gbconsta

CAT C13 - Lots Of Grey Smoke, No Power Need Suggestions

24 posts in this topic

Coach is currently at a CAT dealer. Engine diagnostic was run and it showed number six cylinder was not firing and there is a lot of crankcase blow-by. Tech said it was injector. Replaced same and still had the same problem. He did a pressure check on cylinder, that was Ok. He is now saying the engine needs to be pulled and head taken off for piston inspection.

1. Has anyone with a C13 had this same problem, and 2. Any suggestions on what might be going on.

thanks in advance - frustrated owner

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Gary,

Not sure I understand. If pressure test showed the cylinder good, why pull it down to look at the piston. I would think a bad piston/rings would show up on a pressure test.

With that said, very difficult for us to do a better job of diagnosing an engine problem over the internet than a hands on tech for your engine brand.

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Brett, the tech is speculating the top of the piston melted without breaking and has caused the compression to drop below firing level. I am not sure I believe that as this engine only has 40k miles, oil changed every year and as not smoked or leaked oil since I have owned it the last three years. It was been a great engine. I am hoping someone out there has seen this happen before and it was some weird cause not requiring an engine dis-assemble.

16 to 20 grand to rebuild the engine is a lot of money out of the pocket.

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Looks like the Coach is at a CAT dealer from the original post.

Question, Did the engine start to smoke all of a sudden or just get worse over time.

Hard to believe that, if the engine compression test was good; there would be a piston issue or that there is a valve issue. How about the push rods, lifter or Rocker Arm loose, or something else in the valve train on cylinder #6. This could manifest its self as a cylinder issue !

Look at all the small items before pulling the head is my philosophy.

Rich.

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Rich, it happen all of a sudden while pulling on to an interstate. No warning, engine has always been very clean burning and quiet running. Engine was not compression tested. It was pressure tested. 90 psi was forced into the cylinder and bleed time was noted. It was within normal limits, per the tech.

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Forgot to ask. What does the log data from the ECM look like on #6 ?

There should be date and time line information regarding the performance of the cylinder.

Pressure test, tests the cylinder integrity, not the condition of the valve train.

Rich.

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Does your unit have a Jake Brake? If so it may be stuck. this happened to my Cummins. White smoke and no power. It was connected to an electrical problem (my fault). Corrected elec. problem no more smoke and full power for the last two years.

Herman

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Herman, it has a 2 stage engine brake. Not sure if that is a Jake brake. I asked that question and was told no it was not the problem. Any idea how that is tested for as the problem.

Thanks, Gary

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An engine compression brake, AKA Jake Brake works by opening the exhaust valve as the piston comes to TDC. Clearly, if the exhaust valve were opening when you are on the throttle, power would be WELL down.

No, I am not suggesting that is the issue-- clearly we can't make that determination over the internet.

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Gary, so sorry to hear. We're over at Pecan, watching this thread with intense interest, will convey it to new Beaver owners even nearer to you who also have a C13. You took it up to Holt Cat?

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Andy, I am with the PPOA also. The coach is at the CAT dealer in Houston.

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The hi pressure turbo is toast, do not know about the #6 cylinder.

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AH ! spool damage or bearings?

Should you have damage to the spool, then an oil test, to see what shows up. It is never good to have fine pieces of metal going through the engine.

Compression / Top rings get beat up.

Rich.

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Rich, I was told it is frozen up. The tech could not turn it by hand.

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Frozen up is one of the "best" failures you can have. It is when blades or parts of blades come off and continue in the intake system that turbo failure can get expensive. I am sure when he removed it that he checked carefully for any evidence of blade failure.

One of the prime causes of turbo bearing failure (seizing up) is shutting off the engine without allowing 2-3 minutes for the turbo to spool down and cool off. This can cause the oil to "cook", and the carbon deposits can block adequate oil flow to the turbo bearings. Be sure the tech checks both supply and return line to make sure they are clean and open.

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Brett, Thanks for that tidbit of information on allowing the turbo to cool down before shutting down. I am willing to bet that I am not the only one that has shuts down their engine the minute they park. Good to know.

Herman

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Herman,

Depends on how the engine is used just prior to that shut down.

If you have driven on city streets, into a CG, etc (i.e. light throttle) you are ready for an immediate shut down. Certainly, by the time you have checked in and arrive at your site, you are good to immediately shut it off.

If you just climbed a long 5% grade and pulled off in an overlook vista at the top-- it DOES need cool down time.

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I always sit while I'm leveling the coach prior to shutting down. My automatic level system takes a few minutes to finalize the leveling. Once that is done, I figure the proper cool down period has been completed. When I drove truck, my employer required us to idle for 5 to 10 minutes prior to shutting down.

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Update on the engine - both turbos are frozen-up. Awaiting a visit by the extended service adjuster before they are replaced.

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Gary,

Would be quite interested in their explanation for WHY both turbos are bad.

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Ditto !!!

From running fine, to smoke and both turbo's.

Like loosing both mags on a LYCO 260 at the same time. The odds have got to be ???

Rich.

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Glad they are making progress on getting you back on the road.

Just a note. You should be able to see the tops of the pistons if you pull the injectors and use a bore scope. Jumping right to pulling the head should not be the first thing I would do. If the tops of the cylinders did look bad then it may be necessary.

Bill

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