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Old 03-30-2019, 07:33 PM   #1
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Checking fluids and what fluids to top off?

I'm heading out to see Hellen tomorrow. I want to check her fluids and top them off if need be. I've only checked the oil and coolant level before as I don't know where the break, transmission, steering and other mystery fluids are. If anyone has some pictures of their buses fluid reservoir or dipsticks to check they could spam me with it would help as I don't really know what I'm doing.
Hellen is a '96 bluebird TC200 with a 12 liter cummins straight 6, her transmission is an allison at545. Is there any other descriptive jargon I need to know to communicate what bus I'm working with? If anything is low where do I find out the correct type of fluid to fill her up with?
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Old 03-30-2019, 07:39 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by Chess View Post
I'm heading out to see Hellen tomorrow. I want to check her fluids and top them off if need be. I've only checked the oil and coolant level before as I don't know where the break, transmission, steering and other mystery fluids are. If anyone has some pictures of their buses fluid reservoir or dipsticks to check they could spam me with it would help as I don't really know what I'm doing.
Hellen is a '96 bluebird TC200 with a 12 liter cummins straight 6, her transmission is an allison at545. Is there any other descriptive jargon I need to know to communicate what bus I'm working with? If anything is low where do I find out the correct type of fluid to fill her up with?
12 liter? 12 valve?
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Old 03-31-2019, 06:15 AM   #3
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12 liter? 12 valve?
Derp, yeah what you said. 12 Valve. Thanks for correcting my error.
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Old 03-31-2019, 09:30 AM   #4
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I want a 12 liter Cummins for my bus
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Old 03-31-2019, 07:11 PM   #5
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So I think I figured out how to check everything but the brake fluid and the blinker fluid.
Supposedly the brake fluid is in a reservoir behind/under the drivers seat but I could not open up the little black box under the seat? Is there a simple trick to get it opened?
Here were my observations.
Cool engine:
Oil-2 quarts low
ATF at bottom of cold idle line
Coolant appeared in reservoir viewing window, only about one third of the window was filed.
Power steering fluid full.
Hot engine:
Oil at bottom of full line
ATF in the cold idle area but not to the top.
Coolant seemed to be bubbling in side the resivoir
Power steering fluid I did not check again.

Nothing smelled, felt, looked or tasted off, but I don't really know what I'm smelling, feeling, looking or tasting for in a diesel.

Still haven't found that dang blinker fluid too.
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Old 04-01-2019, 02:10 PM   #6
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Location: Fingerlakes region NY
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Year: 1999
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Engine: International DT466E 190HP variant
Rated Cap: 72 pax 29500 GVWR
Engine oil:
should look like deep colored honey if fresh, possibly sooty black in a diesel. Should not smell like carbon (fried chickeny/burnt olive oil smell) and be slippery between your fingers.
Transmission fluid: (check with engine running)
If it’s dyed red then it should be a nice cherry fruit punch color. Shouldn’t smell burnt or feel gritty in your fingers.
Power Steering fluid:
Depending on the fluid used (motor oil vs trans fluid) you’ll see the same as the engine or trans.
Coolant:
Should be a bright red, orange, purple, blue, green, etc. whatever you’ve got in there. If it looks nasty, has a “sheen” on the surface, has a bunch of junk floating in it, or smells any strange (should smell sort is sweet, I associate it with maple syrup) then it might need a flushing.
If it’s bubbling while running you may have some issues.
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Old 04-01-2019, 03:12 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WARGEAR View Post
Engine oil:
should look like deep colored honey if fresh, possibly sooty black in a diesel. Should not smell like carbon (fried chickeny/burnt olive oil smell) and be slippery between your fingers.
Transmission fluid: (check with engine running)
If it’s dyed red then it should be a nice cherry fruit punch color. Shouldn’t smell burnt or feel gritty in your fingers.
Power Steering fluid:
Depending on the fluid used (motor oil vs trans fluid) you’ll see the same as the engine or trans.
Coolant:
Should be a bright red, orange, purple, blue, green, etc. whatever you’ve got in there. If it looks nasty, has a “sheen” on the surface, has a bunch of junk floating in it, or smells any strange (should smell sort is sweet, I associate it with maple syrup) then it might need a flushing.
If it’s bubbling while running you may have some issues.
there could be issues if it is bubbling, but if it's just rolling, it means the thermostat is open and the water pump is doing it's job
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Old 04-01-2019, 03:22 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WARGEAR View Post
Engine oil:
should look like deep colored honey if fresh, possibly sooty black in a diesel. Should not smell like carbon (fried chickeny/burnt olive oil smell) and be slippery between your fingers.
Transmission fluid: (check with engine running)
If it’s dyed red then it should be a nice cherry fruit punch color. Shouldn’t smell burnt or feel gritty in your fingers.
Power Steering fluid:
Depending on the fluid used (motor oil vs trans fluid) you’ll see the same as the engine or trans.
Coolant:
Should be a bright red, orange, purple, blue, green, etc. whatever you’ve got in there. If it looks nasty, has a “sheen” on the surface, has a bunch of junk floating in it, or smells any strange (should smell sort is sweet, I associate it with maple syrup) then it might need a flushing.
If it’s bubbling while running you may have some issues.
I plan on posting some pictures soon but you bssically described the way everything looked and smelled. I was joking about the tasting.
How do I know if it is bubbling or rolling in the viewing window?
The coolant is greenish yellow and smells sweet when I open the cap for the radiator, I can't smell or really see the color through the viewing window.
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Old 04-01-2019, 03:25 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Sleddgracer View Post
there could be issues if it is bubbling, but if it's just rolling, it means the thermostat is open and the water pump is doing it's job
I need to figure out how to post videos on here so I can find out if it is 'rolling' or bubbling as I'm not sure how to look for the difference.
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Old 04-01-2019, 03:41 PM   #10
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Rated Cap: 72 pax 29500 GVWR
Open the cap when the engine is cold. Fire it up and let it idle. Look inside the coolant tank with a light. Does the liquid appear to be bubbling like a hot spring or bubbly like a bowl full of soapy water? Or is it just flowing? The latter is what’s normal. The first option suggests more serious issues.
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