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1988 CK 3500 Overheating


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Lrs52200
New User

Sep 22, 2017, 4:59 AM

Post #1 of 8 (115 views)
1988 CK 3500 Overheating Sign In

I have a beautifully restored 1988 CK 3500. I just had a brand new 350 put in August of 2017 and suddenly, the temperature gauge is no longer working. I pop the hood to see that there was coolant at the base of the upper radiator hose, around the thermostat on top of the valve covers. I tighten the clamp thinking that was the problem. a couple days later, same thing. Gauge still isn't working. I opened the radiator cap and it is full to the brim and the overflow is also to the full line. Everything on that engine is supposed to be brand new so I can't understand this. There's no way I'm taking it back to the shop that installed it for a multitude of reasons, unless it turns out that I need another new motor.

Here's the history: I got the truck back from the shop. Two weeks later, I'm going down the interstate and look in my rear view mirror and can't see the road behind me for all the black smoke that's pouring out from the back of my truck. According to the guy that installed the engine, my "Oil cooling unit" went. He removed the unit all together, charged me a bit more than $300.00 and sent me on my way. Evidently I didn't have a choice of having a new one installed. Maybe 3 weeks after this I'm driving to work and the truck is making a weird noise. I back into a space and pop the hood. The serpentine belt is off. The sound I heard was the engine overheating because this truck has a belt driven fan. I had the work site mechanic look at it and when he pulled the fan shroud off, he found the mechanic's tools there and also discovered that they never bolted on (completely) one of the units that the belt goes around. I don't know what it's called. It sits on the bottom left of all of the things hooked up to that belt. Sorry, I'm a woman and I don't know the names of all that stuff. I know the air conditioner is above it and the alternator is to the right of that and the tensioner is between the air conditioner and alternator, but that's about it. But this thing is big, and is below that air conditioner thing. Okay, so it's supposed to use 3 bolts but he only put in 1 of them, leaving the other two along with his ratchet and socket under the fan shroud. Our work site mechanic was kind enough to put a smaller belt on it, avoiding whatever that thing is that wasn't bolted on right, just to get me back to the shop that installed the engine. When I got there, the mechanic told me to wait because he'd have it fixed in just a few minutes. Well, that was not the case. He couldn't back out the bolt that was in there because he said the guy "bottomed it out." Not sure what that means, but he ended up drilling it out and then re-threading the new, larger hole. He put the thing back together and sent me on my way (this took 2 days, by the way). I told him the temperature gauge wasn't working - but he ignored me and didn't fix it. Evidently he feels compelled only to take my money. I don't trust him. I don't want to take my truck back there. I've put $14,000 into this truck and I refuse to let this guy destroy it.

So here's my problem. The temperature gauge wasn't working for a couple of weeks. The truck was stalling if I would step on the gas or brake. When I popped the hood, I saw an electrical connection that was no longer connected. With the Chilton manual, I was able to figure out it was from the gas pump relay. But that still doesn't solve my overheating problem. I say it's overheating because just about 1 day ago I had to drive this truck for about a 15 minute drive when all of a sudden I hear this electrical buzz - I swear it sounded like dropping a bunch of BB's onto a snare drum in quick succession - and at the same time, I saw a red light flash on the dash with every "buzz" that I heard. The light said, "Check Gauges." Then I saw that the temperature gauge had suddenly come back to life, except that as the check gauges light would flash, the temperature gauge would bottom out at 260 degrees. I got scared and pulled over to check the coolant level. It's still full. A friend suggested that it could be my thermostat so I bought a new thermostat and changed it. The old one was still sparkly new. There was nothing wrong with it. But I changed it anyway since I had it open. Oh, and by the way, I had to remove the tensioner to do this and there are two brackets that bolt onto the back of the tensioner, the left one sits on the left bolt of the thermostat housing and the one on the right bolts to the head - except that when I removed that bolt from the tensioner, the bracket on the right just fell to the ground!! My mechanic who had just "fixed" my belt problem didn't feel the need to bolt the bracket back onto the engine. Nice.

Now I'm being told it could be the ECT. Okay fine. I bought a new ECT. I haven't installed it yet - but I know the one on the engine is brand new too, just like the old thermostat. Has anyone out there experienced anything like this with this truck before?? Does anyone have a suggestion? I paid a lot of money for this engine and just as much to have this dope install it - not to mention paying him to pull the old engine. No, I'm not driving this truck - I have another vehicle. But I love this truck and want to get it back on the road. Can someone help me????


