Page 1/2  >  >>
User Rank
Plastics On Car Engines
RonChownyk   11/22/2011 4:32:36 PM
Plastic parts on engines are a bad idea all the way around.  They just can't withstand the temperatures, chemicals, vibration, etc.  Funny, I've never seen an aluminum intake manifold start crumbling away.  OK, I'll admit to seeing aluminum thermostat housings corrode, but only on poorly-maintained cars with leaking radiator hoses.  And a t-stat housing is certainly a lot less than $300.

In 2009 we were left stranded 75 miles from home by our 2004 Chevy Aveo when the PLASTIC thermostat housing broke clean off.  Suddenly coolant was spraying out from under the hood.  There was no quick roadside fix, and it had to be towed home.  To add insult to injury, the thermostat and housing are one complete unit which is a dealer-only part.  Of course, it took a week to arrive as well.  Luckily it only cost around $25 - and we were really lucky, because the dealer told me that the part number was being changed, as well as the price - to $58.


User Rank
Critic   8/4/2011 4:10:08 PM
The intake manifold is a $300 part.  This is not much money to have to spend to repair a 10-year-old car.  Stop whining!  Keep in mind, also, that you could probably convince Ford to provide a free replacement manifold, because it is a known defect.

User Rank
Crumbled Plastic Manifold...
pcushion141   7/28/2011 6:53:23 AM
The same had happened to me a few years back with a 1993 Oldsmobile Eighty-Eight with the 3.8L-V6... I was too far from home but able to get to work and call the tow-truck... The mechanic did the same prcedure and as far as I know, it is still that way today.

User Rank
Re: Plastic Intake manifold
fire-iron.biz   7/28/2011 5:27:19 AM
Having spent many years associated with fleet vehicles, this type of problem with molded plastic/rubber parts is not all that uncommon no matter of brand.  As to the comment on the vehicle being "ten years old", I have seen molded and other part failures at all ages, including before the vehicle even left the dealer's lot.  Age should not be an issue with vehicles, apply the same cost per hour of use evaluation to vehicles as is done with industrial equipment and the industrial equipment manufacturer would never make a sale.  Few consider a vehicle to have a lifespan exceeding 200,000 miles or roughly 4,000 hours which is less than six months for a piece of industrial machinery.  If one wishes to make excuses for EPA mandates or whatever as to why vehicles are not manufactured to higher quality, use-efficiency standards, why is the same not equally applied in all industries?  If such were really the case, why then are the auto manufactures not taking these issues directly to the consumers who are in control of who gets elected to political office?  The problems with the automotive industry do not lie anywhere except with the industry itself.

Sawmill Engineer
User Rank
Sawmill Engineer   7/27/2011 12:40:49 PM
I'm still scratching my head ---when I throw a few tools into my pickup to do a roadside repair, I don't usually take taps and pipe fittings.  That comes with the second or third trip home to get the left-handed monkey wrench, taps and the like!!

You're a good man to be able to take just the right items!!



TJ McDermott
User Rank
Design for maintainability
TJ McDermott   7/25/2011 10:24:29 PM
If you had to tap the manifold, then it wasn't made for maintainability.  More screw fasteners, threaded fittings please!  Less disposable products.

User Rank
Bad design or bad part
Tim   7/25/2011 9:19:39 PM
It is possible that your manifold was not a design flaw and was just an unfortunate bad part that was supplied to Ford.  I would imagine that if it was nylon, it was probably glass filled for better rigidity.  If you have a short shot at the end of fill for glass filled nylon, you lose the nylon and just have glass at the end of fill.  Over time this short can weaken and crumble. 

Dave Palmer
User Rank
Re: Plastic Intake manifold
Dave Palmer   7/25/2011 6:41:15 PM
Were there any zinc or brass parts in contact with the nylon intake manifold? Nylon is well-known for its chemical resistance.  However, there are a few chemicals which are incompatible with nylon.  One of them is zinc chloride.  Unfortunately, this forms as a corrosion product when zinc is exposed to chlorides (e.g. salt).  Nylon will "crumble" if it is exposed to this corrosion product.  Just a thought.

User Rank
Plastic Intake manifold
BobGroh   7/25/2011 4:52:15 PM
Truly a bit of bad 'luck' but the car is over 10 years old - just another investment in an older car! On the positive side, you will have the exquisite fun of either replacing the manifold yourself or paying somone to do so. See - a learning experience!

If you do a web search on this, you will find out you are not alone in this problem and that there was a legal settlement back in 2005 on exactly this problem. The plastic manifold was used on the 4.6L engine from 1996 until it was replaced (with an aluminum manifold) in 2002.

I'm sure there was a lot of work done to validate the design but, hey, stuff happens and the real world can be somewhat unpredictable.


David McCollum
User Rank
Manifold repair
David McCollum   7/25/2011 12:43:56 PM
Curiosity overwhelms me. . .if you could tap the manifold and repair the issue with a simple plimbing fitting, why could the manufacturer not do it? I suspect that injection molded plastic parts are cheaper than those which must be machined, but I still think in terms of what is best over what is cheapest. I get a lot of great repair tips like this one from the Ford Truck forum, and they help me keep the old Aerostar on the road, even with 250,000 miles. There's probably a similar forum for Mustangs.

Page 1/2  >  >>

Partner Zone
Latest Analysis
Advertised as the "Most Powerful Tablet Under $100," the Kindle Fire HD 6 was too tempting for the team at iFixit to pass up. Join us to find out if inexpensive means cheap, irreparable, or just down right economical. It's teardown time!
The first photos made with a 3D-printed telescope are here and they're not as fuzzy as you might expect. A team from the University of Sheffield beat NASA to the goal. The photos of the Moon were made with a reflecting telescope that cost the research team 100 to make (about $161 US).
At Medical Design & Manufacturing Midwest, Joe Wascow told Design News how Optimal Design prototyped a machine that captures the wing-beat of a duck.
The increased adoption of wireless technology for mission-critical applications has revved up the global market for dynamic electronic general purpose (GP) test equipment. As the link between cloud networks and devices -- smartphones, tablets, and notebooks -- results in more complex devices under test, the demand for radio frequency test equipment is starting to intensify.
Much of the research on lithium-ion batteries is focused on how to make the batteries charge more quickly and last longer than they currently do, work that would significantly improve the experience of mobile device users, as well EV and hybrid car drivers. Researchers in Singapore have come up with what seems like the best solution so far -- a battery that can recharge itself in mere minutes and has a potential lifespan of 20 years.
Design News Webinar Series
10/7/2014 8:00 a.m. California / 11:00 a.m. New York
9/25/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
9/10/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
7/23/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
Quick Poll
The Continuing Education Center offers engineers an entirely new way to get the education they need to formulate next-generation solutions.
Oct 20 - 24, How to Design & Build an Embedded Web Server: An Embedded TCP/IP Tutorial
SEMESTERS: 1  |  2  |  3  |  4  |  5  |  6

Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.
Next Class: 10/28-10/30 11:00 AM
Sponsored by Stratasys
Next Class: 10/28-10/30 2:00 PM
Sponsored by Gates Corporation
Next Class: 11/11-11/13 2:00 PM
Sponsored by Littelfuse
Learn More   |   Login   |   Archived Classes
Twitter Feed
Design News Twitter Feed
Like Us on Facebook

Sponsored Content

Technology Marketplace

Copyright © 2014 UBM Canon, A UBM company, All rights reserved. Privacy Policy | Terms of Service