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Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys, I'm back and so is my truck. I posted a month ago or so about some overheating and smoking problems which turned out to be a warped head letting coolant into cyl 6 which explains the misfire code. I had the heads machined and the head gasket job done and got my truck back with one new problem and one old one. The new one should be taken care of this week by the shop that did the work. I'm leaking power steering from the cooler. (Thankfully it's power steering, I thought it was tranny being it's the same, and I didn't want my tranny to overheat but power steering is fine with me if they will replace the cooler)
Now my truck is still getting too hot for my comfort and it's only at stand still. Reg operating temp is below the halfway mark on the gauge and it'll be there while driving and while stopped for maybe one minute but if I stay stopped longer at a light or something it goes up to halfway and today I shut my truck off at a friends for a second and when I started it again it was a tiny bit over half which I dont like. It went back down promptly after I started driving again.
Is this the damn radiator I keep hearing about on different forums? I've replaced the fan clutch so that can't be it right? It's about a month old with only two weeks of driving on it. Radiator?! I want my s*** to be cold already!!! I'm $2,000 into this now and I'm sick of throwing money at it! I'm 19 and don't make much money so I need this fixed already!!! Please help me guys, any similar stories?? Thanks guys!!
 

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Hey guys, I'm back and so is my truck. I posted a month ago or so about some overheating and smoking problems which turned out to be a warped head letting coolant into cyl 6 which explains the misfire code. I had the heads machined and the head gasket job done and got my truck back with one new problem and one old one. The new one should be taken care of this week by the shop that did the work. I'm leaking power steering from the cooler. (Thankfully it's power steering, I thought it was tranny being it's the same, and I didn't want my tranny to overheat but power steering is fine with me if they will replace the cooler)
Now my truck is still getting too hot for my comfort and it's only at stand still. Reg operating temp is below the halfway mark on the gauge and it'll be there while driving and while stopped for maybe one minute but if I stay stopped longer at a light or something it goes up to halfway and today I shut my truck off at a friends for a second and when I started it again it was a tiny bit over half which I dont like. It went back down promptly after I started driving again.
Is this the damn radiator I keep hearing about on different forums? I've replaced the fan clutch so that can't be it right? It's about a month old with only two weeks of driving on it. Radiator?! I want my s*** to be cold already!!! I'm $2,000 into this now and I'm sick of throwing money at it! I'm 19 and don't make much money so I need this fixed already!!! Please help me guys, any similar stories?? Thanks guys!!
Okay, first take a breath and clam down man. I totally understand how it feels to be 19 and having to deal with car related problems lol! We will try to help you best we can. I'm sure Ramtech will probably chime in too.

Alright now first off I would like you to go and get a brand new T-stat that is a Mopar OEM one or a HIGH QUALITY 180 degree aftermarket one. This would eliminate the potential of the current one being defective. Also please make sure that your coolant is a 50/50 mix with water and the coolant.

Next thing is what is the ambient temp where you live? Where I am when it is around 100 my gauge will show at the middle BUT that is with a 180 and the heavy cooling package so if you don't have that it's probably normal for it to sit slightly over half. Also you described it being slightly higher when you turned it back on when getting back from visiting your friend, this is also normal as the heat soaked into the block will continue to bleed into the coolant mixture. Due to this and because the water pump plus fan are off the coolant will absorb a lot of the heat from the block leading to the temprature being higher than when you left it with the fan and water pump still flowing coolant through the rad.

Last thing is are you sure that your gauge is working correctly? Plug a scanner in to see what the sensor is outputting and to check if it correlates to the gauge. Also take an infrared heat gun to the upper radiator hose to see if its close to the sensor as it should be close.

