crate hemi problems

Discussion of Hemi crate engines.

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crate hemi problems

Postby dodgeman66 » Fri Sep 19, 2003 7:01 pm

Has anyone had any major problems with their 426 crate hemis made in 2001? I started mine up for the first time about amonth ago and after about five minutes oil seeped out of the head gasket. Cummins sent me a composite gasket to replace the steel and I have ran it about 30 minutes since and it seems ok but Ive heard so many horror stories on these things Im almost afraid to start driving it! And yes it does have alot of valve train noise(I adjusted rockers) and it also had 85-90 lb of oil pressure at idle hot and they sent me a new pump that seems to have fixed that problem also. $10,000 motor and all these problems so far. Its in a 66 dodge charger that likes about two months from being ready for the road. I already wished I had built my own! I think they should at least compensate you for time and trouble! May be my last mopar for awhile!! :(
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Postby MG42pillbox » Sun Sep 21, 2003 1:10 pm

Id rather push a Mopar than drive anything else. You gotta talk to some experts if you run into anything else.
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crate hemi problems

Postby dodgeman66 » Sun Sep 21, 2003 2:55 pm

Yea Ive always had the same loyalty to them but when Ive had problems in the past they have taken care of them. If they would look at how many mopars are in my stable they may think twice! My family and relatives buy dodges on my advice. To me this engine was like buying say a Neon since it was almost as much. This may be the last mopar I push!
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Postby MG42pillbox » Sun Sep 21, 2003 11:02 pm

Id stare at a HEMI Crate than Push a Chevy, That is not a "mainstream" Product.... That crate is for the hard-core enthusiast, Chrysler figures, "Whos ever gonna f*ck with these things is gonna know enough" and or have access to the people or tools that will be able to get it going fine..... On the other hand, if you buy a Chrysler vehicle, They will suck you off for 70K miles
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Postby dodgeman66 » Mon Sep 22, 2003 6:25 am

I know enough to build a hemi but when I bought this THING I was lead on to believe it was hand assembled by people who knew what they were doing! Now I have an expensive engine that I dont know if I can trust it or not. Im trying now to decide if I should pull it out and tear it down and check to see if everything is within specs.
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Postby MG42pillbox » Mon Sep 22, 2003 12:46 pm

I would honestly make Chrysler send me a new one, thats unacceptable.
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Postby hemijohn » Mon Sep 22, 2003 3:21 pm

I have 2 new crate hemi's... a 426 and a 472. Both have very loud valvetrains and both leaked oil. The 472 had three broken rocker arm studs after about 50 miles of driving. Through the years I had owned 8 original hemi cars and had no problems at all. two crate hemis and problems with both.
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Postby MG42pillbox » Mon Sep 22, 2003 4:11 pm

thats not what I want to hear, Chrysler needs to take responsibility and not to act like ford when It comes to these problems.
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Postby dodgeman66 » Mon Sep 22, 2003 4:31 pm

What was all the hype about these things being better and stronger? I read before I bought it that Chrysler knew where it had weak points and made them all better.(HAHA) I started it up this morning and still can't believe all the noise in the valvetrain and now it looks like the rear main seal is starting to leak oil! What next? Bill
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Postby MG42pillbox » Mon Sep 22, 2003 4:46 pm

They need to send you a new one until it works right from the first crank.
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Postby MG42pillbox » Mon Sep 22, 2003 4:59 pm

I would only buy a Motor from KB RB or Hensley Performance.
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Postby hemijohn » Mon Sep 22, 2003 8:54 pm

The rear main was leaking in my 426, and it wiped out the clutch. The 472 was leaking from the oil pump and the timing chain cover. I had to wait four months to get my 472 because I was told they were working out some defects....they should have worked harder. I have friends that bought crate hemis from Aruzza and ray barton and had no problems.
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Postby dodgeman66 » Mon Sep 22, 2003 9:21 pm

If I had to do over with I would have stuck with the 440 that was in it and saved a lot of money or found an orig. hemi to build. I did look at some orig. hemis but for a couple thousand more I though wow I can buy a brand spanking new hemi. What a joke I guess Im just sc!#%%! I guess if it comes down to it I can rebuild it and it will be as good as an orig. I'll probably just drive it as is as long as it goes unless they do something about it. Maybe I can trade it for a Chevelle SS454!
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Postby Steve1118 » Tue Sep 23, 2003 2:09 pm

Valve train noise is a characteristic of all Hemis, always has been.

I have been racing Hemis since 1964, and they remain a cantankerous animal. They are not a low maintenence engine, and require constant attemtion to remain up to snuff. They are not for the faint hearted, nor for those who are not willing to keep on top of them.

