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EL I6 Cooling System Upgrade... 

 

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 Post subject: EL I6 Cooling System Upgrade...
Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 2:18 am 
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Hi All,

Ok here's the dilemma - current WOT tuning just recently has seen a huge increase in heat...as a result, my water cooled T03/04 turbocharger is boiling the coolant and all the hot air is building up at the tallest point of the cooling system - the radiator overflow bottle...so after lifting the bonnet while it's all hot, it appears that there is no fluid in the bottle or the rad cap (rated at 120 KPA) has been the weak point in the system and sprayed coolant all over the engine bay - as a result, I'm low on coolant (the low coolant sensor kicks in and comes up on the instrument cluster).

So - my question is...where is the weakness in the system ? I am wanting to know if I can just whack on a higher pressure rated rad cap or will this cause more problems ? The way I see it :

* Factory cooling system is rated to a maximum pressure of 125 KPA (it says in the manual)...so if I put in something like a 140 / 150 kpa rad cap (are these even available?), then I suspect the weak point will be on the plastic radiator side tanks ?

* One option is to get a thicker (32mm) radiator (but still with plastic tanks) to perhaps flow / cool better and perhaps bring temps out of the turbo down a bit ?

I would love to hear what other lads with Turbo I6's have done to counter this...obviously not everyone hooks up the water cooling - happy to hear people's experiences are with having both oil / water lines hooked up to turbochargers as I have.

Thanks,
Steve

 

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Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 1:10 pm 
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Steve has a turbo?!?!? Huh - news to me :wink:

Regarding tuning of WOT... try something to bring combustion temps down? Richen it up a little (at expense of power) or play with water/meth injection...

Should the coolant be getting so hot as to boil when cooling the turbo?

Is the rad cap meant to spray all over engine? i thought it just opened up the overflow pipe?

New rad would almost be a definate.... i would be cautious playing with rad cap rating... even with stock rad and cap on mine the pressure was sufficient to blow a hole in the side tank of the 10 year old radiator...

 

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Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 1:16 pm 
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Sounds like WOT tuning is a little too agressive. More fuel! :)


Maybe install a 302 and rely on EGR :D:D

 

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Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 1:49 pm 
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if you put a higher pressure rad cap on you could risk popping a hose off somewhere - the pressure build up has to have a release somewhere...

 

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Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 2:02 pm 
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Get some coolant with a higher boiling point. I'd try the better radiator too.

 

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Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 3:07 pm 
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a permanent fix all though a bit of money would be get a tig welded overflow bottle and get it heat coated...or/and get an aluminium radiator from desert coolers or get one custom made. bit of kablingy but maybe worthwhile.

 

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Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 3:20 pm 
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4.9 EF Futura wrote:
Steve has a turbo?!?!? Huh - news to me :wink:


Yeah I have been undecided between turbo, hiclone and twin electric superchargers - decisions decisions ![/quote]

4.9 EF Futura wrote:
Regarding tuning of WOT... try something to bring combustion temps down? Richen it up a little (at expense of power) or play with water/meth injection...


Yeah, water injection might be something worth looking into...don't see how it could be a bad thing.

4.9 EF Futura wrote:
Should the coolant be getting so hot as to boil when cooling the turbo?


Hmmm, well after what you said about brining down combustion / charge temps...I am thinking it should not theoretically be boiling (current tune may be causing this)...one setup I saw a pic of had, the water line coming from the overflow bottle (the coolest part of the cooling system) - this doesn't seem like a bad idea...

4.9 EF Futura wrote:
Is the rad cap meant to spray all over engine? i thought it just opened up the overflow pipe?


I should specify, it doesn't spray all over the engine - it more-so spurts out, but when the car is travelling it obviously gets all over the zorst side of the engine bay and makes a royal mess.

4.9 EF Futura wrote:
New rad would almost be a definate.... i would be cautious playing with rad cap rating... even with stock rad and cap on mine the pressure was sufficient to blow a hole in the side tank of the 10 year old radiator...


