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Old 11-14-2021, 06:46 PM   #1
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Ticking sound...sometimes. Exhaust header, definitely

330ISC 8.3L in a Monaco 2004.

Not sure if these are related or two things have occurred on the same trip. Started to hear a ticking sound when cold or after running hard and then idling. Could have been when going down the road, but I couldn't hear it.

Pulled over today on a long drive with big mountains. Stopped for a few minutes. Decided to see if I could find the tick with the engine running. What I saw was a gush of fuel dripping off the bottom of the engine for about 1 minute then it stopped. It appeared to be coming down from near the top of the engine on the passenger side

Inside, I took off the cover inside and could see that one of the bolts was missing from the exhaust header. Guessing it sheered, but if I'm incredibly lucky it just backed out. Does this happen? Why? Fun?

I read somewhere about clicking sometimes coming from the injectors. Do my symptoms tell me what I need to do?
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Old 11-14-2021, 07:01 PM   #2
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Sorry, but I can’t orient myself to the photo. Don’t know what I am looking at.

But...

The soot near the center certainly looks to be an exhaust leak.
However, the gush of fuel is concerning.
Just where did you see the fuel?
Had you just started the engine when you saw it?
Was it dripping from the passenger side, just above the starter motor?

IMO, the fuel leak is your top priority right now, even if it’s not related to the ticking.
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Old 11-14-2021, 07:16 PM   #3
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X2 on finding the source of fuel. Sounds like it might be your lift/transfer pump leaking, which long term is a major problem. The lift pump is located above the starter, you can see the top of it from the bedroom hatch. If it is leaking you can try and tighten the top 3 bolts, which is a short term fix. Do some searches on this problem and decide what type of long term fix you prefer. Mine started leaking last year and I opted to install a FASS transfer pump, ~$1000 doing it myself.



Can you get a better picture of the exhaust manifold. Besides one bolt missing it almost looks like it is cracked. This is fairly common on the ISC, I had to replace mine in 2015. Doing the job yourself ~$800 in parts, having a shop do it can be $1500-2500.
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Old 11-14-2021, 07:20 PM   #4
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With the bolt missing it sounds like the ticking was an exhaust leak. You’ll need new gaskets and possible exhaust manifold resurfacing.

Fuel leak, I’d have the lift pump checked.

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Old 11-14-2021, 07:28 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ljwt330 View Post
Sorry, but I can’t orient myself to the photo. Don’t know what I am looking at.

But...

The soot near the center certainly looks to be an exhaust leak.
However, the gush of fuel is concerning.
Just where did you see the fuel?
Had you just started the engine when you saw it?
Was it dripping from the passenger side, just above the starter motor?

IMO, the fuel leak is your top priority right now, even if it’s not related to the ticking.
That picture is looking down on the exhaust manifold. The red circle possibly indicates were the gasket at the turbo mount is leaking. If that is the original E-manifold it is or will be broken. The ticking is a leaking gasket. I had to have mine replaced = $3,000.

His lift pump is under suction when the engine is running, that means it will not leak fuel while running; instead it will suck in air, which in turn usually ruins the main pump.


gsgriffin, look for threads and posts by IMPRSD, he is the local expert on lift pumps and installing FASS aftermarket fuel pumps.
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Old 11-15-2021, 05:37 AM   #6
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Thanks for all the replies. I had a very long day of driving (with these issues) and just needed to sleep....

Yes, I do believe the fuel is coming from above the starter. It appeared only at the initial engine start and then stopped after a minute. I'm not afraid of doing work myself, but we are on the road right now and not in a permanent location where I can work on it. Will try to get into a shop this morning, but Show Low, AZ is not a huge city with lots of options.

As I slept, it does seem to add up. I was recalling that in the last two days I saw a reduction in my turbo boost. I thought it was odd, but overall, the engine seemed to be doing ok. I believe it was only when I got the RPM high enough that the turbo would spin up well. Low boost was not great.

I also felt that my compression brake was a little weak. This might also explain that. Here is another picture. It was pretty obvious to me as the soot is not on the one exhaust port and on everything around it.
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Old 11-15-2021, 07:52 AM   #7
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The 3 bolts on top of the fuel transfer pump are easily accessible (at least on my rig). The big risk of the fuel leak is the potential for the injector pump to suck air.



Thanks for the new picture. The exhaust manifold supports the turbo. If there is just a stud/bolt missing it might be an easy fix. If the stud is broke off the whole thing will have to be pulled to get to the stud.



