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Discussion Starter #1
Folks,

Thanks a bunch for tolerating my differential issues. It grinds a bit still, but not nearly as bad and for far less time than before. I'm back for a little more advice. To recap, '06 commander 5.7 limited QDII yadayada...111K miles, and since my wife can't seem to stop finding her way into traffic court or insurance claims with it, I've given her my Infiniti and now the Commander is my DD. So far, for routine maintenance/freshen up, I've swapped all fluids (diffs, TC, trans/filters) that I know of, but a couple of questions remain:

Coolant - It was in a minor fender bender in March, and the radiator was replaced as part of the repairs. I am fairly certain they did not use the correct antifreeze, as it is yellow-green and the truck runs hotter than usual (no overheating yet). I know I need to fill with the correct fluid, but since it is a new radiator, do I need to flush it or can I just drain via the plumbcock and refill with the correct 50/50 of the Chrysler spec antifreeze/distilled water?

Sensors - At 111K miles, I am becoming increasingly aware of just how many sensors these modern cars have. I'd love to have a list of replaceable/meaningful sensors that would require replacement (and you could DIY). Should such a list surface, I'd be happy to write-up/film how-to threads.

At this time, my planned mods are an OME HD kit, new UCAs, and exhaust (although the plasti-dip threads have me thinking my chromes pieces would look pretty bitchin in matte black). Are there any preventative/"while it's apart" things I should take care of to prepare?

Thank you!!
Ryan
 

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Folks,

Thanks a bunch for tolerating my differential issues. It grinds a bit still, but not nearly as bad and for far less time than before. I'm back for a little more advice. To recap, '06 commander 5.7 limited QDII yadayada...111K miles, and since my wife can't seem to stop finding her way into traffic court or insurance claims with it, I've given her my Infiniti and now the Commander is my DD. So far, for routine maintenance/freshen up, I've swapped all fluids (diffs, TC, trans/filters) that I know of, but a couple of questions remain:

Coolant - It was in a minor fender bender in March, and the radiator was replaced as part of the repairs. I am fairly certain they did not use the correct antifreeze, as it is yellow-green and the truck runs hotter than usual (no overheating yet). I know I need to fill with the correct fluid, but since it is a new radiator, do I need to flush it or can I just drain via the plumbcock and refill with the correct 50/50 of the Chrysler spec antifreeze/distilled water?

Sensors - At 111K miles, I am becoming increasingly aware of just how many sensors these modern cars have. I'd love to have a list of replaceable/meaningful sensors that would require replacement (and you could DIY). Should such a list surface, I'd be happy to write-up/film how-to threads.

At this time, my planned mods are an OME HD kit, new UCAs, and exhaust (although the plasti-dip threads have me thinking my chromes pieces would look pretty bitchin in matte black). Are there any preventative/"while it's apart" things I should take care of to prepare?

Thank you!!
Ryan

Do a complete flush of the coolant, and use the correct HOAT coolant instead (orange type). Best to flush out all the old coolant first, fill it up w/ just water (can also use flush fluid as well, though not always advisable), run the engine w/ the heater blasting for like 10mins. Let it cool and drop the coolant/water again. This time, refill w/ HOAT coolant and distilled water combination.

As far as fluid is concerned, don't forget to flush the brake fluid; this is overlooked so often. The fluid in the master cylinder should be nearly clear; $20 says it's pretty dark by now...aka contaminated fluid. Recommended every 2yrs. Real easy job to do... but if it's also low on fluid, it's also a sign your brake pads are wearing down too. Check both f/r axles and examine if you need those replaced. When I did my brake job, I ended up replacing both front/rear rotors (started to shake often), along w/ the pads.

Other items to do on the HEMI:
- Replace 16 spark plugs (2 per cylinder slot) w/ stock Champion Copper plugs, gapped accordingly.
- Replace PCV valve, air filter, wipers, and possibly fuel filter.
- Replace oil/filter (pretty obvious, just wasn't listed; I usually run some motor flush between changes).
- As a routine, try to steam clean the engine bay every so often; I try to do it every 7500-12500 miles to keep most of the parts as clean as possible from dust, oil residue, etc.
- Examine serpentine belt, and replace accordingly; may also require replacing the tensioner as well.

I hope I didn't miss anything else at this point.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Flush it. The two coolants should not be mixed. See this thread---> http://www.jeepcommander.com/forums/showthread.php?t=9422&page=7

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This was the exact thread I was looking at when I realized why it was running hot. Dealer is across the highway from my office, so my lunch break tomorrow is a Chipotle run + acquiring correct coolant. Pretty involved flushing process, but I think I can handle it. (any tips or gotchas for a garage flush are welcome)

I've been performing routine (5K) M1 oil/filter changes, and I understand the fuel filter is integrated with the pump, so no easy change there. Did a full on brake job (pads/rotors/fluid) 3 weeks ago. Just trying to get it back to square one, given that regardless of my DD, I'm all-in with my commander as a project for the foreseeable future.

