On the road… again…

From first startup there was a problem.  I thought I solved the issue or partially when I found the loose rocker arm.  See previous post; “First start, first drive”  for more about this.

Oil pressure low. Click to enlarge – use browser back button to return.

I had strange oil pressure issues.  It would run around 25-30 pounds and slowly drop off.  The lifter ticking continued and would fade after a few minutes, but the oil pressure would also drop to near nothing.  I wasn’t sure the ticking was not the rocker arm again.  Apparently the oil pressure was dropping as the oil thinned out, as oil does.  I checked this with another oil pressure gauge to verify the dash gauge was working correctly.

Due to some recent health issues, I had an actual mechanic that I trust, look it over to verify I was correct before I pulled it apart.  I also had him check under the valve cover for me.  He discovered the rocker arms were fine.  He also discovered that the oil pickup tube o-ring was the incorrect one.

TSP 81073 oil pan kit. Click to enlarge – use browser back button to return.

The o-ring that was found to be incorrect, was the one provided by the manufacturer of the oil pan.  Top Street Performance (TSP).

We called TSP to let them know of the issue and we were told by them that there was also an issue with some of the oil pickup tubes in these kits in that the weld was not complete around the pickup screen.  Mine seemed to be welded fine, so the o-ring was the only issue.  New correct o-ring installed.  This solved the oil pressure issue.  Not the top end noise.

 

I didn’t tear the engine completely apart, but only far enough to know there was enough damage that I didn’t want to spend the money for repair.  New cam, possibly new cam bearings.  a few new lifters, gaskets. bolts, and so on.

Damaged push rod. Click to enlarge – use browser back button to return.
Damaged lifter vs. good lifter.. Click to enlarge – use browser back button to return.
Damaged lifter. Click to enlarge – use browser back button to return.

 

Another victim. Click to enlarge – use browser back button to return.

Here we go.  Another engine is the quickest and easiest resolve… and likely the cheapest.  I found another 5.3L on FB Marketplace for a fair price.  Drove a few miles.  Picked it up, brought it home and cleaned it up.

After a spray paint rebuild it was time to remove and replace.

 

 

Spray can rebuild. Click to enlarge – use browser back button to return.

First start of the “new” 5.3L was a success.

There was now an annoying squeak that I didn’t have before, but running without a problem.  !!  I thought the squeak was a bad tensioner pulley.  I had another so I replaced it.  Sounds a little better, but after a day or two the annoyance had returned just as strong.

Continental Elite serpentine belt. Click to enlarge – use browser back button to return.

It was about this time that coverman66 posted his latest video on Youtube; “Chirping noise at idle?  How to fix engine chirp.”  Sounded like it would help my issue.  I was able to finally find this belt available on Ebay so I bought a couple.  A few days later, no squeaks!  Truck 5.3L uses a Continental Elite 4060922.

 

 

Next is to finally tackle these horrible coil springs.

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