Be sure that those guys decked BOTH the head and the block to make the seal work, if they don't square the block to the head the new gasket will just fail again in a year or so and be very venerable to overheats killing it.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Here's the thing though, on other forums there are tons and tons of people who say the radiator is the problem cause people replace everything but the rad and still have the issue, once the rad gets replaced they say it goes away. Or at least 98% of them. Some said fan clutch but mine is brand new.
So I don't want to do the thermostat without doing the radiator or the radiator without the thermostat. That's so much coolant!!! I'm outside Chicago in the burbs mostly and it's been in the 70's - 80's. For instance it was in the 80's today. I'll have to check with an infrared gun the next time I work which might be wednesday, weather pending. Oh, scratch that I might go in the check tomorrow before I proceed with further money spending. What gets me is it gets hotter when I'm not moving. That's what I feel is wrong. I'm no mechanic and figure out everything as I go but I don't think my truck should start to get hot and raise the temp gauge as I sit at a light for a minute or two, I feel like my radiator should work well enough along with the t stat to keep everything cool.
Gahhhhhhhhh! And I'm leaving power steering puddles everywhere I park!!!! I love my truck but why so temperamental?!!!? Thanks for the quick reply though btw! Keep it coming guys! Don't leave me stranded here!
 

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Here's the thing though, on other forums there are tons and tons of people who say the radiator is the problem cause people replace everything but the rad and still have the issue, once the rad gets replaced they say it goes away. Or at least 98% of them. Some said fan clutch but mine is brand new.
So I don't want to do the thermostat without doing the radiator or the radiator without the thermostat. That's so much coolant!!! I'm outside Chicago in the burbs mostly and it's been in the 70's - 80's. For instance it was in the 80's today. I'll have to check with an infrared gun the next time I work which might be wednesday, weather pending. Oh, scratch that I might go in the check tomorrow before I proceed with further money spending. What gets me is it gets hotter when I'm not moving. That's what I feel is wrong. I'm no mechanic and figure out everything as I go but I don't think my truck should start to get hot and raise the temp gauge as I sit at a light for a minute or two, I feel like my radiator should work well enough along with the t stat to keep everything cool.
Gahhhhhhhhh! And I'm leaving power steering puddles everywhere I park!!!! I love my truck but why so temperamental?!!!? Thanks for the quick reply though btw! Keep it coming guys! Don't leave me stranded here!
No that is normal. I am a mechanic and because you are not moving the air is not being forced into the radiator from the front and the fan is at low speed because your engine is at idle, try letting it sit then gently hold the revs at like 2500 and watch the temp drop. Of course do this while in park and after it it reads hotter than when moving.

Oh and with regard to the power steering leak OH YEAH, mine had one at its 5k mile service (dad owned it for 11 years before me) and it only truly was fixed when I took possession and replaced the entire system myself.

I would get hose clamps (homes depot or lowes) and replace all the factory constant tension clamps. Also if your hoses are old then you should get new ones, however I cheated and just tightened the clamps a lot (too lazy to install the new ones as they got to the shop a day after the custom rack and new pump did).

Just wait till winter, if you have the heavy duty cooling you will NEVER reach operating temp when moving!
 

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A few things that I haven't seen mentioned/ or asked yet.

1. How many miles on the the motor.

2. When you had the heads done did you go ahead and replace the water pump? If not replaced check the weep holes while it's running(at operating temp) to make sure it's not leaking out of them one way to know you need a new pump.

3. Did they burp the cooling system correctly prior to letting you have it. I don't recall the size allen key you need to open the bleed plug just make sure you do the burp while it's cold, and not up to operating temp.

4. At this point adding a 180 thermostat masks the issue. Check to make sure that they reinstalled the thermostat the right way dumb yes but it has happened before.

If all the above checks good I would lean towards a clogged radiator.
The weak point on these motor's is the head's due to them being aluminum. I blew a gasket on the passenger side exhaust portion of the gasket when I still had mine at 154,000. Good motor just some basic stuff to look for. Middle of that line at least on my dakota was 219-220 as verified in my live data. I wouldn't say you are on the verge of overheating but it's good to take a look at the above. I have many reason's to not use a 180 but that's just my opinion, and another story in itself.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
There are 114,000 on the engine. The water pump was not replaced and I haven't checked it myself. The mechanic said he spent a lot of time burping the system as my first though was there could be air in the system. I'm not aware of this bleed plug.
I also need to figure out what the 12 o'clock line actually is because I've read on forums that dealerships have told people all sorts of things.
I feel like it could be the radiator just because of the stopped issue. At work, all of the powerstroke diesels are run all day long, they don't get shut down until the end of the day and they are being driven, ptos are used, and we pull illegallsy heavy weight and once the temp reaches that almost halfway point, it won't budge from thEre.
 

