Rust in the engine



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eroomas
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Rust in the engine

Post by eroomas »

Short of a rebuild is there anything one can do to remove or reduce the rust in the engine? I've been told flushing is too dangerous. Can frequent oil changes eventually reduce the amount of rust enough so that I have a serviceable engine? The engine has some lifter noise I would like to address but am afraid that it would be pointless. Please tell me I'm wrong. Aside from the lifter noise the engine runs fine and doesn't go through oil. Is this a terminal problem that I'll have to live with as the rust continues to reek havoc on the engine?
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Mark Merritt
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Re: Rust in the engine

Post by Mark Merritt »

eroomas2;I am not sure what you mean by rust in the engine? Is it the radiator/anti freeze,or is it in the oil,[discolored].Where are you seeing the rust?The rockers can be adjusted and will quiet it some,it has solid lifters,do you have A shop manual? Get back to us and we will try to help. If the motor does not puff of knock,or leak and go through oil I would say you are good to go,put some miles on it.Maybe A compression test would be something to look into,but I think your ok. Mark
ONLY ORIGINAL ONCE!!!!!
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Dick Koch
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Re: Rust in the engine

Post by Dick Koch »

Eromas - I think your first name is Andy, right.

1. Engines do not rust internally, if the cooling water jacket leaks water into the engine i.e. the head gasket, the oil will turn a milky dirty white.
2. The engine water cooling jackets will build up rust over time and affect cooling. Then the engine and radiator will need to be flushed. Open the petcock at the bottom of the radiator and drain then take out the water jacket plugs on each side of the block, they are just under the freeze plugs they are a pipe plug and have a square head. If the block will not drain take a small screw driver and poke around in the holes to get a flow of water. Put the plugs back in, tighten the radiator petcock, fill the radiator and engine with water and "radiator/engine flush" you can get it at a parts store and take a 20 minute ride. Then do the drain think again. Then fill the engine with water and anti-freeze to your liking.
3. The clicking noise if you have a 318 engine is probably coming from the tappets which can be adjusted to eliminate the noise. If you have hydraulic lifters 361 engine they can be cleaned or replaced. Usually a good detergent oil will help with the Hydraulic lifters.
4. Rather than rust you may be talking about Sludge which is a thick buildup of dirty oil that accumulates and sinks to the bottom of the oil pan over time. Sometime flushing the engine can do harm, if it's running OK just change the oil every 3 to 4 thousand miles with a good detergent oil. I use Shell Rotella T, 15W40, it's a high detergent diesel engine oil with a high Zinc content which you need if you engine has solid lifters. I use it in all my engines. I also use a ZDDP zinc additive at every oil change with a solid lifter engine.
Now, isn't old car ownership fun!!! :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
Dick.
Life is Beautiful! Sex, Beer & Mopars.
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eroomas
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Re: Rust in the engine

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Hey Mark, The entire inside of the rocker cover was caked in rust so bad that the Oil fill cap was rusted solid to it. I cleaned that out and replaced the cap, My mechanic told me not to attempt to clean out rust and run the risk of breaking loose any chunks that could get lodged internally some place else in the engine. I may be making a mountain out of a molehill; the only thing so far I see that could be symptomatic of this rust in the rocker area is the ticking. I guess what I'm really wanting to know is serious this is. When I get a chance I will remover the cover and post a picture. I'll also look at the oil filter when I change the oil and see what I see.
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Mark Merritt
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Re: Rust in the engine

Post by Mark Merritt »

eroomas2; If the inside of the rocker cover and rocker gallery has rust it is evidence of moisture build up,probably from the previous owner/owners running the engine on short trips not long enough to allow it to come up to temperature.I live where it gets cold in winter and have friends that live close to work{1/2 mile away} and I have seen this light colored kind of slime that developes under the rocker cover,it is A combination of cold temp and cold motor,maybe the car was stored and only started once in A while for A short time.I do not see the harm in cleaning it up.I would drop the oil pan and clean the pan and oil sump screen as well.I am sure you have the 318 like mine,it has solid lifters and they need periodic adjustment to remove the play.It is the original engine? I did A rebuild on mine and it had A considerable amount of sludge in the pan,however my motor was puffing and very worn,and had A bad rear main seal [oil ] leak.My 55 Buick has never been rebuilt,bone stock original,but it to had sludge in the pan,it looked like playdo clay,the screen was laying in it,I cleaned it and the oil pump,and it gets ran,it loves it,I put 4,000 miles on it the second summer I had it,the more I drove it the better it ran,I would suspect yours is in the same boat.I know you have the idiot light but how is the oil pressure?Maybe put A oil pressure gauge on it,I put A "T" at the sender location after my rebuild and run the idiot light and A pressure gauge.Post some pics I would like to see them,how many miles is on the engine? Was the car stored or not ran for A long time? In my opinion I think you will be fine,get back to us. Mark
ONLY ORIGINAL ONCE!!!!!
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eroomas2
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Re: Rust in the engine

Post by eroomas2 »

Hiya Everyone :D

Ok ... so Andy took the cover thing off of the engine and had me take pictures ... this is what we mean by 'rust in the engine'. Please notice the buildup in the hexagon shaped things (not the gear head ... just the Fury wife lol) and the gunk (for want of a better word) that is on the engine parts.

