Photo 1/15 | Wrenching On 1989 Dodge D250 | wrenching on 1989 dodge d250
Photo 2/15 | Nitrous Solenoid | One nitrous solenoid was wasted by accidentally leaving the switch on. Since it was hard-wired in (we’ve had a few relays fail), a smoked $220 solenoid was the result.
Photo 3/15 | 1989 Dodge D250 Rusty Bed | We’d originally planned to have the truck bed covered in Line-X for protection but somehow didn’t end up doing it. We also didn’t get it painted, which means surface rust. Fortunately, on most of the West Coast, small amounts of rust are all we have to deal with.
Photo 4/15 | 1989 Dodge D250 Vacuum Pump | Somehow, one of the pods on the vacuum pump sheared off, leaving us only one for braking. If it had failed completely, we’d have suddenly lost all power assist, which in Los Angeles traffic would have been bad. The pump was replaced with an OEM unit off another Dodge.
Photo 5/15 | 1989 Dodge D250 Radiator Cap | A blown head gasket? A destroyed radiator? Nope, just the radiator cap, which failed to seal pressure about 100 miles into a trip. The lesson here: Replace your radiator cap every few years, or keep a spare one in the glovebox just in case.
Photo 6/15 | Transmission Fluid Line | Losing all your transmission fluid at full-tilt in Overdrive is about the worst thing that can happen. Luckily, when our line popped off, we realized it quickly and pulled over. The factory quick-disconnect fitting was replaced with a plain, high-psi rubber transmission line and secured via hose clamp.
Photo 7/15 | 1989 Dodge D250 Transmission Mount | We had a strange vibration in our ’89 Dodge, and when we checked (during our locker install) we found our transmission mount had broken apart completely. We replaced the shot unit (a cheap rubber mount) with a polyurethane mount from Energy Suspension.
Photo 8/15 | Bypassed Ac Clutch | Of course, our A/C compressor (which never gets used) decided to completely seize up when we were using the truck for moving, and it was full of junk. We cut the belt, limped it home, and bought a non-A/C belt to simply bypass the compressor since our air conditioning didn’t work anyway.
Photo 9/15 | Battery Ground Wires | The gauges were fluctuating one day as we pulled into work and thought Hmmm, we’ll have to take care of that later… That was, until the truck was “shut off” and it kept running! All it turned out to be was a loose battery ground wire, which was the best kind of fix: free.
Photo 10/15 | Welded Front Suspension Crossmember | This was a scary one. A large clunk was loud enough to warrant immediate investigation, and it turned out that the crossmember was cracked right along the suspension mounting point. After a whole lot of welding by buddy Harvey Grant, it was deemed road worthy, although we still check on it from time to time.
Photo 11/15 | Intake Boot | After our turbo test last year, we found out that air temperature exiting the compressor can be upward of 400 degrees at 60 psi of boost. We have a feeling that our non-intercooled setup has been hell on our intake boot, which is kind of crushed and melted. So far, we haven’t done anything about this, although a PPE 100-psi-rated boot is on its way.
Photo 12/15 | Turbocharger | Our turbocharger has a lot of side-to-side play, which worries us, even though it doesn’t have any back-and-forth movement. Since it’s been consistently at 60 psi for the past few years—even with a 360-degree thrust bearing—we’re keeping an eye on it.
Photo 13/15 | Rusted Engine Block Heater | After the truck had been sitting for a while, we noticed a big puddle under it the next time we started it. It turned out our block heater was corroded and the O-ring was shot. We temporarily fixed it with blue RTV. So far it has held, and the temporary fix has become the permanent one.
Photo 14/15 | Brake Master Cylinder | One of the back wheel brake cylinders has a leak, and so far we’re addressing it by adding brake fluid. Who needs rear braking, anyhow?
Photo 15/15 | 1989 Dodge D250 On Dragstrip | Now that we have a locker installed and have fixed (or at least know about) all of our problems, we’re going to try to improve on the tractionless 13.1 at 118 mph quarter-mile pass we made last year. Look for another track update soon, as we try to crack into the 11-second bracket.