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Old 11-30-2021, 11:38 AM   #1
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ISX600 CM870 - Coolant Loss

Just looking for other suggestions on what to check, and TIA!

> New to us used coach about 16 months ago. Had just under 40K when we bought it, and due to life now a bit under 46K. 07 coach, with 06 Smog Level ISX600 CM870 (EGR but no DPF).

> May have been losing coolant since the day we bought it, but started to monitor the Reservoir Tank this year, and noticed the coolant starting to drop in the glass tube monitor. (All coolant level checking done with level coach, and cold engine before a days travel.)

> We went from Yuma to Montana, and Montana to Oregon Coast, and then Oregon to Yuma again - since the end of June.

> In Twin Falls, ID, heading to Oregon, I added another gallon of Coolant, and marked the location as a new Baseline on some blue tape I added to the side of the tank next to the glass tube reader. And because I could detect no signs of leaks anywhere else. (Hoses, Clamps, Radiator, Water Pump, Heating Hose to front OTR Heater, OTR Heater unit, School Bus Pumps (Rear bypassed by previous owner.), etc. etc.) The only place I thought I saw residue, was on the frame below the Reservoir tanks Overflow Tube/Hose. So I went ahead and located I feel a good quality Radiator Cap at a Peterbuilt/Kenworth shop in Twin Falls. 16LBS, which is the same as the one that was on it when we took delivery.

> From Twin Falls to Oregon Coast, three days of travel. The coolant level dropped two out of the three days. And at the fill up of fuel stop on the third day, I could see coolant dripping below the Overflow Tube/Hose.

> I made an appointment for help at Coburg Cummins. And taped a water bottle to the bottom of the Overflow Tube/Hose. The day we ran over for the appointment, we drove and extra hour to get at least 100 miles on run over. The bottle was full and had overflowed on that 100 mile run.

> Cummins Tech's: Leak Tested the Cooling System and Turbo; Removed hoses and tubes to visually inspect the EGR and Compressor for Moisture (None detected.); Pulled samples of Oil and Coolant for analysis. No coolant found in oil, and no exhaust found in coolant.

> At this time the coolant was about 1/2 way or so down, and about a 3 1/2(?) gallon or so reservoir. As the coach was new to me, and those tests came back good, and with some guidance from a few others - I thought 'It has not found where the reservoir tank likes to level off yet, for this specific coach.' (I knew at PDI, they had added coolant to the tank too. When I started observing and noticing it, it was about 3/4 full, and when hot would arise about 1" with plant of room to not be 'Full' in the sight glass tube.). So, I decided to drive and monitor, and see if it would 'reach a level' and stop spitting out coolant.

> Weeks of enjoying Oregon Coast, and Club Premier Services 50A, I drove to Yuma. Another three days of travel. And another one where two out of three days of travel, coolant was lost/dropped - spitting out the Overflow Tube/Hose.

And now, the coolant was lower down in the sight glass tube then I felt it should be. About 1 1/2" of coolant visible.

> So while here at Yuma, I put the water bottle taped back onto the Overflow Tube/Hose, and ran the engine until the Thermostat opened temperature wise.

Bottle which I had taped on had had about 1/2 full of water. With engine running, I could watch a steady bubbling of and the water was turning the ES Complete light blue.

> Removed the new Radiator Cap, and it seemed to have a good seal, as the gasket had an indentation all the way around it. But to because it was cheap cost, I locked another good quality (Actually looks to be the same Radiator Cap, from RUSH trucks. Much more 'solidly' built then the one that NAPA had in stock. And almost twice as expensive too.).

> So second New Radiator Cap installed. And reran the test again, getting up Thermostat opening temperatures. (I was popular here at the RV Park, two times running the engine at higher RPM's for just under 30 mins!)

No bubbling this time, and no signs of any coloration of the freshly half filled water bottle.

> So, OK! Wow, perhaps I had a bad cap, and then replaced with a new bad cap too... Those things happen!!!

But, it's the 'two out of three days' of coolant lossage that has me a bit confused. Some variation in condition is taking place. A bad radiator cap, would have spit out coolant under all three days of travel(?) - is my thinking.

