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Old 10-03-2012, 08:42 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Vulcan Oil Consumption, Fouled Front Bank Plugs

So i am trying to figure out why my Vulcan is using oil.. and why only my front 3 spark plugs are fouled with ash (Oil is most likely being consumed in the front three cylinders). I did a compression test on the front cylinders (4,5,6). They all came back 155 psi across the board (170 psi wet test across the board). So i don't think its the rings. I am leaning toward it being something wrong in the head those 3 cylinders are located. I am thinking about doing valve seals next, to see if maybe the oil is getting in the combustion chamber from there. The original engine was replaced about 6 years ago under warranty but i don't know if it was a long block or a short block that was put in. The car has used oil ever since it was done. Anyone have any experience with leaky valve seals in a vulcan? Do you think this will fix the problem or is it a more serious problem with the head? Or not a problem with the head at all? Thanks!
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Here is a picture of on of the spark plug.. all front 3 plugs look about the same
Vulcan Oil Consumption, Fouled Front Bank Plugs-132380_10151256420779245_1035748924_o.jpg
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Old 10-03-2012, 09:15 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Burn a hotter plug in the car and see if it cleans up. What gas or alchohol combination. I would put a set of Autolite or Motorcraft fine wire in and see if it is better. They seem to be a good mileage and performing plug. Your compression is good for an older vehicle. I would add some Restore at oil change time. It seems to cause no harm for oil burning cars. I have used it on a truck with over 200K and still am over 150 ft lbs compression all around.
Save money and do the small things first.
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Old 10-03-2012, 09:25 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Iv tried some oil additive stuff before. Car uses quite a bit of oil that's why i was thinking maybe the seals are letting oil past. At 25 bucks for a set of seals i think its worth a try. Im just not positive it will do anything. Iv never thought of using a hotter plug, could give it a try. But the back plugs are fine.
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Old 10-03-2012, 09:59 PM   #4 (permalink)
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How much oil is the engine using? Mine goes through 1 quart every 3k miles, which I don't find to be excessive for the age and miles (2005, 162k miles)
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Old 10-03-2012, 10:25 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Are you trailing any blue smoke?
If it is your seals, you'll see a cloud of blue smoke when you first start the engine.
At 120,000 my Vulcan is using about the same as Mr 15951.
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Old 10-04-2012, 06:00 AM   #6 (permalink)
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My engine is using a quite a bit of oil. I have to add a quart id say every 2000 km (1800 miles) Iv added 4 quarts since june. And its not driven that much. I do see some blue smoke on startup sometimes and driving away after a cold startup. But while running normal there is no evidence of burning oil out the tailpipe (are the cats causing me not to see the oil out the tailpipe)
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Old 10-04-2012, 06:49 AM   #7 (permalink)
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What weight oil are you using?? Try 5-40w if you can find any. You could replace the seals and see if that helped. I am partial to the Restore for older cars and add a pt on every oil change. You could pull your oil filter and add a can of Restore after changing filter. Both my Tauruses are over 120k and use little oil. 1/2qt or less in 3k miles. Am funning 5-30w summer and 5-20w winter. If you compression is that good I would not mess with the heads.
Burn some more oil and think about it.
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Old 10-04-2012, 06:52 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Thats being generous too. It uses more than that. The car has 190,000 KM on it ( 118,061 miles) but the engine was replaced and probably has somewhere near 75,000 Km (46,602 miles). The car has been burning oil since the engine was replaced is 2006. Im thinking valve seals or guides on that head? Oil is NOT getting in through the intake or all cylinders would has fouling and compression values are good so its not the rings, so i think iv narrowed it down to the head...
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Old 10-04-2012, 07:09 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by downhill View Post
What weight oil are you using?? Try 5-40w if you can find any. You could replace the seals and see if that helped. I am partial to the Restore for older cars and add a pt on every oil change. You could pull your oil filter and add a can of Restore after changing filter. Both my Tauruses are over 120k and use little oil. 1/2qt or less in 3k miles. Am funning 5-30w summer and 5-20w winter. If you compression is that good I would not mess with the heads.
Burn some more oil and think about it.
Iv tried different oil weights. Iv tried additives in the oil like auto RX and its doesnt make a difference. A compression test wont tell you if your seals are good or bad will it? Iv been burning oil and thinking about it for 6 years
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Old 10-05-2012, 11:12 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Well, your not going to like my theory's either way.
Yes, your on the right track thinking the valve guide seals
could be bad. But only on one head? Suspicious. And as long
as you had one head off, you might as well take the other bank
off also.

If the heads look OK, look closely at the cylinder bores for
wear ridges, or other abnormal signs of wear.

There is one perverted possibly here. The rings are suppose to
be staggered on the pistons when assembled. Maybe it was the
wrong day of the week when your block was assembled and
your rings are lined up rather than staggered. maybe a set of
rings is missing altogether? Maybe the pistons were undersized?

Since this seemed to happen since the engine change, i would suspect
some form of assembly/parts selection malice

The problem is that its much cheaper just to get another used engine
than rebuild yours unless you have the chops and tools to do it yourself.

My guess also is that if you had that much blow by on the pistons, you
would be seeing smoke out the tail pipe on hard acceleration, and the
intake plenum would be full of oily crud from the PVC venting.

I have seem very few Vulcan as insect foggers out the tail pipe of oil
smoke. Bad headgaskets are another matter. All my vulcans leak
more than they burn. Even the one was 200K on it.
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