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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hello I'm new here on this forum and I'd like to ask a question about diagnosing my 2000 dakota SLT 5.9L. My header pipes get glowing red hot within minutes of starting. I replaced the spark plugs and wires and rotorcap. I did the soapy spray test and see bubbles coming from the 2 middle headers where they meet the manifold AND at the end where all the headers meet near the flange. I took off the headers an replaced the gasket and still see the bubbles so I ordered a remflex gasket to see if that solves my leak from there. But how do I seal the other area near the flange? Its the same on both sides. The red hot pipes are burning up my wires and burned a hole through the bottom of my air filter box. I have to fix this Thank you
 

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Are you getting a check engine light with codes? It sounds like the engine is running very lean (vacuum leaks in the INTAKE manifold or poor fuel delivery). Some small leaks (found only with soapy water) in the exhaust wouldn't make the headers get hot enough to melt nearby wiring and plastic. If you have a scanner, check to see what your fuel trim numbers are. If you don't have a scanner, get with a friend or a mechanic who can help you determine why your engine is running so lean. Don't drive it this way, you'll likely burn up your valves and more running this hot.
 

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What Marine said, it's running super lean and my guess would be it's either picked up a timing issue somewhere or it's not actually firing on all 8 cylinders. As stated there really isn't anyway to diagnose the issue without a scanner to look at what's going on. If it has a miss or it's running really lean is should most definitely have some trouble codes and an engine light. Could also be your CAT being clogged or that one of your upstream o2 sensors (Not sure what that motor uses for a controller or anything tbh) is faulty. An exhaust leak won't cause this problem.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
When I put it on the scanner it said o2 sensors bank 1 sensor 1 and 2 codes so I replaced them but still have the issue. Thats why I did the soap test and I cut out my cat converter thinking that was the issue. I've read about timing issues and I have no idea how to fix that it sound expensive :(
 

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Well simplest things first would just be make sure ignition timing is where it's supposed to be if it's way too retarded before top dead center your EGT's (Exhaust Gas Temperatures) are gonna be insanely high because you're not getting a full burn before the exhaust exits the valves. Cam timing, which I don't think can cause a noticeable difference in exhaust temps before you start see'ing major problem else where in the engine and you'd probably get codes for it being out of sync. Also you gotta make sure youe down stream o2 sensors are still connected to the harness (Sensor 2) and ziptied up to the frame somewhere they are in free air. You shouldn't be see'ing any error codes from the upstream o2 sensors (Sensor 1). If you do still have errors with sensor one and you know it's a good sensor that's pretty indicative that the sensor is correct and you are leaning out on that bank of the engine and means you have a fueling issue.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Well simplest things first would just be make sure ignition timing is where it's supposed to be if it's way too retarded before top dead center your EGT's (Exhaust Gas Temperatures) are gonna be insanely high because you're not getting a full burn before the exhaust exits the valves. Cam timing, which I don't think can cause a noticeable difference in exhaust temps before you start see'ing major problem else where in the engine and you'd probably get codes for it being out of sync. Also you gotta make sure youe down stream o2 sensors are still connected to the harness (Sensor 2) and ziptied up to the frame somewhere they are in free air. You shouldn't be see'ing any error codes from the upstream o2 sensors (Sensor 1). If you do still have errors with sensor one and you know it's a good sensor that's pretty indicative that the sensor is correct and you are leaning out on that bank of the engine and means you have a fueling issue.
Ok im not a mechanic plus im a girl but I do know how to follow directions to a T. So im going to fins a good video about ignition timing. I did change both 02 sensors im going to look at the downstream one to make it as you described. I thank you so much for your input. Sounds like you know your dakotas. Lol im like a sponge soaking everything all in I love my truck!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
What Marine said, it's running super lean and my guess would be it's either picked up a timing issue somewhere or it's not actually firing on all 8 cylinders. As stated there really isn't anyway to diagnose the issue without a scanner to look at what's going on. If it has a miss or it's running really lean is should most definitely have some trouble codes and an engine light. Could also be your CAT being clogged or that one of your upstream o2 sensors (Not sure what that motor uses for a controller or anything tbh) is faulty. An exhaust leak won't cause this problem.
Oh BTW I cut out my cat and replaced it with a bendy pipe. I can hear air coming out when I stick the blower on my tail pipe so im going to seal it better with the copper stuff by permatex and reclamp it.
 

