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Old 08-15-2017, 06:39 AM   #1
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Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 124
Idler chirping 6.0 PSD

Hey guys, I'm getting ready to start a decent sized project on my 2006 6.0. I've had what I believe is an idler pulley squeak at start up for a long time. My van has 103,000 miles and has the original serpentine belt too. In addition my electric fan squeals (I believe it's the fan) at high RPM when I'm pulling a trailer up large steep grades.

My plan is to:

Remove radiators and change coolant
Change thermostat
Install Bulletproof 6.0 water pump
Replace electric fan
Replace idler or idlers (how do I know which is bad?)
Replace serpentine belt

Anything I'm missing since I'm here?

Thoughts on the idlers?

I appreciate any ideas.


2006 6.0 PSD
6" Ujoint Offroad Lift
4.56 gears 35x12.5x17 Toyo MT's

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Old 08-15-2017, 07:02 AM   #2
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Water pump...Ford or BPD

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Old 08-15-2017, 07:45 AM   #3
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Location: Flagstaff, AZ
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I second the BPD water pump or one with a metal impeller from Dieselsite. And, the brake vacuum pump . All the same stuff has to come out to get to it and it's not pretty when it fails. Good preventive maintenance. AC2Z-2A451-A.

What coolant are you running? If it's Ford Gold you could consider swapping it out for an CAT1 ELC.
2005 E350 RB 6.0 PSD for extended fun
1989 Landcruiser FJ62 for local fun
2011 VW TDI Golf for hwy fun
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Old 08-15-2017, 07:46 AM   #4
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Location: Colorado Springs, CO
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capnjim, this is just my personal preference but I would recommend all of it. Or at least as much as possible. Which would save you from digging down into the front of the motor over and over. The accessory drive system of a 6.0 is kind of like a timing belt in an OHV motor. Just plan on changing everything after 100K mi or 9 yrs.

If you have the means my preference would be to add these to your list.

- Just change all the Idlers (at 90K mi mine were like old skateboard wheels)
- The complete belt tensioner not just it's idler.
- Vacuum pump if it's original. (it will be staring right at you, not that expensive, easy to change)
- Coolant/Heater hoses if original or chafed. Mainly the one that goes down from the degas bottle. (it will be right there and easy).
- Power Steering Pump if your really ambitious ( Kind of a pain and a little early at 100k mi but again it's right there at that point)

I've done all this on mine and in several tear downs unfortunately. At least on mine the biggest pain is removing the fan/rear shroud assembly. Take your time with that part.

2005 SMB RB 4x4 6.0 PSD
A rocket on the pad is safe,
but it's not what rockets are built for.
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Old 08-15-2017, 08:39 AM   #5
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Thanks guys.

Yes BDP water pump is going in.

I will change the complete idler assembly too (good advice)
I will change vacuum pump and rad hoses as well.

Quick question.

To drain the block do I need to pull both plugs. One side is tough to get at right.

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Old 10-03-2017, 06:48 AM   #6
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Just a quick update.

Got the job done it actually was pretty easy and straightforward.

I would recommend buying the factory service manual, it was helpful.

The one mistake I made was not really cleaning and inspecting the water pump o-ring lip. When I removed the stock water pump a little bit of debris flowed out and settled in the lip compromising the seal. It was frustrating because I had to totally disassemble everything to get back to the pump.

I might have ordered a new rad too. The radiators are pretty crappy IMO.

Oh, buy the tool for fan removal too, it made things much easier.

Ultimately I did:

Idler wheels
Vacuum pump
Bullet Proof water pump
Fan clutch
Radiator hoses

Chirping is gone and all seems good so far.


2006 6.0PSD 6" Ujoint Lift

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