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Duramax Second Generation: 2004.5-2005 (LLY) Discuss the second generation (2004.5-2005 LLY) of the 6.6L Duramax diesel engine & associated components. 2006 LLY engine discussion belongs in Third Generation forum due to the differences of the 2006 LLY and the 2004.5-2005 LLY. Engine related discussion ONLY.

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Old 11-14-2011, 12:03 AM   #1 (permalink)
DirtymaxLLY
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Comment on the Ice Pick Trick

OK. Before anybody gets their feathers ruffled, the ice pick tech tip probably has it's use when you're out in the boonies and are trying to get home with only limited tools and no scanner for diagnosis. Kind of in league with WD-40 and duct tape. That said, let me share my findings before someone else spends more money on the same discovery. Knowing a fair amount about a variety of automotive and motorcycle electrical connectors, I was curious to see just what is being done to the female terminal of the injector harness connector by shoving an ice pick through it. So, rather than using my truck as a test rat, I bought four connectors from RockAuto.com. Chevy wanted $70 each, Rock Auto wanted $20 ( I never buy just one). Anyway, looking INTO the wiring harness connector, there are ports above and below the two large slots that receive the blade terminals of the injector. The small ports are to release the terminals from the plastic body of the connector. I inserted a very small pair of tweezers (hospital type) into the ports of each terminal and gently withdrew it from the connector body by pulling the wire. Voila!! The terminal has a lock tab on the top and bottom of the female terminal that "click" when inserted. So, if you jam an ice pick through the connector, as directed, you effectively mangle the female box terminal and likely could never remove it from the plastic connector body. I serviced mine with a small copper brush, CRC electrical spray and dielectric grease for the seals WITHOUT REMOVING THE FEMALE TERMINAL. A Q-Tip and some CRC worked to clean the injector cavity terminals. If you are getting injector "rattle", but do not get codes P0201 through P0208, the injectors are providing continuity and load verification to satisfy the computer. This doesn't mean they're discharging fuel properly, as was the case with my engine, and could only be pinpointed with the Tech2 scanner. If you want to see what an electrically failed injector does to engine operation, carefully disconnect #7 as it is the easiest to get to. Your engine will barely run with no power and lots of smoke if you increase throttle, because it's only running on one bank. You will get codes P0207 and P2146, which will lock in and have to be cleared. I read lots of forums looking for a simple cheap cure, but I just wasted two days. Chevy scanned it through the OBDII port for $100, found #8 cylinder missing and the fuel balance way off the mark. Replaced #8 injector and problem solved. In closing, I only posted this to save someone else a big expense and from wasting time. The axiom is, "We learn from bad experiences, other people's, if we're smart."

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Old 11-14-2011, 02:37 AM   #2 (permalink)
jake111
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In early 2007 I became aware that the LLY had a mysterious, unexplained problem where it would barely run. I was a few months away from driving to Alaska, which included places where you are a 100 miles from anything, and another vehicle is sometimes rare. By then I had learned of other LLY potential problems, all of which you could head off (harness over FICM/alternator bracket, large CAT fuel filter / Nicktane, etc.). But then people reported getting stranded in Baja or down a forest road . . . not good.

The only solution was to find a dealer and a new wiring harness. #2/#7 were notorious and GM provided a kit to splice new connectors. Neither of these sounded too good or easy to do . . . in Baja, a forest road, British Columbia, Alaska, or most places.

I was VERY concerned. Then came the Ice Pick method and an explanation that the injector connectors had a problem. I bought a scanner and got a sharp pointy tool. R-E-L-I-E-F ! ! ! I could sleep at night. I could drive with confidence.

I've never had to mess with my injector connectors. I've always suspected (1) a poor design that allows the connection to become loose and (2) corrosion. Since I live in Southern California (not right on the coast), it's usually dry, we don't have snow and salt, and things just don't corrode. My truck is over 7 years old and the underbelly is almost completely rust-free (just a little surface rust on some parts GM didn't paint or coat).

I think everyone should welcome your investigation and findings. Thank you for sharing ! ! ! If I understood what you are suggesting, an alternative is to simply clean the connector for a better connection, and apply dielectric grease to prevent corrosion. Sounds good.

I'm still suspicious that the connector could become loose from age/vibration and still needs to be tightened. Besides piercing with the ice pick, I've heard of others who "tightened" the connection by (1) using pliers or vise-grips to slightly squish the connector, or (2) shoving a small piece of aluminum foil in the connector.

Thanks again ! ! And thanks to those to came up with the Ice Pick solution ! ! !

