'99 & up 7.3L Power Stroke Engine and DrivetrainDiscussion of the 99 & up 7.3L Power Stroke diesel engine and drivetrain in the 1999-Up Super Duty trucks and Excursions. No gas engine discussion allowed except on transmissions and drivetrain that pertain to all models. Please confine discussion of topics in this forum to those items that are specific to the 7.3L Power Stroke engine.
We have five or six PSD's that are in the years 1999 and up to 2003 in our fleet. I just started reading on the coolant and says we are to add FW16 and do some sort of test strip thing. Can someone explain to me what FW16 is, went to the local NAPA and they never heard of it or the test strips. What is the procedure with this test strip and FW16 additive.
Any and all help will be greatly appreciated.
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You should go to an International Dealer or your local ford place. They should have both. International dealers will be the cheapest (although recently my local Ford dealer has become competitive in price on these). They will know what you need and the exact name of the additive you need will vary from one place to another. But if you tell them its for those years and green antifreeze on a T444E or Powerstroke 7.3L engine they will stear you in the right direction. Instructions are in the test trip package. Fairly self explanatory instructions.
FW16 is the ford parts designation for the Anti Cavitation additive to prevent cavitation of the coolant systems and its passages caused by the vibrations of a Diesel. Read this:
But don't follow the solutions there. This FW-16 acts as a sacraficial coating to absorb the damage. Thats its purpose.
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Can someone explain to me what FW16 is, ...
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It's a supplemental coolant additive (SCA), made by Fleetguard and sold by Ford. The current Ford name is "Heavy Duty Cooling System Additive VC-8". From '99 until about 2004 it was the same name but FW-16 instead of VC-8. And before '99 it was the same name but FW-15 instead of FW-16. But the original is Fleetguard DCA4 (diesel coolant additive formula #4).
The purpose is to prevent damage caused by cavitation. Do a Google search on "cavitation" and you'll probably learn a lot - but mostly about cavitation damage to propellers and pumps. Cavitation damage to diesel engines is caused by the steam "bubbles" in the coolant collapsing in the water jacket inside of the cylinder walls.
You test the SCA concentration in your coolant with Fleetguard 3-Way Coolant Test strips. Those things are time sensitive, and expire after about a year or less, so don't buy a big pack of them. Some places sell a 4-pack, so that's what I bought when I had green coolant. A 4-pack lasted me about a year, so when I had one left I ordered another 4-pack. You can order the 4-packs along with the DCA4 from http://www.dieselmanor.com/cooling_sys.asp You can get the DCA4 at any International truck store. The International truck stores usually sell the Fleetguard DCA4 test strips, too but very few will have them in 4-packs. The common size is 30-packs and 50-packs for use in diesel engine service and repair shops.
My Sierra Blanca in the sig pic was a great pickup for 11.5 years. I sold it a coupla years ago. I drove a hand-me-down 2003 F-150 SuperCrew 4.6L 2V for a while, but it was unacceptable for towing more than a rowboat. Replacement is a 2012 F-150 EcoBoost SuperCrew Lariat that tows my 5,000-pound TT like a dream.
minisprint, you don't need the Ford brand SCA or their special 3-way strips. Any quality SCA and test strip will work wonders in your PSD's, including the NAPA brand.
FW-16 (or FW-15, etc.) is not a specification. It is simply a Motorcraft part number like their FL-1995 oil filter. Ford only listed a SCA specification (ESN-M99B169-A) for a few select PSD's made in 2002, just prior to the introduction of their Gold coolant. You can verify that for each model year HERE in the Owner's Diesel Supplement, and HERE with Ford's Green/Gold Service chart.
NAPA carries the original, and most widely used type of SCA in the world. It's the stuff heavy-duty diesel truckers use. It's easy to find and easy to test. My fleet experience shows that this type of SCA is less prone to over-dosing, has a longer life, provides better cavitation protection, and is easier on your water pump and cooling system. It is Nitrite-based. Nitrite is most important and primary cavitation inhibitor. Unlike Ford's stuff that can't be balanced on the Molybdate/Nitrite scale, it does not rely on "synergy" to work. I guarantee you will like it. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/cool.gif[/img]
If you need industry accepted conversions and test methods between the two types of SCA, or information from the SCA makers saying it's ok to mix different SCA's, I can PM you that.
BTW, the guys at NAPA don't deal with Ford's SCA part number. If you mention "Coolant Additive", "Coolant Conditioner", "Supplemental Coolant Additive", or NAPACool, they'll know exactly what you want.
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