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Old 11-29-2014, 02:04 PM   #1
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Default Catch Can Drain - One way valve needed?

I have a catch can problem. Firstly, it's a cheap one, so no internal baffling, etc, etc... Can't even open it to add baffling...

It seems like the oil vapor is saturating the VTA filter, and further pressure is forcing the oil outside of where it's supposed to go. It's making a hell of a mess of the engine bay at the moment...

Today, I grabbed some relatively cheap in line fuel filters, took them apart, removed the nylon filter element, and loosely fit some stainless steel wool into them. Ran one of these for each breather port on the cam cover, into the catch can. Ran a separate hose from the breather port into the bottle. Turned the car over, let it come up to temp, etc, etc... Nothing spectacular coming from the hose. Revved it to about 4-5K, and held it at 3K, again, nothing spectacular.






So, I put everything back together with the in-line filters, and fiddled with some other items that needed doing. After that, and with fresh oil in the car; cranked her over, and again, nothing spectacular exiting the filter.

Took it for a small spirited drive, and the problem surfaced again. Oil saturated breather is now burbling room-temperature oil into the engine bay. Since it's heavily aerated, the volume looks deceptive. The in-line filters don't look like there's anything there that would cause this sort of problem. (Small amount of oil emulsion on the exhaust side filter, nothing on the intake, and certainly no visible pooling)

Regardless, it looks like whatever I did actually may have made the problem worse.





That got me to thinking, and please correct me if I'm being an idiot...

If the air filter gets laden with moisture (oil, or water, or both), could this cause enough of a flow stoppage to allow the oil drain to push oil UP into the catch can?

If so, this is going to continue to be a problem even if I get a baffled can.

I've heard of folks running one way valves, and was curious if that may alleviate the problem in this situation? And, if that's a yes, I've got like 15 old, working PCV valves laying about, can I use one of them? I checked one with a tap, and it passes water one way and blocks the other...

Any help would be appreciated.

Images were of the car when I got it home this evening. Just went out for 30 minutes of normal driving, and it looks the same...

Last edited by Calmdown; 11-29-2014 at 08:19 PM.
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Old 11-29-2014, 10:11 PM   #2
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Sup HTC One crew

If this is just from street driving, that's a lot of blowby. I'd be kind of concerned about the health of the motor.
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Old 11-30-2014, 01:55 AM   #3
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I had mine sealed without the air filter and no baffle using a PVC valve. There was a noticeable difference in much smoother idle, after about a month or so about 3 teaspoons were in the catch a can.

I would put a pvc and secure where the air filter is mounted. Mine was ghetto as well. Back then it was in a state where catch a can were illegal so what I had as a container was a fake power steering bottle. My car did not come with one, but it had the bolts etc for the ones who have it. Got a bottle real cheap at the junk yard. It worked perfect til the day it got replaced with a pretty shinny GReddy OCC.
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Old 11-30-2014, 08:05 AM   #4
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Ok, just disco'd the catch can, and ran everything to two water bottles from each port:

Then realized the crankcase was venting through the drain pipe, so blocked that off...

Spirited short drive under boost showed an oil foam escaping the exhaust port, intake port was clean.

Took it for a 20 minute spin; while it hasn't settled out yet (still frothy as hell), looks to be about 3 tablespoons of oil.

Going to see if I can get a one-way check valve from the local hardware store, and set that in place.
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Old 11-30-2014, 08:13 PM   #5
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One way valve purchased, and promptly unintentionally disassembled, making it a two way valve. (check ball was gone with a capital G).

Running ghetto water bottle setup for the time being. Is it typical to get "all of it" from the exhaust side, while getting "none of it" from the intake side?
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Old 11-30-2014, 08:13 PM   #6
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Dont drain the catch can back into the crank case. When it fills up dump it out in your waste oil jug, you dont want that **** going back into your engine. It does still seem like you have a blowby problem and should compression test the car.
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Old 11-30-2014, 08:35 PM   #7
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I run dual cans (gigidy). FWIW, I have collected zero in the hot side can and maybe a couple/three table spoons in the PCV side over 3000k miles.

I've heard of some having problems which the hot side if they've ever removed the plates in the valve cover and not resealed them properly. Or if they drilled drain back holes in that plate.

