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Discussion Starter #1
I have a Volvo MD2b 25hp diesel raw water cooled engine. I was advised by previous owner to put in a gallon of antifreeze (marine) to prevent freezing. Temps are getting down into the low 30's here this week so I did what he said. I disconnected the intake hose and started the engine and sucked in a gallon of antifreeze. My question is...Does this sound right to experienced diesel owners. Is there additional winterizing that would be needed?

Thank you for any assistance.

Rick
 

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Did you see antifreeze discharging from the exhaust? Depending on the length of the exhaust hose and size of the water lift muffler, it could require more than 1 gallon.

Do you also need advice on winterizing the water system, plumbing, head(s), etc?
 

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Thank you. No I didn't check the exhaust. I am using the West marine pink stuff. I will get more.

Yes I could use advice on other systems.

The head isn't working so not an issue.

There IS water in the water tank but it wasn't replenished from last winter. Should I try to pump it all out?

Thank you again!
Rick
 

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I hope you're using the non-toxic antifreeze, not the automotive type antifreeze. :)
 

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I don't know the layout of your particular engine, but if you have a heat exchanger, it will require winterization as well, plus possibly the thermostat. Contact your engine maker.

Also, you might want to pour antifreeze in the water muffler, and, after you dry it out, put some in the bilges. If water seeps into the boat in the winter, it won't freeze in the bilges if it meets undiluted anti-freeze. This advice is unnecessary if you have a garboard plug, but few modern boats do.

It is simpler to winterize FWC cooled engines, because you can simply do the raw water circuit and pour antifreeze in the expansion cap in the heat exchanger.
 

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Automotive AF and Marine AF have the same toxicity to fish

Please, don't believe me. Look up MSDS sheets on both and see what the numbers say for fish. No difference. Both are pollutants that add significant chemical oxygen demand (~5000 times stronger than sewage), so don't discharge either. They don't put that on the label. Either AF type is recyclable.

HOWEVER, the toxicity difference for people is real. That is where marine AF shines. NEVER use automotive AF in a potable system.
 

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I would have shut off the raw water inlet seacock and then drained the block at the tap provided for that purpose (all engines have them, don't they??)
 

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harp :

This anti-freeze trick does not work easily (probably not at all) for a raw water cooled motor. Unless the motor is hot and thermostat is open (it does not stay open for long anyway as it opens and shuts), the anti-freeze has no way of getting into the cylinder heads and blocks, and simply by-passes them to run straight out of the exhaust pipe. Check out page 11 of this manual....

http://www.bluemoment.com/manuals/VolvoMD11C_D_17C_D.pdf

Your anti-freeze will enter via the hose close to arrow 21, and the coolant entry to the exhaust manifold is that wee T-piece you see under the exhaust manifold (about 3/8 the way along it, from L to R). If the thermostat under the cover at 17 is closed, then the coolant does not enter the T-peice, but just by-passes the motor, runs from R to L along the wee hose at the top (often via raised syphon break), and into the exhaust elbow.

Also check out page 45. Page 10 shows your motor, or very similar, but the principle is the same.

This one needs a bit more thought. Anti-freeze colourant in the exhaust just means that you have anti-freeze in the exhaust... that's all. It does not tell you if it is in the motor.

I have the Volvo MD17C, the three cylinder motor. Yours is very similar to the MD11.

The only way I found to defend that motor against freezing was to drain all three blocks and the exhaust manifold. That's a total of 4 drain plugs (items 19 on my motor picture, items 7 on your motor picture). Also, pull the coolant hoses off the gearbox, and blow the water out of it (by mouth).

If you have a deep bilge, tie some string around the plugs before you unscrew them. The plugs are expensive if you lose them. The plugs have a wee drain screw within them, but I find it just corrodes and jams.

Be careful, at -14C (7F) one night my motor froze on the canal, all the core plugs blew out, but one block was cracked a wee bit. It still weeps, three years later. A weep is not terminal to a raw water-cooled motor, unless it weeps into the oil. (it's not). Such temperatures are rare here, but it was a real heart-stopper, and very nearly wrote off the motor completely. I went back to the boat, started the motor, and water was flying everywhere out of the core plug covers, all of them lifted off, and were at an angle.

I will be happy to steer you through it, if you wish. It isn't a lot of work. The anti-freeze trick is not likely to work at all though, so be careful.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thank you all,

Rockter,

One thing I always do is shut off the raw water intake and run the engine for another 30 sec.

Might it be possible that since the thermostat didn't open there is little or no water in the block or intakes?

Rick

Might it be possible that there is little
 

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harp :

There will be plenty in the exhaust and gearbox, but it is difficult to get any into the motor if the thermostat is shut, and even when it opens, it does not open for long, hence the need? to drain the system.

It might be possible to run the anti freeze in a bail-and-bucket loop, with the motor under load. Put the cooland intake into a bucket of the brew, and catch the spent exhaust water in another bucket. Then use a bailer to transfer the spent brew from the exhaust bucket to the intake bucket.

That's likely to be a bit of a chore, and exhaust gases will be in your face together with that toxic anti-freze. It really is toxic stuff.

Keep cats away from it. It's sweet to them, and they get poisoned.

It's easier to drain it, methinks.
 

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I used the blue engine antifreeze as it provides rust inhibitors as well as antifreeze.

I have a closed cooling system. I ran 3+ gallons thru the heat exchanger and had good blue antifreeze coming out the exhaust. I do have the canister in the muffler system. Did I do enough? Engine is a Perkins 4.154.
 

