rocker shafts . If you have any problems give us a shout . Let us know how you make out and what your diagnosis is .
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