Steam out from under hood, found the culprit being a 4" blowout hole of the heater hose running from carb area to firewall. Checked the coolant level in the radiator and it was low, but the fins were still wet so it didn't even get hot enough to evaporate dry.
Replaced hose with a fix it kit type thing using a new section of bulk heater hose & a plastic adapter piece just to be able get it home, refilled coolant but it only took just under a gallon, started right up nice, but black smoke out of exhaust 3 miles home, very low power in low rpms had a hell of a time getting it up to speed like it wasn't responding to the gas pedal, but get it up to 40mph & it has a bit of power even with the black smoke still sort of visible in the mirror during panicked 'omg just get me home' driving.
Died a few times at idle(red-lights) and had hard restarts on the way home. Simply didn't want to start back up & ran like crap when it did,all the way up to about 35-40mph. Then back down at lower speeds it was miserable to keep the rpms up, though no backfiring.
Pretty much solid black stuff out the tailpipe the whole way home though.
No weird engine noises though & the oil looks fine.
Ran but super rough and is very very unhappy but she made it up my steep 30' driveway section thankfully.
Checked the coolant in the radiator and overflow and no cross-contamination after it cooled off in the driveway.
Pulled the oil cap off and it was not foamy (YAY!) and not yucky in any way though it smelled a bit like gasoline to me --- it has for a long time now and it's been running practically perfectly so I didn't worry about it until now thought I'd mention it just in case.
Air filter is a little dirty but looks like a normal "almost time to replace it" air filter, nothing screaming "'omg' that's filthy".
The bulk heater hose used as a temp-repair is kinked a bit in 2 places from the 'just get us home' repair in the parking lot. That needs to be redone or replaced with the molded hose that should be there, will get to that in the morning. Obviously the path of the coolant was restricted (though not completely blocked) on the way home, but the temp gauge only went up about 1/4" from the 3 mile trip home & it took a long time for it to start moving at all. No temp spikes.
But why oh why is it running like crap now??? It didn't overheat according to the temp gauge, the oil isn't saying I blew a head gasket which is what I was scared of with the lack of power at low rpms/speeds.
So these are all the panicked thoughts I'm having:
I don't think I touched anything else other than taking off the air filter housing and the heater hose. When I first was looking around to see where the steam was coming from everything looked GREAT. No oil leaking, no obvious signs of overheating or leaks anywhere, until I found the heater hose had exploded. I didn't mess with a anything else just replaced that hose section.
Wondering if the pressure of the fluid when the hose exploded could have damaged something around the carb (under the air filter area), or what in the hell probably happened.
How would loss of some coolant cause a super rich condition? Or is that even possible? Makes no sense so hoping for any ideas.
The truck was running fantastically wonderful before this happened so no idea what I could have done wrong/vacuum lines accidentally bumped by me or ruined when the hose let go?
Is there an electronic anything that could have been damaged by the sudden burst of coolant in the wrong direction?
Will look for signs of vacuum hoses being damaged, re-do that kinked heater hose, Maybe try to run it & see if there's air in the cooling system to be burped out? maybe check the plugs??? but they're likely to be filthy with it running so rich anyway so I don't know if that would be useful to see anyway.
Does coolant actually run through the carb??? If so, what sort of damage to the carb happens when it runs without coolant at 35mph for simply just 2 minutes to coast into a parking lot? Heck, I don't know if it actually ran without coolant anywhere because it only took about a gallon & I'm pretty sure the capacity is much higher than that.
How does it make sense that it started right up when it was cold in the parking lot right after the repaired hose was done, but it hated restarting after it died at red lights on the way home?
If I do restart it tomorrow I'll make sure I do it with the heater turned on & fan off, just in case that helps circulate coolant through the 'new' heater hose section, etc. Disappointed in myself I didn't think of making sure the heater was on today on the way home after the repair. WAs too concerned to be able to listen for any weird engine noises so had all accessories off on the way home.
^ these are the things I'm thinking of & types of videos I've spent tonight looking at so far.
I'll update after I look at it again tomorrow but I'm scared to run the engine with it running so miserably because I don't want to do any further damage Looking at it today I simply didn't see anything "wrong", leaking, or out of place