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Author Topic: HOW2: Changing the V6 Oil Cooler  (Read 13273 times)

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JamesV6CDX

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HOW2: Changing the V6 Oil Cooler
« on: 10 September 2008, 22:25:08 »

V6 Oil cooler replacement

Are you experiencing goo in your coolant tank? If so, it's unlikely to be the head gasket, as many garages often mis-diagnose. The oil cooler, which sits in the "V" of the engine, is the usual culprit. Usually, it corrodes as a result of bad coolant (poor servicing) and dumps engine oil directly into the cooling system.

If I can give one peice of advice - catch it early. Have a peek in the coolant tank when you do your weekly checks (which I am sure you all do religiously ;) ) and look for signs of oil. If caught early it causes no problems - but if it gunks up the cooling system, it can mean a lot of flushing!

The procedure to change the cooler is as follows:

Raise the car safely, and remove the oil filter. On early models it's a spin on filter - later ones is a cartridge - in which case undo the cap and remove it with an alen key. You will then be faced with this:



Undo the 2 unions in the picture, with a 19mm crows foot socket. Dead cheap to buy.

Then lower the car again for access.

Working now in the engine bay, remove the air intake plenum, which is detailed in this guide:

http://www.omegaowners.com/forum/index.php?topic=90657.0

Once off, you will be faced with the top part of the air inlet:



You need to remove this for access, so unplug the multiplug at the back that leads to the injectors, and undo the fuel line unions (17mm and 19mm). Then remove the 6 E12 torx bolts (3 per side) holding this on. Once all bolts are loosened (you'll need an extension bar) tease the inlet out. Get the right angle and it comes out with no force.

You'll then see the black "inlet bridge" held in by a load of E12 torx bolts again. Remove all of these bolts, and pull out the bridge. Like so:



Nearly there. Now undo the Two 22mm union bolts, holding the Coolant bridge across the two cylinder heads. Recover the washers, and get the bridge out of the way, tucked away at the back.

Now you need to undo the Two 22mm bolts holding the oil cooler pipes to the cooler. Remove these - again recover the washers (above and below) and pop the pipes out of the way, like so:



Now you need to separate the oil cooler itself from the oil cooler plate, so as it can be removed from the engine.

Using a 30mm socket on an extension bar, remove the 2 30mm nuts that you will see on top of the cooler plate. On an old cooler these famously break - but don't worry, you are replacing it!

All of the above can be seen in this picture (I will add labels soon)



Now you are ready to remove the oil cooler plate. To do this - undo all of the bolts around the edge of the oil cooler plate, using an E12 socket and an extension bar.

You can now lift the plate away:



And remove the oil cooler:



You now need to have a damn good cleanup all around the mating face on the engine, for the new plate to sit on.

Make sure all mating surfaces are clean and dry.

Once this is the case, offer up the new oil cooler into the recess in the engine, the same way you removed it. Before you put this in, ensure the two rubber O rings are in place on the oil cooler - where it will meet the bottom of the cooler plate.

A gasket is not needed for the oil cooler plate - just sealant. You must use vauxhall grey sealant for this, nothing else will do. Smear the sealant all around the new plate - don't use too much, but, ensure it's all well covered too. Then offer up the cooler plate to the engine, on top of the oil cooler you have just put in the recess. You will need to pull the cooler upwards so as to get the threads for the oil pipes through the cooler plate, and secure them with the nuts. A trick for doing this is to put one of the union bolts into the new cooler by hand, pull up on that - and fit the 30mm nut on the other end. It will then stay in place to fit the nuts on both pipes.

With the 30mm nuts hand tight only, torque down the oil cooler plate. Once this is done, torque the 30mm nuts up to 30nm.

You are now ready to refit the oil cooler pipes. Placing a new washer above and below the pipe union, (on the bolt) re-fit the bolts to the cooler so they are loose (by hand only) but the threads are biting. Once you've done this - get back under the car, and fit the oil cooler pipe to block unions, as follows:



Note - removing the crank sensor (1 bolt) makes access much easier.

Tighten these to a sensible level - but don't go silly - strip one, and you're in trouble!

Now working in the engine bay again, tighten the oil cooler pipe to cooler union bolts, again to 30nm.

Re-fit the coolant bridge just as it came off, using new washers as always. (Tip - ensure the temp gauge spade connector is still attached, it has a habit of popping out).

Once you've checked all of this is correct and well, then start fitting the inlet bridge - using the bolts which have some threadlock compound on. You should be able to re-use all the inlet seals, I've never had to replace them.

Once this is on, re-fit the inlet and injector assembly. Ease it in - DO NOT force it. It will go on an angle. Tighten the bolts for this, and re-fit the electrical connector.

Re-connect the fuel lines (17mm and 19mm) to the inlet assembly.

Then you need to it
« Last Edit: 27 September 2011, 08:44:35 by Jimbob »
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JamesV6CDX

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Re: HOW2: Changing the V6 Oil Cooler
« Reply #1 on: 10 September 2008, 22:25:41 »

Points to note:

1) Do this job with a cold engine. Do not re-fill with coolant after doing this job, for 24 hours - and do not be tempted to start the engine in this period. This is so the sealant you used can go off - else it will all be coming apart again! When 24 hrs has elapsed, re-fill with coolant. (5l red antifreeze from Vauxhall, and the rest water).

2) You have just had the cooling system apart, you may get airlocks. When you first start the car, fill with coolant first, set the cabin temps to high, and run the engine without the header tank cap on. Periodically and gently burp the hoses, and check for heat on the matrix hoses at the back. Once it all warms up without any problems, fit the cap.

3) Work safely. Jack and support in the correct manner, your life is at risk. I would recommend anyone attempts this job even if not confident - but, supporting the car is the one thing you MUST ask for help with, if you are not 100%.

4) Only use genuine parts. Pattern seals don't work well and cause more problems than they're worth.

5) If you're car is full of sludge, do LOADS of flushing. You can run the engine (from cold only) with a hose pipe in the header tank, and the bottom radiator drain screw undone, to aid flushing. If it's really bad you'll need a flushing agent - Traffic film remover from Machine Mart works wonders!

6) Have fun - it's actually an enjoyable job :y ;)
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JamesV6CDX

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Re: HOW2: Changing the V6 Oil Cooler
« Reply #2 on: 10 September 2008, 22:34:00 »

Just to add - this is an ideal time to do both Spark plugs, and cam cover gaskets, if they are due. The HBV is also in a very accessible state.
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