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Potential Mechanical Issues Please Help!

Discussion in '2015 V6 Mustang' started by Wulfe, Jul 28, 2019.

Am I F***ed?

  1. No

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  2. A bit

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  3. Your life is over

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  1. Wulfe

    Wulfe New Member

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    Hi everyone,

    I created a profile on this site with the hope that someone more mechanically inclined than myself might have some insight for me. I've had my 2015 V6 for 2 years, no issues at all, regular oil changes. Most of the time I've had it I've been running the 91 octane tune by diablosport.

    About a month ago I installed the Spectre Cold Air Intake (I understand this is actually a short ram). My finding is that from a cold start or at high rpms driving through the mountains it felt a bit more responsive, a bit quicker, and makes a great sound. On the flip side, it lost a crazy amount of torque down low once the engine bay heated up (0-60 time jumped all the way up to 8.1 seconds). I decided I was ok with this tradeoff since most of the time I spend at low rpms is on the highway with the cruise control on, my fun is in pushing it on windy roads.

    I did want to reduce the low power, however, so I covered the intake tube and heat shield in gold heat reflective tape and removed a fog light and ran a duct tube from there to just under the filter. This almost totally negated the issue, intake temps are usually about 6 degrees above whatever it is outside even after the engine has been warm for a while. Eventually it will still get heat soaked, but this is taking hours instead of minutes.

    So, I thought I had done quite well especially since I have no mechanicing experience at all. Today, though, when I pulled out of my driveway and onto the road and started accelerating, there was a pretty jarring thud and my car slowed quite a bit quite suddenly. My window was down and I mostly heard it through there so I couldn't pinpoint where it came from though it felt like it came from the front half of the vehicle. I wasn't expecting to have to log my experience driving to work today so this won't be precise at all, but I believe it happened somewhere around 3000 rpms, right where my car starts to feel speedy.

    I turned around and parked it, popped the hood, looked in the engine bay and under the car for anything out of place and I didn't notice anything unusual. I tried googling what happened for about a half an hour with no luck before I needed to get to work. It should be noted I ALWAYS drive in S with the paddles, I just can't stand letting the car try to figure out what I'm doing. When I left, I did not experience any issues getting going on the road but I was nervous and had not activated the manual shifting mode, it seemed to shift out of first and into second very early to me.

    At the bottom of my road, I stop and turn onto the highway. I usually accelerate quite hard to get into traffic here and today was no exception. By now I had taken over the shifting since all seemed well and again, around my car's torque peak in 1st gear there was a jarring thud. At the same time it happened, I was just starting to pull the paddle for 2nd, but I ended up in 4th instead. It seemed to me that whatever the car went through caused it to turn off manual control mode and it put itself in 3rd with my immediate input restoring manual control and shifting it up to 4th.

    This has me deeply concerned as it is my only vehicle and I live about 10 miles from work, I also don't make a whole lot of money so I'm stressing pretty hard. I haven't driven home yet, and I plan to take it to the shop tomorrow morning. Of course I'm hoping the professionals can figure out what's going on and fix it if it wasn't just some sort of fluke, but I'm driving myself crazy so I wanted to ask for input here. I'm also not really confident the local shop will do anything, I live in the middle of nowhere and I've been burned by them before.

    Neither instance caused the check engine light to come on, I checked for codes with my tuner just to make sure and there were no codes. I also should have mentioned that I'd been missing my tuner for some time (thought it burned in a shop fire) and found it today. I checked for updates and reapplied my tune just before the first incident. I reapplied it again between the two thinking it may have been possible the first time was some kind of glitch-instigated problem with the tune (I learn quick but I seriously have very little mechanicing knowledge, so if that's a stupid thing to think don't ridicule me).

    Any thoughts for peace of mind or helpful things for me to suggest to my sketchy small town mechanics?
     
  2. Wulfe

    Wulfe New Member

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    Again, I'm no expert, but some thoughts I've got on what may be going on:

    1: I reinstalled the tune which likely reset the ECU, which now has to relearn a few things and it has not yet adapted to the free flowing intake. Pushing it too hard at this time may have caused it to screw up somewhere.

    2: The closest thing I found in my google search was damaged engine mounts. Descriptions of the symptoms here sounded close but not precisely the same, I do not know how to look for this to confirm.

    3: I found less of this while searching, but maybe some sort of driveshaft issue. I don't have any way of getting under the car to see if I can check this out.

    4: I have terrible luck, and from the sounds of it if this is transmission related I'm in for a hefty bill, so I've been reluctant to even entertain the idea of a transmission issue.
     
  3. Pete fender

    Pete fender Pete Fender

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    Possibly the torque converter clutch slipping when shifting.
    The so called cold air intake, as a ''ram'' is only effective at triple digits as a ram air.
    You should not have to alter it in any way.
    Check for leaks, make sure any hoses are connected to it like the stock one had.
    Spector is not the best, but it'll do.
    Cold air intakes are not very good at delivering cooler air, as you get ''heat soak'' as the outside air is actually heated while traveling through the metal intake pipe which is under the hood.
    They get that sound because of the lack of sound deadening ripples the stock hose has.
    I'd get rid of the tube you ran, it is low enough to allow water to soak the filter element during heavy rain, and driving through an inch or two of water in puddles or poorly drained roads.
    If you get the air filter wet, you could stall, and in an extreme case, hydro-lock the motor.
    Any intake for an everyday driver should be no lower than stock.
     
