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Apr 1, 2011
Missoula, MT
I have a 62 with a 5.3 vortec. It seems to dislike water. If I run through a stream, deep puddles, or the undercar blast at the car wash, the motor struggles and or dies. Seems water may be getting in something somewhere? If I'm able to keep driving she'll finally swallow/spit and catch her breath. If she does actually die then she'll eventually come back but I've always been able to let her dry out. The concern is obviously at a long crossing and her dying in the water and not being able to catch her breath. So I guess my question is where would the water be getting in and has anyone had a similar problem and if so what was done to remedy?
The only time I had trouble with deep water it had gotten into the distributor so make sure the cap is on well.
no distributer on a 5.3. my bets on the intake what kind do you have. maby spark plug wires. how deep are you going into the water? you might want to look into a snorkel and some dielectric grease.
I have had that sort of problem with my tbi 2f and have narrowed it to the relay back that goes from the ignition to the starter. I don't know if you still have that one but it's on the passenger inner fender and for me it seems to be the issue when it gets even a little moisture.
Had the same issue and found problems with the wires. Check your spark plug wires; they may be old or have cracks somewere letting in moisture.

Another issue to look for is the location of the computer. I somtimes have issues when it rains or when I wash the car. Water finds its way to the computer plug. Once dry everything is fine.
So, its raining here for the first time in awhile and the truck won't go 2 miles with out bogging down and wanting to die, idles rough, and back fires occasionally. Litterally sounds like its drowning. Since it's a 62 with a Vortec swap 2 PO's ago I don't have much of a starting point and the electrical is a mess I have been trying to sort through for the last year (it was in storage for 6 months...). The fuel pump is mounted on the frame, is there any chance water could be getting in there? Air intake is just an open K&N cone filter which sucks but I haven't had much time to figure anything else out. My soultion there is a stock air box for the Vortec but there's not as much room as there would be if it was in the Yukon it came out of... Any more ideas would be appreciated.
Just sounds like water getting to the electricals. Check the wires and distributor cap. Often headers are installed for engine fitment reasons on a swap and the plug wires and ends get too close and crack. They might look fine at first glance, but pull the middle wires off the spark plugs and check. Since you don't really know the history of this engine, I would replace the wires, cap and rotor.

And do yourself a favor and get OEM parts not aftermarket.
Came out of storage two months ago but I just drove it 500 miles this weekend while the world was still frozen and no issue until the rain started and everything started melting.
Second just replacing the spark plug wires with OE parts. Then look at the electrical for that fuel pump.
my money is still on the intake. When an air filter gets wet it won't let air in until it sucks all the water through. I have seen it happen many times to my brother and friends who have open air filters. Try Spector performance they make an air box that works ok and is not too expensive. Is you k&n aluminum or plastic? I used an aluminum pipe so I could cut it down to fit and also hooked it up to a snorkel. No wet filter regardless of whatever and it also gave me about half a mpg on average. here are some pics of my setup



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If it's not the plug wires, try spraying the coils- I've seen some cracked GM ones that would get enough water in that they'd stop working....
...might also check the crank position sensor, just for karma...

Haven't had a chance to pull a code yet. Code reader is in the wife's 100. No check engine light, but I guess I won't get one because of the swap... Will start there though, then plugs and wires while waiting on a air intake cover. Any more ideas appreciated.
Take a really good look at the 62 and 80 series air filter assemblies. If you buy the OE Toyota filter for the 80 (not sure about the 62) it is a cleanable, non-oiled permanent air filter element inside a housing that makes it hard to get wet. Best part is that the 62 lower bolts to the RS fender liner area like it's supposed to be there. the diesel top offers a round bung to duct to, but it's not that big of a project to cut off the 62's AFM mounting elbow and weld on part of a mandrel bent exhaust tube from Summit.
It's a vortec motor so I was looking at a vortec (GM) air filter box for compatability. I will post some pics in a few and the air filter is wide open but water doesnt usually get up that high.
Heres a pic of the engine bay from when I bought the truck. I've cleaned it up a little, replaced the air filter but with same type. I don't have much room for an airbox where the filter is because I put a relay box there (on wheel well fender...)

Yeti engine.jpg
Do you have these?, might keep away some of the water, you should be good without these but might help



My 60 has a different character: does not come out of the water when I want :cheers:

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