Good luck.
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Old 11-15-2021, 08:57 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by jacwjames View Post
If it is leaking you can try and tighten the top 3 bolts, which is a short term fix.
Thanks. Tightened the three bolts and started up with no fuel. Will probably need to test and watch more.
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Old 11-15-2021, 09:46 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by jacwjames View Post
The 3 bolts on top of the fuel transfer pump are easily accessible (at least on my rig). The big risk of the fuel leak is the potential for the injector pump to suck air.



Thanks for the new picture. The exhaust manifold supports the turbo. If there is just a stud/bolt missing it might be an easy fix. If the stud is broke off the whole thing will have to be pulled to get to the stud.



Good luck.
At the shop now waiting for the estimate. Assuming I just need to get a new header, is this even possible to dyi or should not be attempted except by the experienced? I do most work myself and could see my way to doing this, but I imagine the bolts could all break off in removal and end up having to do some serious work. Would hate to snap of bolts and have to tow this somewhere.
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Old 11-15-2021, 09:56 AM   #10
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The lift pump is located above the starter, you can see the top of it from the bedroom hatch. If it is leaking you can try and tighten the top 3 bolts, which is a short term fix.

....
Doing the job yourself ~$800 in parts, having a shop do it can be $1500-2500.
Thanks for the tip. Tightening may have solved it on the short term.

Did you replace your exhaust header yourself? I'm considering finishing my drive and doing it myself to save some money, but if this should only be approached by owner with a shop, then I'll pay, but saving$1-2k would be preferred. 14 bolts. Get out the broken off one which is hopefully not sheered at the engine block. Put 14 bolts back on. Am I not seeing something in what it takes?
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Old 11-15-2021, 09:59 AM   #11
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Just a thought, I suspect you have two issues, exhaust leak and a fuel leak. The shop will be able to let you know though. Good luck, CA
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Old 11-15-2021, 12:21 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by gsgriffin View Post
Thanks for the tip. Tightening may have solved it on the short term.

Did you replace your exhaust header yourself? I'm considering finishing my drive and doing it myself to save some money, but if this should only be approached by owner with a shop, then I'll pay, but saving$1-2k would be preferred. 14 bolts. Get out the broken off one which is hopefully not sheered at the engine block. Put 14 bolts back on. Am I not seeing something in what it takes?

I was aware of the potential for a fuel leak and kept an close on it. All good one day and then took the rig for a drive to fill it up with fuel. Got back and decided to clean my jack stems as they seemed to come up really slow so I crawled under the rig and sure enough>>> the leak. Tightened the 3 bolts but long story short I decided to install a FASS pump and bypassed the old lift pump.


Yes I did change the exhaust manifold myslelf, it was cracked. Started soaking the bolts with PB Blaster a couple days ahead of time. Didn't have any problems getting the bolts out. The entire job took me ~8 hours, I wasn't in a hurry and wasted a lot of time dropping tools, nuts, washers etc and had get up and go retrieve the stuff. A helper would have saved me a lot of time. In 2015 the manifold, gaskets, studs cost me ~$650. I've heard it's hard to find manifolds so no doubt the price will go up.



One risk you have to be concerned about is if you have studs broken or missing it will let the manifold twist due to the weight of the turbo. Unless you can at least get new studs in I'd be concerned about driving.
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Old 11-15-2021, 12:25 PM   #13
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After tighten the screws the leak has been known to came back. Certin engines the lift pump only runs developing presure for a minutes or two. Then it turns off and the injector pumps creates a vacume sucking the fuel from the tank and air through any leaks. Not very good for injector pump since it uses fuel for lubercaion and air is not a good lubercator.

I would get a new pump.

Exhust manifold and I looking at a heat shield around it? Bolts falling out of the manifold never saw that. But bolts fall out of heat shilds on manifold I have see more then a few times.
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Old 11-15-2021, 12:56 PM   #14
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I've posted this is several other threads about a broken E-manifold. The ISC engine is known for broken exhaust manifolds due to the weight of the turbo and associated piping.
In 2019 I had my E-manifold replaced at a HDT repair shop. Even after soaking the bolts with PB Blaster 4 broke off. The final bill was $3,000. Had I not completely removed the bed frame so the mechanics had easier access, the shop owner said the labor bill would have been much higher.
Only 2 ports were not leaking, manifold completely broken, and turbo joint leaking. The Cummins improved manifold is much heavier in weight.
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