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Motor mounts, radiator fan replacement, coolant <long winded>

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Old 18 Apr 2016, 01:49 pm
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Default Motor mounts, radiator fan replacement, coolant <long winded>

Saturday morning started early at 7:30 AM with trips to Walmart, OReilly, back to Walmart, Autozone and Napa for todayís tasks: One final adjustment of the motor torque mounts, finish the cooling system flush/refill and replace the radiator fan assembly.

Motor torque strut adjustment
The third time was a charm on the motor mount adjustment once I finally figured out the CORRECT way to measure the 119mm spacing on the top mount. Supporting the engine with the floor jack in the correct position made the adjustment very easy.

Once the spacing was set, I torqued the bolts to 85 ft-lbs and ran the engine. Yes the vibration was slightly larger than when the torque bushings were gone, but not bad and slightly less than earlier in the week when the spacing was wrong.

Radiator fluid
I had emptied the cooling system earlier in the week and filled it with Blue Devil radiator flush so that It would run through the engine for 5-6 hours and by the weekend I had logged 5 hours of running time according to the UltraGauge readout.
Draining the radiator fluid using the Chrysler drain valve was tricky at best and a pain in the behind if you donít know how the darn thing works. After getting as much as I thought I could out of the drain valve, I took off the lower radiator hose and drained the rest. I then disassembled the thermostat housing, removed the thermostat and started pouring water down the pipe and letting it empty through the lower hose into a bucket. The fluid drained from the radiator didnít look bad, but the fluid flushed through the engine looked nasty.

As NitroPT speculated, this car sat for quite a while without running which caused some rust to accumulate in the engine. After draining out the top liquid, there was quite a bit of sediment (black particulates) on the bottom.

Radiator Fan Assembly Replacement
Before refilling, this was a good time to pull the radiator fan, see what was wrong with it and replace it if necessary. I included a replacement fan assembly in my big Rock Auto order last week so it was ready to be installed if I couldnít quickly fix the old fan.

Several days of troubleshooting last week told me that the high speed command from the PCM was not making the fan spin because it would not run the fan when the A/C was turned on. For a week, I was running the fan on low speed full time with a switch inside the car. The line from the relay output was not making a path through the fan to ground. It should have been around 1 Ohm and I was reading an open circuit. I measured full continuity from the relay output to the fan connector so chances are the brushes were not making contact with the commutator. I put the old fan away for another weekend build project to replace all 4 brushes for about $30. Then Iíll be able swap that one in when this new one dies.
After watching a few Youtube videos of guys swapping out fans this week, the job was very easy using my cordless screwdriver for the grille, radiator support and bracket and a socket wrench for the screws which held the fan to the radiator

All done:
Back to the radiator.
After reinstalling the lower radiator hose and drain valve, I started filling the coolant through the thermostat cavity but I started seeing fluid dripping onto the driveway. The blasted drain valve was leaking. I tried opening and closing it several times and suddenly part of the O-ring was sticking out of the drain valve opening. A trip to the Chrysler dealer netted me a drain valve for $9. I stopped at OReilly to see if they happened to have a similar part but I had to have an intact new one to compare it with. Sure enough $5
Hereís the mangled part along with the comparative prices and the aftermarket part in case anyone needs one without paying the crazy dealer prices.

Back to refilling. I lost about 2 quarts of fluid before catching the rest so I filtered out the catch through a paper funnel filter, alright a coffee filter. The fluid was clean. After filling, installing a new thermostat, closing up the housing, reattaching the upper radiator hose and topping it off, I ran the engine at around 2,000 until I saw the fluid circulating past the thermostat. I now know that after draining and filling the cooling system, I need to let the system cycle a few times with the radiator cap off. If I donít do that and leave the radiator cap on, the engine temp sensor will climb to 250+ and light the high temperature idiot light. I would then have to stop, let the engine cool and add another 1-2 quarts because the thermostat is sitting out in the open air. This time I surrounded the area with towels and after a couple of temperature cycles, got a nice big burp of radiator fluid. I then topped it off again (close to 2 quarts) and put the cap on.

While the car was up on the jackstands, I checked the lower control arm bushing. Yup, they're shot.
Fortunately NitroPT had me also put them on the Rock Auto Order so that will be a near term future project. Looks like you have to remove the lower torque strut in order to get to the front attachment point of the LCA but I have lots of experience with that procedure now.

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Old 19 Apr 2016, 12:54 am
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Default Re: Motor mounts, radiator fan replacement, coolant <long winded>

great ? hope to see your updates.
2003 GT M/T in Onyx Green Pearl on Michelin Pilot Sport AS 3 Plus Tires 205/50ZR17. Dark Slate Gray Interior. OEM cargo net, parcel shelf, slush mats and trunk protector, mud flaps, mopar subwoofer. Platinum edition pedals, Neon SX 2.0 steering wheel with black+grey wrapped leather cover. Generic lowering springs, KYB gas shocks, Valeo solid flywheel conversion and clutch kit. Urethane insert engine mounts. Energy suspension full body urethane bushing kit. Chrysler premium front speakers, Jenson 6x9 rears. Boston Audio 4x55W amp. Panasonic head unit with xtenzi bluetooth. 300W AC power inverter. Escort 360max and Escort Shifter ZR4, dual front+rear dash camera. stage 1 blow off valve and syked tune computer . Boost and oil pressure gauges with Turbo-Timer. Needswings 3" exhaust elbow, Electric valve actuated Y-pipe with catalytic converter. To do: coilovers, 2step controller, quaife diff, Air-Fuel Meter
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Old 19 Apr 2016, 07:42 am
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Default Re: Motor mounts, radiator fan replacement, coolant <long winded>

Good work! I'm glad you're sorting it all out.
2002 PT Cruiser Limited, 2.4L, Automatic Transmission, Metallic Silver Paint
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Old 19 Apr 2016, 08:22 am
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Default Re: Motor mounts, radiator fan replacement, coolant <long winded>

Originally Posted by rsrocket1 View Post

How many miles on this PT Cruiser?
If at First You Don't Succeed - Try, Try Again
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Old 19 Apr 2016, 09:18 pm
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Default Re: Motor mounts, radiator fan replacement, coolant <long winded>

That's pretty much how mine looked at 125,000 miles. I just replaced both of the LCA's. Much easier IMHO.

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Old 19 Apr 2016, 11:23 pm
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Default Re: Motor mounts, radiator fan replacement, coolant <long winded>

Originally Posted by ptcruisersteve View Post
How many miles on this PT Cruiser?

In general, the car looks pretty good. Any rust is very light atmospheric rust from spending its whole life in California and not the heavy crusty rust that flakes off on cars from the rust belt. So far all of the bolts could have been broken loose with just hand wrenches. I used the impact wrench on the really big bolts because I had one.
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