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Member # 48294
Reged: 09/14/04
Posts: 1
cat 3116
#1992625 - 09/14/04 04:33 PM

I have a GMC Truck with a cat 3116 engine. At 166K milage it became hard to start. I brought it in to cat and they replaced the injectors.

I picked it up and within 60 miles it began to smoke and run a bit rough. Today I returned it to the cat shop and they are working on the repair. So far the word is the number 6 cylinder has a broken push rod. They said they wanted to figure out why it broke and want me to leave it with them for a couple of days. (Like what else can I do).

My question to you guys is this a very common thing to have happen? It ran fine once it started prior to the repair job.

Any comments?

Member # 35310
Reged: 10/06/03
Posts: 44
Re: cat 3116 new
#1995003 - 09/15/04 10:28 PM


The thing that concerns me is that the failure occurred on #6 cylinder. On the TopKick #6 is a real pain to get to, it is under the firewall. You cannot get your head back there far enough to see if the pushrods are properly in place ( in the sockets in the cam followers and in the balls on the rocker arm). You need to use a mirror to see if they are correctly installed. It is possible that the root cause is misassembly by the tech. The rod would stay in place for a while and then either break, bend, or fall out. Luckily, the rod did not wrap around the cam and get pushed through the block. The fact that they want it for a couple days makes me wonder if they are waiting on a rocker arm or cam follower- these are parts that can become damaged by not installing the rod correctly. They are not usually replaced, even at overhaul, thus they are not usually stocked and may need to be ordered in.

You did not say if it was a valve push rod or an injector push rod. If it was an injector push rod, it can break if the injector seizes. A siezed injector should not be your dime- it is either a parts warranty problem or an installation (cleanliness) problem.

I would sure want to see all of the parts that are replaced and hear what their failure analysis is before breaking out the checkbook for something that may have been their fault.

Also 166k is a little soon for injectors. (I,m not questioning their diagnosis though). It is not uncommon to see those injectors go 500K in on highway application. About the only thing that causes them to wear and cause hard starting is dirt. Usually, on highway trucks fuel from clean fuel islands and are not subject to lots of dirt. This is not the case with construction equipment or farm equipment that might be fueled in dusty surroundings from filthy tanks in the back of pickups. I have seen many more occurances of both mechanical injectors and electronic injectors in dirty off road conditions that wear out and start hard, than in on highway applications. I really encourage you to use Cat 2 micron filters, these have seemed to work real well to prevent injector wear-out from fine dust in the fuel. Also make sure that whoever is changing your filters is not dumping unfiltered fuel into them. This can be another source of dirt in the fuel since unfiltered fuel goes into the clean side of the filter.


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