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Cypress Offroad

 My Jeep - Engine Rebuild

March 2002

My Fault, blew up my engine at the creek. Learn from my mistakes.

Don't go in the water until you check it out first and if you do go real real slow.

First Time Out in EW2.

I went to the creek and was Crossing without checking first or seeing somebody else cross, but I had been across this creek 50 times in my stock TJ. I hit a steep drop off in the sand. The creek is soft sand and it can change with the currents easily. You can kind of see how the water is darker where I'm sitting in the picture above. The water was under my doors when I stopped, but that was because I rolled down the little drop off. The water surged and the front end tipped and my Jeep took a big gulp and stopped dead in his tracks. In my defense the YJ has an air intake which is much lower than the TJ's. It is under the driver's side headlight, and I just found out the hard way.

So here's what I did. I was pulled out of the water by the guy who lives by the creek after about 15 minutes of sitting. Because I went by myself, I was lucky to have people where I was crossing. Always go with a buddy. Once on the shore I let my jeep drain and I pulled my sopping wet air filter. Major Clue. After it sat for a while I tried to start it. It sounded like I was tearing the heck out of the bendix it wasn't turning my engine over.  My hopes were to force the water back out little by little. I shouldn't have done this. Water doesn't compress and you will at minimal blow your gaskets. It didn't seem to turn the engine over but a tiny turn is some major compression. Bring tools, If I had them in my Jeep I could of pulled the plugs on the beach.

Another Jeeper offered to tow me back to the road. He went up a pretty good obstacle while towing me. I was impressed, and with stock 4 banger YJ. Wish I got his name. I know I'd recognize the back end of his Jeep. :)

Back at the road I took out the spark plugs and turned the engine over. Water spewed out, to put it gently. I replaced the air filter and tried to dry up the intake as much as I could. Put the spark plugs back in and got it started. White Smoke poured from the exhaust. The engine seemed to be wanting to die and sputter but it kept running. I drove it about a mile and it died and I elected to get towed home, which is only another mile or so. (easily done with a tow rope)

When I got home I drained the oil replaced the sparkplugs, distributor cap, rotor, oil filter, and towel dried all my intake area. I replaced the oil ran it for awhile and drained it again. I could get it to run pretty good, but it still blew some smoke. Then I realized that I didn't have any water in my radiator. Upon adding, major white smoke.
Engine-Work-001.jpg (79110 bytes)
Click to Enlarge
I towed it to A-shop Automotive and the diagnosis began. Turns out I had blown my headgasket out one side and there was a crack in my block between the 4th and 5th piston. You can see in the picture where it is obvious that I blew the gasket at the 5th piston. I never got a good picture of the crack but it was about 3" long and between 4 and 5, also. It was an expensive lesson that'll never happen again.

Al and Robert at
A-shop did a great Job putting the new engine in my Jeep and now it runs like a top.

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