Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Day 2, 3, 4 - Still in Corvallis

Sunday (2) - A nice, sunny day. I walked down to the drug store to get a flu shot. I figured that I needed to get one sometime. This seemed to be as good of a time as any. As I was heading out of the drug store, I glanced down at the instant coffee, as has become a habit, and they had several bottles of  Café Bustelo espresso instant coffee. I had picked up a bottle in a store outside of Atlanta and hadn’t seen it since. I’ve been checking every time I’ve gone grocery shopping since Arizona. And, it was on sale! They had two jars left so I picked up both of them. I don’t have instant coffee often but this is the tastiest one in my opinion.

Monday (3) - Today, we met up with some long time friends from Fairbanks who now live in Salem for lunch. Afterwards, we stopped at the repair shop to check out the RV. The grid heater now works and cold starts are possible now. There is still smoke though I’m not sure if it’s any better. The mechanic said the grid heater looks like someone used starting fluid as it was physically broken. The #4 injector was not changed. They think the smoke is from glazed cylinders. By cutting out individual cylinders, the smoke doesn’t change so it’s not injectors. Glazed cylinders is usually caused by improper engine break in and extended running at idle. (Low combustion temperature) Unfortunately, the fix is major work. He recommended trying an oil additive (Lucas Oil Stabilizer) and not an overhaul since we aren’t planning lots of miles. By lots, he means 50k-100k per year. We picked up a gallon of the Lucas product and dropped it off. He said that they’ll drain a gallon and add it. We’ll be picking it up tomorrow.

Tuesday (4) - We picked up the RV today and had a long conversation with both the service manager and the mechanic. The grid heater does work now. On initial startup, it looked a little better until I turned on high idle. Then the smoke returned. The injector was not replaced as there wasn’t anything wrong with it. Compression is lower than it should be due to the glazed cylinders. Shortly after leaving the shop, the “Stop Engine” and “Check Engine” lights came on. Water temperature and oil pressure were fine and drivability didn’t seem to be affected so I looped around Albany and returned to the shop. The mechanic connected the computer and the codes were  for “low boost” and lost communication with a sensor. In my two mile drive, the error occurred 13 times. When we brought it in, the error had occurred 255 times which is max counter and it stops reporting and generating an alarm.

The mechanic said both are non-critical. The “real” boost sensor is connected to the engine computer and controls the waste-gate. The boost sensor this is complaining about just sends info to the computer up front for a boost gauge that we don’t have anyway. The sensor is to communicate between the engine computer and the front display. After the error occurs 255 times, it’ll stop reporting. It can’t cause the engine to go into limp mode or shut off. The shop in Tucson mentioned this and connected to the engine computer while driving and said max boost was 29psi which was fine. If we really did have low boost, there would be black smoke on full throttle. We aren’t seeing black smoke.

BTW, the guesstimate for engine repair is $25k. But both the service manager and mechanic said that they wouldn’t do it. There is a lot to be said about buying new so you know the full history of a vehicle.

For now, we are at an RV park outside of Corvallis for a couple of days as we need to move back into the RV. I drove the coach here and Bridget went back to the house for the first load which would include the cat...


10 comments:

david R said...

Bummer about the engine. But otherwise it runs ok? so drive it until the Polaroid develops. Its definitely in better shape than when you bought it.

SonjaM said...

I sure hope that, whatever the mechanical problem might be, won't affect your travels (and your wallet) too much, Richard.

Geoff James said...

By your cat's pose, it clearly heard how much an engine rebuild would cost :-)

redlegsrides said...

Man, 25K? Sounds like the previous or first owner really FUBAR'ed the break-in procedures for the engine or just ran it all the time when not moving. Sigh. So, I guess it's just live with the smoke on cold starts when high idle is engaged? Is high idle required or dictated?

Lynne Goebeler said...

Oh Richard, so sorry about the continued issues, but it sounds like the smoke and alarms will just be annoying, not impact your ability to travel. 25k is crazy! Continued good wishes!

RichardM said...

Just disappointed. But it drives fine.

RichardM said...

Knowing what the problem is means I won’t keep trying to fix it.

RichardM said...

Good one!

RichardM said...

High idle isn’t needed unless you need to build up air pressure faster.

RichardM said...

Thank you. Yep, we will keep traveling.