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Old 09-21-2015, 09:33 AM   #1
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2000 36' Land Yacht XC Diesel
Gaffney , South Carolina
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Engine Overheat?

Took the RV to Gulf Shores this past weekend cause my kids wanted to ocean fish. Towed my car down and I remember thinking "this engine never seems to get hot". Spoke too soon, on the way back, and if you know I65, it's not a mountainous road by any means, the engine temp hit HOT and tripped the buzzer startling the daylights out of me. As I slowed down to pull to the side, the temp ran back to just below midpoint (letter N in the word NORMAL). Checked radiator fluid level and it was right in the sweet spot. As I drove on, temp would move from N to about L back and forth. Didn't seem related to speed and the needle was fairly active.

In my gas engine truck I would:
1. change radiator fluid
2. check lower hose on radiator to see if it was spongy/soft
3. change thermostat
4. replace water heater

But do not have any diesel engine experience; what do you guys say or think please?
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Old 09-21-2015, 11:20 AM   #2
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Wow that sucks. I had that same scare recently and it was the top hose. $650!

If you are still going then you are not in the same spot as I was. I would suggest you add your model to your signature so we know what kind of engine we are talking about. Click on the User CP and edit signature.

-Randy
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Old 09-21-2015, 11:52 AM   #3
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Updated my signature, thanks.

What was the exact problem with your top hose israndy? Seems like you're going through a rash of problems too. I have signed up with Coachnet RV travel protection and so far they've been great.
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Old 09-21-2015, 12:10 PM   #4
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If fluids are good the first thing to check is did the clutch fan come on? Hard to tell on a diesel with it being in the back but if it did you should have seen a real drop on the gauge in a short time.

Have the thermostat checked if you can't do that yourself. Remove it and put it in water on the stove. It should fully open before the water boils.

Do you have an exhaust gas temperature gauge? If so watch it and reduce a gear if it is hold above 1200 degrees for some time.

It may be time to have the radiator rodded and cleaned.
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Old 09-21-2015, 12:28 PM   #5
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Diesel and gas cooling are about the same. Some oil burners have an electric fan clutch so you look for a loose or bare wire check continuity etc.

But what you have described has happened to me personally and has always been the thermostat. I did see a collapsed hose on a friend's motor once.

Start at #3 on your list and work out from there. Look for leaks around the water pump too.
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Old 09-22-2015, 10:30 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JourneytoRet View Post
Updated my signature, thanks.

What was the exact problem with your top hose israndy? Seems like you're going through a rash of problems too. I have signed up with Coachnet RV travel protection and so far they've been great.
I would have suggested putting the model of RV you have in there.

On mine it was a blown hose to the top of the radiator. Yesterday I had to put other top hoses on. So I am well over $1000 but not surprising as I purchased a beater RV that has been sitting for 10 years. The repair shop refused to put the mileage as they didn't believe I only had 8k on the ticker. I believe I looked into coach net and it seemed very expensive but I'll look again

-Randy
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Old 09-25-2015, 09:41 AM   #7
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Found a Cat dealer just down the road from us. Parts said there's actually two (2) thermostats for this engine! Never heard such a thing before, but will find out this weekend, wish me luck.
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Old 09-25-2015, 10:48 AM   #8
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GM uses dual thermostats on there diesels.
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Old 10-02-2015, 11:20 PM   #9
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My 396XL blew a water pump...hard to get to...while they were in there I had all the hoses changed, the serpentine belt (it was starting to look old) thermostats (yes there are 2) and I had them steam clean the rad and Charge Air Cooler. Not cheap...but less expensive than getting in there more than once.
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Old 10-02-2015, 11:54 PM   #10
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I have seen impellers spin (come loose) on the water pump shafts on Cat engines with similar symptoms.

It is difficult to diagnose.

My other experience with Cat engines is that they are great, but are VERY SENSITIVE regarding overheating.


Brevi tempore!
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Old 10-03-2015, 09:39 AM   #11
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As this is my first experience with large vehicle including cat diesel I got worried looking at me 2 temp gauges and both engine and transmission staying on cold in the rain. If it is not raining they are both between cold and normal so never even saw it going up to normal not even in 100 degree heat.
Peter
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Old 10-03-2015, 10:36 AM   #12
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These engines should run in the normal range, but I would rather have an engine run cool as run hot.

Assuming the gauge is correct, a cold running diesel can encounter accelerated piston ring and cylinder wear and foul the oil with unburned diesel that washes the cylinder walls.




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Old 10-03-2015, 11:33 PM   #13
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Quote:
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cat diesel ... 2 temp gauges ... are both between cold and normal so never even saw it going up to normal not even in 100 degree heat.
Peter
Wow, I have seen mine go well over normal. Climbing mountains especially. Of course I have had both my radiator hose and now my Air Chiller hose fail. Got really warm when they were failing but they have since been replaced, perhaps now I will not see this issue. But I have now been trained not to climb a hill without an eye to the temp gauge. If it starts to climb I downshift to keep the engine above 2000 RPM.

-Randy
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Old 10-04-2015, 06:38 AM   #14
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Journey-

You may want to add a thorough cleaning of the Radiator/Charge Air Cooler "stack" to your maintenance/troubleshooting list. Most chassis mfg's mount the engine coolant radiator and the turbo intake air radiator (CAC) and sometimes even oil coolers together in a "stack" with spacers between. I think your XC may be a Freightliner Chassis with a Cat C7 engine and a rear-mounted radiator? Most big diesels will drip/mist/leak a bit of oil running down the road, and that along with years and miles and road dirt can literally plug up a "stack" causing overheating from nothing more than poor airflow through the stack.

You will want a free afternoon, a gallon of Simple Green or similar metal safe cleaner concentrate, a lot of water, and old clothes. Use a pump up sprayer with a pretty heavy mix of Simple Green and LOW pressure water hose. Wet the stack thoroughly from all possible angles, spray with the mix and let it set. Then flush/rinse with a LOT of water towards the engine as much as possible as that is how it got dirty. Then do it again like 2 more times. Don't use a pressure washer or a brush as you can damage the radiator fins. You might be amazed at how much crud comes out. I did it at least once a year when we owned a Spartan side stack chassis and I was always shocked at how dirty they got.

Hope this helps!
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