Need to know: did we just buy a really pretty lawn ornament? if not (definitely preferable), how do we fix it?

Here are some photos:
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Mark Merritt
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Re: Rust in the engine

Post by Mark Merritt »

eroomas2; That does indeed look like rust in the engine,it was probably caused by storage and condensating due to temperature changes [warm to cold/unheated then heated garage]It does not look that bad,if it were mine I think I would use A mild wire wheel and have A good shop vac right next to the wheel while lightly brushing it off.Be sure to clean up the excess oil in the gallery before doing so.I don't think it looks bad, would it's past owners or history have any clues as to how it was stored or how often it was driven? Adjust the rockers if needed there is A sequence to do that,A shop manual is helpful.condensating is like when my garage is cold and I bring the temperature up to quickly my tools "sweat" it is A problem we have in the north during winter unless the garage is close to room temp all the time,just some thoughts, mark
ONLY ORIGINAL ONCE!!!!!
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eroomas
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Re: Rust in the engine

Post by eroomas »

Thanks Marc and Dick, You both were very helpful. Yea this car has been sitting for a while I believe. I bought it from a guy who restores old cars specializing in Mopars, who ever it seems that he probably had to many irons in the coal to keep this one up. He did a lot of work on the car last minute to get it ready for me to test drive. I'm feeling pretty optimistic at this point, The Oil pressure is good and it doesn't leak or burn any oil. The only thing is the lifter tick which sounds like it is fairly common in the 318s. I thought about the shop vac thing, I'll definitely try that and adjust the rockers and see were I'm at at that point. Is there a way to drop the oil pan with out hoisting the engine?
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eroomas
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Re: Rust in the engine

Post by eroomas »

I will be keeping the car in a heated garage so hopefully we will be fine in the future. I just have one more question. I won't be driving the car over the winter months, how long does the car need to be idling to reach a temperature high enough to burn off the condensation?
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Mark Merritt
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Re: Rust in the engine

Post by Mark Merritt »

eroomas2; The motor is up to temp when the heater gets warm or the hoses are A little hot to touch.Does the temp gauge work? I know it sounds trivial but on old cars alot of things do not work.I am not sure on the oil pan yet,maybe Dick will hop on that,on my Buick all I did was remove the cross over exhaust pipe,and then remove the pan bolts,do you have dual exhausts? I think it should come right out. Mark
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Dick Koch
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Re: Rust in the engine

Post by Dick Koch »

Andy - Personally, rather than wire brush to get rid of the rust and debrie on the valve train I would wipe with a damp micro towel using mineral spirits and a vacuum close to the work as Mark suggests. Don't risk any large particles clogging oil passages. Then coat the valve train with a liberal amount of engine oil. As you will store the car in a heated garage and be using the car more than it has been used in the past it should not have as much condensation as before. To burn off any condensation in the engine and exhaust system I would run the engine 20 to 30 minutes at least every other week. As far as removing the oil pan unfortunately you may have to raise the engine. Your service manual should describe how to do it. Since you are going to have the engine raised it may be a good time to install new rubber motor mounts. A new pan gasket set can be had at NAPA. The valve covers just need to be cleaned out real good and coated with oil. Make sure you use rubber valve cover gaskets and not cork. I would suggest adding a pint of Marvel Mystery Oil with next couple of oil changes.
Good luck,
Dick.
Life is Beautiful! Sex, Beer & Mopars.
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Mark Merritt
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Re: Rust in the engine

Post by Mark Merritt »

eroomas2; I crawled under mine and it looks you would only need to remove the center link,it is the steering component that is right below the pan.Just take it one thing at A time,you have A beautiful car,and it will be A long winter,you have lots of time!! Mark
ONLY ORIGINAL ONCE!!!!!
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eroomas
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Re: Rust in the engine

Post by eroomas »

Thanks Guys, You have both been very helpful. I'm feeling a bit more optimistic and I'm gonna get to work getting this Rust reduced and adjusting my lifters.
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