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Old 10-25-2015, 06:34 AM   #1
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Late Model Tow Vehicle Engines and "Catch Cans"

Those who own 2014+ model year gasoline powered trucks, in particular the Ford 3.5 turbocharged engine (but no engine is exempt), are likely aware of issues related to intake valve "coking" and arguments for and about "Catch Cans". There are several designs some of which claim to be much more useful than others.

As I understand it, virtually all gasoline engines (any brand, any displacement, any number of cylinders) designed and put into use during 2014 and each year since, to meet Federal emissions standards ingest piston blow-by. Unlike previous model years and engine designs, these engines are "fuel injected directly into the cylinder", after and not before the intake valve. This results in intake valve "coking".

I only just discovered this potentially costly problem and how my 2014 GMC truck gasoline directly injected engine is affected by this design weakness. As my truck is just now reaching 30,000+ miles, I can anticipate having to deal with future engine problems caused by intake valve coking. In fact, it is possible that even now, installing a "Catch Can" will be of limited value to my engine due to the number of miles I have already accumulated on my truck without the use of a Catch Can.

I am presently shopping the various models of "Catch Cans" and am wondering if amongst users of this Forum, there is any experience about prevention of "Intake valve coking" in 2014+ gasoline engines and which maker and model of Catch Cans might be preferred.
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Old 10-25-2015, 08:26 AM   #2
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I am going to look into what you are talking about neighbor. From what little I know on the subject, it is supposedly an issue with all modern engines with direct injection that occasional cleaner additive deals with. Years ago my BMW had issues and they told me to buy BP fuel or add injection cleaner once in a while. This goes along with what some say- use the higher octane fuel (the most detergent) and avoid short drives. The computers are supposed to be providing ultra-lean mixtures to combat this but... only time will tell.

There is another issue too. There is a documented problem with oil delivery/use in GM and Honda engines that switch off cylinders 4-6-8 for economy that, according to the report I read, does not begin to show up until around 30K or more. Both companies are aware of this. The report states that as cylinders switch off, oil begins to seep past the rings and cause excessive oil use, thus the title of the report "Excessive oil use". Interestingly while GM acknowledges it in their reply, they comment that 30K is high mileage and the condition is thus, normal. Crazy.

Do you get the feeling that sometimes we are expected to buy new every few years?
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Old 10-25-2015, 08:35 AM   #3
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Didn't know about the 'oil consumption' problem. Will do some research on this and thanks for the heads up. It's only the past few days I discovered the 'catch can' problem.

Well, until 2014 engines, gasoline additives did help with intake valve coking because the fuel injection took place before the intake valve. Detergents in gasoline, specially from top tier refiners, helped a lot with deposits on intake valves and this is why the refiners referred to their gasolines as having a cleaning ability.

2014 gasoline engines however, inject the fuel charge directly into the cylinder after the intake valve. This leaves no opportunity for high quality gasolines and their detergent additives, to clean intake valve coking. Thus the demand for Catch Cans.
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Old 10-25-2015, 09:25 AM   #4
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oh, to correct my post, the oil seeps past the "idle rings" not those in use at the time.

Well, so much for cleaners I guess.
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Old 10-25-2015, 09:43 AM   #5
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Late Model Tow Vehicle Engines and "Catch Cans"

Progress!!

It comes with a cost.

http://www.technologyreview.com/view...lines-of-code/

The information systems are what will make it impossible to keep new cars running over the long term, and will relegate most every repair to "dealer only".

The KISS rule is now history.

Nasty PCV air/oil has been fouling engines for decades.

One of the bigger issues facing "modern" engines certainly of GM and Chrysler products is the tiny little oil pickup tube. This tube has a very fine screen that will plug up with debris even on a well cared for engine.




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Old 10-25-2015, 10:34 AM   #6
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Late Model Tow Vehicle Engines and "Catch Cans"

Many of you who keep your GM or Chrysler products over one hundred thousand miles, especially those who use them to tow, will experience "loss of oil pressure" events.

This will happen when the oil pump pickup becomes clogged with debris.

Many will say,,, "it cant happen to me because I change my oil regularly".

I say I think you are wrong, and here is my theory why.

I have removed the oil pans on several GM and Chrysler products experiencing loss of oil pressure events, and in ALL of them I have found varying amounts of a hard black granular substance about half the size of a grain of rice.

Where did this come from? My guess is that under hard use, oil film adhering to and subsequently condensing on the bottom of the pistons becomes superheated, lifts, and curls into carbon granules that then drop into the oil.

