Author Topic: Steps forward in car repair, but with some stumbling  (Read 5491 times)

ethilo

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Steps forward in car repair, but with some stumbling
« on: April 01, 2014, 09:46:39 PM »
I took on a project to replace my radiator and water pump on my pickup truck.  Before I began this project I had no idea I would be removing my timing belt to get to a water pump, holy cow.  I learned a bunch along the way, including how to replace the timing belt.  However, I got a new torque wrench recently, hadn't used it yet, I followed all instructions and thought I was doing the right torque specifications but still ended up tearing 2 bolts.  Also rounded one of the engine block bolts trying to remove it, and didn't get it out.

I DID replace the water pump.  Probably gonna go to a mechanic to get them to fix my bolt problems though unless someone has a real good strategy to removing bolts with no heads...

pjm123a

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Re: Steps forward in car repair, but with some stumbling
« Reply #1 on: April 02, 2014, 06:42:41 AM »
removing bolts with no heads is not easy. If you are going to do any work on cars however it is only a matter of time before it happens. Dealing with it generally depends on where it happens. If it is a part on your workbench it is obviously a lot easier that something barely accessible lying on your back under the car. My suggestion is to get yourself some left-handed drill bits and some screw extractors. There are lots of youtube videos on how to extract broken bolts. A left handed-drill bit drills in the direction you want the bolt to turn to remove it. Sometimes this alone will extract it. You can get left-handed drill bits at your local harbor freight. They are item number 95146. When you use them your run your drill backwards. Harbor freight has screw extractors as well. They are item number 40349. It is obviously much better to prevent the bolt heads from breaking in the first place. I always use 6 point sockets whenever possible. If bolts are really stuck use PB-Blaster first. If that doesn't work try kroil creeping oil. The PB blaster is cheaper so I generally only use the kroil as a last resort. I do not have any personal experience with it but there is now a "freeze" spray available made by loctite. I intend to try that in cases where the PB-Blast and Kroil fail.

pjm123a

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Re: Steps forward in car repair, but with some stumbling
« Reply #2 on: April 02, 2014, 06:48:05 AM »
One other thing on the torque wrench. When reading the specs make sure you talking inch pounds or foot pounds of torque. For things like plastic covers and aluminum parts often the specs are in inch pounds and you should be using a small (1/4 in or 3/8 in drive) torque wrench and not a big one that is more suitable for foot pounds (1.2 in or even 3/4 in drive). Hope this helps.

Milspecstache

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Re: Steps forward in car repair, but with some stumbling
« Reply #3 on: April 02, 2014, 08:02:58 AM »
Regarding stripping nuts/bolts/shearing them off I often think that all anti-seize should come with a warning to decrease the torque by 10%. 

skunkfunk

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Re: Steps forward in car repair, but with some stumbling
« Reply #4 on: April 02, 2014, 08:17:26 AM »
I took on a project to replace my radiator and water pump on my pickup truck.  Before I began this project I had no idea I would be removing my timing belt to get to a water pump, holy cow.  I learned a bunch along the way, including how to replace the timing belt.  However, I got a new torque wrench recently, hadn't used it yet, I followed all instructions and thought I was doing the right torque specifications but still ended up tearing 2 bolts.  Also rounded one of the engine block bolts trying to remove it, and didn't get it out.

I DID replace the water pump.  Probably gonna go to a mechanic to get them to fix my bolt problems though unless someone has a real good strategy to removing bolts with no heads...

Ha, when I rebuilt my automatic transmission a few years ago I stripped every single hole on the case. Stupid aluminum cases . . .

ethilo

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Re: Steps forward in car repair, but with some stumbling
« Reply #5 on: April 02, 2014, 09:39:58 AM »
Yea, I think the issue was that I looked at the Hanes manual for the car for torque specifications and it said: "General specs: 10mm bolt 27.5 ft-lbs" and I did it on some bolts that probably should have just been hand-tight instead of meeting torque specifications.

I dunno, I'm kind of scared to get too much more involved in this.  I love this truck so much that I probably would rather leave rescue procedures to professionals.  It's a 1986 Mazda B2000 that I bought for $500 10 years ago with 127k miles on it at that time.  I have done most of the repairs on it myself but it's definitely given me practice in knowing my personal limits...

fixer-upper

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Re: Steps forward in car repair, but with some stumbling
« Reply #6 on: April 02, 2014, 04:58:31 PM »
Yea, I think the issue was that I looked at the Hanes manual for the car for torque specifications and it said: "General specs: 10mm bolt 27.5 ft-lbs" and I did it on some bolts that probably should have just been hand-tight instead of meeting torque specifications.

If the head is 10mm, it should be closer to 27.5 inch pounds.  27.5 ft*lb, would be fine if the threaded section was 10mm in diameter.

ethilo

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Re: Steps forward in car repair, but with some stumbling
« Reply #7 on: April 02, 2014, 09:31:30 PM »
Yea, I think the issue was that I looked at the Hanes manual for the car for torque specifications and it said: "General specs: 10mm bolt 27.5 ft-lbs" and I did it on some bolts that probably should have just been hand-tight instead of meeting torque specifications.

If the head is 10mm, it should be closer to 27.5 inch pounds.  27.5 ft*lb, would be fine if the threaded section was 10mm in diameter.

