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Berkyeng

British Columbia

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Posted: 06/28/20 11:58am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Hi all

I purchased my 2008 Forest River Berkshire 390BH (Freightliner Chasis, 340hp Cummins 6.7L ISB) about 1 year ago. It has 52,000kms on it (I bought it at 45,000kms). For completeness related to this question, I am flat towing my 2018 Ford Explorer behind it.

Took it on its first trip (with me) over some steeper grades (Salmo, Bombi, and Bonanza Passes in southern B.C.). On the steepest sections of grade (8-ish%) I started building heat in the engine. Needle never made it to “red” and didn’t get any warnings on the dash, and the engine cooled back down within a couple minutes after coming off the grades. The rig and toad slowed to about 50kph (30mph) up these grades in 3rd gear. I do feel like I babied it a bit up these grades as well.

Thoughts on if I have a cooling problem? Outside temps were mid-20s Celsius (70s Fahrenheit) at max, even cooler at the summits.

Any advice greatly appreciated.

Thanks.


BerkyEng
Sparwood BC
2009 Berkshire 390BH

wolfe10

Texas

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Posted: 06/28/20 12:07pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Clean the front of the CAC as well as radiator. Access from bedroom or closet depending on floorplan.

Needs to be done annually.

A garden hose and Simple Green Extreme (will not harm the aluminum CAC)and an old pair of clothes you don't mind getting dirty is all you need.


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Berkyeng

British Columbia

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Posted: 06/28/20 12:14pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks.

Is there any way to access this from under the coach (knowing full well this will get me wet and dirty!). I’ve been under the bedroom once and the engine cover is so tight it took me 2 days of prying and pounding to get under the bedroom. I really don’t want to go through that again!

Thanks.

* This post was edited 06/28/20 03:29pm by Berkyeng *

garym114

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Posted: 06/28/20 09:03pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Don't know where the power RPM range is on your engine but it is probably higher that the RPMs you were doing at 30mph in third gear.


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wolfe10

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Posted: 06/28/20 09:09pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Berkyeng wrote:

Thanks.

Is there any way to access this from under the coach (knowing full well this will get me wet and dirty!). I’ve been under the bedroom once and the engine cover is so tight it took me 2 days of prying and pounding to get under the bedroom. I really don’t want to go through that again!

Thanks.


You will just have to crawl under and check. Look at the perimeter, not center of the CAC (the fan blades sling the dirt to the perimeter).

And, yes, if overheating, operate about 200 RPM under max HP RPM for your engine at less than full throttle. Higher RPM turns the fan and water pump faster and less than full throttle reduces heat load. Do NOT run dash A/C when overheating.

Berkyeng

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Posted: 06/28/20 09:26pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

garym114 wrote:

Don't know where the power RPM range is on your engine but it is probably higher that the RPMs you were doing at 30mph in third gear.


Yes, likely. Was doing about 2100RPM. Thanks for this tip. Will aim for 2700RPM if I have the problem again.

Thanks

Flan

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Posted: 06/29/20 05:13am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

What are you considering hot? 210 degrees for short stints is pretty normal usually once cresting the grade they will cool off settle back in around 180-190.


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wolfe10

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Posted: 06/29/20 07:41am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Flan wrote:

What are you considering hot? 210 degrees for short stints is pretty normal usually once cresting the grade they will cool off settle back in around 180-190.


While absolutely true, I would suggest that once coolant temperature rises above thermostatic control (fan on high speed on side radiator systems) one needs to start addressing the condition.

That likely means lower gear, higher engine RPM and backing out of the throttle. Using this technique,we have successfully climbed long 6+% grades in 100 degree weather without coolant temperature rising more than 10-12 degrees F from thermostatic control. And, passed other DP's on the side of the road with severe overheating under exactly the same conditions.

ajriding

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Posted: 06/29/20 08:52am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I had a 5.9 with a truck camper and trailer climbing the Rockies and temps stayed level. On big climbs temps would rise, then the thermostat would open, then cool back to high 180's, then close and rise into 190's and cycle back and forth (I had a quality temp gauge so could see this).

I never saw temps go high.

I suspect other issues,
A bad radiator - old and partly clogged- a mechanic shop can look at it with a temp gun and see if there is any clogs.
A bad fan clutch (slower speed climbing might require the fan to run)
A bad thermostat
Is the fan shroud intact and directing air correctly?
Nothing blocking the radiator?

Berkyeng

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Posted: 06/29/20 11:47am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

ajriding wrote:

I had a 5.9 with a truck camper and trailer climbing the Rockies and temps stayed level. On big climbs temps would rise, then the thermostat would open, then cool back to high 180's, then close and rise into 190's and cycle back and forth (I had a quality temp gauge so could see this).

I never saw temps go high.

I suspect other issues,
A bad radiator - old and partly clogged- a mechanic shop can look at it with a temp gun and see if there is any clogs.
A bad fan clutch (slower speed climbing might require the fan to run)
A bad thermostat
Is the fan shroud intact and directing air correctly?
Nothing blocking the radiator?



Nothing untoward underneath. Fan shroud completely intact. New coolant last year. Don’t know if the rad is plugged, but like I said the unit only has 52,000kms on it so would struggle to understand why the rad would be in trouble.

I’m going to try and take it to a shop and steam it out. I cannot get under the bed / closet without a cutting torch at this point. Tried pry bars and hammers and the bed compartment is too tight to take apart.

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