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Old 02-18-2012, 06:31 PM
StudebakerDean
 
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aluminum radiator smokes

builds done and im on a newly rebuilt 350 w/ a new aluminum radiator. did the initial drive and found my antifreeze was black. oil and trans oil are fine.figured the black water is from the build, filled the radiator with flush and water and antifreeze (its cold here) and ran it again and the radiator smokes. doesnt appear to break 160-180 degrees, motor seems fine.
im wondering if I should replace the thermostat, or is the oily water im flushing out by running it making it smoke, or what. ???

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Old 02-18-2012, 06:37 PM
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Did you do a complete flush? I would completely flush it out until the water coming out of the engine similar to what is going in. Then refill radiator with fluid/distilled water, wait for thermostat to open then fill accordingly.
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Old 02-18-2012, 06:45 PM
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What do you mean the radiator smokes? Steam from the fill neck with the cap off, or the body of the radiator is giving off steam?
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Old 02-19-2012, 12:39 AM
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the body of the radiator smokes. seems more like smoke than steam. no i didnt do a complete flush. i put in flush stuff ot run an hour w/ it in to clean everything but I cant run 15 minutes w/o the radiator smoking. the temp gage is 180 as is the second and third gage im using to make sure its not running hot. my electric fan is not kicking on but if it did it would just move the smoke around. didn't change or check thermostat from rebuild. everything else is new, so i figured it was too. someone told me the aluminum eddlebrock can strip out of you remove the thermo 90 so i was saving it for last to check. also my blackish coolant seems coolant color now. og and when i run it i lose approx half my overfill reservoir contents, but nothing in the oil.
its the last issue im having and im dying to drive it but didn't want to drive w/ smoke coming off the radiator. so any suggestions on a next step?
did notice today the aluminum radiator had a logo of a winged bird or something on it in blue and someone painted over it w/ solver spray paint on the fins in the front of the radiator. smoke/ steam comes out of the engine side of the radiator, and mostly on the sides, through the fins
any ideas on a next step would help. its winter here so flushing is going ot be tough..
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Old 02-19-2012, 07:28 AM
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smoke'n rad....

it sounds to me that the smoke is only coming from the outside of the rad....????... if not a big problem, pull it and get a few cans of bk cleaner spray... and clean the rad of oil that sounds like its on it.. and yes that'll smoke but will burn off..
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Old 02-19-2012, 11:06 AM
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I am guessing you might have some sodium hydroxide in the block which is now in the radiator making the water black. Flush the block and radiator with lots of water.
The smoke is probably from the paint.
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Old 02-19-2012, 11:54 AM
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If you are going to flush your system try it this way, Make your self a flush gun by taking a section of sced 40 pvc sized to fit your lower rad hose, a cap to fit the pipe, a female water hose fitting, a air gun that has a removable nozzle on it's end. a couple of clamps and what ever nipples you might need. Drill a couple of appropriate sized hole so you can thread the nipples into the cap. You can probably force the nipples to cut threads into the cap. Screw in the water fitting and the air gun. Glue the cap onto the pipe. Pull the thermostat out of the engine and re-install the housing. Remove the lower rad hose from the radiator and install your gun. Hook up water and air. Let the water flow through the engine and radiator then hit the air. Repeat as necessary You've just backed flushed your engine and radiator. If you didn't replace the thermostat when you rebuilt the engine do it now. Run into the house and log on to Hotrodders.com, log into the Home made tools discussion and type in " Flush Gun". Not only did you flush your system you'll have half a dozen guys saying to them self " Why didn't I think of that? "
You can make a better gun by using water pipe rather than pvc but you'll need taps for that.
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Old 02-20-2012, 08:29 AM
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New Developments.... I spent time this weekend on my issue and heres where I am now, and what I did in order of occurrence...
I got to thinking my trans cooler little radiator is right about the same area the smoke comes from when I run the truck. So thinking it might be spraying trans fluid on my radiator, I moved it. and vigorously cleaned that area of the radiator. Fired up the truck and still smoke, AND I noticed very small amounts of fluid in the vanes. could have been from the cleaning, but I figured running it would have dried that up. since im figuring leak now, I added aluminum leak repair from a bottle (hate the stuff but needed a fix) fired up the truck and still smokes. BTW, im blowing a fan on this while I work as the electric fan i have doesnt seem to work. I decided maybe the thermostat, new rebuild, would have a new stat, but ya never know. Swapped it out and yes its in correctly, and noticed something I thought was strange. the radiator fluid is cool enough to stick a finger in, the water in the motor was very hot?? anyway, swapped the stat, fired it up and same deal smokes, but a new problem arose. the back pressure in the radiator forced fluid back up into the plastic overflow and bowed it out from pressure or heat and make it spill over. ive for a 20 psi cap, it came up enough to force fluid into the over fill. I didnt have a fan on the radiator as earlier, and the temp looks to be 180, but the gage seems sketchy. so did the radiator hole plug stuff clog something? or is there a clog elsewhere. The motor is rebuilt but sat for a while w/ the openings open to critters etc. so im thinking my next move is pull the radiator, and take it for pressure testing, and cleanout, totally flush the motor, and replace the hoses just to make sure. any ideas? and again thanks for all the advise, I owe everyone a beer.
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Old 02-20-2012, 08:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boothboy
If you are going to flush your system try it this way, Make your self a flush gun by taking a section of sced 40 pvc sized to fit your lower rad hose, a cap to fit the pipe, a female water hose fitting, a air gun that has a removable nozzle on it's end. a couple of clamps and what ever nipples you might need. Drill a couple of appropriate sized hole so you can thread the nipples into the cap. You can probably force the nipples to cut threads into the cap. Screw in the water fitting and the air gun. Glue the cap onto the pipe. Pull the thermostat out of the engine and re-install the housing. Remove the lower rad hose from the radiator and install your gun. Hook up water and air. Let the water flow through the engine and radiator then hit the air. Repeat as necessary You've just backed flushed your engine and radiator. If you didn't replace the thermostat when you rebuilt the engine do it now. Run into the house and log on to Hotrodders.com, log into the Home made tools discussion and type in " Flush Gun". Not only did you flush your system you'll have half a dozen guys saying to them self " Why didn't I think of that? "
You can make a better gun by using water pipe rather than pvc but you'll need taps for that.
This is a starting point. You might want to flush the engine and radiator separably.
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Old 02-20-2012, 11:11 AM
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Is it really smoke? What does your nose tell you?
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Old 02-20-2012, 02:58 PM
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rad

got all kinds of stuff goin on now... it may be air locked now.. pull the stat and drill two 1/8" hole in the flange area.. this will allow air to escape when filling. ya i hate that fix a rad stuff too... will do almost anything not to use it...
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Old 02-20-2012, 05:24 PM
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I made a pressure tester out of an old rad cap and a valve stem, take a die grinder and remove the rivet that holds it together, then us a step drill bit and enlarge the hole so a rubber valve stem fits snuggly, put the rubber seal in radiator followed by the spring and install cap put a little air to it and use soapy water to find possible leaks. I only use about 12lbs, don't know how much a radiator will take? Oh you have to cap off the overflow also.
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Old 02-20-2012, 09:09 PM
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radiators going to the shop wednesday. a dip to remove paint, pressure test, and inside cleanout for $50 sounds good. if its got issues I can evaluate further repairs.
while its gone, I will be doing a thorough cleanout of all areas coolant goes. I'll post further later on in the week.
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