Yea, warming the engine is the plan, i have some kevlar sleeves that i can wear while everything is hot, hopefully itll work. I dont have access to anything other than a small propane torch. Do u think heating the block up, using this little torch, would work. Or would it not be a good idea since the block is aluminum.?
I would use the propane torch. I've used them many many times on bolts and they always at least help to budge it a little. It does take a while to heat things up, so be patient with the flame on the bolt.
On the never-ending quest for better gas mileage...
I wouldn't worry about melting the block with a simple propane torch. The block is too massive and aluminum too good a heat conductor for that to happen. Now if you were using an oxy-propane or oxy-map torch, I would be worried.
In fact, with the heat conductivity of the engine, I doubt that the torch will even be enough to get the bolt heated up to a useful temperature. Heat will get conducted away from the bolt through the aluminum, and into the coolant in the engine block. The hotter the engine block gets, the faster heat will radiate off and convect away from it, drawing more heat away from the bolt. If you could somehow drain all the coolant out of the block, you might have a fighting chance.
IMO, your best bet is to simply run the engine (assuming it's in running condition) for 15-20 mins to get everything heated up. While that will end up heating up everything else in the engine bay as well, the stopped engine's thermal mass will be working for you, keeping the bolt hot, not against you by drawing heat away.
IM going to go with running the engine up to operating temp, get the safety glass and the sleeves on and hope for the best. ill let u know how that works out. Im still going to need to get the top radiator hose off while the motor is either warm or hot because its in the way, should be real exciting.
I strongly advise against removing the upper radiator hose when the engine is warm/hot because the cooling system is PRESSURIZED!!!!! That's why they tell you to never take the radiator cap off when the engine is warmed up.
You should be able to remove the plug without taking the upper hose off even though you have some resistance.
yea, i realize it has pressure, do u know if the threads extend beyond the inside edge of the block, if they do, the threads on the drain plug maybe corroded and tear the threads up on the block, on the way out.
Every D-series engine I've looked at - 1986 through 2005 model years - has had an aluminum block and head with iron cylinder sleeves. The iron sleeves are merely the wear surface for the pistons... They don't even come into contact with the coolant jacket - there's a layer of aluminum in there first.
As far as the cooling system pressure goes, either leave the radiator cap off while the engine is warming up, or wad up a towel and cover the cap with it, then loosen the cap slowly through the towel. The towel should deaden any sudden jets of steam or coolant.
Not the towel for protection idea. Steam is really dangerous stuff. Don't fool around. True, it might work - but I saw a guy once who'd removed a radiator cap from a hot engine. Bandages from fingertip to elbow, a real mess. He was lucky there was something left to bandage up.
I think warming up the engine with cap off should be good. It will stabilize at just a few degrees lower temperature than if you had the cap on. I think the few degrees less will be just as helpful in getting the plug out. Of course those few extra degrees help FE when driving but you're not driving here.
If your wrench handle for the plug hex is only a breaker like I have, consider getting a ratchet for this job so you can more easily get that hex to turn enough revolutions to come out. Then maybe a breaker bar if needed to push past the resistance where it's sticking.
Or work from underneath maybe? But only if you can be sure you're away from the fluid stream.
Currently getting +/- 50 mpg in fall weather. EPA is 31/39 so not too shabby. WAI, fuel cutoff switch, full belly pan, smooth wheel covers.