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post #1 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-16-2007, 02:52 PM Thread Starter
 
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A new lead in my case. =)

Ok so I haven't really had any time to diagnose my new-headgaskets-but-coolant-still-burns-and-comes-out-of-the-exhaust problem but I found my problem today. The passenger side headgasket is leaking. I took the #3 cylinder spark plug out and it was drenched in coolant. The driver's side spark plugs look perfect. My question to you guys before I take this thing apart is:

Should I try a headgasket sealant before I remove the heads?

Should I check the drivers side headgasket even though it is new and nothing is wrong with it? I don't really want to take it off because that might cause a leak on that side also.

Any tips and suggestions would be great. I have a haynes repair manual to guide me through this.
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post #2 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-16-2007, 03:17 PM
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I wouldnt do a sealant at all,, its mainly for slow seeping gaskets,, not all out failures.

If the other side is fine then leave it alone. mostly likely something went wrong during the install or maybe the cylinder head is cracked or warped.

Have the heads checked by a machine shop that can tell if its cracked or warped.

Also,, when you pull the heads off take care as to not damage the leaking gasket and if you can take some good pics of it and post em up.. most likely by just looking you can see why it failed.

Brad
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post #3 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-16-2007, 03:30 PM Thread Starter
 
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The heads were machined before the new hgs were put in. I have never driven the car, only started it in my driveway. I didn't drive it because the thermostat would creep up slowly past the "norm", most likely because of this, or maybe a bad water pump. With that being said I don't the hg failed, the problem was already there.
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post #4 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-19-2007, 10:54 PM Thread Starter
 
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Hi guys i took the intake manifold off and found this. My question is: Should I keep going and take off the heads to check the gaskets? There is a mess of silicone gunk around the holes where the intake gaskets would go (from the man who repaired my gaskets) and now I'm questioning whether my headgasket is leaking or if it was the intake gasket leaking into the cylinder. But this picture shows oil and coolant mixed. Taking the head off is easy, but I'm afraid of putting it back on and having it leak. Any tips? Thanks! =)
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post #5 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-19-2007, 11:29 PM
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maybe the front timing cover gasket failed? the coolant port is next to the oil port.

lets get some better pics of the gasket material thats there.. did you peel it away already?

Wanted to add that any time a gasket is replaced,, I do a coolant pressure check just to make sure. these can be rented at autozone
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post #6 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-20-2007, 02:02 AM Thread Starter
 
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How likely is it that the front timing cover gasket failed? Keep in mind that there was coollant in cylinder 3. I'll post more pics tomorrow.
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post #7 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-20-2007, 06:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scotteiboi
How likely is it that the front timing cover gasket failed? Keep in mind that there was coollant in cylinder 3. I'll post more pics tomorrow.
I am willing to put money on this theory:

your lower intake gasket was leaking. Its easier for those to leak than it is the headgasket. Most people dont properly torque the lower intake manifold. I go over mine at least 3 times on the final torque spec in the proper sequence.

This would explain your coolant in cylinder 3, it is right beside the coolant port. It also explains the oil in the lifter valley.

-Thomas

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post #8 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-20-2007, 08:19 PM Thread Starter
 
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Yes you are right. Thank you for posting. I was certain that was also the problem. And now i have confirmed that it IS the problem. Now I can get on my way and put it all back together. Thank you Thomas!
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post #9 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-20-2007, 09:52 PM
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I like the theory above,, would be a great time to do a compression test while intake is off.

I always use felpro gaskets and a good torque wrench plus I also add a lil Grey RTV to the gaskets just where the coolant port is. not alot just enough to make it tacky.
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post #10 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-21-2007, 11:56 AM
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mm hmm, deffinetely do a compression test now while you have it apart, so you dont have to take it apart again...again.
-Thomas

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post #11 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-24-2007, 02:26 AM Thread Starter
 
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Well unfortunately, replacing the intake manifold gaskets did nothing. Water still drips out of the exhaust and the car still runs poorly. I'm at the end of my rope here. Not sure what to do with the dang thing. My only other assumption is that the headgasket did not seal upon installation. I am having it towed to a shop where they can tell me whats wrong with it.
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post #12 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-24-2007, 10:01 AM
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NAPA sells a headgasket leak detection kit, for like 50.00 i believe that it's called a block tester. Been a while. invest in that since it's a 3.8L , it's cheaper than a tow.

1988 Lincoln Mark VII
Paxton Novi 1000 6psi kit, 30lb injectors 73mm C&L, MAF converted A3M, gt-40's, Felpro headgaskets, 1.7 Cobra RR's, typhoon intake,1 5/8 shorty headers, off road x-pipe, and full mandrel catback, electric fan, 3.73's, TKO 500, pro 5.0 shifter

372.4hp / 394.6tq 5psi

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July 30, 1979 - March 26, 2006
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post #13 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-24-2007, 10:01 AM
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Did You Do A Compression Test???????