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A closed system is very different and much easier to treat, xort.

Your primary coolant system will have a header tank, and the anti-freeze cannot escape from there.

The secondary system will be treated reasonably if the coolant is coloured on exit.

The problem with a raw water cooled system, is that it is difficult to get anti freeze into the block and heads and manifold. It is easier to drain it and leave it drained than to have to hope that the thermostat has opened long enough to get the anti-freeze in there.

When the thermostat opens on the raw water cooled Volvo, the hot water is only skimmed off the top of the motor anyway. There is no formal through-put. Even with thermostat open, you may not get much anti-freeze in there, as the throughput will skim the hot water off the top and from there it is swept away to the exhaust elbow.
 

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The problem with a raw water cooled system, is that it is difficult to get anti freeze into the block and heads and manifold. It is easier to drain it and leave it drained than to have to hope that the thermostat has opened long enough to get the anti-freeze in there.
There are two ways around that: 1. Main Sail's "ocean in a bucket" arrangement. In short: Bucket the fitting in the bottom of the side for hose that goes to engine water intake. Hose on water output from engine back to bucket. Run engine until thermostat is cycling, dump water, replace with AF, run engine until you're certain thermostat has cycled. Or 2. Just remove the damn thermostat and feed AF until it comes out the exhaust.

Method #1 has the advantages of not having to remove and re-install the thermostat, and not pouring excess AF out the exhaust.

Neither method is all that difficult, as a rule. I used method #2 this season. Our A-4's block has three drain plugs, which the PO replaced with wee valves. I open those up and make sure "slippery" stuff comes out.

Jim
 

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The problem on the Volvo is that the thermostat forms part of the seal on the thermostat housing. You will have to make another gasket if you take the thermostat out.

It has always made me nervous as to whether the anti-freeze is reaching the bottom of the barrels no matter how much is coming out of the exhaust.

Draining the system does not take that long. Then I know it cannot freeze.... there ain't no water in there.
 

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I have been thinking. If we heated up the motor, then made it cool with neat anti-freeze, and plenty of it, and caught it in the bucket, and ran it in a loop, it should work eventually I think. I guess it should work, given time. I don't know how much water is in the motor though. I guess we gould back out a barrel plug to see if it's coloured, then call it as treated????

It's damn toxic though... a damn-awful liver toxin, so be careful.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Thank you. Rockter your remarks are very helpful. It is great that I am not the only one with this kind of engine. I think I will try to do some draining. I was going to try to run it with the thermostat out and run in more antifreeze but your remark about the gasket saved me from that mess.

I never got back to you from this spring. Your suggestions helped fix the cooling problem I had. The engine ran great all summer.

Rick
 

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Yes I could use advice on other systems.

The head isn't working so not an issue.

There IS water in the water tank but it wasn't replenished from last winter. Should I try to pump it all out?

Thank you again!
Rick
Harpguitar,

I won't comment on the engine winterization -- I know how to do mine, but mine ain't yours.

You definitely want to drain the water from your fresh water tanks. In addition, you should either break your water lines and blow any fresh water out of them (a shop vac with hose reversed works well here), or pump pink (non-toxic) anti-freeze through the water system so that you see pink stuff coming out each faucet.

You'll also need to either clear water from all your pumps or pump antifreeze into these lines. Examples: deck wash pumps, bilge pumps, shower sump pumps, etc.

Don't forget to keep your batteries fully charged. They won't freeze if they're charged, but, if it gets cold enough, they will freeze if they're left in a discharged state (not a good idea regardless of the temperature).

I think it's a good idea to cover a boat -- try to keep water, snow and ice off it, if you can. Obviously, boats are meant to get wet, but the freeze-thaw-freeze-thaw cycle that can occur during the winter months can cause problems. I have no way to prove it, but my suspicion is that leaks in deck joints and fitting penetrations of the hull get worse because of small amounts of water get in and then freeze, which opens up the crack more and then, when it thaws, a little more water gets in and freezes, then thaws ....you got the picture.

If you haven't figured it out already -- you can skip all this nonsense if you go south for the winter.
 

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Pink anti-freeze s not meant to be diluted at all. It even says so on the label. You have to make sure that most in not all of the water is out of the system before adding it.

This is how I winterize my Universal Atomic IV:

I use the Sierra anti-freeze (Automotive type but friendlier) mixed 50/50 (good to -20F) in a bucket that the intake hose is dropped into, a bucket suspended under the exhaust at the transom catches the exhaust as I run the motor for 10 minutes or so. This ensures that the wet exhaust system is protected as well as the transmission. As this doesn`t guarantee that the thermostat has opend, I then pull all of the drain plugs. If any anti-freeze has made it into the block water passages, it will drain into the bilge.

Next I dump the remainder of the anti-freeze into the bilge and pump it out with my manual pump again into the bucket. This will protect that pump. Then I dump the anti-freeze back into the bilge and pump it out with the electric pump. My electric pump pickup is lower in the bilge than the manual pump pickup which is why I do it second. All leftover antifreeze is then given to thet yard for their use and disposal.
 

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Pink anti-freeze s not meant to be diluted at all. It even says so on the label. You have to make sure that most in not all of the water is out of the system before adding it.
This is true. That's why I use the purple stuff instead of the pink stuff--just in case there's any dilution.

This is how I winterize my Universal Atomic IV:

...This ensures that the wet exhaust system is protected as well as the transmission.
The transmission? Are you speaking of the A4's reversing gear? It has no water jacket.

Jim
 
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