For those who are willing to do this, nothing will touch them.
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Postby hemijohn » Wed Sep 24, 2003 7:00 am

You are right, Hemi's are alot of work . We all know they are a bear to live with...fouled plugs, zero gas milage, constant tuning, etc. For some reason, the new crate motor is louder than it should be. I currently own 6 hemi cars, four with solid lifters and the two crate motors that are not solid...and the crate motor valvetrain makes more noise...go figure. I just wish that mopar performance would fix these problems. They have been selling these motors for a few years now and the same problems still exist. Poeple buying new motors don't expect to have oil leaks, anti-freeze leaks, stange noises etc.
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another update on crate hemi

Postby dodgeman66 » Tue Dec 02, 2003 1:55 pm

I thought I would let you know whats happen since I last posted. The car is just about ready for the road ,well it has been up and down my road a few times with me setting on a stool. It leaks a little antifreeze when its cold from the new head gasket and the motor still smokes like crazy and I know I have run it enough to burn any oil in the cyl. and drips some out of the rear main seal whew! What a piece of crap motor! If anybody out here in mopar land has any connections I could use some help since my dealer cant seem to get anything done.
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Postby hemijohn » Tue Dec 02, 2003 5:10 pm

Sorry to hear you are still having problems with your hemi. As for the anti-freeze leak from the head gasket, check to make sure they have been torqued correctly. It is an iron head motor...right? The hemi, by design will seep oil into the cylinder and smoke. Milodon sells seals that go around the spark plug tube that helps this tremendously. Plus, it will smoke until the rings have seated, I have found crate motors to seat in about 600 miles. As far as the rear main...that sucks. The rear main in my 426 whiped out my clutch, so I know what that feels like. Sorry I don't know anyone higher up that could help you...good luck.
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Postby dodgeman66 » Tue Dec 02, 2003 11:55 pm

It is iron head hemi and I checked the head bolts cold and hot and they were fine. If it takes that long to break in I guess Ill have to wait and see. The car is auto so the rear seal will have to leak untill I see about the smoke. I have the plugs tightened down to specs and you think oil can still seep around the tubes? I had read on a post about the cylinders being not finished smooth enough. Maybe the antifreeze leak will stop up in time. More than likely this thing will have to be pulled out and fixed somehow.
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Postby hemijohn » Wed Dec 03, 2003 8:35 am

Oil can still seep past the tubes....at least it did on mine. My business is restoring musclecars and selling them. I finish a car, put some miles on it, work out any bugs and sell it. I put 300 miles on a 71 hemicuda that I put a 472 crate motor in. The new owner put betwenn 200 and 300 miles before it stopped smoking. From the amount of problems you have had, I think you will be pulling the motor out and fixing it.
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Postby Torpedo » Tue Mar 02, 2004 4:13 am

Frankly, if I paid 10 grand for a new motor, that didn't work properly and didn't get any satisfaction, I would contact my lawyer and have him send a letter to mopar asking them to make things right. I would also send a copy to whom ever you bought the motor from. If that didn't work then I'd sick the lawyer on um big time!! 10 Grand is a lotta banana's to shell out. Now I mean if ya got it like that, than that's fine. But if ya work hard for your money, then I wouldn't let them screw me. I'd also make it known that I was gonna go on the intenet and warn people off their products. Now I realize that elephants are tempermental beasts, but I think that considering that it came from Mopar direct it should at least be buttoned up properly with no leaks. They do have noisey valve trains but it depends on how noisy it is. It's called quality control, and they shouldn't be allowed to get away with poor workmanship. That's just my .02 on it.
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Postby dodgeman66 » Tue Mar 02, 2004 8:51 am

At this time the dealer sent their service manager out to give mopar a estimate to repair but when he seen all the smoke coming out of the tailpipes he said no way! He couldnt believe they would sell a motor with all the flaws it has right out of the box. It leaked out the heads for him also. That was last week but have not heard anything yet. I think they should send me another motor since I dont think I should have a $10000 motor that needs to be rebuilt!!!!!!!!! This car is fully restored so its going to be a mess to removed.
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Postby Torpedo » Tue Mar 02, 2004 6:51 pm

I think that after all the aggrevation this motor has caused you, that I would very seriously consider asking for a refund. You could wind up playing musical motors. How do you know that the next one won't be a clunker??? You might check out some of the custom engine builders and see what offerings that are out there. You might find a motor that is built by someone who builds to order and since you seem to be looking for something on the stock side you might be able to find a better deal. Check around this forum and other hot rod forums and pick some brains and see who out there can point you in a better direction. You might have to spend a little more but wouldn't be worth it to get a motor that's running right and that won't require you to have to be hasseled. Sounds like Mopar has gotten a little too big for their britches. Maybe they think that because it says Mopar that you'll put up with the aggrevation because of the previous reputation of the Hemi's of the past. Don't let them get away with it. If ya don't get on these guys, they'll just continue stiffing hard working folks, just because they can. I'd let Mopar know that you've lost confidence in their product, and that your money will spend just fine somewhere else. Again it's just my .02.
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Postby dodgeman66 » Tue Mar 02, 2004 10:19 pm

Of course I had already decided if they send me another motor I will probably tear it down and check out everything before it goes in the car! And I have let it be known I think that no more mopar business from my friends or myself till this is resolved. My son just bought a new ram diesel pickup a couple months ago that I let happen but I wanted him to buy local. My wife has worked at Toyota for fifteen years and I can get their cars and trucks at cost if I had wanted but chose to buy dodge. huh!
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Postby Torpedo » Wed Mar 03, 2004 11:52 pm

Well Dodgeman66, I wish you the best, in what ever you decide to do. I hope that Mopar sends you a new motor that doesn't need a thing and that it's a strong performer. Keep us posted.
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Postby Torpedo » Fri Mar 12, 2004 4:53 am

Anything new to report Dodgeman?
~Torpedo~
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