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shotwell

Blue Devil and a certain very sick SVT Contour...

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For some time my SVT has been having cooling issues. It's been getting worse steadily. For a while Bar's Stop leak did the trick. More often lately I had to add a bottle of Bar's just to keep it running smoothly. That all reached a boiling point (literally) a few days ago. Took a gallon of coolant just to go 30 miles and the temp gauge was all over the place. Not good! Revving the engine up with the radiator cap off caused a geyser six inches high!

 

Discussions for a 3.0 replacement have long been underway. I've been between pushing the car into the river and fixing it up for some time now. Aussie Ford is strongly on the side of the 3.0, of course. Now seeing (and hearing) another 3.0 Contour in action has me swinging that way again. The addition of Cassandra to my stable of cars has not only saved my bacon but renewed my interest in these cars. The only reason a 3.0 can't happen right now is lack of money.

 

Back to the SVT. There is a certain head gasket sealer called Blue Devil. Many of you have seen it on the shelves of your local auto parts store. It's really expensive ($60) but guaranteed to work.

 

http://www.usasealants.com/products/blue-devil-head-gasket-sealant/

 

These are the same guys that make White Sheppard oil stop leak (that actually works) so I decided to take the plunge.

 

This thread is to chronicle my experience with this product.

 

Yesterday I started the process. Pulled out the thermostat. Flushed the coolant until it was clean, then 10 extra minutes. Installed a strong cooling system cleaner and topped off with water. Drove it until it was hot and let it cool (per those instructions). Flushed that out of the system until it was clear +10 minutes. Let the engine cool completely again.

 

Next I continued with the instructions on the Blue Devil bottle. They seem silly but I followed them to a T. Cold engine, filled with water leaving enough room for the Blue Devil product. Start the engine with the cap off and pour slowly! Once the product is in replace the cap and let idle for 50 minutes. Take a short test drive. Let cool and replace thermostat, then add coolant to proper level.

 

It should be noted that on the test drive the leak was still present. The coolant boiled over like it did before and I was very frustrated. HOWEVER, after the engine cooled I continued with the directions and replaced the thermostat, filled with coolant. What happened next I was not expecting.

 

The heater works perfectly. The temp gauge stays in the lower half of the gauge, much like it did when I bought it over 10 years ago. No strange noises, no boiling over. I absolutely cannot believe it!

 

Took it for a test drive. A 75 mile test drive. Not a single hiccup!

 

So here we are. Mileage today before the test drive: 189,278. I'll make regular posts with the status of this car. If it blows, well, 3.0 time. If it holds...awesome! Here's hoping guys!

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My offer to buy your car (cheap) still stands if that keeps you from pushing it into the river. But I'd prefer it was running well and you kept it. So Mike, juggle Blue Devil into Devil with a Blue Dress... did your dad have any Mitch Ryder on vinyl? (Or should we line up a working deck to record off of mine? What? A cars and tape meet???)

 

But your Blue Devil update is EXCELLENT news to owners of ancient platforms like ours.

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It certainly is good news. More good news today.

 

The beatings have commenced. At least 10 trips to 7000rpm today alone. It actually COOLS DOWN when I beat on it! That's the car I remember!

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The heater works perfectly. The temp gauge stays in the lower half of the gauge, much like it did when I bought it over 10 years ago. No strange noises, no boiling over. I absolutely cannot believe it!

 

Took it for a test drive. A 75 mile test drive. Not a single hiccup!

 

So here we are. Mileage today before the test drive: 189,278. I'll make regular posts with the status of this car. If it blows, well, 3.0 time. If it holds...awesome! Here's hoping guys!

 

AWESOME! That is some magic stuff!

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Just think it's really that Terry Haines guy again.... I'd never have talked about the blue stuff if Terry hadn't talked about the White Shepard first.