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This is just my opinion but if I were to replace a radiator the pump would be on the list also. I picked up a reman pump for like 50 bucks I think. Seem's to be the typical life span on these engines for head gaskets all it takes is one time of a slight overheat, and they are gone. The bleed plug sits on top of the engine where the upper radiator hose connects it's somewhere between an 8-12 mm allen key if memory serves. You have to burp the heck out of those to make sure there are no hidden pockets of air in the system. From what you describe I would start there, and branch out. You can pull the radiator to get tested they run about $200 for one last time I checked. Did you do your timing chain tensioner's while they had the head's off another common wear spot. That will give you what sounds like pinging under throttle.

Found this little gem from my 4.7 days.

According to FSM - this is how I did it and haven't had an issue.

STANDARD PROCEDURE - REFILLING
COOLING SYSTEM 4.7L ENGINE
(1) Tighten the radiator draincock and the cylinder
block drain plug(s) (if removed).
CAUTION: Failure to purge air from the cooling system
can result in an overheating condition and
severe engine damage.
(2) Remove the cooling system bleed plug from the
radiator upper hose inlet housing. (Fig. 11)Fill system
using a 50/50 mixture of ethylene-glycol antifreeze
and low mineral content water, until coolant begains
coming out of the cooling system bleed hole. Install
the cooling system bleed plug. Fill radiator to top and
install radiator cap. Add sufficient coolant to the
reserve/overflow tank to raise level to FULL mark.
(3) With heater control unit in the HEAT position,
operate engine with radiator cap in place.
(4) After engine has reached normal operating
temperature, shut engine off and allow it to cool.

When engine is cooling down, coolant will be drawn
into the radiator from the reserve/overflow tank.
(5) Add coolant to reserve/overflow tank as necessary.
Only add coolant to the reserve/overflow
tank when the engine is cold. Coolant level in a
warm engine will be higher due to thermal
expansion.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Okay I found the bleed plug. I've been driving so I can't do it right now.
I also tried putting my truck in park at a stop light when it went to the halfway line and revved her to 2,000 rpm and she went down quicker than s***! So now what does that mean? I also just felt my rad and the only hot spot is the area up by the upper hose? Everything else is pretty cool in comparison? Flow issue with the rad? I hope the rad is my ticket! That would be such a relief but I don't want to replace anything without more advice.
 

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Sounds to me like your 4.7 is running just like it should. Until your temp gauge starts climbing for the red, I'd say it's doing pretty okie dokie.
 

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Opened the bleeder plug, a few bubbles came out before it was even fully out. Then I started my truck and it was just overflowing out of the hole. Drove around and it stayed normal for a long time then went up to almost half when I stopped for a minute or longer. Can't get the bleeder plug out again, might've tighten too hard. After driving the upper hose was squeezable and makes a weird sound when I squeeze it. Wonder if I need a new one or new clamps or both. Rad is still only really hot on the upper right corner near the upper hose. Still air or clogged rad? Both?
 

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Okay I found the bleed plug. I've been driving so I can't do it right now.
I also tried putting my truck in park at a stop light when it went to the halfway line and revved her to 2,000 rpm and she went down quicker than s***! So now what does that mean? I also just felt my rad and the only hot spot is the area up by the upper hose? Everything else is pretty cool in comparison? Flow issue with the rad? I hope the rad is my ticket! That would be such a relief but I don't want to replace anything without more advice.
Just like I said see?
 

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Opened the bleeder plug, a few bubbles came out before it was even fully out. Then I started my truck and it was just overflowing out of the hole. Drove around and it stayed normal for a long time then went up to almost half when I stopped for a minute or longer. Can't get the bleeder plug out again, might've tighten too hard. After driving the upper hose was squeezable and makes a weird sound when I squeeze it. Wonder if I need a new one or new clamps or both. Rad is still only really hot on the upper right corner near the upper hose. Still air or clogged rad? Both?
That's again normal for it to be hot as heck right near the upper hose and cool everywhere else, the upper hose is where the incoming hot coolant is.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
That's again normal for it to be hot as heck right near the upper hose and cool everywhere else, the upper hose is where the incoming hot coolant is.
I just can't imagine it's normal to rise when I've stopped. I see what you mean but assuming dodge has some sense to them, they would produce a truck that doesn't freak out and get hotter when stopped for two minutes. Everything else including my girlfriends dodge caravan with over 300,000 miles and a new radiator stays at the same temp no mater what. Driving down to Texas last summer and everything. I'm ready to take the rad out and hoses, curb stomp it and put a new one in along with a t stat and fill correctly with the bleeder plug but i also don't want to because I could've put money down on a cummins at this point. You guys this love hate relationship should have so much more love!!!
 