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Old 11-14-2011, 11:22 AM   #3 (permalink)
DirtymaxLLY
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jake111 - Glad the pick trick worked for you, but unless I'm totally wrong you'll play Hell getting the metal female box terminal out of the plastic injector connector body as it is intended to be released. I held back a bit of info because my last epistle was getting a bit lengthly and I was afraid of putting people to sleep, drowning in details. However, to clean and tighten the female box connector I also used a slightly modified dentist's pick like is used to scrape placque from teeth. The tip was broken off so I just shortened it leaving about 1/16" of a hook and angle sharpened the sides. Kind of looks like a linoleum knife blade, but blunt. Put this about halfway into the release ports and rotated it until I could see the terminal contacts move toward the blade slot. Then used it to scrape the contact areas of the female terminal through the blade slot. A last blast of CRC, a little dielectric grease on the silicone gasket, and it snapped back into the injector cavity with a little resistance (a good thing). If you ever need to replace a connector with a repair pigtail, go online to RockAuto.com. The GM/Delco part number is PT2183. One is a "genuine GM part" and the other is a generic. Buy the generic. The wire leads are about 4" long and should be sufficient to take any strain off a too-short harness lead, which was a listed GM bulletin issue (#2 & #7 injectors). Still have to find the female box terminals without leads. Hate splices, but there's times you have to. I grew up in the desert of So. Cal., so I know all about sand intrusion and off-roading Vs ocean and seawater. Moved back to the Northwest, but on the arid side toward Idaho, so not much rain. Really didn't want to buy a diesel, but my restored 1973 F250 just didn't end up with the required torque to tow our trailer. That's all for now. Sorry there's no good way to give a Reader's Digest version of this issue without leaving a lot to intuit.
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Old 11-14-2011, 11:42 AM   #4 (permalink)
1953drtelco
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Great info thanks.....
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Old 11-14-2011, 11:57 AM   #5 (permalink)
Diesel Wanna Be
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Dirtymax, could you provide some photos of your research?
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Old 11-14-2011, 01:33 PM   #6 (permalink)
DRCook
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where did you get the little brush, and what size did you use ?

thanks!
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2004.5 Sport Red Metallic Crewcab Shortbox 4x4 LLY ARE Truckcap/Bedrug liner Bilsteins Hellwigs front and back, LBZ mouthpiece + entire 06 intake, nbr 2 and 7 wiring harness. Racor auxiliary fuel filter, Engineer837 auxilliary radiator, Earl's tranny cooler, fender vents, Banks intercooler & Speedbrake, Merchant Automotive transfer case pump rub fix
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Old 11-14-2011, 04:46 PM   #7 (permalink)
DirtymaxLLY
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Diesel Wanna Be and DRCook - To save space I'll address you both. The small copper brush was my dad's and I have absolutely no idea where he got it. Go to your local gun repair shop and see what they have. It should look like a pencil with a straight bristle brush where the eraser would normally be. Another source might be an office machine service store that maintains copiers and typewriters. Otherwise, just get an acid flux brush that's used for soldering. Harbor Freight and your local nut-and-bolt store should have them. Really, unless the connector has water trapped in it, they don't get all that cruddy. The CRC electrical component spray does most of the work. And always make sure it doesn't attack the plastic by testing it on the connector body with a saturated Q-Tip FIRST. Take the silicone gasket off so you don't lose it, BEFORE cleaning. CRC also makes the dielectric grease in a can like Cheez-whiz. You can find both at Schuck's Auto.

As far as photos, I don't have a camera that has real good resolution in macro mode for shooting close-ups. Also, I'm trying to get the part number of just the female box terminals, so a repair can be made without splices or having to buy the whole connector assembly. If I can take a good set of photos, I'll post them on the forum. Don't hold your breath, this might take a while.
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Old 11-14-2011, 07:09 PM   #8 (permalink)
DRCook
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Ah, I thought you used one of the little tiny twisted wire "tube brushes" to actually get inside the connector and brush off the interior of the female connector components. They make them very small BUT want to sell them by the box, usually in the $80.00'ish range.

Never heard of Schuck's Auto. Is that a chain out where you live ?
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2004.5 Sport Red Metallic Crewcab Shortbox 4x4 LLY ARE Truckcap/Bedrug liner Bilsteins Hellwigs front and back, LBZ mouthpiece + entire 06 intake, nbr 2 and 7 wiring harness. Racor auxiliary fuel filter, Engineer837 auxilliary radiator, Earl's tranny cooler, fender vents, Banks intercooler & Speedbrake, Merchant Automotive transfer case pump rub fix

Last edited by DRCook; 11-14-2011 at 07:11 PM.
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Old 11-14-2011, 08:34 PM   #9 (permalink)
DirtymaxLLY
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DRCook - It is an old chain that started in the Seattle area, but has been bought out by O'Reilly Auto Parts. It's part of Kragen and a couple of others. Anyway, I think the CRC products can be had at Walmart too. You might even try NAPA. A rifle bore brush wouldn't be small enough to get into the connector openings unless it was reeeeeally tiny. Like I said earlier, these are Weather pack type connectors with silicone seals where the wires come out and where they mate with the injector cavity. The main idea is to get them very clean and dry, lightly lube the seals and the bore of the injector cavity, and make sure they fit snugly with an audible click. The best thing you can do from there is leave them alone unless it's absolutely necessary to remove them. Don't leave an unplugged connector unprotected. Ziplock snack-size bags and some tape work great. I probably sound like a fanatic, but you can't imagine how many hours of cleaning could have been saved with a little preventive care. My big pet pisser is guys who disconnect A/C systems and don't plug or cap the lines. Then they have the guts to get pissy when they have to replace the silica gel receiver. Oh, well I've beat this to death. Just be thorough and you'll do fine.
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Old 11-14-2011, 11:49 PM   #10 (permalink)
jake111
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DirtymaxLLY View Post
jake111 - Glad the pick trick worked for you . . .
Oh, I haven't used the pick trick yet, I just carry one in the truck.
Quote:
Originally Posted by DirtymaxLLY View Post
. . . . The best thing you can do from there is leave them alone unless it's absolutely necessary to remove them. . . .
Absolutely!! That's why I've just carried the pick so far. Actually, I would be more likely to shove a small piece of aluminum foil up there as a first road-side attempt.

It's good to hear about a way to finesse it. But depending on the situation, a big hammer (I mean a pick) might come in handy.

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