These granules lack the mass to drain out of the crankcase on oil changes, and instead adhere to the interior surfaces of the engine. As a result they accumulate over time.

What will happen, is that the grains will float around for a while causing no symptoms until enough accumulates to block the oil pickup.

When this happens, everything is cool when you first start the engine, and early on it is cool when the truck sits and idles. The problem is made manifest when it is driven around. The grains, slowly accumulate and block the oil pickup screen as you are driving causing oil starvation and loss of pressure.

If you turn the engine off, the grains will drop off of the screen, and flow will be restored for a time upon restart....

This issue will cause some engines to be pushed to failure, and it WILL cause many perfectly good engines to be replaced because they are diagnosed as being "worn out".

The only fix is to drop the oil pan and physically clean out the crap. I tried various means of flushing to no avail.

I am surprised that this issue has gotten so little recognition. I have seen this issue multiple times, the only damage I saw from this was on a Dodge truck that seized a cam bearing in the head wiping out the timing chain system, but I was able to fix this and the engine lasted a few more years until the engine experienced catastrophic overheating in an unrelated event.

In other words, if you experience this problem, and stop the truck when the pressure drops, there will be lots of people eager to sell you an engine you don't need.

Beware!!



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Old 10-25-2015, 11:27 AM   #7
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How about the probability that "coked and hardened oily deposits" on the intake valves break off and enter the engine lube system, eventually settling in the oil sump and plugging the oil intake screen. This is far less likely to happen in GM engines prior to 2014 (fuel injected prior to intake valves) but almost certain to happen in post 2014 GM engines (fuel directly injected into cylinders) of all displacements.
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Old 10-25-2015, 11:30 AM   #8
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Late Model Tow Vehicle Engines and "Catch Cans"

There is no direct path from the intake valve to the engine oil.

These deposits would have to either go past the valve guides/seals or the piston rings.

These deposits are too large.




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Old 10-25-2015, 12:31 PM   #9
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I run one very similar to this setup:

Mazdaspeed6 Oil Catch Can Kit Stage 1 | Damond Motorsports

Pretty high quality and factory oem style appearance. I bet you could order one from these guys at Damond and fit it you your application without much trouble.
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Old 10-25-2015, 02:39 PM   #10
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Yes, I agree and thank you for reminding me. However, there are reports of piston and cylinder wall damage thought to be caused by coked deposits dropped from the intake valve. Seafoam makes a product that is sprayed into the intake manifold which is said to soften coked junk and may turn out to be the cheapest and simplest method of cleaning the intake valves. Alternatives are much costlier cleaning by scraping by hand, blasting with walnut shells, or complete removal of the head.

I am still hoping that someone here is familiar with 'Catch Can' and can report their experience.
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Old 10-25-2015, 04:31 PM   #11
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I was skeptical when I first read about catch cans on this thread, but after researching this a little bit it seems like a good idea to me, and it certainly couldn't hurt.


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Old 10-25-2015, 04:51 PM   #12
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Quote:
The KISS rule is now history.
My father and you, J. Morgan, are in complete agreement.
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Old 10-25-2015, 05:49 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cbrittan View Post
2014 gasoline engines however, inject the fuel charge directly into the cylinder after the intake valve. This leaves no opportunity for high quality gasolines and their detergent additives, to clean intake valve coking. Thus the demand for Catch Cans.
It isn't a 2014 issue. My first gasoline direct injected vehicle was purchased in 2008 (BMW 535 twin turbo, 3.0 litre). I ran it for four years with no issues relating to intake valve deposits. We now have our third BMW directed injected engine in the family, and have yet to see this problem.

Installing a catch can on a BMW is usually an effort to defeat the factory emissions control systems and in particular the oil separator which cleans oil mist out of the crankcase vent fumes before sending that flow back into the intake manifold. Maintenance of the system means that oil drains properly back into the sump and vent fumes (with less oil) don't cause problems in the engine. Not maintaining it can cause oil to be sent to the intake manifold and the potential for the types of problems you mention. A catch can simply collects the oil and doesn't rely on the separator. Until it is full. The practice trades one maintenance task for another. I would rather use the factory system. I certainly don't think that catch cans are a solution. They are as archaic as road draft tubes were back in the sixties, before we got PCV valves. They do have a place on a closed course race track, which is what they were designed for.

Jeff
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Old 10-25-2015, 07:20 PM   #14
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I have a 2014 GMC 2500 Denali with a 6.0 gasser. I know they changed the engines in the 2014 1/2 ton GMC, but GMC 2500 didn't change until the 2015 model. So does the 2014 2500 have the older style engine or the new one this post is referring to?
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