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Any diesel experts here....am I screwed.

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Any diesel experts here....am I screwed.

Old 06-16-2007, 05:41 PM
  #21  
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Default Re: Any diesel experts here....am I screwed.

I recently ran water through my volvo tamd41a - (saltwater, which i determined came in the tank vent!)

first off, the racor should have a ball that floats on water that will "plug" the flow if fills up with water too much - mine did not.

I broke the fuel lines at the injectors and had pure water coming out -

Most important thing is to get the water out ASAP and get diesel through the fuel system, and I mean ASAP, even if you have to do it by hand.

The water took out my fuel pump, but fortunately I keep a spare on the boat and was able to swap it out.

Turn the engine over by hand after disconnecting all the fuel lines to be sure there is no water on top of the pistons - then use the hand priming pump on the engine to pump all the water out until (pure) diesel is coming out of the fuel lines at the injectors, put it back together and fire it off.

Mine smokes at idle a little now, but doesn't up and running. I have a spare set of injectors I am going to put in next weekend and test compression at the same time - I am really hoping white smoke is from an injector, which I think is all it is because it runs PERFECT at cruise with NO smoke and I still have the same WOT rpm as before!

I would at least have the injectors tested, but the injection pump will make the injectors look cheap, so flush it like I said above ASAP!!!

email me directly if you want and I'll give you my phone number so you can do it this weekend, DO NOT wait until monday or until you can get a mechanic - at least to flush the water out!!

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Old 06-16-2007, 06:00 PM
  #22  
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Default Re: Any diesel experts here....am I screwed.

Modunlavy,,,sent you a pm
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Old 06-16-2007, 06:21 PM
  #23  
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Default Re: Any diesel experts here....am I screwed.

jenkinsph - 6/17/2007 7:00 AM

I have already made this mistake when I was a kid in high school. Touched the starter after draining the filters on a
6-71 GM and turned it for a split second and then we had to rebuild the motor. My vote check it out first!!!! It is
the cheapest and best way out of a potential problem. Any other fuel issues can be dealt with at the same time.


Steve
What actually happened to damage the engine? I ask so that I can avoid doing the same with a 8-92.
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Old 06-16-2007, 07:11 PM
  #24  
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Default Re: Any diesel experts here....am I screwed.

Something is a little off about that story. It's pretty hard to damage a Detroit. Their low pressure fuel pumps circulate quite a bit of fuel. Even if you don't pre-fill the filter, it will be full fairly quickly. Maybe, on an engine with brand new injectors, you might seize them up within a few seconds while running them dry but it would hardly destroy the engine.
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Old 06-16-2007, 07:56 PM
  #25  
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Default Re: Any diesel experts here....am I screwed.

water is never good unless your on the wagon, but not to worry drain the fuel filters the water problem comes back then you could have head gasket issues, fog is actually raw fuel being forced through the engine ,usually a bad injector is the culprit. not the end of the world by any means your engine is practically bullet proof wish I had them
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Old 06-16-2007, 07:56 PM
  #26  
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Default Re: Any diesel experts here....am I screwed.

If you got water through the fuel regardless of saltwater or freshwater I would change the injectors, its such a fine tolernance it doesn't take a much to screw up. They shouldn't be overly expensive unless this has electronic injectors which are wicked pricey but if this a mechanical volve the injection pump itself would be the touching item because thats where the fuel is being pressurized and is the most sensitive to damage. I doubt that you have a bent rod or anything like that. Have a compression done like modunlavy said. We have 5000 gallons of water in our main fuel tanks on the ship on work on and it took out 56 electronic unit injectors on 35 series CATs that were 3000hrs old, there was no damage to anything other then the inectors. Don't fret to bad, it should be ok, just the water out of the system and get diesel back into. Pop out the injectors if you can and spray some fogging in there to prevent any corrsiosn. goodluck
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Old 06-16-2007, 09:27 PM
  #27  
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Default RE: Any diesel experts here....am I screwed.

If you get water into an injector on a diesel while its running it will blow the tip off and dump raw fuel into the cylinder. The reason for this is that the water flash-boils - effectively an explosion inside the tip - and off it comes.

