Progress Thread Let's try this again...

Alldegree

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That's an old wives' tale.


View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pa4RwsiZUmI

I always wondered about that, thank you for debunking the myth for me. An old mechanic friend told it to me years ago and I always thought it was a little fishy, but when I saw the seal leaking that was the first thing that came to my head.

I took the cap off and took a picture for you guys. I’m not sure what indicators to look for beyond scorch marks and bits of metal, but everything looks ok to me.
196E6B16-F0EC-4124-9022-B1841BC384D1.jpeg
 
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MustangIIMatt

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I also asked the guy and the shop about the leak, and they both recommended trying stop-leak before doing anything expensive. I picked up some Lucas Oil, topped off whatever was lost due to the leak (less than a quart so far, I checked it cold and I’m waiting for the engine to cool off to check it again).
DO NOT USE STOP LEAK IN YOUR ENGINE. Figure out what is leaking, and fix it. Any shop that is suggesting the solution to your oil leak is to put in stop leak is not a shop I would want to do business with.

This, 100%.

"stop leak" products are actually bad for the systems they're poured into.

Most of the time, they've got polymers, glycols or other chemicals in them that attempt to "soften" the leaking seal or gasket, or make it swell up.

Here's the thing, it'll stop a leak, for a little while... emphasis on the little.

Then the leak will come back, and be worse. Why? Because when that seal was either softened or swollen, said already worn seal was getting worn even more by the moving part either rotating or rubbing against it.

Cooling system stop leaks are even worse than that, frequently causing clogged heater cores, heater control valves, radiators, hoses, thermostats, etc.

Here's the good news:

You used Lucas.

Lucas's products don't actually fix a damned thing, and they don't hurt a damned thing. They're just thick lubricants that slow leaks by making the fluids themselves thicker. You'll even see me advocate their ridiculously thick red power steering fix in a bottle as the best way to shut up a Cardone remanufactured power steering pump for 70s-90s Ford applications, because it's the only thing I've found that does that.

The only bad thing about Lucas's oil additive is that it's basically gear oil, and lacks the antiwear additives that are in engine oils. If you used a quart or so to replace leaked oil, you didn't hurt anything, and there's no real need to hurry up and get it out of there, it can wait until the next oil change.
 
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90sickfox

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Do like Mustng93ssp said.....take the belt off and make sure the noise is coming from the distributor. If it is the distributor than you need to change it ASAP. If the shaft freezes up in that distributor it can cause damage to the camshaft amd put metal in your oil.

If you pull the belt amd noise foes away it's something else. If the noise stays then pull the distributor out. Mark the bottom at the base with 2 dots or a line first. Remove the cap and mark where the rotor is pointing inside the distributor. Remove the hold down bolt and pull the distributor up slowly. Hold the body in the same position while lifting it out. The rotor will rotate a little....mark the inside of the cap where its pointing. Once removed the rotor shaft and gear should rotate smoothly. If they don't you need a new one. Check the hear for wear.

Going back in just line the rotor up with the last mark inside the distributor. When you install it the rotor should rotate to the first mark you made inside. The base should line up with the mark on the block. Timing should be right where it was before you took it out.

While the distributor is out look down in the hole with a flashlight. Check the camshaft gear and take note of the condition of the oil pump shaft. ( it looks like a hex shaped ¼ inch allen key.
 

Alldegree

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If you used a quart or so to replace leaked oil, you didn't hurt anything

I think I used less than half a quart. I tried to do small increments because I didn’t want to overfill it, and luckily I read your post before adding any more.


Now, a synthetic also doesn't do anything to prevent leaks. If it did, I'd be out of a job since I work on BMWs for a living (they all use synthetic, and those bastards leak more oil than the Exxon Valdez).

I just read this part and laughed because my Dad had a CPO 750Li years ago that he ended up getting rid of after a couple of years, mainly because the valve seals went bad and it was burning a couple quarts of oil a week. That car was beautiful, but it was an over-engineered mess.

As far as your squeak goes, take off the belt and start the car. If the noise is gone it is something in the serpentine system. Belt tensioner, alternator, water pump etc.

I’ll probably do that after work tomorrow, I’ll let you know how it goes. The power steering pump has been making a lot of noise lately, so if I had to place a bet on what part of the system it could be, that’d probably be it.
 
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Alldegree

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Pulled the fan belt, it’s the distributor. The squeak, although faint, was there when I leaned in and listened closely. Put the belt back on the car, everything’s back together. I’m almost glad it’s the distributor, because it actually explains some of the other problems I’ve been having with the car (intermittent misfire, gasoline smell, poor throttle response) that I had previously attributed to the timing being slow. A new distributor is about 100 and I’m thinking I might as well get a new coil and plugs/wires while I’m at it. I’ve read really good things about the “screamin’ demon” coil on LMR. Is it worth upgrading that right now, or is that something you have to have supporting mods for in order to see any noticeable benefits?
 