(This post was edited by Lrs52200 on Sep 22, 2017, 5:00 AM)


Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Hammer Time profile image

Sep 22, 2017, 6:27 AM

Post #2 of 8 (103 views)
Re: 1988 CK 3500 Overheating Sign In

You don't have a CK 3500. It is either a C (2WD) or a K (4WD)
I'm not reading an novel just to know your temp gauge doesn't work. If you have an electrical issue, why are you messing with hose clamps?

If the gauge doesn't work, remove the wire from the gauge sender (Dk green) and ground it. The gauge should to to full hot. If it doesn't, then your problem is not in the engine, it's in the body.



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We offer help in answering questions, clarifying things or giving advice but we are not a substitute for an on-site inspection by a professional.



(This post was edited by Hammer Time on Sep 22, 2017, 6:27 AM)


Lrs52200
New User

Sep 22, 2017, 6:47 AM

Post #3 of 8 (97 views)
Re: 1988 CK 3500 Overheating Sign In

I appreciate your response, though I found your tenor quite rude. The backstory on the truck was given because I don't know if the belt slipping off and the truck being driven without the fan could have contributed to the current issue. I did not know that the fan was belt driven. Why was I messing with hose clamps? Wouldn't you if you saw coolant at the base of the hose? It seemed the logical thing to do - to make sure it was tight.
I don't understand what you mean when you say "gauge sender." I don't understand what you mean when you say "if it doesn't, then your problem is not in the engine, it's in the body." The body of what?


Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Hammer Time profile image

Sep 22, 2017, 7:06 AM

Post #4 of 8 (86 views)
Re: 1988 CK 3500 Overheating Sign In


Quote
I don't understand what you mean when you say "gauge sender." I don't understand what you mean when you say "if it doesn't, then your problem is not in the engine, it's in the body." The body of what?


That was a pretty clear explanation of a basic test. If you don't understand that part of this, then you'll never be able to handle the next steps and you probably should find a professional to do this for you.



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

We offer help in answering questions, clarifying things or giving advice but we are not a substitute for an on-site inspection by a professional.



Lrs52200
New User

Sep 22, 2017, 7:11 AM

Post #5 of 8 (82 views)
Re: 1988 CK 3500 Overheating Sign In

If you are talking about the ECT, can you just call it that?


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Sep 22, 2017, 7:18 AM

Post #6 of 8 (80 views)
Re: 1988 CK 3500 Overheating Sign In

This job got butchered somehow! Tools left behind, smoke, loose belt items! IDK - you don't get every bolt new like when it was built new - plenty would be changed over from prior engine.
Did you say fan clutch not right as well? It screws on these not bolted and meant to be quite tight takes tools to just change those.
Real deal is the job is a horror show IMO. Either back luck or what the engine cooler for oil busting may or may not be caused by the job just bad luck but may also mean you quickly ran with zero oil pressure or way too low?


$14K bucks already! What on earth did they do that's tons of bucks more than I would ever think for now maybe a new "long block" and swap over the rest of the "stuff" if good use it again but know it's good.
Don't blame you for not wanting to go back it sounds horribly hacked up hope nothing permanently damaged. Just gauge is easy to test as Hammer said. It's not the CTS with the yellow and black wires to it another one for gauge. Bet it's just not plugged in with this hacked job,


T



Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Hammer Time profile image

Sep 22, 2017, 7:27 AM

Post #7 of 8 (76 views)
Re: 1988 CK 3500 Overheating Sign In

No, I am not talking about the ECT. That is for the computer. The gauge uses a single wire sender switch. It's usually found on the left side of the block, below the exhaust manifold.



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

We offer help in answering questions, clarifying things or giving advice but we are not a substitute for an on-site inspection by a professional.



Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Sep 22, 2017, 1:53 PM

Post #8 of 8 (59 views)
Re: 1988 CK 3500 Overheating Sign In

Correct. To me CTS or ECT means the same thing virtually all black wire and a yellow has nothing to do with gauge or other. Only failures other than leaking from trauma has been a plug or connection. Anything possible with this hackery!
Tom







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