Aaah, yea, that's probably it.  Good to know for the future, thanks!

amha

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Re: Steps forward in car repair, but with some stumbling
« Reply #8 on: April 02, 2014, 09:41:27 PM »
Wow! Well, at the risk of sounding insensitive---congratulations not only on replacing your water pump yourself, but also on learning more about bolts (including, potentially, how to remove them)!

ethilo

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Re: Steps forward in car repair, but with some stumbling
« Reply #9 on: April 03, 2014, 12:10:32 PM »
Well, I got myself a screw extractor drill bit and a set of vice grips.  Got my blow torch out too.  Thank you Youtube for all the different methods people have talked about!

I first attempted with the vice grips (there was about a cm of thread sticking out that I could grab onto) after putting in some penetrating oil.  Carefully putting tension on it, the bolt came loose and twisted out without much difficulty!  I then went for the 2nd screw which had about 2 mm exposed thread.  I tried first with my finger tips after letting it sit in some penetrating oil overnight and it ended up coming out by my fingers alone!

Now how terrible would that have been if I put the whole thing back together again, refilled the radiator, just to drive it over to a repair shop, have them take it all apart again, and do exactly what I just did?  They probably would charge 1+ hr of labor too.  Dodged a bullet here!

Funny how so often there is just one more step in DIY projects that you might throw the towel in on.  Learning this lesson every day!

Greg

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Re: Steps forward in car repair, but with some stumbling
« Reply #10 on: April 03, 2014, 12:54:35 PM »
Nice job!  For future reference, or when a torque specification isn't given, you can consult these charts:
http://www.dansmc.com/torque_chart.htm

After a while you will also learn to do some by hand to pretty much the correct torque.  As mentioned, anti-seize reduces the torque setting required on your wrench. 

In your case the bolts you broke on installation were fairly easy to remove because you broke them on installation.  If they had broken on removal, because they were stuck in their holes, you could have had a much harder time of it.
« Last Edit: April 04, 2014, 09:59:08 AM by Greg »

pjm123a

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Re: Steps forward in car repair, but with some stumbling
« Reply #11 on: April 03, 2014, 02:27:31 PM »
My compliments as well. Nice job!! I agree that youtube is a great resource. Look also for on-line forums for whatever vehicle you own. In the end though your skills will best improve mostly by gaining experience. The trick is to only make a given mistake once! Good luck on future projects and repair.

Milspecstache

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Re: Steps forward in car repair, but with some stumbling
« Reply #12 on: April 03, 2014, 04:46:34 PM »
Nice job and thanks for starting a great discussion on DIY car repair!

Thegoblinchief

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Re: Steps forward in car repair, but with some stumbling
« Reply #13 on: April 04, 2014, 02:52:48 PM »
Depending on how much is left, a cutting wheel and a flathead screwdriver can work quite nicely.

jba302

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Re: Steps forward in car repair, but with some stumbling
« Reply #14 on: April 04, 2014, 03:01:25 PM »
3 of the most important multi-use tools for my vehicles -

1. torch
2. 4 lb sledge
3. 30" pry bar

Rust is a pain in the ass.

ethilo

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Re: Steps forward in car repair, but with some stumbling
« Reply #15 on: April 04, 2014, 07:34:37 PM »
Just took the car out for a spin around the block. Man, what a feeling of accomplishment.  I parked it and will check for radiator fluid leaks tomorrow morning.

I went online and checked some price quotes for the job I did (just to build me up a bit more).  Looks like a water pump job would cost ~$400, and a radiator also another ~$400 or so, including the parts.  If a shop did the jobs together like I did, maybe it would cost about $6-700ish.  Overall my bill including new hoses, cap, water pump, screw extractors, screws, radiator, coolant, and a new vice grip ended up being easily below $300.  AND I learned so much more about the car and have that super awesome feeling of accomplishment!!

fixer-upper

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Re: Steps forward in car repair, but with some stumbling
« Reply #16 on: April 06, 2014, 02:58:26 AM »
Just took the car out for a spin around the block. Man, what a feeling of accomplishment.  I parked it and will check for radiator fluid leaks tomorrow morning.

I went online and checked some price quotes for the job I did (just to build me up a bit more).  Looks like a water pump job would cost ~$400, and a radiator also another ~$400 or so, including the parts.  If a shop did the jobs together like I did, maybe it would cost about $6-700ish.  Overall my bill including new hoses, cap, water pump, screw extractors, screws, radiator, coolant, and a new vice grip ended up being easily below $300.  AND I learned so much more about the car and have that super awesome feeling of accomplishment!!

Good job!

My rule of thumb is whether I can do the job for the cost of the tools.  If so, I get tools for my labor, and profit from the ones I already have.  After a couple decades of doing this, it amazes me how much I still spend on tools.  ;-)

Exflyboy

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Re: Steps forward in car repair, but with some stumbling
« Reply #17 on: April 08, 2014, 12:06:47 PM »
Here is a tip for removing rounded off bolts.. there are many ways, may favourite is to mig weld a larger nut over the top of the old bolt head... Choose a nut where the rounded bolt head goes thru the center of the nut.. then you just tack the inside of the nut to the outside of the bolt head.

I have removed several fasteners this way, often they are screwed into aluminium.

OK so you don't have a mig welder probably.. Heres another.

If the bolt/nut has a split washer under the nut/bolt head and you have access.. Take and old screwdriver and stick it in the cap of the washer then chisel the split outwards so the washer opens up. You will be able to completely remove the washer and this will remove all the tension in the bolt.. Then you can grab the nut or bolt with pliers and simply undo it.

Heres another... If you have access take a pair of vice grips.. the locking kind. You can snap these on so tight (like you barely have enough hand strength to close the handles).. Then because they are on so tight simply rotate the grips to undo the thread.


For rusted on bolts.. there is no finer method than hating with oxy-acetylene.. Just have to be careful not to burn down the car..:)

Frank