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Old 05-04-2011, 11:02 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Bad CDR? Please Help

Hi guys, it's been a while since I've posted on here. The truck has been running really well for almost a year now (1994 Factory Turbo F-250, 112K, Auto-trans). But recently, she just hasn't been the same. It's hard to explain, but she has been running a little rougher on start-up, she's starting to burn a little oil (never has before), and is blowing a lot more white smoke on starting (she has always had a little smoke, mostly in the winter, but not at 70).

I popped the hood for the first time in a while and I found a few new oil leaks: both valve cover gaskets are leaking by the rear cylinders, something (maybe CDR, but I don't really know) behind the intake 94 Turbo Diesel :: CDR Bad 2 picture by nickmohrbacher - Photobucket, and a slight film on the intake where the filter is 94 Turbo Diesel :: Oil in Filter picture by nickmohrbacher - Photobucket. I opened the air filter box and didn't find loads of oil, but I found the filter had oil on it. Pretty much all of the paper fins were wet with oil from the inlet side about 3/4 of the way.

So what gives? I did a little research and found that it could be the CDR valve malfunctioning (again, no idea what/where this is really). I read that there is a relocation kit from Banks or some other solutions that use a hose to route it to the ground below the truck, essentially eliminating this part. How easy is this to do? Does it have any negative side affects?

Anyway, I would really appreciate any other possible issues and solutions. Thanks!
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Old 05-04-2011, 11:20 PM   #2 (permalink)
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In your first picture-YES that is the CDR and the leak your pointing to is the grommett. If your starting up a little rough with whilte smoke, then it might be time to test the GP's. Does it only do it on the first start of the day and how long is the WTS light coming on?

Oil from the leaking valve covers can blow in different directions under the hood while your driving so fix the leaks and then clean your filter housing again and then look for oil. Since the CDR directs oil mist to the engine side of the filter, some oil might be normal. I run a K&N and I have seen residue when I take the top off. What some members have written about is an RDT ( Road draft Tube). thats where you simply route the oil mist via a tube to the base of the frame and let it vent out on the road, eliminating the CDR.
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Old 05-04-2011, 11:37 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Since I bought the truck, I replaced the gp's, IP, injectors, return line kit, injector o-rings, and maybe a couple other things, within a few months of each other. Anyway, the darn thing has always smoked. The WTS light still stays on for the normal amount of time (seems like 20 sec or more). As far as the valve cover gaskets go, I am 100% they are leaking, but I am not too worried, I try to keep this truck 100% leak/oil free for the most part. That way I can tell where it is coming from. As far as the oil on the filter housing, the residue was coming from inside the housing. I will take a picture of the filter tomorrow when it is light out. I have never had this, all of my filters have always come out dry.

So, is it safe to assume that this issue is caused by a bad CDR and can the problem be eliminated with an RDT? Does the RDT cause any negative side effects other than oil being blown out under the truck?
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Old 05-05-2011, 12:11 AM   #4 (permalink)
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The CDR is also meant to maintain a slight amount of crankcase pressure based on the pressure drop through the unit itself. An RDT of sufficient length should also do this. However, it is also an oil separator, and it is intended to separate at least some oil mist from the crankcase gases due to where the pressure drop occurs, which is primarily in the CDR due to the restriction-opening-restriction setup.

If the CDR is stuck closed then you should be able to find out by dismounting it, hooking up some 1" tubing, and trying to blow through it. It's supposed to be a one-way valve only permitting gases to pass from the crankcase to the intake on top of these other functions.

It is not safe to assume anything.

If the CDR is stuck closed it may be possible to clean it with some diesel fuel.

I have a GM CDR plumbed into a custom intake with 1" tubing. Presumably it adds a little pressure drop, thus more crankcase pressure, but I don't believe it can make any kind of significant difference. If it does it's in the less-leaky direction which is fine with me.
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Old 05-05-2011, 12:16 AM   #5 (permalink)
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ok, so how do you clean these things and take them apart? Is it worth it to save the hassle and just put on a new one? I can't find a new one anywhere. Any ideas?
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Old 05-05-2011, 05:25 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Navistar would have them........

Do you know when to service your CDR valve?

All 6.9L and 7.3L diesel engines are equipped with a CDR (Crankcase Depression Regulator) valve. Even the new 7.3L Power Stroke is also equipped with the same valve. The CDR valve is one of the leading causes of head gasket failure in these engines. The CDR valve is responsible for controlling the pressure/vacuum in the engine crankcase, and seperating the oil mist from the air and returning the oil to the crankcase. The CDR valve should be serviced every second oil change or when signs listed below are seen.

When the CDR valve is not properly serviced, engine oil enters the air intake and is drawn into the engine. The diesel engine will burn this oil as fuel, however, it is heavier and thicker than diesel fuel and, having greater BTU output, causes excessive heat in the cylinder. Due to the intake manifold design, most of the oil will migrate to #7 and #8 cylinders; the last two cylinders in the rear by the firewall. The increased temperature here will cause the cylinder head to lift off the gasket and allow water or oil to leak out the back of the cylinder head where it meets the block.