If you'll entertain my lame suburban conquest for a moment, it felt pretty good to pop an unmanned curb around a Maxima stopped in the right hand lane (with no intention of turning right). Plenty of room, no pedestrians or law enforcement around. Had a grin for a few blocks, and ready for more!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Seems pretty simple now, actually.

1. Open/drain from plumbcock
2. Open engine block plugs to fully drain the bad stuff
3. Run the flush per instructions and drain
4. Refill, warm engine up, blast heater, purge air via bleeder screw.

Gonna grab a pcv valve too while I'm at it.

In my old Z28 days, I got a little boost by using a 180* tstat over the stock 195. Is it safe to use one in the hemi?

Thanks!
RyanD
 

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In my old Z28 days, I got a little boost by using a 180* tstat over the stock 195. Is it safe to use one in the hemi?
I think I remember someone on here using the wrong tstat and having problems. If I were you I would stick with the proper tstat. And I don't think you really need to remove the block plugs, unless you want to.
 

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Do not remove the engine block plugs for a coolant swap. No need to and you will thank me later. Trust me
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I'm about halfway through the job at the moment (first stage of prestone flush is now cooling and I have a couple of observations/questions:

When I refilled it, I added the flush directly to the radiator, topped off the reservoir/radiator with water. I let all bubbles come to the top of the radiator before I sealed it and started it. It seems that the purge screw is lower than the radiator cap, so wouldn't all of the air in the system eventually make its way there? The bleed screw seems like a pain given that I had to remove the air box to access it. Unless I'm completely off base, it seems like the air would eventually make its way out on it's own. Thinking if I just carry a 50/50 mix of the Zerex/distilled water and check it a few times I'll be OK. Thoughts?

Ryan
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I'm about halfway through the job at the moment (first stage of prestone flush is now cooling and I have a couple of observations/questions:

When I refilled it, I added the flush directly to the radiator, topped off the reservoir/radiator with water. I let all bubbles come to the top of the radiator before I sealed it and started it. It seems that the purge screw is lower than the radiator cap, so wouldn't all of the air in the system eventually make its way there? The bleed screw seems like a pain given that I had to remove the air box to access it. Unless I'm completely off base, it seems like the air would eventually make its way out on it's own. Thinking if I just carry a 50/50 mix of the Zerex/distilled water and check it a few times I'll be OK. Thoughts?

Ryan
OK, job done, and I actually did utilize the bleed screw. It's cooling off now from the 50/50 of Zerex/distilled/4oz of water wetter. Gonna drive it around the neighborhood here in a bit, but for now, I'll watch the level and call this one a day. At least for 5 years :)
 

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Yep, all good. No overheating, added about 1/4 gallon over the weekend. Yesterday morning topped it to between the full/ add line, drove it all day, parked it. Checked it this morning, level was the same. Very pleased with my work :)
 

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The engine is designed to run at a certain temperature and the thermastat keeps it at that temperature.

Running the engine cooler can cause accumulation of deposits in the engine and especially on the valves. Running cooler can cause more piston skirt and ring wear because the cylinder/piston/ring dimensions are all set for the best clearance when the parts have expanded to the temperature they are designed to run at. Run the engine cooler, the piston/cylinder walls/rings will be at a different dimension and clearance than designed. Etc, etc....

Besides, people that have actually tested it found that often running the engine hotter than normal produced a little more power.

I think the lower thermostat comes partly from ignorant speculation and partly from the fact that a lot ECU programming will give more spark advance at lower temperatures, but I have yet to see anyone prove they got more power on a dyno just by switching to a lower temp thermostat.

Besides, if you want more power by changing the tune in the ECU, then get an aftermarket reprogrammer or performance ECU, that actually works instead of increasing the wear on the engine by using the wrong thermostat.

Flushing the cooling system, means flushing it with fresh water to get out any of the old trapped coolant in the system. No need to use harsh chemicals in the aftermarket flush unless you have some evidence of deposits and gunk in the cooling system. If you did use the chemical flush additive, then make sure (or I hope) you flushed with fresh water at least once if NOT several times to make sure you got all the corrosive chemicals out before adding the coolant that will stay in there for another 100k miles.

Depends on the vehicle and the engine combination, some vehicle/engines, just draining the radiator gets 98% of the old coolant out, others only gets 60% out. That is why you flush with fresh water, to get all the old coolant left trapped in the system out.

One trick I do, and you need an air compressor, I disconnect one of the heater hoses and blow compressed air down the lines to drive the old coolant out of the heater core and heater hoses. Some engines have the water pump below the bottom of the water jacket, and disconnecting the lower radiator hose will drain every drop out of the block, those engines often don't have a water jacket drain plug on the block. Others have the water pump higher than the bottom of the water jacket and some coolant will remain trapped in the bottom of the water jacket. Some might be close enough that jacking up the back of the vehicle might drain it, others the only way to get it all out is to pull the water jacket drain plug. Then the argument would be is it really worth all the effort to get the last couple onces of coolant, just flush it with fresh water, it will won't make a difference.
 
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