405 radiator failure

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citroen7
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405 radiator failure

Post by citroen7 »

her that has to be obeyed rang me this morning saying the water light had come on ,so she carried on another 4 miles and stopped at a petrol station with steam coming out everywhere,i said hang on i will be there shortly. Turns out radiator failed big time now on stopping the wife said the fans kicked in and the temp did not go above 90 . I refilled rad and bled system as best i could and let her cool down but she would not start
so on towing i bumped her and she did start .once we were home and with a jump from my trusty bx she started but not as you would expect after two or three cranks of the engine but she ran ok .
Now i have gone out a few hours later and she wont start but did try,so before i fit a new rad can anyone put a little light on the matter?
Is the engine "cooked" or am i missing something silly
the other thing i forgot to mention is the fuel filter was empty and had to be bled when i first got to the car. Any help would be most welcome!
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CitroJim
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Post by CitroJim »

What engine? Petrol or diesel? From your fuel filter reference I'm going to assume it's a diesel.

If it is a diesel and you had total water loss the news may not be good but there is a whole lot of diagnostics to go through first.

The starting has to be looked at first and this empty fuel filter. If the 405 is a late one with the filter on the thermostat housing then the heat from the very hot engine may have warped the filter housing and allowed air to get in or the plastic pipe between the filter head and the pump may be damaged. Firstly, try a start after a good pump of the priming bulb to ensure the filter is full and the pump is full of fuel. Pump until the bulb goes stiff.

Go for a start after a good glowplug session and have an observer looking at the exhaust whilst cranking. Is there any smoke coming out and if so, what colour? If it's white than this is unburned diesel and shows the engine is not firing. Black means the engine is trying to fire. No smoke at all means you have a fuel problem and none is reaching the combustion chamber. If you have developed air leaks and again, I'll assume it's a Bosch pump, the engine will be very hard to start. Check the leakoff pipes. Again excess heat could have damaged them, being made of soft plastic.

If you do see clouds of white smoke during a start attempt then suspect a loss of compression.

If the engine starts, the integrity of the head gasket can be checked by observing the water in the radiator header tank. If you see lots of large bubbles flowing around or the system (with the cap on) very quickly pressurises from cold to the extent that the hoses become rock hard, suspect the worst. Failed Head Gaskets and/or cracked heads nearly always pressurise the coolant.

What happened to the rad? It's unusual they go so subbenly and so catastrophically :?

Did the cooling system empty completely? If it did, I'm hoping you let the engine cool right down to stone cold before adding water. If you add cold water to a very hot engine, it is easy to do serious damage :(

Let us know so the diagnosis can continue...
citroen7
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Post by citroen7 »

hi jim,
what a mind of information! After the car had cooled down i pumped the fuel bulb and did the glowplugs twice and she did start after about 30seconds and yes there was a cloud of white smoke but once reved a couple of times the exhaust was clear, i should point out that she has always been a bit smokey on start up,after all there is 160K on the clock.
the oil in the sump is clear of water and there are no visibal leaks of any fluid anywhere (apart from the rad!) New rad will be here pm tomorrow and i have a xantia with the same engine sat here so i will swop fuel pipes and filter housing and see how we go worst case will be engine swop from xantia but fuel pipe problem seems to make sense
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Post by citroen7 »

new rad was fitted today not difficult although whoever invented those bayonet connections should be shot! fitted temp header tank and topped up. She was still a bugger to start and ran very lumpy for a while but seemed to settle down. but before long the temp rose and the fans kicked in but the rad was cold so opened the vent on the rad and clouds of steam
turned engine off and let everything cool down .On trying to start up while cranking over water came gushing out of the rad and she would not start
so i am thinking the worst and will take the head off, but i only have a manual for a diesel xantia ,so is there somewhere i can download a manual for the pug?
i am now going to pour a glass of something and cry :cry:
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CitroJim
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Post by CitroJim »

I'm sorry to hear that :cry:

One thing though, the 405 is an absolute :evil: to bleed. they say a Xantia is difficult to bleed but compared to a 405 it's a walk in the park.

Ensure again you're fully bled. I once had a terrible job doing this in my early days of Pugging and nearly cooked the engine because of a particularly difficult airlock. You may need to pull one of the small hoses off to bleed fully, especially if the bleed valve is broken. Mine was.

The 405 head job is almost precisely that for the Xantia so the Xantia manual will do fine. the engines are identical :wink:
citroen7
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Post by citroen7 »

Jim thanks for your words of wisdom i have now got to the stage of removing the turbo which will now be friday as i work late thursday nightsso hopefully sometime over the weekend we will be startingto put it all back together :lol:
will keep you posted.
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Post by citroen7 »

update with a couple of questions.
head was successfully removed last weekend and was not as bad as i thought. A recon head fully rebuilt arrived yesterday thanks to a forum member :) so rebuild will start on friday night .The head was supplied with timing belt kit and gasket set which has 3 notches plus one , but the gasket that came off has 3 notches plus 2 am i being paranoid or because the new head has been completely rebuilt is this ok to go ahead and fit ? and is there any other potential banana skins to look out for?
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Post by RichardW »

ISTR that the first set of notches (up to 3) tells you how thick the gasket is, and the second set tells you which engine it's for - in the back of my mind, the 2 notches are for a 1.7TD engine - it should tell you in Haynes.
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Post by RichardW »

According to my Haynes Diesel engine book, the notches at the edge of the gasket are the thickness (3 being thickest). The ones in the centre relate to engine size, and a single notch is for a 1.7 engine, whilst 2 is for a turbo engine (although this book only covers the 1.7TD engine) - the Xantia book just says they relate to engine size :roll: It does sound like the gasket supplied might be the wrong one :cry: Try holding it up against the old one to see if it is the same.