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Old 06-13-2016, 03:28 PM   #1
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Coolant surge tank blowing coolant out over flow

I have a 2002 Monaco Dynasty Princess 42' cummins ISL 400HP. I have been having problems with the cooling system building up pressure to the point that the coolant is blown out of the overflow tube. I was in Washington State late fall when it started, a cummins dealer checked the system with a blue colored fluid at the radiator cap and told me it wasn't exhaust. With that they said it was my compressor building the pressure up. They changed it and the problem didn't go away. The engine has not overheated thru all of this, it runs around 190. Anyone have an Idea. I'm about to pull the radiator, I'm just not sure why the pressure builds up but not the engine temp. Cap has been replaced.
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Old 06-13-2016, 03:36 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by svpassion2 View Post
I have a 2002 Monaco Dynasty Princess 42' cummins ISL 400HP. I have been having problems with the cooling system building up pressure to the point that the coolant is blown out of the overflow tube. I was in Washington State late fall when it started, a cummins dealer checked the system with a blue colored fluid at the radiator cap and told me it wasn't exhaust. With that they said it was my compressor building the pressure up. They changed it and the problem didn't go away. The engine has not overheated thru all of this, it runs around 190. Anyone have an Idea. I'm about to pull the radiator, I'm just not sure why the pressure builds up but not the engine temp. Cap has been replaced.
Have you made sure the mix is ok? Sounds obvious but people sometimes keep putting pure antifreeze in and it doesn't cool efficiently. Try topping off with distilled water for awhile. Or change to ELC. More efficient and lasts longer.
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Old 06-13-2016, 04:19 PM   #3
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Coolant surge tank blowing coolant out over flow

I didn't know the compressor pumped up the cooling system!
Sounds like cylinder pressure leaking into the water jacket via a bad head gasket.


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Old 06-13-2016, 04:31 PM   #4
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Let's take a look at why the coolant is coming out the overflow tube. The spring in the pressure cap has to be overcome by the pressure in the cooling system. Once that happens the rubber radiator cap gasket lifts off the filler neck seat and coolant flows out and down the overflow hose.

To me it is one of two things, too much pressure in the system, or a cap that is not holding in the pressure.

The blue dye test is to verify that exhaust gasses are not getting into the cooling system and creating excessive pressure that would force coolant out of the tank. At the time of the test, the above was not happening. This could be an intermittent issue with exhaust gases entering the cooling system but highly unlikely as an intermittent problem.

The other culprit could be the radiator cap. I'm sure you had it checked, and/or replaced at time of blue dye test, but need to comment regardless. Monaco has specified radiator caps from 9# - 16# on their coaches. Why the variances, I don't know.
If you have a 9# cap on you system, you could try a 13# or 16# cap to see if that cures your problem.

With water boiling at 212, the addition of pressure raises the boiling point approximately 3 per pound. And a 50/50 mix of coolant/water will give around a10-15 addition to the boiling point. In a gasoline car application this is far more important as they run in excess of 229 normally. But in our coaches, a 9# cap should suffice. Maybe you have a 9# cap and yours is on the borderline of releasing the pressure.

You might try a new cap first, if you haven't yet. And also change to a higher pressure, again, if you haven't.

One other thing to check closely is to make sure there is no foreign material on the seating area of the radiator neck that would keep the rubber gasket from sealing properly. And, while inspect the sealing ridge on the neck, make sure there are no voids on it.

There may be some underlying other problem, but I hope you arrive at a simple, spelled inexpensive, fix for this issue.
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Old 06-13-2016, 04:44 PM   #5
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Blown head gasket, like camp Daven said.
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Old 06-13-2016, 04:52 PM   #6
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Tough to find, but I once had a temperature sensor that controlled the air shutters of a trucks radatior, leak air system pressure, into the cooling system. It pushed coolant out the cap.

I don't know your engine but look anywhere the air and coolant interacts. Is your fan controlled by coolant temperature ?

