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Old 03-06-2013, 09:58 PM   #1
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ISM Oil Leak

I thought I'd share my saga.

I've been going back and forth with Cummins and Spartan for over 2 years on what I presumed to be excessive blowby -- excess pressure spraying the front of the toad and the frame with oil. Cummins finally put a manometer on it to humor me and concluded it was well within spec (11in if I recall.)

It didn't set right with me, I knew there was something else amiss. But to humor them, I installed a jaz can (see below) to catch the blowby. Much to my dismay, I arrived in Myrtle Beach and wouldn't you know, the front of the toad was covered in oil!

When I got home, I picked up some tracer dye from Cummins, put it in and hit it with the UV light. It appears to be blowing oil through the new jaz can breather and through the front crank seal (which would be a real treat to replace from an accessibility standpoint if it came to that.)

I've not gotten any further with it yet. I guess the turbo seal will be first on my list to inspect.

The worst part is, it's 2 years out of warranty now so I'm flying solo!

Good fun.
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Old 03-07-2013, 05:51 PM   #2
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We have a 04 Essex with 500 ISM engine and we have also had issue with oil drops on the tow car and the back of the coach. After alot of different checks and changes are problem was our dip stick tube leaking. It would push the dip stick up just enough to allow the pressure to cause a leak. Sometimes small other times alot. I came up with a different hold down and 10K miles later not one oil leak or drop.
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Old 03-07-2013, 09:01 PM   #3
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That would be an awesome fix! Unfortunately, while I haven't picked up a manometer and put it on it, the crankcase pressure is high enough to blow oil and vapors AROUND the seals of that jazz can as well as the front crankshaft seal -- and at a rate enough to spray the front of the toad.. and I don't mean drops... there's a layer of oil on the toad.

I'm hoping for a turbo seal or something "simple" - but I fear the worst; a broken ring or similar.

I'm trying to follow the chain through Cummins to see if they will at least do the right thing and give me a diagnosis. I obviously don't have a dynamometer or even a manometer to perform all the test procedures outlined in the service manual. From there, I can figure out the next course. I have the tools, building and (most of the) skills to handle most of it, unless it involves pulling the head and rebuilding a cylinder. I don't think I'm going to completely tear down a $25k engine. LOL
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Old 03-08-2013, 11:05 AM   #4
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ISM will leak some oil out of blow by tube. We also had some oil spray out of blow by hose and after talking with the bus barn manger and my back ground in racing we attached the hose to the exhaust like he has done for most of the pre 2010 diesels in his fleet. You get a piece of pipe about 6 inches and cut one end at a 45 degree angle and then weld that into your 5 inch exhaust pipe. Weld it in so the 45 cut isn't facing into the exhaust flow but going around it. Then add some 3/4 HD heater hose to your blow by tube and install clamps and no more drip oil when parked or on the back of RV and toad. Did this 50K and 5 years ago and works great.
Tom
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Old 08-08-2013, 08:04 PM   #5
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Mine too

What I did was to put a spray bottle over the blow by tube and a hose clamp to hold it there. You will also need to cut some small holes in the top. It caught all the oil on the trip but I decided to find out shy it did this. What I found was that when I use the Exhaust Brake it would build up pressure and make the oil blow out. My last trip I did not use the Exhaust Brake and guess what NO OIL. So that is my two cents worth.
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