On an older distributor pump engine (or a unit injector engine like a Detroit) this is bad, but not catastrophic - the tip MAY damage a valve or a turbo on the way out, but it also may not. The injector(s) involved will need to be replaced and if there is turbo damage, that will need replaced too. If you get unlucky and a valve is damaged then the cylinder head has to come off. The odd thing is that on Detroits that rarely happens, although turbo damage is pretty common.

On a common-rail motor you're dead. The rail is pressurized at an extremely high level and huge amounts of fuel will rush into the cylinder, washing all the oil off the walls and instantly trashing the hole. You will not be able to shut it down before this occurs.

But - if it won't restart something else is wrong. I am assuming the engine will CRANK; if not you've got some sort of mechanical damage inside. Odds are you have lost prime; air compresses so you get no fuel delivery at all to the engine.

For older design engine (e.g. distributor pump) you need to crack all the injector nuts, then crank (put a rag around all but one.) When you get fuel with no air bubbles coming out of that one, stop cranking and snug them up. The engine will light on the one hole and run like crap for a few seconds while it gets the air out of the other ones; worst case you may have to bleed them all (you can do this while its running but its messy.)

If its a unit-injector engine they will typically reprime but you still have to get fuel to the pump.

What engine make and model are these?
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Old 06-16-2007, 10:43 PM
  #28  
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Default RE: Any diesel experts here....am I screwed.

You're getting lots of advice here, but don't take any of it too seriously. Get a qualified Volvo diesel tech to check it out, that's the only prudent course of action. There's no way any of us so-called experts can accurately diagnose what happened over the Internet.

I hope it's nothing serious.
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Old 06-16-2007, 10:56 PM
  #29  
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Default Re: Any diesel experts here....am I screwed.

Pretty unlikely that you have damaged the engine itself from water thru the injectors, since the engine was running and you shut it down (it did not shut down or stall).
I am really surprised that no-one has suggested fuel polishing to get rid of the water. I always have a fuel pump, a set of filters (usually frams, with a water separator and a filter) and clear tubing where I can moniter the fuel as it is being filtered. Pull out of the bottom of the tank and put back into the top (fuel return) of the tank. Run the pump long enough to get all of the water out of the fuel.

As for salt water--I have gotten salt water into a fuel tank and into the injectors. This happened on an Atlantic Ocean crossing during a bad storm. The vents were under water enough to suck salt water into the tank. When the engine strated to run rough, I stopped it immediately--saw the water in the Racor, switched to a different tank, and different Racor (always have parallel filters, so you can run thru one,while changin the other). I started an electric fuel pump, thru away all fuel in the lines from the filter on--cracked each injector and got clean fuel running thru each injector, then tightened them up and started the engine. I then "polished" the fuel--and got several gallons of salt water out of the tank--as soon as possiable, I transfered the fuel out of that tank, opened the man hole, and sucked all the remainder fuel and any crud out with a hand pump, and cleaned the bottom of the tank with paper towels. I also re-routed the tank vents, with baffels so that it would be much more difficult to suck salt water into the fuel tank. (Vents allow air to enter tanks as fuel is used--if the vent is under water, water is sucked in)
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Old 06-17-2007, 12:02 AM
  #30  
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Default RE: Any diesel experts here....am I screwed.

Jellybean - 6/16/2007 10:43 PM

You're getting lots of advice here, but don't take any of it too seriously. Get a qualified Volvo diesel tech to check it out, that's the only prudent course of action. There's no way any of us so-called experts can accurately diagnose what happened over the Internet.

I hope it's nothing serious.
This is the best advice that you have received all night. While most of it is well intentioned, it is impossible to peg the answer reliably over the internet. Modunlavy's advice is good as well - look at the source - he has the motors and he also works in the field, doing repowers and other work on boat's whose injectector's cost more than your entire motors. Other good advice is to make sure that you absoulutely trust the mechanic. This situation is perfect for a greedy liar. Like I said most of the advice is well intentioned - there are a few useless responses that don't really offer any advice at all, just seem to try and scare you with worst case scenarios, do your best to ingnore these as they serve no purpose other than to perhaps satisfy their desire to relish in other's misery. Try to relax, take Modunlavy up on his offer of further help - it seems you already did, "PM sent" - Good.