The radiator in it, is just over 12 months old...so it's not like it's the factory one that has been on for 8 years etc...so I'm not all that worried about it being rusty etc...but yeah the plastic tanks are my concern...I know of a couple that have split under some thrashing.

Waggin wrote:
Sounds like WOT tuning is a little too agressive. More fuel! :)


Yeah I think more fuel might be the way...

Waggin wrote:
Maybe install a 302 and rely on EGR :D:D


You're not helping...go stand over there in the FAR QUEUE :)

Happy wrote:
if you put a higher pressure rad cap on you could risk popping a hose off somewhere - the pressure build up has to have a release somewhere...


Sure - but at the moment, it is ALWAYS going to do it unless I can figure out a better tune (richen it up a bit) or get better cooling efficiency through a thicker radiator and (or) water injection *shrugs*. May have to look into that.

voxace wrote:
Get some coolant with a higher boiling point. I'd try the better radiator too.


Yeah I was using the Nulon stuff...AFAIK, that's pretty good stuff...higher boiling / freezing points than Tectaloy...if anyone can recommend some better stuff - I'm all ears !

andrewsfutura wrote:
a permanent fix all though a bit of money would be get a tig welded overflow bottle and get it heat coated...or/and get an aluminium radiator from desert coolers or get one custom made. bit of kablingy but maybe worthwhile.


Yeah don't know how sturdy the factory overflow bottle is...I mean - I have never seen one split (Dave's car exempt...but I don't think that's from heat?)...aluminium radiator was something I was thinking of...but do they do them in a 32mm ? Andrew - if you have any places to recommend, I'm all ears :)

Thanks guys,
Steve

 

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Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 3:31 pm 
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dcstraight wrote:
You're not helping...go stand over there in the FAR QUEUE :)


mwhahaha 8-)

 

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Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 3:45 pm 
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Steve, regarding the boiling coolant (i couldnt be stuffed sorting out all the quotes, lol)...

I'm just wondering if the agressive tune is leading to REAL hot exhaust temps which are in turn making the turbo REAL hot. Just a thought...

I'd be a little concerned with the safety of the turbo... if the coolant is boiling, it means it aint getting any hotter (i.e. physically unable), meaning it wont absorb any more heat.. meaning heat stays in turbo... of course, this little tid bit does little to help solve your problem...

'Gman the rad man' on ebay was offering all sorts of funky radiators to me when i ordered the standard replacement... might be worth checking with him what's available for an EL.

I beleive the condition you are faced with is referred to as boil over... if that helps with digging up information.

Hahaha, hiclone... rock on!!

 

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Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 6:10 pm 
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4.9 EF Futura wrote:
I'm just wondering if the agressive tune is leading to REAL hot exhaust temps which are in turn making the turbo REAL hot. Just a thought...


Yeah this is something I suspect too.

4.9 EF Futura wrote:
I'd be a little concerned with the safety of the turbo... if the coolant is boiling, it means it aint getting any hotter (i.e. physically unable), meaning it wont absorb any more heat.. meaning heat stays in turbo... of course, this little tid bit does little to help solve your problem...


I have thought about this, hence why I am not driving the car atm - will hopefully have a look at it this weekend.

4.9 EF Futura wrote:
'Gman the rad man' on ebay was offering all sorts of funky radiators to me when i ordered the standard replacement... might be worth checking with him what's available for an EL.


Yep I'm going to be getting in touch with him - I have seen radiators suiting EF/EL's on ebay.

4.9 EF Futura wrote:
I beleive the condition you are faced with is referred to as boil over... if that helps with digging up information.


Yep that's the term I'm looking for - boilover *mental note made*

4.9 EF Futura wrote:
Hahaha, hiclone... rock on!!


The 16 year olds forced induction :)

Cheers Martin,
Steve

 

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Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 7:42 pm 
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Well Im thinking somethings definatly wrong as Ive never had any cooling dramas on the two I6 turbos Ive done. Although Im using a straight oil cooled T4 as Im not a fan of water cooled turbos. If its an old school water cooled T03 then you can run it oil cool only, I did this on a previous car and the T03 didnt suffer... GTs are a different story, water only.

