Monday, 27 August 2012

DIY: Test Light

Worthless, but very useful for DIY enthusiasts especially in wiring. This is my custom made Test Light. 
I use 12-volt bulb, wire and safety pin; easy for me to poked into wrapped wire without cutting or spoilt the wire wraps. 

The function of Test Light is to find the suspected wire. For example, to find ACC/ON wire, tap the terminal A to the metal vehicle body/part (-ve), and terminal B (safety pin) poked into the suspected wire. If the test light's bulb lights ON when you turn the ignition key to ACC/ON position, that it is. You also can use multimeter for this job.
My handmade test light

This is an aftermarket test light 

Monday, 20 August 2012

DIY: Install Defi BF Gauge (Part 3; Vacuum)


Picture 1

Item needed
1. Vacuum Gauge set with T-joint and vacuum hose (supplied)
2. Wire tape
3. Cutter
4. Allen key

Vacuum gauge plays an important role to monitor the "health" of your engine. For the power supply, refer to the WATER TEMPERATURE GAUGE installations above. I just want to talk about the wiring of the vacuum sensor. As an older type of vacuum gauge, the vacuum hose connect directly to the rear of the gauge. But not for this type of gauge. It come with external vacuum sensor where the vacuum hose connect into it and the sensor send signal to the gauge. 

Vacuum Wiring Diagram

Ok, let’s start. There were two cables that belong to this sensor that when we combine it through the male-female connector, it will be one. Sensor cable from the gauge will have two wires in it, that is RED and BLACK, and cable from sensor will have three wires that is WHITE, BLACK; connect it as picture 3 below or just follow the male-female coupling. Another wire from sensor is RED, connect it to key "ON" (refer to vacuum's wiring diagram). This is a power supply for the sensor. Another end of the pink colored socket (refer picture 2) connect to the vacuum sensor. Place the vacuum sensor away from heat and water.
For vacuum source, you can find it somewhere near the throttle body or carburetor. It should be easily find as it will be black in color, as size as pencil. But not all of that hose can be use, find the most powerful sucking hose. Once you find it, cut it and connect it back by using T-joint as picture 4. Another point of the T-joint connects with the hose that come together with the gauge, to the vacuum sensor. Done!! 
Vacuum gauge reading for "healthy" engine should be between -0.57bar and -0.75bar during idle. My Perodua Kancil's reading is -0.62bar.

Picture 2

Picture 3

Picture 4

DIY: Install Defi BF Gauge (Part 2; Water Temperature)

Picture 1: Water Temp on the right
Item needed
1. Water temperature gauge set (Sensor included in box)
2. Water temperature sensor hose adapter (buy separately, price range RM25-RM35)
3. Teflon tape
4. No.12 wrench (open end)
5. Philip screw driver
6. Cutter
7. Coolant
8. Wire tape
9. Allen key
Follow the wiring instructions as volts gauge HERE if you only have one unit of gauge. But if you have installed Defi BF gauge previously, you just need to use the link power cable (refer picture below) provided in the package and plug it into the first gauge and another end to the 2nd gauge. There's no need to do another wiring for power supply for second, third, fourth and so on.

Picture 2: Link and main power cable
 I think there should be no problem with the gauge mounting process, very simple. Just take a look for a few seconds, and then you know what to do. So we proceed to the next step, searching for a hole at the engine bay firewall to give way to the sensor wire because water temperature sensor will be mounted at the coolant radiator hose. Next, drain the coolant by removing the draining screw (it looks like a Mickey Mouse ear) that located somewhere at the bottom of the radiator. Refer picture below, circled in red.

Picture 3
 Cut the upper coolant hose to the radiator, and connect the water temperature sensor hose adapter into the hose that has been cut. Clamp it tight on left and right with the clamps that come with the adapter. Then wrap the water temp sensor threads with 2/3 rounds Teflon tape to avoid the coolant leaking. Use wrench no.12 to tighten the sensor to the adapter.

Picture 4: Water Temperature Sensor Hose Adapter

Picture 5: After Sensor  Installation complete
Please take note here that if the sensor only have one wire ( picture 5 above), you need to make grounding wire on it by connecting a wire to the small screw just next to the sensor's hole, and another end to the vehicle body.
If the sensor comes with two wires (picture 6 below) as my new gauge sensor, there's no need to make grounding. For the sensor wiring, white wire of the sensor connect to the red wire to the gauge, black wire of the sensor connect to  black wire to the gauge. Done with that, refill the coolant and check for any leaking. Start the engine for a few minutes before you add some more water into the radiator. It should be work better. Normal operating temperature is around 85-95 degree Celsius.  As for my Perodua Kancil and Perodua Viva I just installed recently, the radiator fan will be automatically ON when the temperature reached 94 degree Celsius.  Done!!