Try to relax and don't work yourself up. Think positive and take the best steps to prevent further damage, and don't let the doom and gloomers get to you. In fact don't even read the thread anymore They probably have never even owned diesel power. They are tough motors. One knowlegeable guy has really stepped up (Modunlavy) don't try to follow the advice of too many different people, it will just make the situation worse. Good luck, its probably not as bad as you have let yourself believe
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Old 06-17-2007, 02:23 PM
  #31  
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Default RE: Any diesel experts here....am I screwed.

Bitefish - 6/16/2007 6:27 PM

If you get water into an injector on a diesel while its running it will blow the tip off and dump raw fuel into the cylinder. The reason for this is that the water flash-boils - effectively an explosion inside the tip - and off it comes.
I'm not sure about this. Injector tips see pressures of 5000-30,000 psi during normal operation. Water isn't going to generate those kind of pressures by boiling. I could see water causing the plunger in the injector to seize up which would cause the injector to continuously dump fuel during low cylinder pressures.
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Old 06-18-2007, 02:20 PM
  #32  
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Default Re: Any diesel experts here....am I screwed.

Yea man holy crap all this talk about blown injectors and bent rods is just pure bullcrap. You have got to get the air out of the system you let in when you changed filters. The volvo high pressure pump has a plug. Get a wrench and loosen that plug. Pump your primer until you have good fuel coming out of the pump. At this point I would try to fire her up. Oh tighten the plug first. If still no start then it may be time to crack an injector line. Diesels only need oil and air. If if will not fire one or both are missing.
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Old 06-18-2007, 02:41 PM
  #33  
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Default Re: Any diesel experts here....am I screwed.

Start from square one and proceed to square 92....get the water totally out of the system, fire them up and go from there, proper purging and bleeding is key....don't automatically start replacing injectors, pumps, rods, engines, etc without first doing a proper diagnosis...shutdown due to water isn't automatically a death sentence.....been there, done that....Mick
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Old 06-18-2007, 04:59 PM
  #34  
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Default Re: Any diesel experts here....am I screwed.

My .02c based on what you posted:

you said...
"I notice the starboard engine is running very rough I turn around and and it looks like a fogger. I shut the engine down and notice a lot of water in the racor. I drain and chk the other fuel filter and water is in there too. I put a new filter on re prime and try to restart. And NADA...will not fire back up"

If I read this right, you shut both engines down even though the starboard was the only one running rough and fogging. Presume you had some water in the fuel that was reaching the stbd engine causing rough running and white smoke. If the Port engine was still running well, there is no reason to suspect a catastrophic failure on it... yet it won't fire AFTER the filter change? That sounds like a clear case of a problem brought on by the filter change, the subsequent priming OR, you reprimed it with tainted fuel... at least on that engine.

As far as the stbd engine goes, if it was still running when you shut it down, you may have had "some" water mixed in with the diesel, BUT it was still mostly diesel AT THAT POINT, since you were getting compression ignition (which won't happen when the concentration of water reaches any significant level). The question is, what happened then? I presume you were out and under way? Hopefully, you got rid of any and all water in each engines fuel system (from the lift pump to the injector) as any water left in suspension over time could damage not only the injectors, but the injection pump as well BUT- presuming you didn't get towed in, you likely attempted to reprime with the same "tainted fuel"? If you had clean fuel and the system was blead properly, the engines should have at least fired.

Can you describe how you reprimed? Did you do it at sea? Were you towed in? ect..
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Old 06-21-2007, 01:18 PM
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Default RE: Any diesel experts here....am I screwed.

r. waddill:

What has happened? Did your mechanic take alook at the engines yet? Let us know the outcome if you don't mind.
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Old 06-21-2007, 03:28 PM
  #36  
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I am also wondering how someone destroyed a Detroit by cranking it after changing filters?

Detroits and Volvos have totally different fuel systems. Volvos have a high pressure pump wth high pressure lines feeding injector nozzles.

The Detroits have UNIT injectors. No high pressure pump or lines. Just a self contained injector which is run off a camshaft lobe and sits in the middle of the head under the valve cover. Each injector is independent from the other injectors so replacing one bad injector can often fix a problem and it is usally fairly easy to diagnose. Detroits pump massive amounts of fuel to fuel the engine, lubricate and cool the injectors. Detroits are self bleeding once you get that engine to fire after a filter change just let'er run and it will smooth right out on its own. Makes the Detroit simple and easier and cheaper to repair than a high pressure pump.

So how was the Detroit destroyed?
 

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