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Author Topic: No pressure in radiator  (Read 1178 times)

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Offline wevie

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No pressure in radiator
« on: December 13, 2010, 02:00:44 PM »
The patient:  '84 RC, fresh rebuilt 360 (block boiled for 48 hrs), radiator professionally cleaned while out of truck.  Water pump and T-stat are new.

I drove the truck to work this morning with temps around -15* F.  I had good heat from the dash the whole trip (25 miles).

When I got to work I popped the hood to check for any noticeable leaks since this is it's 'maiden' voyage out of town.  Everything looked in good shape, but I noticed there was no pressure in the upper radiator hose.

I grabbed my infrared thermometer and found the bottom end at 170*, the intake manifold at 150*, and the T-stat housing at 170*.  I'm comfortable knowing the engine wasn't overheating on the trip, but the lack of pressure concerns me.  I don't remember the temp rating of my T-stat, but if it's 180 or above, then it probably never opened.  If it's 160-ish then it should have opened and the system should be pressurized.

I suppose there must be a leak somewhere in order for it to not build pressure.  I will check the level before leaving work tonight.

Any ideas?
1984 RC, 5.9L, 4x4, cam and headers

Offline moparmike72

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Re: No pressure in radiator
« Reply #1 on: December 13, 2010, 02:16:31 PM »
At 170 degrees it's not likely to build much pressure anyway, I would just drive it, sounds like it's doing ok.
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Offline cjohhny

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Re: No pressure in radiator
« Reply #2 on: December 13, 2010, 02:20:40 PM »
With outside temps that low, that's probably all you're going to see.  That's why some folks put cardboard in front of the radiator to restrict air flow to make the engine come up to temperature.

And if memory serves, 195 degrees is the stock t-stat you should be using.
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Offline wevie

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Re: No pressure in radiator
« Reply #3 on: December 14, 2010, 05:32:25 AM »
After work I started the truck then popped the hood to check the level.  I had to add maybe a quart to top off the radiator.

At this point I do believe it is weeping somewhere - most likely the water neck.  Truck will be parked until I can resolve this.

1984 RC, 5.9L, 4x4, cam and headers

Offline KThaxton

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Re: No pressure in radiator
« Reply #4 on: December 14, 2010, 09:33:54 AM »

At this point I do believe it is weeping somewhere - most likely the water neck.  Truck will be parked until I can resolve this.


It could have just purged an air pocket. Was your overflow bottle empty?
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Offline wevie

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Re: No pressure in radiator
« Reply #5 on: December 14, 2010, 09:46:16 AM »
It could have just purged an air pocket. Was your overflow bottle empty?

*facepalm*

I did not check the overflow bottle.  Temps will warm up to the 20's later this week and I'll feel more like troubleshooting.
1984 RC, 5.9L, 4x4, cam and headers