Author Topic: 04 Zafira diesel, cooling disaster (??) on M5 - engine not dead!!!  (Read 26694 times)

Steve McF

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Just had our Zafira MOT'd, aircon regassed and new front discs and pads fitted as part of preparation for a couple of longer holiday journeys that are coming up. Yesterday the wife embarked on the first of those journeys down to Cornwall, with a freind and 4 kids in the car.

An hour and a half after they left, she rang me to say they'd broken down on the M5 near Bristol :o Apparently there was a popping noise and the engine temp then increased rapidly, so they immediately pulled over onto the hard shoulder, whereupon there was smoke or steam coming out from under the bonnet :o

AA man came to have a look and spoke to me on the phone, saying there had been some sort of cooling issue, the top hose had blown off, and the whole engine compartment was now coated in oil/coolant/water mixture, and that it could be terminal :o

They were relayed back home, and when I opened the bonnet, there was black sludge sprayed everywhere near the dislodged top hose, through the radiator and oozing out of the coolant/water header tank :o

I have arrange for the local garage to pick the car up to have a look at tomorrow. They suggested it could be anything from a head gasket, to a completely trashed engine....I hope it is the former if anything :o

The car is an 04 DTi with only 64,000 on the clock, and fully serviced :o

Any thoughts, help, suggestions gratefully received. I don't want to have to scrap the car, but I don't want to pay what it is worth for a new engine either.........
« Last Edit: 13 October 2013, 06:45:40 PM by Steve McF »

Steve McF

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Re: 04 Zafira diesel, cooling disaster (??) on M5 - engine fatality???
« Reply #1 on: 29 July 2013, 02:02:32 PM »
Just had a couple of the lads from work have a quick look at the car - we started it and it seemed to run OK - no warning lights on the dash. So we put water into top hose and reconnected it, and topped up the header tank with water and ran it for a couple of minutes.

No dodgy noises as such, no smoke from the exhaust, and no engine warning lights!!! Could it be that this is not the disaster we initially feared?? ;)

sgould

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Re: 04 Zafira diesel, cooling disaster (??) on M5 - engine fatality???
« Reply #2 on: 29 July 2013, 02:11:08 PM »
Ouch!

I don't think a couple of minutes running will get a diesel up to temperature.  So you may have a head gasket problem and overheating, but only apparent when really hot.

Is the header tank oily?  If the gasket has gone, then oil in the water would give the oily sludge and when it falls onto the exhaust, the water will steam and the oil will smoke.

Are you still with Warranty Direct?
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sgould

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Re: 04 Zafira diesel, cooling disaster (??) on M5 - engine fatality???
« Reply #3 on: 29 July 2013, 02:13:47 PM »
Further random thought....

The hose popping off is unusual, is the pressure cap releasing? 

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Steve McF

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Re: 04 Zafira diesel, cooling disaster (??) on M5 - engine fatality???
« Reply #4 on: 29 July 2013, 06:27:13 PM »
Hi Will,

no, the point of running it was to see if the engine was siezed - it appears to be OK on that front :) But.....

a) does the head gasket need doing?
b) does the head need skimming?
c) what caused the overheat to begin with?
d) how much is a steam clean and complete coolant system flush out in addition to the above? :o

Sadly I ceased to be a Warranty Direct customer when I traded the 9-5 in for this very car back in 2006 :o
So no warranty, no come back....and I need to gauge the cost of repairs against the value of the car :o :(

sgould

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Re: 04 Zafira diesel, cooling disaster (??) on M5 - engine fatality???
« Reply #5 on: 29 July 2013, 06:49:50 PM »
I can't say what's wrong.  You will need the garage to do some tests. 

I'm not sure if you can do a compression check on a diesel.  Possibly through the glowplug holes?  But also a "sniffer" test to check for exhaust/oil in the water.

Don't know about a steam clean.  Pressure washers can do damage, so price is not the most important thing to look at.  At least you haven't got any ignition to flood.
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Steve McF

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Re: 04 Zafira diesel, cooling disaster (??) on M5 - engine fatality???
« Reply #6 on: 29 July 2013, 07:53:18 PM »
Just plugged the Op-com into the car - no DTCs stored at all :o :)

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Re: 04 Zafira diesel, cooling disaster (??) on M5 - engine fatality???
« Reply #7 on: 29 July 2013, 08:14:51 PM »
If there's oil there then there is a pathway between oil and water. This is bad and usually points at a head gasket failure *or* is the car an automatic and has a shared oil/water cooler rad (or some other cooler that means oil and water can mix?)

Steve McF

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Re: 04 Zafira diesel, cooling disaster (??) on M5 - engine fatality???
« Reply #8 on: 29 July 2013, 08:27:49 PM »
It is just a turbo diesel manual.......I'll try and see if I can put some pics on......

Steve McF

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Re: 04 Zafira diesel, cooling disaster (??) on M5 - engine fatality???
« Reply #9 on: 29 July 2013, 08:38:30 PM »
Here's what greeted me when i opened the bonnet....... :o

Steve McF

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Re: 04 Zafira diesel, cooling disaster (??) on M5 - engine fatality???
« Reply #10 on: 29 July 2013, 08:57:12 PM »
Just found this thread, where the oil cooler is mentioned rather than the head gasket - any thoughts?

http://www.vauxhallownersnetwork.co.uk/index.php?threads/1-7-dti-timing-belt-kit.114761/#post-1371357

sgould

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Re: 04 Zafira diesel, cooling disaster (??) on M5 - engine fatality???
« Reply #11 on: 29 July 2013, 09:27:59 PM »
That could certainly explain the problem if the oil cooler is integrated with the water radiator.  You need to check that.  Saab did that on some models.

But if there was a leak between the oil and water, the water side would suddenly be at 60 lb/in2 instead of 15 lb/in2, so things would pop and there would be "oil in the water"!!
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Re: 04 Zafira diesel, cooling disaster (??) on M5 - engine fatality???
« Reply #12 on: 29 July 2013, 10:27:51 PM »
If your Zafira has the 2.2 TiD engine then I think the oil cooler is a small finned box which is bolted on to the bottom of the oil filter.

sgould

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Re: 04 Zafira diesel, cooling disaster (??) on M5 - engine fatality???
« Reply #13 on: 29 July 2013, 10:41:32 PM »
One like this?



The two tails at the bottom look like water hose connections, not high pressure oil pipes.

Found it here, looks rough!!  :o

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/VAUXHALL-ASTRA-ZAFIRA-VECTRA-OIL-COOLER-2-2-DTI-Y22DTR-2002-2005-/360693105564
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Steve McF

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Re: 04 Zafira diesel, cooling disaster (??) on M5 - engine fatality???
« Reply #14 on: 29 July 2013, 11:05:54 PM »
It's the 2.0DTi engine (Y20DTH I think the code is)...

Zafira A/ Mk 1