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Old 01-11-2014, 05:46 PM   #1
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Catch can problems

Do you own a catch can? Well if so please enlighten me on how this thing works. And if what I found today is normal? The oil feels smooth and like oil off the dip stick. But at the bottom of the catch can/ separator, there was sludgy oil. I was told it's normal in cold weather. But is brown oil bad? My biggest concern is a blown head gasket. Click image for larger version

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Old 01-11-2014, 05:52 PM   #2
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I think that is normal. A blown head gasket will give u frothy oil on ur dipstick.
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Old 01-11-2014, 06:17 PM   #3
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So what does a catch can do?
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Old 01-11-2014, 06:40 PM   #4
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It keeps the oil from going to your intake and gumming things up there, or affecting the octane of the gas. On my 2006 the system allowed the oil vapor in before the throttle body and it really gummed that plate up; with the Xcharger Xtreme the oil vapor will clog up the intercooler fins; on my 2013 I noticed that the intake manifold had a lot of oil in it when I was testing a new intake manifold. Got the catch can after that.

And that sludge is normal in cold weather. It will have a funny color too on really cold days because you have condensation getting in as well as the oil vapor.
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Old 01-11-2014, 07:12 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Getn off View Post
I think that is normal. A blown head gasket will give u frothy oil on ur dipstick.
Troy
+1 plus issues in Coolant possibly.

---------- Post added at 08:12 PM ---------- Previous post was at 08:07 PM ----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by Whitelightning View Post
So what does a catch can to do?
Don't take this the wrong way, I am an old man. What did you buy the catch can to do?

Ok, the young guy inside of me says you bought it for the 2nd reason I did, it looks Kewl

Art (the first reason was to keep oil out of the air intake)
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Old 01-11-2014, 09:37 PM   #6
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+1 plus issues in Coolant possibly.

---------- Post added at 08:12 PM ---------- Previous post was at 08:07 PM ----------



Don't take this the wrong way, I am an old man. What did you buy the catch can to do?

Ok, the young guy inside of me says you bought it for the 2nd reason I did, it looks Kewl

Art (the first reason was to keep oil out of the air intake)

I bought it because i want to prolong my engines life. ive been dogging it lately though and that spooked me wwith the coffee/ dirty oil look. ive seen it on a dip tick but never in the can. As odd as it sounds im going to school this fall to get my Automotive Technology certification and i have a wealthy knowledge of older carbureted engines through my father. but it also is nice to look at along with the cold air intake. the past few times ive emptied the can, it was a nice black oil and felt like oil. this time was different.

whats weird is a good friend of mine noticed that his coolant was red and mine was yellow. we opened up the reservoir and come to find it was actually dry. and the 2 years ive owned the car, its always been like that, just never noticed the coolant missing because usually it's yelllow. filled it to the line and that was about a half jug of the 50/50 mix. its been flawless after that. knock on wood my biggest issue is mainly having a blown head gasket. for some reason im paranoid of it in a way
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Old 01-11-2014, 11:48 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArtU View Post
+1 plus issues in Coolant possibly.

---------- Post added at 08:12 PM ---------- Previous post was at 08:07 PM ----------



Don't take this the wrong way, I am an old man. What did you buy the catch can to do?

Ok, the young guy inside of me says you bought it for the 2nd reason I did, it looks Kewl

Art (the first reason was to keep oil out of the air intake)
I bought one also. It keeps oil from going into your PCV Valve where it will be burnt up. I put one on my V6, Passenger side. I put in part of a coffee filter a small piece of steel wool and part of a coffee filter on top. That keeps the oil on there and not in my PCV Valve.

I just used to empty it every 500 miles, each time finding about one tablespoon of oil.
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Old 01-12-2014, 01:19 AM   #8
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Actually, the oil comes through the pcv valve. Vacuum from the intake pulls crankcase vapors out of the motor through the pcv valve. So the oily mist originates at the pcv valve. The oil catch can keeps the oil out of the intake tract and helps keep valves from gumming up.
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Old 01-12-2014, 01:57 AM   #9
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Actually, the oil comes through the pcv valve. Vacuum from the intake pulls crankcase vapors out of the motor through the pcv valve. So the oily mist originates at the pcv valve. The oil catch can keeps the oil out of the intake tract and helps keep valves from gumming up.
^ + 1mil
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Old 01-12-2014, 09:09 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArtU View Post
+1 plus issues in Coolant possibly.

---------- Post added at 08:12 PM ---------- Previous post was at 08:07 PM ----------



Don't take this the wrong way, I am an old man. What did you buy the catch can to do?