> I have to go back and review our route from Twin Falls to Oregon those three days of travel. But I know for a fact that the route I took from Oregon to Yuma, had Day 1 and Day 3 of pretty good grades to climb, and I downshift and have the ISX running at much higher RPM's and Boost on those grades. And the same about the downgrades, those two days of coolant lossage - also had heavier Jake Brake Activity too. (The stretch from Corning to Bakersfield on I5 South, was a loafing along day as far as grades were concerned, very seldom saw 5th gear when up to travel speed on that day.)

I believe my first day of travel from Twin Falls, ID to Redmond, OR - was also a relatively easy day of travel grade wise. (And need to check my notes on this, I think that was the day we did not lose any coolant, Day 1.)


==========


OK? So great if it was a bad radiator cap, or a radiator cap seal that was compromised under higher pressure conditions. Temperature via gauge and SilverLeaf were always below 200F, usually running 187-192F when loafing, and on grades maybe 197-8F... (The highest I ever saw, on this new to me RV, was 205F or so, and that was with me pushing the rig hard in 6th gear from Needles to Las Vegas long gradual grade, in 117-124F run. (I was testing to see how the cooling system did, and I thought it did great... As I normally would have downshifted to 5th, but the tad bit of torque with the ISX pulled the grade fine in 6th.)

==========

When we put the coach in storage next week. We'll drive for an hour or so on I8 just to see what happens with the coolant level. Dropping, or not dropping... Due to what maybe a 'variable condition'(?) causing the lossage.

So input and advice on other things to check appreciated!! Here is what I have so far:

- EGR Cooler (For internal cracks)
- CAC
- Even though the Coolant and Oil Samples analysis came back clean, Head Gasket and or Cracked Head. (But again, while two out of three only?)
- Slipped Liner (On this young of miles and hours engine.. Well not likely (I hope!)

Any input other things to check, appreciated! And thanks to all that read all the way thru this post... Trying to info share on what has been done over these few months, with few days, of traveling under our belts!!

Best to all,
Smitty
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Old 11-30-2021, 11:49 AM   #2
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Coolant reservoir overflowing......that is via the radiator cap

New/NEW Rad cap... issue resolved.
*Did a pressure test get done using a pressure gauge to measure actual pressure?
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Old 11-30-2021, 12:09 PM   #3
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We have the same engine. I started losing coolant intermittently which became more constant over time. One time there was a small amount of white smoke on startup but only once. Our mechanic took one look at it and said its the EGR cooler. While replacing the EGR cooler he also replaced the hydroformed coolant crossover pipe which had a rotted flex connector.
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Old 11-30-2021, 12:18 PM   #4
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It's usually the EGR cooler. Hope you find it.
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Old 11-30-2021, 02:37 PM   #5
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On EGR Cooler failures. Should not that have been identified via the Coolant analysis reflecting Exhaust Fumes in the Coolant? (And that is for sure a question. I assume this would be the case, as well EGR's do get Exhaust Fumes pumped in - and the EGR Cooler is to help Cool those Fumes before pumping that back out into the Intake side!

And yes to radiator cap replacements. Two new ones added within the last few thousand miles... And who knows, the second new one I installed yesterday may have solved the problem... Certainly no signs of bubbling on my second test engine run. (And will stress it some under normal driving conditions next week as we put her in storage.).

Thanks for the input so far!
Smitty
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Old 12-01-2021, 07:20 AM   #6
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What PSI cap are you using? Cummins Quickserve shows this for my CM870:
"Minimum Recommended Pressure Cap With EGR 103 kPa [15 psi]"

I don't think the EGR cooler failed on the CM870 very often. The early CM871 had lots of EGR cooler failures.
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Old 12-01-2021, 01:06 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hypoxia View Post
What PSI cap are you using? Cummins Quickserve shows this for my CM870:
"Minimum Recommended Pressure Cap With EGR 103 kPa [15 psi]"

I don't think the EGR cooler failed on the CM870 very often. The early CM871 had lots of EGR cooler failures.
Ours had a 16PSI cap when we bought the coach, and that is what I replaced it with (Twice now!)...

Glad to hear low CM870 Cooler Failures.... Hope I'm no the exception! That being said, IF the second New radiator cap really has not solved the problem - I'd welcome it being a failed EGR cooler - because I'd at least know what it is to fix!

