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JoeMo 08-21-2010 02:56 PM

454 with no oil coming out of push rods
Need help. I have an 86' 454 in my RV with an engine knock. The engine has low mileage at 21,000 and has been well maintained. The noise started 2 weeks ago when I came home after driving 300 highway miles. I used a scope and found the noise loudest right above #1 cylinder. When I removed the valve cover (saw no sludge at all) and ran the engine I noticed no oil was squirting up from the push rods. I installed a mechanical gauge in place of the sender and got pretty much what the dash gauge showed: 42 psi at startup and mid 30s when the engine warmed up alittle. Still no oil and the knock occurs once in a while but not really by #1. It does seem to go away with increased rpms. Any ideas? Right now I have the oil cooler disconnected, thinking maybe one of the hydraulic lines had a restriction, but when I blow air through it, the flow seems fine. I'm concerned that a cam bearing is loose but not sure what to do next. Joe

bigdog7373 08-21-2010 04:47 PM

Pull out the push rods and see if they are clogged.

27 t 08-21-2010 06:49 PM

how's it run.. have seen lifters wear a hole in them and bleed the oil right through never gets up to the rockers...

JoeMo 08-21-2010 09:33 PM

The engine seems to run fine, no smoke from the exhaust at start up or under load and when I changed the plugs, they all looked good. She idles very smoothly. The rear crankshaft seal was leaking 1,000 miles ago but I've since added a seal conditioner and that seems like it's slowed down a lot. I'll pull 1 or 2 of the push rods tomorrow morning and post what I find. By the way, I've only taken off the driver's side valve cover, maybe I'll take the other one off too. Thanks, Joe

454C10 08-22-2010 07:21 AM

big blocks don't squirt oil out of the push rods as much as small block.

and tend to barely squirt oil out the push rods at idle.

Is it wet with oil under the valve cover?

pull the valve covers, rev the engine to 2000 rpm and hold it for a few minutes, then look for oil.

also check it see if the all the push rods are spinning.

JoeMo 08-22-2010 06:27 PM

I ran the engine up to 1500-2000 rpm and all of the rockers started to get wet with oil, not squirting like I thought they should, OK. I adjusted each valve while the engine was running, loosening till it starts to tick then back down till it stops and per my chevy book another 3/4 of a turn. The engine seems fine at idle but now the noise is on the other side, will adjust them too. Had to stop as it actually started to rain here in Jersey and the rv was quickly filled with smoke. Wife doesn't know that one yet....will post when finished. :sweat: Joe

454C10 08-23-2010 09:30 AM

both my 454 and 396 do the same thing (not squirting, more of a dribble).

if the push rods are spinning (at idle rpm) then the cam lobes should be good.

BBC's tend to eat cams. you may want to use zddp additive (

I use zddp additive and an over cam oil system on my BBC's (BC engineering).

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