Our featured post is cooling system repairs performed on a 2007 Ford LCF medium truck, brought to us by a client from Collingwood, Vancouver.
The primary concern on this truck was that the engine overheated when the truck was loaded or going up a steep highway grade. This was indicated by the temperature gauge climbing very high. The owner had already replaced the thermostat and the fan clutch: neither of these parts solved the concern.
We road tested the vehicle and verified the climbing temperature gauge. This occured even though we had no heavy load or steep highway grade to drive the truck. A good hard highway drive caused the temperature to rise excessively. Back at the shop we inspected the vehicle thoroughly and found the concern: the radiator was plugged, but not internally as is common but externally.
The entire core, especially the bottom two thirds was plugged with dust and dirt. It was subtle but it was enough to block air flow through the radiator fins. This is a very unusual cause of overheating, though not entirely unsurprising as this truck is used to haul small disposal bins. Over the years it had spent enough time in dusty and dirty environments to suffer from this buildup.
Repairs involved us removing the radiator and cleaning the dirt off with a pressure washer (on a gentle setting). While we were at it we removed and inspected the water pump. The water pumps on these trucks use a plastic impeller and these are prone to breaking. When that happens the engine will overheat. We installed a new metal impeller pump as preventative maintenance.
After reassembly a good road test confirmed that the temperature remained normal.
The Ford LCF is a medium duty truck built to compete with the GMC Forward and Isuzu NPR flip cab trucks. While the GM/Isuzu trucks are extremely reliable the LCF has one major stroke against it: it uses a 4.5 Liter International diesel that is essentially a 6.0 Liter Power stroke engine with 2 cylinders missing. Most all of the myriad of concerns that occur with the 6.0 Liter also occur in this engine.
For more about the Ford LCF click on this link http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ford_LCF
For more about radiators click here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radiator