Fingers crossed nothing needs to be fixed... And thank you!
Smitty
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Old 12-01-2021, 01:07 PM   #8
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FWIW my coolant level sensor has begun leaking internally. Coolant corrodes the connector and wiring as well. I've heard of cases where the leak followed the harness and caused significant damage elsewhere. Mine is a very slow leak though over time it takes a toll on the coolant level. My sensor is near the bottom of the reservoir tank and impossible to see, access, or replace. I disconnected the connection to the sensor and dummied in a signal to keep the low coolant light off until I have the time and determination to dig into it. I have to drain both the hydraulic fluid and lines as well as coolant so I can remove the tanks to access. Yuck. Of course I still have the temperature gauge and will get an alarm should the engine overheat. Meanwhile I check the fluid level visually frequently.
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Old 12-01-2021, 03:48 PM   #9
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Thanks Bon! I can just get my head in deep enough to check that sensor, and it was and remains dry for now!!! 99.9% sure our coolant lossage has been via that Overflow Hose... And I did keep looking, over and over (Well, many times 'under', while slither on my back underneath!) again for any other fluid lossage. Oil is freshly changed and in good color from the run from Oregon to Yuma. No odors or white smoke at startup out of the exhaust. Both of these reinforce the analysis not finding anything... The 'bubbling' into the water bottle taped onto the Overflow Tube/Hose, sure indicates the either the pressure was built up too hight and opened the radiator cap, and or, that the radiator cap itself was defective. And Cummins in Coburg did do the Coolant System and Turbo Lead Test for me, all came back good...

I will add that back coolant sensor to my regular review cycle, as I admit I never had any problems with our Allure - but will watch this area on the Magna!

Best,
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Old 12-01-2021, 06:06 PM   #10
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Have you ever pressurized the cooling system and let it set over night? You can rent (borrow) a pressure kit from many automotive supply places. It's surprising what eventually comes out and where given enough time.
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Old 12-01-2021, 10:46 PM   #11
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Have you ever pressurized the cooling system and let it set over night? You can rent (borrow) a pressure kit from many automotive supply places. It's surprising what eventually comes out and where given enough time.
I have not. But, Cummins of Coburg did pressure test the cooling/turbo systems... And all OK... Does not mean that I should not do a test on my own though!!!

I'll check around the Yuma area for kit... As we are not heading to storage until next week!!

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Old 12-07-2021, 03:04 PM   #12
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Elected to put on a second new radiator cap, in case he replacement one from earlier this year was defective.

While in the RV Park. I ran 'before new cap' test, getting the engine up to thermostat opening temperature, and then examine the end of the overflow hose that I had placed into half full bottle of water. It was a lighter blue from the ES Complete coolant mixing in, as well as bubbling away too.

After the 'new, new cap', brought it back up to temp again. And no bubbling. So was thinking maybe this was it.

Today we drove about 70 miles before putting the coach in storage, and I ran the RPM's up in the 1850-1950 range while on a few hills. Boost hit 34 for a bit too. And when I stopped to look at the bottle (That I had emptied before leaving the RV Park.), it was half full. And completely full at about 70 mile when we reached the storage unit.

So, will need to continue to sort things out.

Best to all,
Smitty
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Old 12-08-2021, 05:55 AM   #13
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Another thing to check when you're getting excessive "pressure" in the cooling system - is the Air Compressor.

It can fail and over pressurize the cooling system - which sounds like what you're describing. A compressor failure can cause coolant to come out of the radiator overflow (and not show any signs of coolant in oil, compression gasses in coolant, or external leaks, as you described).
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Old 12-08-2021, 12:33 PM   #14
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Another thing to check when you're getting excessive "pressure" in the cooling system - is the Air Compressor.

It can fail and over pressurize the cooling system - which sounds like what you're describing. A compressor failure can cause coolant to come out of the radiator overflow (and not show any signs of coolant in oil, compression gasses in coolant, or external leaks, as you described).
Agree with this, and Coburg Cummins did inspect the Compressor or signs of coolant, negative...

Thanks!!!!
Smitty
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