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focusmidwest 03-03-2013 10:53 PM

Wire conduit heating up and coming off
I drive a 2008 Focus SES with about 81,000 miles on it. Back in October 2012, a large section of wire conduit that covers the bright red wire insulation suspended over the top of the engine block basically melted off, or became brittle and fell off, due to the heat of the engine compartment. A coworker and I got some new conduit and placed it over the red insulation, then secured the conduit in place with electrical tape.

As you can see in the image below, the "new" wire conduit has turned from a plain black to a charcoaled grayish color. It looks like the heat of the engine compartment is causing the change in color, and the conduit appears to be becoming more brittle.

I am wondering three things:
- Is it a serious issue if the wire conduit comes off again? (meaning, if the red insulation becomes exposed)
- Should I go ahead and replace the wire conduit again directly over the engine block?
- If yes on the previous question, would there be any benefit to wrapping the new conduit with some silicon-rubber self-sealing tape that's certified for continuous use up to 500 degrees F?

Thanks for any input.


amc49 03-04-2013 12:58 AM

You need to make an effort to move it somewhat inboard or closer to the center of engine, having it directly over the exhaust is killing you there. If nothing else lift it higher, distance=added life there.

whynotthinkwhynot 03-04-2013 05:02 AM

That wiring is set up on clips, so that's where it should be. You could wrap it with some insulating tape. I would use a roll of what's called "friction" tape from the electrical dept in a hardware store. It's basically cloth tape with a substance on it that grips. On older cars, this was used as wiring loom. If you use it, you must be sure that each wrap is halfway over the top of the previous wrap. It can't be loose when installed, but it doesn't have to be pulled tight either- it must be snug.

don627 03-04-2013 11:39 AM

You should see what they look like after 10 years! I have had to replace large sections of mine particularly the fan harness conduit near the radiator. I replaced it with heat resistant metalized conduit.

amc49 03-05-2013 04:42 AM

Don't care if that's where it should be, if the harness is cooking you have to out-think the engineer that put it there.........I've moved coolant lines that did the same thing as there and guess what? The lines then lasted MUCH longer, in fact repeat troubles totally disappeared. Even though very hot under the hood overall, it gets really bad directly over the exhaust.

don627 03-05-2013 08:36 AM

I agree they route things for ease of assembly not for longevity. I don't know how many times I've moved wiring harness away from sharp edges and such.

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