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Diesels & gasoline engines are so different, you can't really be comparing the cooling systems

I suggest that you take it to a real radiator shop & have them look at it for any issues
If they tell you that they believe it is partially plugged, drive it home & pull the radiator & take the radiator back to that shop to get it RODDED out, they pull the tanks & run a flat rod through each of the tubes. That method cleans out all of gunk & it will be good for another 10 or more years.
Removing the radiator & reinstalling it is where the radiator shop makes their money through labor charges.
When you are ready to put the radiator back in, think about replacing the hoses & belt(s), as well as checking to see if the person that worked on the heads, had replaced the thermostat

rodding
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_vr7we7nk6s


I don't know about plastic radiators, but steel radiators can be re cored, they just replace the tubes
Good Luck
 

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You have to keep in mind that the upper hose is a coolant return from the engine which is why it should be hot! An improperly burped system, or a thermostat installed the wrong way would cause the above. The easiest, cheapest way to start is by burping the system. The fact that you can rev and cool via the clutch fan tells me that the system is still functioning. Even a bad radiator cap can cause this which is just a quick look (while cool) at the gasket where it mates with the housing for cuts/torn. If it has been changed make sure you have the right cap I think factory was a 21 psi cap for 2001 not much changed for 2004 mechanically. The "squishyness" of the lines wont really be there as they put springs inside the tubes to prevent cavitation. Also double check your reservoir to make sure your not empty. Honestly though in the summer my 4.7 would sit in the middle sometimes just shy of that, and was normal for me for the time of season.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
You have to keep in mind that the upper hose is a coolant return from the engine which is why it should be hot! An improperly burped system, or a thermostat installed the wrong way would cause the above. The easiest, cheapest way to start is by burping the system. The fact that you can rev and cool via the clutch fan tells me that the system is still functioning. Even a bad radiator cap can cause this which is just a quick look (while cool) at the gasket where it mates with the housing for cuts/torn. If it has been changed make sure you have the right cap I think factory was a 21 psi cap for 2001 not much changed for 2004 mechanically. The "squishyness" of the lines wont really be there as they put springs inside the tubes to prevent cavitation. Also double check your reservoir to make sure your not empty. Honestly though in the summer my 4.7 would sit in the middle sometimes just shy of that, and was normal for me for the time of season.
Checked for any damage on rad cap, nothing at all. Says 16psi. Coolant is full, slightly under full on the reservoir tank when cold, full in rad when cold, at full mark when hot, not opening that b**** when hot! Lol!
I'm gonna have the shop that did the heads work on trying to burp it more on Friday. Any thought on a pusher electric fan?
 

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The truck is more then 10 years old
you really think that the springs inside of the hoses have not deteriorated ??
the radiator doesn't have gunk built up in the tubes ?
the rubber seal on the radiator cap is really good & the spring inside of the cap still works as new ?
The heater hoses are like new ? there is no gunk built up within the heater core?

Let us know how all that works out :)
 

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Checked for any damage on rad cap, nothing at all. Says 16psi. Coolant is full, slightly under full on the reservoir tank when cold, full in rad when cold, at full mark when hot, not opening that b**** when hot! Lol!
I'm gonna have the shop that did the heads work on trying to burp it more on Friday. Any thought on a pusher electric fan?
My question would be if yours has one that's already factory installed. The dakota's electric fan is used for two things when the A/C comes on which would be an easy way to check to make sure it's working while it's on. The second method is based off the operating temp of the engine so for instance my dakota always turned the fan on somewhere between 214-216. So add that to the list of things to check if you are similarly equipped. Also if you get an opportunity check the temp via data logger if possible so you can verify your gauge.
 
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