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Cracked head caution

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Q: Are the cracked exhaust seats in the Cummins 5.9L diesel engine found in the Ram pickup a cause for concern?

A: The AERA Technical Committee says cracked exhaust seats on 1998-2006 Cummins/Chrysler 5.9L diesel engines have been reported by other AERA members as well. The 24 valve engines with four valves per cylinder have been the source of the complaints.

The cracked exhaust seats on the above mentioned engines have been noticed during routine engine service. In some instances the eng-ines were not disassembled as an apparent valve sealing problem.

Most of these cracks have been described as "hairline" but others are easily visible to the naked eye. Despite their presence, though, none of the heads leaked in any of the reported instances where cracks were observed and pressure testing was done.

To repair the cracked seat inserts, aftermarket replacement seats are now available in standard or .010" oversize.

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