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I also have a 2000 R/T. It has Spintec headers. If you have a primary pipe to header flange leak, the only permanent way is to have that area re-tig welded.
Temporarily you can try a wood stove cement sealant from the hardware store.
You have a lean problem caused by either problematic injectors or a way off fuel sync.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I also have a 2000 R/T. It has Spintec headers. If you have a primary pipe to header flange leak, the only permanent way is to have that area re-tig welded.
Temporarily you can try a wood stove cement sealant from the hardware store.
You have a lean problem caused by either problematic injectors or a way off fuel sync.
Hi I just got my remflex gaskets I can show you a picture of my headers tomorrow. I think it may be both of what your saying. Thank yiu!!
Well simplest things first would just be make sure ignition timing is where it's supposed to be if it's way too retarded before top dead center your EGT's (Exhaust Gas Temperatures) are gonna be insanely high because you're not getting a full burn before the exhaust exits the valves. Cam timing, which I don't think can cause a noticeable difference in exhaust temps before you start see'ing major problem else where in the engine and you'd probably get codes for it being out of sync. Also you gotta make sure youe down stream o2 sensors are still connected to the harness (Sensor 2) and ziptied up to the frame somewhere they are in free air. You shouldn't be see'ing any error codes from the upstream o2 sensors (Sensor 1). If you do still have errors with sensor one and you know it's a good sensor that's pretty indicative that the sensor is correct and you are leaning out on that bank of the engine and means you have a fueling issue.
After I put the gaskets on and back together ill run it for codes again to see what come up. When I had the test the first time it only said sensor 1 bank 1 and 2 weeks later it said sensor 1 bank 1 AND 2! Ugh
 

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Hi I just got my remflex gaskets I can show you a picture of my headers tomorrow. I think it may be both of what your saying. Thank yiu!!

After I put the gaskets on and back together ill run it for codes again to see what come up. When I had the test the first time it only said sensor 1 bank 1 and 2 weeks later it said sensor 1 bank 1 AND 2! Ugh
No numbers? P300-308 are misfire codes. The vehicle can show its own codes with the key-turn thing but not all of them.
Remflex are the best. Only ones I'd use and I have gone thru several including the sub standard ones from Spintec themselves.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
No numbers? P300-308 are misfire codes. The vehicle can show its own codes with the key-turn thing but not all of them.
Remflex are the best. Only ones I'd use and I have gone thru several including the sub standard ones from Spintec themselves.
Thats what I've read as well. I hope for the best but prepared for the worse . Lol ty!
 

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Listen to what tryanide states. Your timing may have dropped out because the computer is leaning out your engine for a reason. It's trying to over compensate for something and that is prolly why running lean.
You took your cats off so maybe its that and the computer doesn't have enough adaptive memory to straighten itself out.. Re-time (and fuel sync) and see if your heat issue goes away.
You need to either fix your flanges or get new headers.
 

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Ay what Arrow said, your long term and short term adaptive are crazy off because of the stock tune and if your sensors are throwing codes your in thermal floor protection and limp home mode so it's trying to compensate for everything when it doesn't know what's going on. Throw some crazy retarded timing at it and you light the candles out your headers. Need to get those sensors working right as in get the down streams (sensors 2) to not throw codes and the upstream (sensors 1) need to be working right no exceptions the motor needs it. A p0420 is a solvable code other than that it's probably a problem. It you have your o2 sensor out and you can hear the heating element rattling it's cooked, bad wires and it's done too. You can test them with a lighter and multimeter.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Thats what I've read as well. I hope for the best but prepared for the worse . Lol ty!
I'm just going by the autozone scanner. Thay said both o2 sensors right now my headers are off my spark plugs out and im changing the thermostat gasket so ill run it again once I put it on
Just out of curisosity, you've never had the distributor out, have you?
No I just changed the cap and rotor and there's only one way to put it back on you can't mess that up.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Listen to what tryanide states. Your timing may have dropped out because the computer is leaning out your engine for a reason. It's trying to over compensate for something and that is prolly why running lean.
You took your cats off so maybe its that and the computer doesn't have enough adaptive memory to straighten itself out.. Re-time (and fuel sync) and see if your heat issue goes away.
You need to either fix your flanges or get new headers.
They were glowing before I even took my cat off thats the reason I took my cat off in the first place. After I did that I started it up and within minutes the 2 middle ones were glowing still. And whats weird is first time I saw it was only the drivers side the next time it was both and one time the red went away on the passenger side and then came back.
 
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