Sounds like you have an issue, be it blow by, or that plate improperly sealed. That is just too much oil vapor in too short a time. I suspect however if blowby, both cans would be filling .
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Old 12-02-2014, 06:25 PM   #8
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Default From Ghetto to GhettoFABulous? (PIC HEAVY)

So, I yanked those filters, and decided to find out what was coming from where on the motor. Sunday, I went for the full ghetto catch can test setup:





Took it for a short drive, and checked the contents...



^^^ Exhaust side outlet.


^^^ Intake Side (There's nothing in there)

All the above was with the drain capped off (hose clamp and a bolt)

So, that got me to thinking about the check valve; so I went and bought one. Installed it on the drain line, than ran into a "how do I get my hands to hold this clamp in place while I tighten it" problem, which ended with me unscrewing the catch can (was attached to the drain line)... and in the process I unscrewed the check valve, and the little ball check thing just sort of disappeared...

By that time, I was out of time, everything was shut; so I put it back to the water bottle+pepsi bottle configuration, and drove it. Exhaust side looks pretty copious, intake side looks clean enough that I'm considering that it may not need to be routed to the can.

Only really cold-start with immediate short drives on it without a lot of time to get it up to temp for the past two days, and nothing truly unsettling in either can really; some oil whipped froth in the exhaust side, fuel tinted water condensate on the pepsi side.

And no, this isn't my "end game" setup. I have not been idle... (terrible pictures coming)

take 1 ebay spec catch can (with removable top and bottom this time):

Apart:


Some Aluminum I bought 2 years ago:


Some 40 micron (ish) stainless E-Cig screen from Ebay


and cut it all up and do something with it:


^^ Ignore the steel wool for now, that's where the questions come in later...


^^ Test fitting the lower baffle (It's raised about 1 inch from the base on legs that I plan on JB Welding to the wall, so no big deal if it needs to go higher)

Not seen: some 10mm stainless thin wall tubing. Ordered, intend to take the exhaust side input to the can, and bend it down so the oil vapor comes out the bottom of the can. (Will have to knock a hole through stuff, I know; waiting to see where to carve the big-assed hole at.) Probably going to extend the PCV side down a bit as well to clear the mesh.

So, question time (with a bit of an explanation so if I AM being an idiot, at least I have a reason for it...)

Got to looking at the baffle plates on the cam cover, and there's only one proper oil separation wall on the exhaust side, and three on the intake. So, I was already not quite happy about having steel wool in the can, so I thought: Why not put baffle plates in there instead?


(Bottom separator thingy)

First angled baffle in

Second angled baffle in (angle is contrary to the first one, just like the PCV side baffle walls)

And, of course, the 40 micron stainless mesh will go above that. The only barb that vents above this is the VTA Filter that sits on top of the can...

So I had a question, and it's two-fold:

1. Am I making a mistake trying to use baffles instead of stainless steel scrubbers?

2. Check valve on drain line to sump. I've heard of folks doing it, but wondering if it'll stop the oil draining out, overflow the catch can, and cause another mess...
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Old 12-03-2014, 12:02 PM   #9
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Why does your car have so much blowby?
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Old 12-06-2014, 01:14 PM   #10
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Don't know to be certain; ran a compression test today, and they fell in at 170-180 across the board; called the installer, and it matched what he saw post dyno break in period.

One thing I did swap out today was the Cam Cover. Had the same one back in 2013, and had some similar oil loss issues (no catch can or turbo, but quite a few highway miles) to the tune of about 2.5 liters poof'd. Chalked it up to a bad cam cover seal (which was actually leaking a bit), but never really drove it that hard until January of last year, when I noticed my cam carriers were fucked, etc, etc...

I realize that it probably violates the laws of thermodynamics to have a Cam Cover go bad; but... it was one thing that's consistently been on the last three iterations of that motor, with similar results across all three. And I was getting tired of the solid red color. I'll pull the tube off in a few days to check if it's still filled with oil or not.

Also installed the above catch can with baffles; haven't put any highway miles on it yet, but did some short drives into boost, and nothing in the filter as of yet. Drive home yielded similar results, but it's a short drive. (Sucks when it gets dark at 4PM here in the U.K.) Started fitting electric windows, and didn't really want to put it on the highway with a window halfway down.