 This is an explanation about the two pictures above; picture no5 & 6. Tips for Perodua Kancil user or any carburetor engine vehicle, you can use the existing coolant temp sensor location. For Perodua Kancil, the coolant temperature sensor for stock in-dash water temp gauge located at the engine head, front side and next to the thermostat housing, it is single wired sensor (refer picture 6, but in this picture, i have changed single wired sensor to a new temp gauge 2-wired sensor). For a better and accurate reading of the water temp, it is recommended to install it there, before the thermostat. So that's why I decide to replace the stock water temp gauge sensor with my new water temp gauge sensor there (2-wired). 
Why I do this?
Because the sensor reading before thermostat is an actual coolant temperature in the engine blocks. I mean current coolant temperature. Just in case if the thermostat fail to open the valve to allow hot coolant flow to the radiator, we can spot it early as the temperature keep rising. But if you install the water temperature sensor to upper coolant hose to radiator, the reading will only be taken just after the thermostat open its valve and hot water flow through the sensor. During the thermostat closed, the sensor only read water temperature in the upper radiator hose itself, not the coolant temperature in the engine block. What happen if the thermostat fail to open the valve, the temperature reading on your gauge will shows normal temperature or slightly low, even though the coolant temperature in the engine block nearly blown your car engine. But in normal situation, when the engine warm enough, the temperature between before and after thermostat not much different because the valve thermostat slightly open that allow coolant flows to the radiator.
Stock water temp gauge sensor I installed it to the adapter, easy to say by swapping the sensor location. If you doing this and you don't want to reuse the stock water temp sensor, it is okey, but the in-dash water temperature gauge will not work. Nothing to worry because you now have a great water temp gauge. But two is better than one am I right? That why I decide to reuse and connect the stock water temp sensor to the adapter.
But, for the electronic fuel injection engine (EFI), this is not recommended. Worried that it will affect the fuel consumptions because existing water temp sensor connect directly to the engine control unit (ECU) that control air-fuel mix.  One of my friend get his Proton Wira's thermostat housing drilled to located the external water temp sensor, and he get the actual water temperature reading inside the engine block. Just make sure to drill it before the thermostat valve from engine. You can try it, but I WILL NOT RESPONSIBLE for any loss or damages to your vehicle.
. That all..

Picture 6
Related topics

Friday, 17 August 2012

DIY: Install Defi BF Gauge (Part 1; Volt)

I just installed this three gauges in my Perodua Kancil; Volt, Water Temperature and Vacuum. Here I want to share with you on how to install them. I'm using Defi BF (Made in Taiwan I think..hehe)  I buy it from a friend of mine that owned a car accessories shop, RM85 each. This gauge has two backgrounds light, white and red, opening and closing ceremony functions. All gauge complete set with metal stand, visor, wiring cable, sensors, hose and T-joint (for vacuum gauge only). Take a look at the pictures below. If anyone interested to buy this gauge, please do not hesitate to email or call me at +60198687669. 

 Picture 1: Volt and Water Temperature

Picture 2; From left: Vaccum, volt and Water Temperature

Picture 3: POWER CABLE

Picture 4: GAUGE REAR VIEW. Both left and right socket can be use for power input or output. Middle is for sensor socket.

Item Needed

1. Volt gauge set (wiring cable included in box)
1. Wire tape
2. Allen key
3. Cutter
Okey, let’s start from Installing VOLT gauge. This is the easiest gauge to install. You just need to follow the wiring diagram below. Make sure you have the wiring kit as shown in picture 3.

Picture 5: Wiring DiagraM
Use power cable supplied with the gauge. There is 4 wires in 1 cable that is Red, Black, white, and Yellow. If the cable provided not long enough to the gauge mounting point, make an extension by using proper wire.
RED connects to the constant 12v positive or from positive battery terminal. If you connect it to key "ON" or "ACC", the closing ceremony function will not work. 
BLACK connects to the chassis or vehicle body, which is negative (-). 
WHITE and YELLOW, you can choose whether you want red color as your gauge background light or white. If you want white as gauge background light, then connect WHITE wire to key "ON", and YELLOW wire to small car light wire. You need a Test Light to find these wire.
So that, whenever you start your car, the background color of the gauge is white, and when you turn on lights, the gauge background color change to red. Recommended white because red colors are not really visible in daylight. 
If you want red as primary color and white as a secondary (at night) background color, just swap the wire.
If no other gauge will be install, let another power socket and middle socket (for sensor) empty as volt gauge did not need sensor to operate.\
Then mount the gauge where you want, and feel it.