90sickfox

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You can put a screaming demon coil on a stock engine.
 

MustangIIMatt

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I personally wouldn't spend money on an aftermarket coil. I have 3 cars with various engine configurations. All 3 run a stock coil with zero issues. In my experience its rare for a coil to go bad. Your money would be better spent on something else.

Chris
I agree with this, with one caveat. When better coil is cheaper, go ahead and upgrade, it won't make a real difference on a stock or stock-ish engine, but if you plan on a lot of upgrades later it'll help. Also, sometimes the performance coils look cooler.
 
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Alldegree

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Ok, it's been awhile so I figured an update is in order.

I took the car in to the shop to get a set of subframe connectors welded in along with some bolt-on shock tower and k member bracing. I also asked them about the distributor. They were able to replicate the noise and put in some kind of special lubricant that seems to have made it go away. So the car handles better, and the distributor stopped chirping.

But there are more problems.

Lately, whenever I start the car, the engine shoots up to 2-3000 rpm for awhile (about 20-30 seconds) before dropping down and bouncing around 800-1000 rpm for awhile and then finally smoothing out. When driving, car feels down on power until I hear a short "hiss," the throttle surges a bit and then it's fine. It almost sounds like a pressure release valve or something.

Is this a vacuum leak, or something else? I know the shop relocated the vacuum tree when they put in the tower brace, so is it possible something might have come loose?
 

Alldegree

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Alright, new symptom. The car is harder to start now (took me 3 tries) and once it did it idled like garbage for a bit and when I took my foot off the clutch in neutral it died. 4th time it started and idled a bit better and evened out once it warmed up.
 

90sickfox

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The idle air control valve can cause the last symptom. It should set a code though. A vacuum leak could also cause your issues.

That hiss could be a couple things. The AC system can cause a hiss noise but only if it's on when you start the car. The AC would also not work. If it sounds like the hiss is from behind the dash it could be the brake booster leaking vacuum. Easy to test with a vacuum gauge. Pull the hose from the booster and apply vacuum to it. That issue would cause a harder than normal brake pedal...or inability to lock up the brakes.
 

Alldegree

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Does trying to start it with the gas pedal pressed fully to the floor make a difference?

It hasn’t happened again since then, but I don’t think so.

The idle air control valve can cause the last symptom. It should set a code though. A vacuum leak could also cause your issues.

That hiss could be a couple things. The AC system can cause a hiss noise but only if it's on when you start the car. The AC would also not work. If it sounds like the hiss is from behind the dash it could be the brake booster leaking vacuum. Easy to test with a vacuum gauge. Pull the hose from the booster and apply vacuum to it. That issue would cause a harder than normal brake pedal...or inability to lock up the brakes.

I don’t think the car has AC, I don’t see a compressor. The brakes feel normal too, so hopefully that’s not it. I like the sound of that idle air control valve though, I think I’ll follow that lead for a bit.

Also, it’s actually between 1000 and 2000 rpm, rather than 2-3000 that I said before. I hooked up a timing light and the ignition is super advanced when it’s doing this. That might be normal, I’m not sure.

I tried to plug in an OBDI reader to see if I could pull any codes, but my little gray connector (I think it’s called the self test) is missing, so that’s great. All of this is kind of a bummer because I was going to take it up to Indiana dunes with some work friends this weekend. I guess I still could? It runs fine after it settles down.
 

Alldegree

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The shop found 5 vacuum leaks and a blown block-off plate gasket, so they fixed all that and the car runs mostly fine now except for the occasional stutter when the engine is cold.

I also found a differential leak, so a buddy of mine came over today and we got to wrenching. Every single gasket on this car is just baked on in the worst way. We had to use a wire wheel to get some of it off. Afterwards, I pumped in 2 quarts of royal purple and added half a tube of friction treatment (the whole tube said it treats 4 qts) and the car seems to run well with no leaks and the rear end doesn't whine as much as it used to.

Something caught my eye while I was fumbling around under the differential though. The rear shocks that are parallel with the ground were painted red and had a name printed on them, "Stormin' Norman." I asked my buddy if he had heard of him, and he said no. So I did some internet research and learned a bit about the late, great Norman Gray. Kind of a neat little easter egg. I remember the seller telling me he had put on some custom racing suspension parts that he had lying around that he had acquired through the years, so I'm guessing these shocks were part of that collection.
 

Olivethefet

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When I first start my car I let it warm up for a minute then take off. Leaving my driveway I'm tuned up hill. The car is running fine but when I shift it stumbles for the first couple of shifts. After it warms up good it's fine. I dont worry about it. Figuring it's a product of old car and who knows what small problems I have that I'm not aware of.
 
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Rdub6

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Sounds like your getting things worked out! That’s great! The more you get fixed up and right, the more you’ll start enjoying the car...... and doing more wrenching yourself!
 
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