 

See several years ago Terry posted about a fellow coming by his shop and giving him a sample of the White Shepard said it'd stop oil leaks.... ya right how much stuff it out there that makes that claim. So Terry dumped it in his old oil leaker Ford PU, and it worked.

 

I tried it and it worked......

 

I figured if they make something that does what it says then perhaps they make other products that do too. Now Shotwell seems to have proven that theroy. Good Job Shotwell, I think is was interesting what you said about it when you were doing the research..... He found that the people that said crap about it either had never used it or when they did they didn't follow the directions. Hmmmm isn't that like most idoits running their mouth spouting their own wisdom????

 

We are all very glad to hear of your success, perhpas your luck is changing a bit.... Now get that exhaust fixed on the Monty, and you'll even have an extra car in running conditiond.... LOL

 

Where did you cut in the flush port? Why didn't you post pics?

 

AF

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Hi. Thanks for sharing this, Shotwell. I look forward to updates. So glad it is working! (When I first saw the thread's title I thought it was about both your cars and you'd changed Cassandra's name - lol)

 

Funny, I was recently watching videos demonstrating similar products. I posted a link below to the video that stuck in my mind. I enjoyed watching it, seeing how that particular product (Thermagasket) was applied; watching exhaust smoke completely fill the screen at one point, then eventually fade away. I think the video was produced by the manufacturer, but I found it interesting all the same.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=skKwZk42euE

 

(On the other topic, oil leak fix products mentioned by AF, I wonder how the White Shepard fixes held up; may look back and try to find Terry's thread. It's really great to have info from known and trusted sources!)

 

Edited to add: I didn't post that big picture; just a link! Sheesh. Think the ad took over... maybe should delete.

Edited by Ferret II

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Ferret, I used White Shepard (personally delivered to me by Aussie Ford a few years ago) in my oil-leaky high mile Contour and I now swear by it. Yes, it works, unlike the other products I had desperately tried before the WS.

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Well, I'm starting to think AF is a saint. So that's you, AF, and Terry who have used White Shepard. Good to know! I have one minor oil leak from the valve cover gasket on the '95 SE, which we'll eventually replace (gasket, not car!). Haven't had to add any oil yet at 102K (knocking on wood here), but great to have the info in general.

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Where did you cut in the flush port?

 

Cool thing about a V6 Contour is that you don't have to cut any hoses!

 

Of the two heater hoses, one of them runs under the MAF to a junction. That junction connects to another hose that goes down to the water pump area. It's a 5/8" plastic junction. Just remove the junction and install the 5/8" T fitting that comes with the flush kit. Easy day!

 

The garden hose will run right behind the battery in front of the air box. It's like they meant it to be this easy!

 

I drove the SVT down to Springfield, OR today. Runs perfectly. Coolant gauge never goes higher then the M in NORMAL, and that's only in traffic. Usually it's right between the O and the R. (For those of you without the word NORMAL on your coolant temp gauge, it's not going over halfway up, ever)

 

Will post another update soon!

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Mileage today: 190,223

 

Nearly 1000 miles later I'm still driving my SVT around. Trip to Springfield went off without a hitch. I'm pretty much driving it everywhere I need to go!

 

I have added about a gallon total of coolant (in small intervals) as the light came on. I don't know if I have a hose leak somewhere or what is going on, but the engine is definitely not getting too hot anymore. Maybe the blown gasket (or cracked head) is a little harder to seal than most.

 

At any rate, this Blue Devil stuff has made my car driveable where it otherwise wouldn't have been.

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Mileage today: 190,412

 

Added almost 1/2 gallon of coolant today. Of course I overfilled it, but this is the most I've had to put in at one time.

 

Still running like a champ though.

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Mileage today: 190,702

 

Car is still running well, but I had to add over a gallon of coolant in the last couple of days alone. Not a lot of miles either.

 

Tried to call the support number, but they were out for the holiday. Will try again tomorrow.

 

I'm afraid this stuff isn't holding up. We'll see what they have to say tomorrow.