DIY: Replace Engine Thermostat & Info

Thermostat plays an important role in maintaining the engine operating temperature as for engine, they need an ideal operating temperature in order for them working efficiently. How thermostats work for that? As the engine cold start, the thermostat valve will be closed, blocking the water flows to the radiator. Only after the engine warm and thermostat sensing the set point temperature, it will open the valve and allows the coolant to flows through the radiator for cooling up by the radiator fan or incoming air. The cooled coolant will be flow back to the engine block. Again, when the thermostat sensing cold coolant, it will close the valve and let the coolant circulate in the engine block until the temperature reached the set point before it open the valve for cooling.

What happen when the thermostat fails?
1.     Fail to open the valve - engine overheating if the thermostat fail to open the valve even though the coolant in the engine block boiling
2.     Fail to close the valve or without thermostat - Coolant will keep on flowing to the radiator and result to the engine fail to reach it ideal operating temperature that will result higher fuel consumption where Engine Control Unit (ECU) will send signal to rich up the fuel mix in order to get ideal temperature. For Vtec and MIVEC engine, low temperature mean that no Vtec/MIVEC. Vtec/MIVEC only function if engine in operating temperature. Beside that that, when cold start it will take time longer than before to warm up.
Alert with that, I decide to reinstall the thermostat with a new one. For five month, my perodua kancil cooling system work without thermostat after the mechanic removes it. He told me that this thing is "useless" after my car overheat because of failure thermostat. 

For this project, you will need
  • New thermostat
  • Thermostat housing gasket or gasket maker
  • scrapper
  • wrench no 12
  • New coolant
  • rack
I bought this thermostat with 82 degrees Celsius; RM45.00

Perodua Kancil Thermostat

First, drain the coolant. Draining point can be found below the radiator, refer picture below, with "mickey mouse ear" screw.

Draining screw in circle.

Draining  screw. Looks like "Mickey Mouse Ear"

Remove upper hose side at both sides; engine and radiator. For extra space, you can also remove distributor cover. 

Remove hose clamp as pointed in red arrow. You can also remove the distributor cover 

Using wrench no 12, remove two bolt of the thermostat housing. Clean it up with water.

Left: Thermostat housing, Right: Thermostat

Thermostat hole at the engine block

I forgot to buy the thermostat housing gasket, but luckily I have this; Gasket Maker

Black in color Gasket Maker
Install the thermostat like this.

Place the gasket maker around the surface that will be linked to engine block.

I have to wait for 10 minutes before the thermostat can be assembled, as per directions given by the Gasket Maker manufacturer. If you using paper gasket, you can assemble it instantly. Tighten the bolt and reattach the radiator hose and distributor cover. Refill the radiator with coolant start engine and checks for any leaking. Add some more coolant in the radiator until it full. Done!

Click HERE on how to check the thermostat

Thursday, 16 August 2012

DIY: How To Check Engine Thermostat

Thermostat must be checked regularly to make sure it work properly. Thermostat can be malfunction after years by years depending on the cooling system condition. Some people do flush and service the radiator twice a year and the thermostat should be last longer. Debris and rust are the main factor that cause jammed thermostat.

Here I want to show you on how to test the thermostat.  This is a new thermostat for my Perodua Kancil, marked with 82 degrees C on it.
Perodua Kancil Thermostat 82 degrees Celsius 
The thermostat valve is close when cold.  Put it into the pan filled with water and start boiling it on the stove. If you have cooking thermometer drop it there so you can see at what temperature the valve open. I don’t have thermometer so I can’t show you that, very sorry guys.
Boil it in pan filled with water
When the water starts boiling, the valve slowly opens. Its mean that, the thermostat in good conditions. If the thermostat did not open or keep open, replace it as soon as possible. Click HERE on how to replace thermostat. Don’t just because of this small and couple of bucks part you lost thousands of Ringgit.  Look at picture below, before and after.
Before: Thermostat's valve closed when cold
After: Thermostat's valve open after heated

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