Ok, the young guy inside of me says you bought it for the 2nd reason I did, it looks Kewl

Art (the first reason was to keep oil out of the air intake)
I'm an old man too! I only knew a catch can to be used in NASCAR ..guess I have lots to learn still...,
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Old 01-12-2014, 10:39 AM   #11
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I too also find about a spoon full of oil about every 500 miles. I empty it by soaking it up in a paper shop towel. I can remember 60s-70s Ford engines having Cans or breather elements in line the PCV hoses from the factory, but you replaced them not empties them. Anyone recall one that you empted rather than replaced? Working in parts stores in the mid-late 70s, I never once had a customer ask for a breather can, they just sat on the shelf with dust on the boxes.

IIRC, the smog pumps also had paper breathers that needed replaced and metal valves on the exhaust manifolds that connected to heavy hoses. [SHUDDER] They hardly even replaced those either, the owners would let them rust away and cut the hoses off. (I'm talking about folks that HAD to fix their own cars themselves, not folks building street or show cars)
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Old 01-12-2014, 12:15 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Whitelightning View Post

whats weird is a good friend of mine noticed that his coolant was red and mine was yellow. we opened up the reservoir and come to find it was actually dry.

Glad to know I'm a good friend of yours XD
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Old 01-12-2014, 11:22 PM   #13
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Engines used to have a tube that came off the back of the engine and then to the bottom of engine to vent crankcase oil. The first federal emission regulation required the PCV valve to prevent the discharge of those fumes. Many rodders in the 70s would replace them with valve cover vents.

The history of the PCV valve goes back to WW2, but did not make it into cars until the early 60s. It was designed by GM to solve issues with tank during fording. When emissions started to be a factor, GM made the design available to all manufacturers. By 1964, almost all cars world-wide had them.
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Old 01-13-2014, 09:49 AM   #14
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They are effective in capturing oil mist that is part of the crankcase breathing system. Years ago, it started with the pcv valve. Yes, our mustangs still have one of these, it's on the passenger side cover that sits over the head. A tube runs from this over to the air intake tube. On the drivers side, there is also a tube that runs close to the air filter box to the drivers side head cover. This is the air "inlet". This side does not require a catch can, as it is on the "air going INTO the crankcase" side.

The oil mist FROM the crankcase is drawn through the tube on the passenger side and runs into the air inlet tube to be reburned. It over time collects on the throttle body plate, and can cause poor idle conditions, and possibly fuel economy. Catching this oil mist using a catch can reduces the oil mist from collecting on the throttle plate.

There are two ways to help prvent this oil mist from the throttle plate, one is by using a catch can on the passenger side, the other is to remove the tube on the passenger side, plug the nipple on the air inlet side it connects to, and install a simple breather filter like they used on valve covers from years ago. This method can cause the filter to get saturated with oil though, and requires periodic cleaning. The catch can is easier to dispose of the collected oil.
Think it's not needed? Ask someone who has one (me included) as to how much oil mist is collected monthly (about 3 to 5 ounces). Want that to collect on your throttle body plate?

The other question asked is "why didn't the manufacturers equip catch cans"? The reason I believe is that the pcv valve was approved by the EPA or federal government for effectively capturing the crankcase fumes and recerculating them back to the engine for reburning. This is why it is still in place today.
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Old 01-13-2014, 05:44 PM   #15
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Yep, Bucko is correct again:

Quote:
The other question asked is "why didn't the manufacturers equip catch cans"? The reason I believe is that the pcv valve was approved by the EPA or federal government for effectively capturing the crankcase fumes and recerculating them back to the engine for reburning. This is why it is still in place today.
I got this from CFM because me being an old guy likes stuff like this,


It replaces your filler cap and allows the crankcase to breath a little better.


I still use a JLT oil catch can on my passenger side. It also collects oil and needs to be emptied.

Ronnie
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Old 01-15-2014, 05:33 AM   #16
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A great setup Ronnie. Clean look too.
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Old 01-16-2014, 07:29 PM   #17
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Yea the brown color is just water vapor mixed with oil and normal for cold weather, this is why you want to drive your car long enough to evaporate all the water out of the oil, this is what I pull out of my catch can in the winter
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Old 01-16-2014, 07:34 PM   #18
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Glad to know that's not milky oil or coffee
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Old 02-11-2014, 12:51 AM   #19
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Not sure what to say about it being cold. I live in Germany and it's cold as **** here, and I've never had anything but black, silky oil... I'm no expert, though. As for the blown head gasket, not a chance. Someone mentioned earlier about frothy oil, that's your biggest tell. Plus, your oil doesn't look whitish or milky...

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Old 02-11-2014, 07:50 AM   #20
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Short drives in the winter, you'll get (i do) milky looking stuff in your catch can. Its just water vapor like others have said
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Old 02-11-2014, 10:13 AM   #21
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Not sure what to say about it being cold. I live in Germany and it's cold as **** here, and I've never had anything but black, silky oil... I'm no expert, though. As for the blown head gasket, not a chance. Someone mentioned earlier about frothy oil, that's your biggest tell. Plus, your oil doesn't look whitish or milky...

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