Timely Topics Archive

A Monthly Article for Vigor Enthusiasts (5/06)


Replacing The Oil Cooler Figure-8 Gasket (cont.)

O-Ring Goes Here 9. Reinstall oil cooler. This was the toughest part for me. The pre-bent hoses are pretty rigid and can be difficult to work with.

Spray the inside of each end with a little cooking Pam and the hoses will slide easily over the hose nipples on the oil cooler and engine block. This is incredibly important since your maneuverability is very restricted and you will have a difficult time putting much force on the hoses to get them over the nipples on the engine block.

I put the hoses on the oil cooler before reinstalling the cooler. Put all the clamps on the hoses but leave them loose. You will need to move the hoses to align them properly.

Because of the problems I had removing the original hose clamps, I bought new adjustable clamps. This made a world of difference for me. If you use the adjustable clamps, make sure to put the clamp on the hose so that the adjuster screw faces up and towards the front of the engine. Access to the adjuster screws is very limited. I will tell you how I did it in a minute.

When I reinstalled the oil cooler, I attached the upper (slightly bent) hose first, then the 90 degree hose. Once I got the hoses on, I replaced the oil cooler bolt (tighten the oil cooler bolt to 54 ft-lbs.).

Word of caution here. The O-ring between the oil cooler and cooler base falls off very easily. Because I attached the hoses first, my ability to maneuver the cooler was limited and view of the O-ring was restricted. I found out the hard way that the O-ring can slip out of the groove and get
pinched between the oil cooler and base. Unfortunately, I could not see it when installing and only found out after restarting the engine when my moment of triumph was ruined by the steady flow of oil coming out from between the oil cooler and base. The second time I reinstalled the oil cooler, I put a little dab (very little) of gasket sealer in the grove on the oil cooler to hold the O-ring in place. There may be a better way to do this that someone can share with club members.

After you tighten the cooler bolt, it's time to properly position the hose clamps at the end of the hoses. I used adjustable clamps and was able to access the adjuster screws from above by sticking a long nut driver through the openings of the intake manifold. You will need an 8"-10" driver. I made one by taping the appropriate-sized " drive socket and 3 inch extender to the end of a long blade screwdriver. I positioned one hand under the manifold to hold the clamp in place as I tightened it from above the manifold. There's enough space to access the 90 degree hose as well. It's key that you install the hose clamp with the adjuster screw facing the front of the engine.

10. Reinstall/replace oil filter and replace lost coolant. I used this opportunity to change the oil and oil filter. Refill the coolant to proper level.

11. Test for leaks. There are two reasons to start the engine and check for leaks before replacing the air box and air filter assembly. First, you have better vision to see the area. Second, if you've got a leak like I had, you save the time of taking out the air box.

12. Reinstall air box, filter and hose. Change the air filter if needed. Make sure you have reattached all the vacuum hoses that you intentionally or inadvertently unhooked during the repair.

Can't thank you enough for such a great job!

This Just In...

From John_deconquerApr 07

"... I ordered the gaskets and started tearing into the car.

I wish I had read Heimonator's timely topic. Oh well. I took off the intake manifold and the throttle box as a unit, then separated them so I could get them further out of the way.

Unfortunately, the wire harness for the anti knock sensor is clipped to the underside of the manifold. When I pulled the manifold loose I heard a crack—the connector and top half of the anti knock sensor had come loose. A new sensor was $160. I soldered in about 6" of lead on the connector so it wouldn't happen again.

On reassembly, first startup, gasoline sprayed everywhere. Luckily the car didn't catch fire before I could shut it off. The O-rings were old and thoroughly pooched. Sunday, I called all over and found a NAPA shop open in Idaho Falls, 50 miles away, that had the injector O-rings. Had to buy them in sets with the spacers and bumpers, another $11.50 per cylinder.

In terms of cost, it would have saved me $220 to leave the manifolds bolted up and do the repair by sense of touch. That is a job for Plastic Man, if you ask me. Or maybe a trained squid. But if I ever do it again, I'll give it a try.

Oh well, the car runs great, the oil leak stopped, my daughter loves the car, and I'm back to driving my old Infiniti G20..."

Thanks, John. Vigor owners everywhere can learn from this!




 Home - • - Clubhouse - • - FAQs - • - Links - • - Timely Topics - • - About Us

 - Top -