Give us some details of the tune at WOT, such as boost level, timing, air/fuel ratio... its very possible you are detonating it ( its so so easy to do without even hearing it ) and the exhaust housing is contantly heatsoaked.

Have you got the water lines hooked up correctly? Where are they going in the cooling system?

The standard radiator cools fine, even with a big intercooler in front of it. Maybe test the system... it could be a basic cooling system problem and nothing to do with turbo/tune.

Another thing is if the turbo's exhaust housing is too small, ie TO3 size, it will strngle the airflow out of the head and exhaust temps will rise very fast, thus heating up the water in the turbo

Just go back and check all your basics, I think you've done a simple error somewhere

Must be something simple, we'll get you boosting :)
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Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 9:09 pm 
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CHEF wrote:
Well Im thinking somethings definatly wrong as Ive never had any cooling dramas on the two I6 turbos Ive done. Although Im using a straight oil cooled T4 as Im not a fan of water cooled turbos. If its an old school water cooled T03 then you can run it oil cool only, I did this on a previous car and the T03 didnt suffer... GTs are a different story, water only.
CHEF wrote:

Hmm, interesting...yeah maybe I'm better off running oil cool only - I don't see why the cooling system has to suffer otherwise :?:

CHEF wrote:
Give us some details of the tune at WOT, such as boost level, timing, air/fuel ratio... its very possible you are detonating it ( its so so easy to do without even hearing it ) and the exhaust housing is contantly heatsoaked.


Boost is 8/9 psi - dizzy timing is bog stock - although I am using a 2222543 crow cam (http://www.crowcams.com.au/templates/Ca ... -OHC.shtml)...yes I am familiar with pinging...recent tuning has been all about adding more fuel to reduce it...it's very interim, until I get it on a dyno to get proper A/F ratios sorted.

CHEF wrote:
Have you got the water lines hooked up correctly? Where are they going in the cooling system?


Yeah I like to think so - water is coming from the intake side of the block, up and over the rocker cover to the top of the turbo where it connects...I'm confident it's connected correctly.

CHEF wrote:
The standard radiator cools fine, even with a big intercooler in front of it. Maybe test the system... it could be a basic cooling system problem and nothing to do with turbo/tune.


Hmm, well I overhauled the cooling system just over 12 months ago...new radiator, new thermostat - I've never had problems with it really. I will double check it all hopefully this weekend.

CHEF wrote:
Another thing is if the turbo's exhaust housing is too small, ie TO3 size, it will strangle the airflow out of the head and exhaust temps will rise very fast, thus heating up the water in the turbo


This is a sound theory - perhaps I should lower boost here.

CHEF wrote:
Just go back and check all your basics, I think you've done a simple error somewhere.


Yeah, this weekend hopefully yields some answers to these questions.

CHEF wrote:
Must be something simple, we'll get you boosting :)


Yeah boost is an interesting thing...I just hope it can all be controlled properly :)

Cheers,
Steve

 

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Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 9:52 pm 
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Sure - but at the moment, it is ALWAYS going to do it unless I can figure out a better tune (richen it up a bit) or get better cooling efficiency through a thicker radiator and (or) water injection *shrugs*. May have to look into that.



how about all of the above???



or when it blows up and you need a new eninge, think about getting the tops of the piston, the chambers and the exhaust ports ceramic coated to keep heat where it should be pushing pistons down and going out of the exhaust

you'll find you gain power from coating those parts

 

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Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 10:46 pm 
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ok, first off retard the timing. On 8psi and stock advance it is detonating big time. Good idea to set it to 6psi too. Also get an A?R guage in the dash so you can see it leaning... mine wouldnt go over 2psi without massive lean out on the stock eec/fuel system. Your not using the stock eec/ fuel system I hope.

Check with a turbo shop befor you remove the water cooling, Im not 100% about all water coller to3/4s, the one I used was fine without water, your may need it
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Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 11:36 pm 
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I am running a water and oil cooled turbo and have no problems with water temp. My car only runs a little hotter than standard.

Are you running that water cooled intercooler set-up you were talking about?

 

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