  4. Wulfe

    Wulfe New Member

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    Thanks so much for your reply!

    The first time it happened I was definitely not shifting, just accelerating hard in 1st. My hoses are connected, but I have questioned the effectiveness of the seal on them. I'm still taking it in today but last night driving it home it felt like a brand new car, maybe like a kid brushing their teeth really well after being threatened with a trip to the dentist's office.

    As far as the actual effectiveness of these intakes and why they provide benefits in many scenarios, I've got a pretty good understanding. After experiencing a loss of low end torque the day I put on the intake, I learned about heat soak and about how most of the intakes marketed as CAI are not actually CAI. Like I said in my post, my modifications were to combat the inherent flaws of the design of my intake and I relied on data to confirm it worked.

    As for the tube I ran from my fog light, there is actually no suction on this as the majority of the air is still coming from the hole in the grill the stock intake used, and I ended it about 4 inches below the filter. It has a very minimal effect on the whole setup and really just drops the intake temp by a few degrees at speed. Even if I followed a car closely on a rainy day, I doubt any water would make it past the first bend in the tube, I let it slope down to the first bend and put a hole in it to drain any water.
     
  5. Wulfe

    Wulfe New Member

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    Update:

    Talked to the mechanics, they can't get to me until tomorrow but they thought my idea of the ECU needing to relearn it's engine after I reapplied my tune was a good possibility. Whether or not damage has been done I still don't know, but like last night it's driving great today.

    I also had another thought, I've done nothing to my exhaust so it's breathing better in but not out. Is it possible too much back pressure stopped something for a moment?
     
  6. Pete fender

    Pete fender Pete Fender

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    "Cold air intakes" are an item of controversy.
    Unless you run dyno tests before and after, any power gain, or loss, is perception.
    Mine tended to seem to increase bottom end power, but not by much.
    It did make it seem better because the air rushing in to the engine is not being quieted by the ridges in the stock hose.
    My scanner shows only about 2 1/2 degree difference, mostly because the metal pipe is getting heat soak, making the so called cold air warm as it passes through the pipe.
    I was given a 3'' H-pipe (new) that bolted to both the engine and GT cat backs.
    People told me that was too much for a 3.8, but on the dyno, with a tuner at hand, I finally hit 240 hp, with other changes, including Mac shortie headers.
    Putting just the cold air nets you next to nothing, you need more than that to gain measurable power.
    One great mod, that made power and went hand in hand with my exhaust system, was the injectors.
    I got rid of the 24 pound stock one hole injectors, and replaced them with 12 hole 24 pound injectors, which were made for jeeps, and are a direct fit.
    The holes are so small, you need good eye sight to see them.
    Same poundage and flow.
    Having more, smaller holes, the fuel atomizes way much better.
    I tested it with a "Friend Dyno."
    I did not tell a friend of mine that I changed the injectors, and let hime drive the car.
    He said he could tell a difference, without me asking.
    Both of us felt better low end, smoother throughout the RPM range, and a new car smooth idle.
    Little things add up, no single change will do much, it's the accumulative changes, working together, that can really perk things up.
    I have had this car since 2000, when I bought it new.
     
  7. Wulfe

    Wulfe New Member

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    Of course I appreciate the input, but I'm not really wanted this thread to turn into one of the countless cold air intake threads on the internet. I'm mainly concerned about the problem I experienced with my car yesterday though I'm not as stressed as I was initially. I provided the information about my intake just in case someone knew about a situation similar to mine, with the possibility of the intake having unforseen consequences.
     
  8. Wulfe

    Wulfe New Member

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    OK, I got the whole thing resolved and I'm sharing the results here for anyone else experiencing a similar issue. I took my car to the mechanics, they went through it and could find no issues. Later that day I got the thud again while accelerating hard in 2nd gear and this time I had a clearer idea about what happened so I went back to the shop and shared my thoughts.

    The jarring thud was a VERY hard gear shift up 2 gears each time. Upon hearing this, one of the mechanics told me that the transmissions in many Ford vehicles with v6's do not like tunes and that if I restored my factory tune the problem would almost certainly go away. I restored the factory tune and spent 3 hours pushing my car hard to see if I could get it to happen again and it never did. So, if your v6 Mustang is tuned and has any kind of transmission issue get rid of your tune.

    I already miss my tune, I wish I had a backup of the old version of my diablosport tune because I ran that for a year and a half with no issues, the updated version of the tune doesn't agree with my car, though. With that tune everything felt quite a bit tighter and in comparison my car feels a bit sloppy now. I tried to contact Diablosport to see if they could do anything for me but they never replied to my emails or chat requests and I never got past being put on hold when I tried calling. Now that I know my car has a good chance of not being receptive to a tune I feel it's a pretty large gamble to try to get a different canned or custom tune so I won't be spending money on that.
     
  9. David Young

    David Young 5th Mustang

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    I use SCT handheld tuners with MPT Tunes. I once had a tune made by Steeda years ago, that the transmission shifts were not touched or changed. Call Steeda to see if they make tunes for the type of tuner you use.