Think outside the box.
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Old 06-13-2016, 05:07 PM   #7
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I agree with Harry's assessment.
If blue dye did not show combustion leakage and there is no discolouration of the coolant the next obvious is the pressure cap. A combustion leak (blown head gasket etc) will also show up as bubbles in the cooling system. this can be a little tricky to witness because the engine needs to be at operating temperature and the cap removed to be able to see the fluid iin the surge tank.

Just because you replaced the cap does not necessarily mean it's not the cap. A while back I was having similar issues. Took the cap to a shop and asked the mechanic to test it for me. A 16# cap was releasing at about 9#. So I purchased a new 16# cap and asked him to test the new one. It released at 14#.
To make a long story short, I went through three new caps before I got one that held 16#. My suggestion would be to have the cap tested to make sure it is in fact holding whatever its rating is.

As Harry said, the higher the pressure, the higher the boiling point. The trade off of course is that the higher pressure lends itself to leaking hoses and connections. In any event, I personally would not run less that a 14# cap.
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Old 06-13-2016, 06:17 PM   #8
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Coolant surge tank blowing coolant out over flow

I hope it's the presure cap, however...Some gaskets don't leak if not at full temp and under a load at highway speed or hard acceleration


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Old 06-13-2016, 06:28 PM   #9
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coolant holding tank for Monaco

Where can I find a coolant expansion tank for my Dynasty.
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Old 06-13-2016, 06:51 PM   #10
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I didn't know the compressor pumped up the cooling system!
Sounds like cylinder pressure leaking into the water jacket via a bad head gasket.


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Someone got sold a bill of goods. There is absolutely no connection between the A/C and cooling systems. They are both sealed and independent of each other.
A cooling pressure test should be performed. Compressed air is introduced into each cylinder with the valves closed and the radiator cap off. If there is a leak in a head gasket or possibly an injector cup or even a crack in the cylinder head you will get a rush of bubbles in the radiator.
Are you ( The OP ) seeing any signs of coolant mixing with the oil? Oil level rising or milky looking oil.
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Old 06-13-2016, 07:23 PM   #11
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The engine mounted air compressor is a water cooled 2 cylinder unit. It has a head gasket just like the engine.

Knowing that, there is a possibility of the compressor pushing compressed air into the cooling system thru a failed head gasket. It would be no different then engine compression pushing into the coolant, minus the combustion gas'.

The OP went with a diagnosis from a shop. He now knows it was a bad one but not a "Bill of Goods". It could happen.
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Old 06-13-2016, 07:51 PM   #12
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Someone got sold a bill of goods. There is absolutely no connection between the A/C and cooling systems. They are both sealed and independent of each other.
A cooling pressure test should be performed. Compressed air is introduced into each cylinder with the valves closed and the radiator cap off. If there is a leak in a head gasket or possibly an injector cup or even a crack in the cylinder head you will get a rush of bubbles in the radiator.
Are you ( The OP ) seeing any signs of coolant mixing with the oil? Oil level rising or milky looking oil.
Lynn
The compressor is the air compressor on the engine that maintains the air tanks for air brakes and horn. There are bubbles after an hour or so if heavy pulling up hills or mtns. Once it starts it goes on until the engine is turned off and let sit for 15 mins, then it will run for an hour or maybe the rest of the day.
There are bubbles but they are not from combustion or over heating or the engine. No coolant in oil.
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Old 06-13-2016, 08:47 PM   #13
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I didn't know the compressor pumped up the cooling system!
Sounds like cylinder pressure leaking into the water jacket via a bad head gasket.


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Old 06-13-2016, 09:49 PM   #14
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Where can I find a coolant expansion tank for my Dynasty.

I had what looked to be an open seam at the neck of my tank. The experienced diesel mechanic told me to coat the neck on down in epoxy. That was 2 years ago and all looks fine.
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