I took out the water pump on my 22 Center Door because the bearing had seized on the pulley and the belt kept coming off. Everyone said T's don't need water pumps. Now, it gets pretty hot and occasionally sprays antifreeze at the windshield. Was everybody wrong? Should I repair or replace the water pump? The radiator was checked and is in excellent shape.
Thanks for any help
Maybe overfilling radiator? Should fill just to cover tubes. Also check fins, if they are loose on the tubes then no amount of cleaning will help it cool. KGB
I think that last part in Keith's comment is your likely culprit. The radiator may be clean and pristine inside, but if you are getting separation between your fins and the tubes you are not getting enough surface area coverage to disperse heat out fast enough.
I thought you were suppose to fill it up to the ford on the radiator shroud.
I was always taught by my grandfather to fill to the two "eye holes" as he calls him. The two quarter sized holes in the top of the radiator, fill so they are just obscured from sight. Does this sound right? (Now IM curious if I'm underfilling!)
There is supposed to be a gasket on your radiator cap. Water should never spray on your windshield.
Every Model T needs a good radiator and good tires.
I fill to the Ford emblem. Be sure the water is really that high, though. Some radiators have a baffle about the height the water should be and if the baffle is wet, it looks like it is full enough. What I do now, is to jiggle the car when I check the water. A wet baffle will just shine, but water will move around when you jiggle the car.
A water pump works, but if everything else is OK, it tends to run too cold and warm up very slowly. That pump keeps the water going through the radiator all the time even when the engine is cold, but the thermosyphon moves the water according to the difference in temperature between the bottom of the radiator and the top of the engine.
Let's not overlook the other obvious possibilities. Check your timing and fuel mixture. Spark that's too retarded will cause it to overheat as will a fuel mixture that's too lean.
If it is a round tube rad., there will be trouble. Also any rad. that is a bunch of years old suffers from the corroding where the fins are attached to the tubes which insulates and causes heating. A flat tube is the only rad. for serious driving.
Thanks for all the help. I did take it off and had a radiator guy tell me it's good. Maybe I do run with the spark too retarded. I did find that if I advanced it more on hills I got more power. I don't think I have a gasket on the cap.
Also check the overflow tube for clogs. Run a coathanger down it to clear it out. Water level should be about even with the ford emblem on rad.shell.
There is a reason your T had a water pump. It overheats without one. There are two ways to deal with it. The best is to find and correct the problem, likely an old radiator that has lost its efficiency.The other is to fix the water pump or get another one and put it on. If you choose the second you will join untold scores of others who have done the same and continue to enjoy their model T's. Just don't mention it here or you will suffer the wrath of the holy ones who have decreed that water pumps are the spawn of the devil and must be relegated to use as wheel chocks. Their point is this, and it is the truth: water pumps are a band-aid for an underlying problem that should be found and fixed.
I always kind of wondered if water pumps weren't one of those more popular "accessories" that garages and mechanics sold to car owners as a preventative for potential over-heating issues. Today we might consider it as a "revenue enhancer". I have just seen too many cars that have good original radiators, but the engines are sporting all varieties of water pumps to conclude otherwise.
At highway speed, I drive mine at full advance. this is on magneto, so there are only 3-4 positions. On hills, I sometime RETARD it for more power. Kinda depends on how steep. If it helps, I leave it there, but if it has less power, I advance it back to where it was. I'm betting you have a timing issue. Run further advanced. Unless you get detonation, it won't hurt anything.
I love my water pump....Jerry
You didn't over heat with the pump so I question how far off your timing is. Not much I'm betting. My '23 had a pump installed by the former owner. He claimed it cured his over heating in parades problem. I mention this because it cured the overheating (so he said). Masking something else ? I guess it did. I left it on as the car ran fine with it. You have something else wrong aside from possibly over filling. A good flush is in order for starters.
Don't forget the thermostat!
Of course the engine didn't have a thermostat originally, because the thermo-syphon system is self-regulating.
But, as stated above, a water pump (usually installed as a Band-Aid for some other problem) made the engine warm up too slowly. So, folks would install a thermostat, to keep the water from circulating until the engine warmed up. Now, without the water pump, it severely restricts the water flow, and will add to overheating.
It would be located where the upper water hose neck bolts to the head.
If there's one there, toss it to the same place the pump went.
Thanks everyone. I'll try everything and see what works. I don't think my timing is too far off and I will run with the advance at full. I run on mag all the time. I had read that I should retard the advance going up hill and I thought that was helpful, but the car runs pretty much the same no matter how I screw it up.
One of my T fords overheated all the time with a freshly rebuilt engine and a new radiator.
When I put on a Gates fan belt it never overheated and never lost water again.
I have never owned a T with a water pump.
Jenell, I didn't see anywhere that you mentioned if your radiator is a flat or round tube. A flat tube radiator is hands down better than a round tube one. I have used both, and I can't make either of my T's overheat with the flat tube, and believe me, I have tested them! Both radiators are old aftermarket replacements that were made long ago, not new ones. JMHO Dave
Forgot to say, no waterpumps either. Dave
I live in Florida and often drive in 90 deg weather. No water pumps on any of my 4 T's. I have flat core fins and Z heads. The hottest it gets is to middle of circle on temp gauge on long stop lights in the summer. On Ocala Tour it never got to circle.
All you guys are filling water to about the same place. There are many ways to measure it. For you hair splitters, I want to know if it is to the bottom or top of the FORD the you fill the water to?
Here we are at 107 degrees in a July 4th parade a few years ago. No overheating, except the '28 Chevrolet that was in front of me for the drive.
This is when I lived in Tucson It was 110 degrees when I got to the Hooters car show. Had a great time, and no sign of overheating. No water pump needed.
Here we are at Freddy's in Pflugerville, TX in 2014. It was 104 degrees, and a 40 mile round trip from my house to the show and back. Again, no water pump, and no problems, and not any overheating.
Every Model T needs good tires and a good radiator.
Water pumps rule! I appreciate discussions like these. Members of the group have no problem with altering the ignition - etimer, distributor, out board magneto.. Discuss a water pump and discussions dark turn negative and against the water pump.
Royce- I just sent you a PM. I have a question about the above parade photo.
David, I hate to be stupid, but I don't know if it's flat tube or round tube. I used the manual to remove it and took it to a radiator guy who said it was in good shape. I got the correct parts and gaskets I needed and put it back together. I've been driving with the advance more advanced now and it's been better- not spitting at me. Yesterday it didn't seem to get above the black line/circle on the cap - even after a lot of pretty big hills- until I pulled in the garage and shut it off. I looked and it inched up towards the top of the circle on the cap.
Looks like you've got it taken care of. Go have fun now!
Experienced some overheating on this tour... I can tell you, it was HOT.
Jerry, my advice to you would be to let it cool down some before you touch it..... and then you should use extreme care....... Those models tend to operate at a much higher temperature than the other ones........
Types of Model T radiators:
Flat tube with fins
Flat tube with honeycomb
Round tube radiators are for show cars that need original style parts. For a driver, I would only use flat tube.
Yes, the T's along with the crowd "overheated"!