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Called and spoke with the folks at Blue Devil Products. The gentleman on the phone went over all of the steps with me, presumably to make sure I did it right. Upon hearing that I am now losing more than a gallon of coolant in less than a week, he directed me to the claims form.

 

He went on to say (unofficially) that a lot of modern engines with higher compression don't work the first time, but will generally work on the second application. Not sure if he's just trying to sell more product, but he did say that I would not be able to make another claim on the same car.

 

I haven't decided if I'm going to try it again. I'll post here again if I do.

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Man, what an odyssey this has been. I'm not sure I could decide to go thru all of that again myself if the product wasn't working anywhere close to advertised. I hope you bought stock in Prestone or Zerex.

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I haven't been using antifreeze. Just straight water going in. Thankfully it hasn't been cold enough to make a difference.

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Mileage today: 190,811

 

Second attempt.

 

So far I haven't lost any coolant. I've driven it 30 or so miles since treatment early this afternoon. It seems fine, but time will tell. Stay tuned!

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Mileage today: 190,934

 

Well that's it. I'm still losing coolant. Not a lot, but enough for the coolant light to be on for a minute after I start it.

 

Unfortunately the Blue Devil Head Gasket Sealant did not work on my car.

 

Stay tuned for a new thread guys. A project SVT Contour will be for sale...as soon as I can compile the mod list.

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Bill Nye has other obligations, so I located a former biochemist/physics nut and will have him chime in.

 

Straight water has a boiling point of like 212 degrees at sea level with no extra pressure besides that of the normal atmosphere. Putting it into a partially closed system (like a car cooling system) will have some effect of raising that boiling point, depending on how well sealed that system is. One with a gasket leak? How bad is that leak?

 

Mixing antifreeze or RVKool or WaterWetter products will raise that boiling point a BUNCH.

 

Yes, the water/coolant liquid blend involved will still expand with heat, expanded liquid will still seek/find a leak too, basic thermodynamics there. But the boiling point I'll speculate is still of major import, as steam from boiling fluid is MUCH MUCH more voluminous and energy-laden and prone to find and escape through leaks. The same quart of water that fills a one quart container will fill how big of a balloon when it is turned into steam? Huge difference. And steam will shoot through a pinhole leak with much more urgency than mere hot water. (Maybe Aussie has a heating/cooling expert or BPA honcho on call to elaborate on that, maybe his own experience on waterlines and steam lines applies insights here. Or has anyone here done time on a submarine? Aren't subs just big recovery tanks for internal fluid leaks unless external leaks eliminate the sub?)

 

I'm wondering if using straight water, with a normal boiling point of 212, instead of some mix, with a boiling point of say 240, in a system where coolant will often get to 230 or much higher locally in the block and heads, helps hasten the fluid loss and thus kind of dares the Blue Devil to have to do more than it is supposed to.

 

Feel free to comment on semi-permeable membranes; the electron shuttle; secondary and tertiary structures of the DNA molecule and associated attached proteins as affecting genetic expression; and the interaction between the North Atlantic salt conveyor, northern European climate and greenhouse gases AFTER we get this coolant dynamics issue thought through.

 

I'd suggest making a chilled fermented malt broth available to catalyze discussion of these concepts among enlightened scientific minds, without anyone having to go to the Galapagos archipelago or the Tetons to look for geysers, natural examples of escaping steam.

 

 

After we kill a case of beer, try some more powerful coolant and see if that helps your SVT turn from Old Faithful into Old Reliable.

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I'll try adding some actual coolant today, but I highly doubt it will make a difference. I see where you're going with boiling points and steam etc, but I believe this additive should have that covered.

 

Right now my coolant is still very blue in color, so there's plenty of "product" still in the system. I'll get back to you on the result.

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Actual coolant has been added. I'll drive my daughter to school and maybe around town tomorrow. I'll likely know right away if it's better, worse or indifferent.

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