To check your CDR valve, remove the air cleaner hold down bolt and inspect it. If the bolt is covered with engine oil mist, it's time to service your CDR valve! Ford calls this item a "Adapter assembly for Crankcase Ventilation" Part number E3TZ-6A665-A or IH part #1805319C1


To service the CDR wash with a solvent, allow to dry, do not use compressed air to dry. There is a small hole in the CDR back cover, ensure it is clean and open. If black chunks of rubber are visible in the intake, on the screen then the rubber membrane has disintegrated, replace the CDR.


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Old 05-05-2011, 07:03 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Thanks cdnsarguy. Sounds like I need to service my CDR and that it is really pretty simple. So I just soak it in a tub of solvent for about 24hrs and then let it dry? What is the best solvent to use?
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Old 05-05-2011, 08:30 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I would try something delicate since people have reported that gasoline has ruined their CDR. I suggested diesel because there's diesel in your blow-by anyway.
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Old 05-05-2011, 10:10 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Years ago a full-time specialist 7.3/6.9 diesel mechanic, who actually knew what he was talking about since he worked on them for a living, said any solvent will ruin or at least shorten the life of the thin CDR diaphragm.
Due to it's design and what it does I've never felt a need to touch mine in 20 years and 243,000 miles. I use 1 quart of oil between 5000 mile changes same as when I bought the truck new in '91. Being a dumb diesel engine mechanic, I'd like someone to expain how engine oil laying below the valley pan can flow uphill through the CDR tube. Same applies with the valve cover mounted CDR on turbo models. Only thing going through it is oil mist (crankase blowby) which is what it's there for. There's been countless guys here and on other forums that replaced or cleaned it and found no decrease in oil consumption. A worn out engine will have excessive blowby CDR or not.
Years ago I mechanic'd at an International truck dealership and later worked on mostly IH trucks (25+ years) and in the long excessive oil consumption diagnosis section in ALL their 7.3 IDI shop manuals a CDR check/cleaning is never mentioned. #1 check on their lengthy diagnosis chart for oil usage is an excessive blowby check which I agree with. If the truck is under warranty and has an excessive oil consumption problem, IH won't even talk to you until that's been done.
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So, is it safe to assume that this issue is caused by a bad CDR and can the problem be eliminated with an RDT?
Not really, I've never pulled the intake ducting off any Cummins, Detroit, Case, Cat, Mack, 7.3, etc, diesel where there wasn't quite a bit of oil in the intake ducting, especially a lot of oil will settle in the "wrinkle" of the rubber turbo to air box boot. And these engines ALL except 7.3's had RDT's.
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Old 05-05-2011, 06:20 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Not really, I've never pulled the intake ducting off any Cummins, Detroit, Case, Cat, Mack, 7.3, etc, diesel where there wasn't quite a bit of oil in the intake ducting, especially a lot of oil will settle in the "wrinkle" of the rubber turbo to air box boot. And these engines ALL except 7.3's had RDT's.
So what I'm getting is that I should leave it as is and monitor it to make sure it doesn't go crazy?
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Old 05-06-2011, 06:27 AM   #11 (permalink)
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My first CDR was on my engine for at least 13 years. That is the one in the picture on my photo link......
Mine was still serviceable....... but like so many I had never seen inside and decided to replace it and get some pics.
Note.....
If the 4 small corner drain backs in the oil catch on the valley pan get plugged or if you add a turbo there were instructions to use an ice pick and make more holes directly under the grommet hole. I will get a picture and put it in my gallery.
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Old 05-06-2011, 12:00 PM   #12 (permalink)
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ice pick and make more holes directly under the grommet hole. I will get a picture and put it in my gallery.
Right, because the aftermarket turbo drains all it's oil directly into the valley, otherwise the only oil in that area is what little amount that runs off the pushrods, lifters, etc.
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Old 05-13-2011, 11:10 AM   #13 (permalink)
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I think I will try to fix this temporarily by cleaning it out with gasoline, because I called the dealership and they want $80 for a new one. I have a question though. I heard from someone (maybe on this site) that you could fit a GM 6.2L CDR on one of these engines. It makes sense. They are easy to get ahold of, including the grommet. They should do essentially the same thing right? Has anyone done this to their rig? How did you do it and what did you use?
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Old 05-13-2011, 02:27 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Good idea. Cleaning parts in gasoline is a longtime tried and true highly recommened method, especially from a safety standpoint.
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Old 05-30-2013, 01:05 AM   #15 (permalink)
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What happens if I do something of this nature? K&N Crankcase Vent Filters with and without Shields
How critical is this " vacuum"? I've got tons of oil in my air intake and was looking at an alternative as it's already punished #7&8....
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