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Author Topic: Cooling system epic FAIL...Are Chinese parts to blame?  (Read 2599 times)

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Offline Zoro

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Cooling system epic FAIL...Are Chinese parts to blame?
« on: February 20, 2012, 08:31:21 PM »
Last week my '84 Eagle sprung a coolant leak on the upper radiator hose right at the thermostat housing. No sooner do I replace it then the lower hose starts to leak. As I'm up under the car I realize there's coolant dripping from the weep hole on the bottom of the water pump. After that discovery I drive the car to the auto parts place and it overheats pretty bad, I get it hosed down and made it to the store and back home without causing any further damage. When the car was overheating there was no heat, just ice cold air. As soon as the car got cooled back down the heat was working again. ???

I tore down the front of the motor this afternoon and found that the bearing on the water pump was shot, the 180* thermostat was not opening and the fan clutch didn't seem to be functioning correctly. Still have yet to determine if the heater valve is working correctly or not. The coolant that came out of the car was a healthy green color and very clear.

I've never seen this many related parts go out right at the same time. The previous owner had the engine rebuilt and all of the parts mentioned replaced at that time. It's been about 4 years and 80K miles since the rebuild. Any ideas on what would make everything fail all at once? Could it be the quality of the Chinese parts?

Tomorrow I will be replacing the thermostat, thermostat housing, fan clutch, water pump and lower radiator hose. The new 'lifetime warranty' parts are all either made in China or Mexico, seems that it's the same story at every auto parts store. I was able to find hoses and clamps that were made in the USA, at least it's not a total washout. ::)
84 Eagle Wagon aka 'Zoro II'
263,000 miles and counting!

Offline carnuck

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Re: Cooling system epic FAIL...Are Chinese parts to blame?
« Reply #1 on: February 20, 2012, 09:17:44 PM »
Hoses were meant to be replaced every 2 years. Same with Vee belts. Serpentine ones last longer.
AMC/Jeep gauges are for amusement only. Any correlation between them and reality is purely coincidental!

Offline mudkicker715

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Re: Cooling system epic FAIL...Are Chinese parts to blame?
« Reply #2 on: February 20, 2012, 10:16:36 PM »
Your no heat thing is normal when there is not enough coolant in the system to circulate. When it was filled back up it circulates again



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Offline Baskinator

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Re: Cooling system epic FAIL...Are Chinese parts to blame?
« Reply #3 on: February 22, 2012, 08:43:17 PM »
Didn't see this thread before I commented on your other one.

He may have used Dexcool in the system before the green coolant was put in. That could have been the cause of his engine and coolant problems before, and he may not have learned the first time. If you don't know about Dexcool, it was made by GM and had a class action lawsuit because it would gel up in the system and cause MAJOR engine and cooling problems. Coolant could've been replaced later with green 50/50 (which SHOULD be used). I highly doubt it would be due to Chinese parts. They get a bad rap, but they are generally decent quality in my eyes. Most of today's parts and cars come from overseas anyway, so I couldn't see that being the problem.

Keep in mind: low cost of labor doesn't necessarily mean low quality parts. Some overseas workers (not all, good example: Apple workers) make more money at the factories than they would anywhere else. Therefore, they take more pride in their work than you would think. If all the parts still came from the U.S., we would be complaining about ridiculously high prices to compensate for labor costs. It's simply a trade-off.

The PO may have also used just plain cheap parts in the rebuild, or he could've used stop leak to fix a radiator problem (which is meant to gel up, and can cause similar problems). You ought to install a 195 degree thermostat at the very least if you haven't yet, and thoroughly check anything you don't replace. Maybe even run some powerful cleaner through, and then flush the system. If you end up replacing the radiator, go with a $200 3-core aluminum one for a CJ-7 on the auction 'bay. All that's required is to drill new mounting holes a couple inches higher, but it will be well worth it. At that time, a $50 external transmission cooler will be a good investment if you have an automatic.
« Last Edit: February 22, 2012, 08:45:20 PM by Baskinator »
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Offline Zoro

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Re: Cooling system epic FAIL...Are Chinese parts to blame?
« Reply #4 on: February 23, 2012, 09:03:21 PM »
Baskinator-
The coolant that came out of the car was green. I've heard all the horror stories about the GM Dexcool, even if I owned a Chevy I don't think I'd use it.

Fixed my overheating and leaking issues by installing the following new parts:
Water pump
Thermostat
Thermostat housing
Fan clutch
Upper radiator hose
Lower radiator hose

Looks like the PO was running a 180* thermostat, after installing the 195* thermostat the car seems to run much better.

Next on the list is one of the auction site CJ7 3 core aluminum radiators. They were listed at $145 the other day and now they're up to $194 ::)

Thanks for the help guys!
84 Eagle Wagon aka 'Zoro II'
263,000 miles and counting!

Offline carnuck

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Re: Cooling system epic FAIL...Are Chinese parts to blame?
« Reply #5 on: February 25, 2012, 08:22:25 PM »
Nevermind the horror stories. The PROOF that it is bad stuff is the $billion$ GM lost in the lawsuit over damages caused by it!
AMC/Jeep gauges are for amusement only. Any correlation between them and reality is purely coincidental!

Offline AMCKen

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Re: Cooling system epic FAIL...Are Chinese parts to blame?
« Reply #6 on: February 26, 2012, 02:34:13 AM »
80,000 sounds like about normal life for these components.
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