Next step is going to be pulling the spring from the oil pump and making sure it isn't shimmed to hell.

The amount of **** you find that loosens itself back up post-dyno during what I consider to be the "shakedown" period is staggering... The Begi Block contraption sprung an oil leak, the lower coolant pipe kicked off yesterday morning, and had an AN fitting for the turbo coolant come loose so far.

My collection of permatex is getting a workout.
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Old 12-06-2014, 01:24 PM   #11
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Cylinder leakage test... Do it.
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Old 12-06-2014, 10:18 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by williams805 View Post
Cylinder leakage test... Do it.


Already got some **** in motion, hoss. Gonna ride that out and see where it goes first.

Then, if that **** don't work, I'm gonna figure out how to keep the oil back in the crank-case. (Hence the original title of the thread, and as yet still unanswered question... IF you run a drain from the catch can to the sump, do you install a one-way valve in that line?)

Then, once I get that **** figured out, I'm going to climb on top of my pile of skeletonized head parts, old engine blocks, scored crank journals, an open diff, a 5 speed transmission, two sub-frames, a radiator, an ignition system, an ECU, a ******* mountain of cam gears, and enough dirty grease and oil to make the Louisiana Gulf shoreline look like a nice place to surf in comparison.

And you know what I'm gonna do? I'm gonna ******* enjoy it. For at least 4 months.

Because I am broke, I am frustrated, and I am tired. I have toyed with this god damned car since 2012 with truly enjoying it for maybe three weeks. I have pulled the engine no less than 6 times, and swapped 4 engines into it. I have placed the ******* car on skates. I have pulled more heads than I care to calculate. I have gone through more Silicone Sealant than a Californian Plastic Surgeon doing breast implant recalls.

And yes, I know you're trying to help. I know there's a leakdown in the cars future. Every single time I've brought that thing out in the past, I may as well have drug the ******* engine hoist with me, because that's what happens. That tool is ******* cursed.

I also know that right now, I just want to know how to kick the ******* thing down the road a few months before I can get enough wrenching energy back.
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Old 12-07-2014, 02:27 AM   #13
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10-4
Then put check valve in. It will help stop the blow by from pushing all the **** in the catch can out of the filter when in boost.

Where is your drain tapped in? Bundy had problems with the drain in the oil pan. Oil would spew out the VTA catch can. I believe when he moved I up on the block (like GTX?) and his problems were solved.

So if you're just trying to get by, I'd say your best bet is with a check valve. In other situations with a healthy engine and drain hire up in the block, no check valve.
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Old 12-07-2014, 11:59 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by williams805 View Post
10-4
Then put check valve in. It will help stop the blow by from pushing all the **** in the catch can out of the filter when in boost.

Where is your drain tapped in? Bundy had problems with the drain in the oil pan. Oil would spew out the VTA catch can. I believe when he moved I up on the block (like GTX?) and his problems were solved.

So if you're just trying to get by, I'd say your best bet is with a check valve. In other situations with a healthy engine and drain hire up in the block, no check valve.
Catch Can drain is nearly 180 opposite the Drain line for the Turbo, so above the oil level at the front of the engine.

Bought a new check valve today, but going to take my time with putting it in; I've already done like 3 different things at once that have the potential to cure the issue, so for scientific purposes (and the ability to pass accurate information down to the next guy who comes along), I'll see what goes on with what's in place currently, then go for the check valve.

And don't misunderstand, I do appreciate all the assistance I've received going through the growing pains of getting this thing sorted. But I also know that if I run a leakdown test and it comes back bad; I won't simply run it "as is" and I'll get to strain my marriage yet again by playing "Occupy Vehicle Bay".
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Old 12-10-2014, 10:27 AM   #15
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I have a Mazdaspeed MX-5 & the stock catch can. I installed a built motor & BNR turbo. I bought a PCV valve from the auto parts store (not mazda genuine part) but I went out & went through the gears 2 to 5th & it spewed a large amount of oil out in my pretty engine bay. I replaced the PCV valve with the Mazdaspeed genuine PCV valve & it seems to have stopped the crankcase from being pressurized by boost & pushing oil up the drain from the oil pan.

Under heavy driving going through the gears people report oil still coming up the catch can drain so the put in a check valve. I just ordered a MSM check valve kit from FlyinMiata.
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