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fartness
computersoc dot com
Premium
join:2003-03-25
Look Outside

Wet air filter?

2001 Ford Ranger XLT 2.5L engine.

I just checked my air filter that I put in last week and it's wet with water. Any idea why?

It rained yesterday and sprinkled today, but I didn't think that should make it wet.

I also see water dripping onto the ground from above the passenger side front wheel well from some plastic piece. It's dark out so I can't get a good picture. I did not have the AC on. It's no where near the air filter.

I also saw condensation on the black circle thing that is north west of where I fill the washer fluid.

I am 100% sure both instances are water. It's clear and has no smell.

I just put in a dry air filter. When the one I had in there dries, can I still use it?


ObdH
Premium
join:2003-06-11
Abilene, TX
you can still use it but you need to check that the box is water tight, and that all hose clamps leading to it are tight and hoses are affixed properly... are you sure it's not oil?
--
I got it one piece at a time, and it didn't cost me a dime!


fartness
computersoc dot com
Premium
join:2003-03-25
Look Outside
reply to fartness
Yes, it's water. Had a shop check it out and they don't see anything wrong. Could a car wash cause this problem too? Had one done a few days before it rained.


mattmag
Premium,ExMod 2000-03
join:2000-04-09
NW Illinois
kudos:3


Yes to the car wash. They are famous for getting water into places that will never get wet any other way.


fartness
computersoc dot com
Premium
join:2003-03-25
Look Outside
What should I do? Especially since I need car washes in the winter due to salt.

Also, if I open the hood, I can look down and see the ground through everything. On my new car, there's a cover. Should I buy a cover for this so underspray doesn't hit the engine?


ObdH
Premium
join:2003-06-11
Abilene, TX
avoid pulling the trigger near panel gaps


fartness
computersoc dot com
Premium
join:2003-03-25
Look Outside
I went to an automated one that they put you on the conveyor belt.

I sometimes wash my own, mostly in the summer.


mattmag
Premium,ExMod 2000-03
join:2000-04-09
NW Illinois
kudos:3
reply to fartness


Where does the air supply originate? Could you post some pics of the air path?

Beezel

join:2008-12-15
Las Vegas, NV
reply to fartness
I have seen Ford E-series vans go through a automated car wash with the blower motor running full blast and next you see soap foam blowing out of the air vents.

Kearnstd
Space Elf
Premium
join:2002-01-22
Mullica Hill, NJ
kudos:1
said by Beezel:

I have seen Ford E-series vans go through a automated car wash with the blower motor running full blast and next you see soap foam blowing out of the air vents.

Hah, But it is a direct air flow. I had my defrost going on my S10 pickup when I had one and started clearing snow before the engine even got beyond cold and found snow on the dash.

Side note is that because of that easy air flow is why if the AC smells funny like mildew you can crank the fan to high and spray in lysol and save the money from the more expensive having the system pulled apart by a mechanic.
--
[65 Arcanist]Filan(High Elf) Zone: Broadband Reports


fartness
computersoc dot com
Premium
join:2003-03-25
Look Outside
reply to mattmag
Truck is in the shop right now for brake issues, it originates below the passenger side headlamp but above the bumper. Shop checked everything out and said the system is fine, and there isn't a reason water should have gotten in.

It will rain this week, so I'll see if it's wet. I'll then throw in the old filter and get a car wash if it wasn't wet, and see if the wash makes it wet.


TheHarvester
Premium
join:2006-08-25
Dana Point, CA
kudos:3

1 edit
reply to fartness
If it is just a "stock" type of filter, I don't think I would want to use it. Most filters are made of paper and water will damage paper. Even after it does dry out, it could still be damaged and have holes in the paper or weak spots that could break off. If it were mine, I would use it for your tests but then it would head for the trash. Air filters are to cheap to risk damaging your engine and/or mass airflow sensor.

(EDIT bold = to fix some phone posting screw ups)
--
mbsastronomy.com

Tig

join:2006-06-29
Carrying Place, ON
Reviews:
·voip.ms

3 edits
reply to fartness
Was there water in the bottom of the air box? If so, clean the air box out carefully, I believe there should be a small drain hole in the bottom. It may be plugged.
I have an 08 ranger 4.0 and the air box setup sounds identical. Last summer when I changed the air filter I found the air box packed with seeds. I cleaned the stash out and installed a squirrel proof 1cm mesh at the inlet.

Edit: I just went out and had a look, there is a drain hole about a cm from the corner nearest the engine and driver. It's about 3 mm. Any water that gets in should run out there before it becomes a problem.


fartness
computersoc dot com
Premium
join:2003-03-25
Look Outside
I had no water in the box.


mattmag
Premium,ExMod 2000-03
join:2000-04-09
NW Illinois
kudos:3


Was the truck running as you went through the automatic wash?


fartness
computersoc dot com
Premium
join:2003-03-25
Look Outside
Yes, should I have turned it off? It's a conveyor belt and they tell you to put the vehicle in neutral.


mattmag
Premium,ExMod 2000-03
join:2000-04-09
NW Illinois
kudos:3

That's about the only explanation left, is that the truck was running and the airflow was sufficient to pull the water spray in along with it. Just depending on how that particular car wash is set up; where the spray concentrates, how your truck was positioned and on and on, many variables in place there. It may not even happen the next time you go, but I'd say to be safe shut it off.


jrs8084
Premium
join:2002-03-02
Statesville, NC
kudos:1
Reviews:
·AT&T U-Verse
Somewhat OT: Mattmag: in your experience, have you ever run across a car (well, motor) that has hydrolocked from a car wash?

I guess I could go ask-Autec build car washes in the next building over. You see them loading them on flatbed trucks. They filmed a how its made their one time using their beta test wash they have in front of the plant.


mattmag
Premium,ExMod 2000-03
join:2000-04-09
NW Illinois
kudos:3
Never one that locked, but a few that died and would not start without some hands-on intervention. Mind you, this was in the day of distributor caps, points and rotors, which most people after hearing such words simply give me a blank stare....

There were a few in the electronic ignition era as well, but most of those generally revealed some shortcoming in the system, like a bad plug wire that would cause a temporary misfire until the engine dried.

telco_mtl

join:2012-01-06
reply to fartness
I have an 05 B4000 same truck as the ranger, just had a look, the air intake is pretty big right behind the headlight, i can see if you are at a high pressure automated car wash water would get in if the engine is running. The grill openings are fairly big on our trucks and water will get quite vaporized on impact and easily sucked in. On the other hand the drain holes in the air box are fairly big so any sitting water would run out.