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Old 10-04-2012, 10:44 AM   #1
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Heat Exchanger Repair

Can anyone give me recommendations on where to take a heat exchanger, from a Detroit diesel 8.2 engine, for repair in the Seattle area. I have one that not only needs cleaned, but has a pinhole leak.

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Old 10-04-2012, 11:02 AM   #2
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HE Repair in Seattle Area

Try giving Performance Coatings in Auburn, WA a call.
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Old 10-04-2012, 11:34 AM   #3
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Seattle Radiator Works is what my mechanic (Hatton) uses. Did a great job for me.
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Old 10-04-2012, 11:51 AM   #4
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Pacific Power Products, kent WA, 800-882-3860. www.pacificdda.com


This is mostly for new but they do have a service group.
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Old 10-04-2012, 02:05 PM   #5
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I am just curious for future reference -- is it really practical to repair a leaky heat exchanger?? My assumption is that it is leaking internally and not simply an external ding. I am not questioning whether it should be repaired only whether it is a realistic option.
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Old 10-04-2012, 02:11 PM   #6
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Chrisjs, in some cases it's an option but most boat owners will replace the unit. The problem becomes twofold. First, can and will the repair hold? And second, pinholes are an indicator that the heat exchanger is deteriorating and unless it was damaged in some way, the odds are really really good that more holes are going to develop in the very near future. If the problem is due to electrolysis, which it often is, then this will at best be a temporary fix. All of this needs to be taken into consideration, especially if the opportunity presents itself for another failure at the wrong time. Chuck
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Old 10-04-2012, 02:22 PM   #7
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I had my generator heat exchanger repaired 2 years ago.

They soldiered up the tube that was leaking and I have not had a problem since. They cleaned it, repaired it and tested it no problem. A new heat exchanger for that generator is in the neighborhood of $900.00 new
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Old 10-04-2012, 06:11 PM   #8
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I have had a couple other people recommend Seattle Radiator. Hopefully, and I was told they would, they will take a look at it first to see if it is worth repairing. They would probably have to steam it first in order to determine that, but if saves me from buying a new one it should be worth the few bucks (boat bucks) to clean it. The pinhole leak is along one of the welds and not from a ding. So, maybe it is deteriating from the inside out. At this point, the leak is not bad enough that I can't run the engine, but don't want to go very far. Another winter project. My guess is that I will have to make a decission to eather have it repaired for $400 or $500 or buy a new one for $900 to $1000. If this one is bad then the other heat exchanger is not far behind.
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Old 10-04-2012, 06:23 PM   #9
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I'd go the repair route myself.

As to the internal corrosion issue, when was the last time the zinc anodes where replaced?
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Old 10-04-2012, 10:32 PM   #10
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Craig,

I just purchased this boat a couple of years ago. One of the first things I did was to check/replace the zinc's. There was very little left of the pencil zinc's in the heat exchangers. Since then I have been replacing them about every 6 months with only about 1/3 to 1/2 of the zinc used up.

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Old 10-04-2012, 10:56 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jstauffer View Post
I have had a couple other people recommend Seattle Radiator. Hopefully, and I was told they would, they will take a look at it first to see if it is worth repairing. They would probably have to steam it first in order to determine that, but if saves me from buying a new one it should be worth the few bucks (boat bucks) to clean it. The pinhole leak is along one of the welds and not from a ding. So, maybe it is deteriating from the inside out. At this point, the leak is not bad enough that I can't run the engine, but don't want to go very far. Another winter project. My guess is that I will have to make a decission to eather have it repaired for $400 or $500 or buy a new one for $900 to $1000. If this one is bad then the other heat exchanger is not far behind.
j - As you say: "The pinhole leak is along one of the welds and not from a ding." And, although I'm sure some here will squawk at me - Here's my successful story...

2008 I found a pinhole on a seam around the fuller hole on my port heat exchanger. Too much leak to run with for very long. I pulled the ends off both exchangers and reamed the tubes and sides with a thin bronze bottle brush and with pressure hose spray nozzle I flushed the interiors completely. Peering inside with 1M cndl pwr spot light... all looked to be basically OK. I then replaced both exchangers’ internal "pencil" zincs (the old zincs were dead meat) and refastened the exchanger’s ends. Then I thoroughly brushed and well sanded a 1.5 x 1.5 inch area around the pinhole and washed/rinsed it well with rubbing alcohol. Took two-part liquid steel, mixed it well, and applied thickly over the sanded area, let set over night with a 100W bulb glowing near to it. Have not had a seep in over four years since. Cost was a couple hours fun work, a thin bronze bottle brush, end cap gaskets, two pencil zincs, and a small two tube package of liquid steel. It don't get no better than that!

Best Luck! - Art
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Old 10-04-2012, 11:16 PM   #12
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If you do end up replacing your heat exchanger make sure you get a cupro-nickel exchanger, not the cheaper variety. This is one case where the extra money is worth spending. The same holds true of the smaller lube oil and transmission fluid coolers if your engine uses those.
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Old 10-05-2012, 03:08 PM   #13
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Sometimes it is not the zincs that are at fault. there is an issue known as erosion from the water passing over the metal the water itself and the force of the flow will erode the heat exchanger making the metal thin.

The zincs are importent but sometimes time will be the issue.

How old is the tube bundle?

Can you just replact that?

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Old 10-06-2012, 01:01 AM   #14
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There is nothing wrong with getting a repair done. The shop should be able to give a good opinion of the condition + pressure test it. Sometime a bad solder joint is just that, a bad solder joint. It happens and it doesn't mean the rest of the exchanger is falling apart.

Just ask some questions and ensure they understand your concerns.
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Old 10-06-2012, 06:32 AM   #15
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In many areas the local radiator rebuilder will be very familiar with heat exchangers.

They are quite common on larger equipment.
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Old 10-06-2012, 10:19 AM   #16
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On a different note, I just replaced my aftercooler which was leaking. I viewed ingesting seawater into the cylinders as "no risk allowed."

On a HX, if it can be repaired and tested successfully for less than 60% the new cost, do it. But remember too, 8.2 parts are getting harder to come by, if you can find new ones maybe you should go that route.
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