1988 Notch Mustang: - 438W, direct port n2o, t56
2003 SVT Focus: - SCT X3 tuner
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post #14 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-24-2007, 10:11 AM
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What He said..........

1988 Lincoln Mark VII
Paxton Novi 1000 6psi kit, 30lb injectors 73mm C&L, MAF converted A3M, gt-40's, Felpro headgaskets, 1.7 Cobra RR's, typhoon intake,1 5/8 shorty headers, off road x-pipe, and full mandrel catback, electric fan, 3.73's, TKO 500, pro 5.0 shifter

372.4hp / 394.6tq 5psi

Rest in Peace Joel R. Bender.
July 30, 1979 - March 26, 2006
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post #15 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-24-2007, 11:41 AM Thread Starter
 
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No. The man who installed the new heads and gaskets did all of that for me. The compression test may have revealed a problem but he did not mention it. I guess I am too trusting. I will pick up a compression test kit today.
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post #16 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-24-2007, 07:11 PM
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Hate to bring the bad news to you, but I don't think your motor is going to last much longer even if you sort out the leak...

You have alot of coolant in the oil, and that is NOT a good mix when it comes to the bottom end, and bearings, especially since you have been running the motor like that.

I'd be looking for another motor to use, or do a complete rebuild on the one you have.

Good luck

Fraser

'94 LX - 3.8: Slow, but gets there.
'90 SC - 3.8: Gets there right quick, and is my baby.
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post #17 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-25-2007, 01:51 PM Thread Starter
 
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Lol. I took out the #3 spark plug this morning and water poured out of the hole.
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post #18 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-28-2007, 03:42 PM Thread Starter
 
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Here is what the cylinder compression tests revealed.

Cylinder #1 148
Cylinder #2 120
Cylinder #3 180
Cylinder #4 150
Cylinder #5 150
Cylinder #6 136

None of those indicate a bad headgasket, but water still enters the #3 cylinder.
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post #19 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-28-2007, 05:50 PM
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its possible you have a leaking lower intake gasket again. It sounds crazy but those things are harder to seal correctly than head gaskets.
-Thomas

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post #20 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-28-2007, 06:00 PM Thread Starter
 
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I agree haha. Thanks again. =)
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post #21 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-28-2007, 08:03 PM
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No way,, how does the reading above not show a leaking HG??

Did the guy that did the work know what he was doing??? Maybe the gaskets were installed upside down or backwards.. I beleieve its possible.

Again pressure test the cooling system.. or better yet,, get a adapter and inject air from a compressor into each spark plug hole and listed for air out of the radiator.
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post #22 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-28-2007, 08:04 PM
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post #23 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-29-2007, 06:43 PM Thread Starter
 
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Ok I think spiltport may be right, here are some pictures of the current situation.:

In the first two you can tell that there are no indications of water leaking into the intake port. In the 3rd one I think it is the headgasket and I think that might be where it is leaking.



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post #24 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-29-2007, 07:00 PM
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could be that its just pooling up there. Hard to say, but that hole that you have pictures in #3 is an oil boss that goes in to that corner head bolt. The water jacket isnt real close to the corner. But in order for it to leak as much as your describer (and the pictures prove it) compression in the cylinders could not be that high. Kinda strange. Well you're only 30 minutes from having the heads off. I say pull em and ask for your money back.
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post #25 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-29-2007, 07:36 PM Thread Starter
 
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I agree. The compression reading goes against a leaking headgasket but then again, there was water in the cylinder when I took the reading. =/ That could be why it was so high. Thanks. I'll pull the head off tomorrow and see what I find.
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post #26 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-30-2007, 08:23 PM Thread Starter
 
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Well here is what I uncovered. It definetly WAS the problem. In the second picture you can see that the guys forgot (or decided not to) punch out the coolant passage holes in the head gasket!! LOL. I cleaned out the water and lubricated the cylinder walls with oil. I can't believe that the installer didn't punch out the holes....such a simple task caused a lot of trouble.


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post #27 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-30-2007, 08:45 PM Thread Starter
 
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No.....nevermind....disregard that last message. There are no holes to be punched out. I'm guessing that the bolts were torqued wrong....I don't know what else could have caused the water and oil mixing. I think that possibly the ignition timing is off which would explain the temperature slowly rising. Or the engine overheated because of the water in the cylinders. Hahaha i'm going insane. I just hope that replacing the headgasket and torquing properly, fixes the problem. *crosses fingers*
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post #28 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-30-2007, 09:42 PM
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buy a straight edge and a set of feeler gauges. Total cost is about 10-15 bucks. Put the straight across the head in thirds and see how much warpage you have with the feeler gauge, then put the straight edge diagonal from corner to corner both ways, and gauge the warpage. I dont know the maximum warpage clearance, but you can find it in a chiltons or haynes. Make sure your head is not warped before putting them back on. Do you know if they checked for this?

Yeah those holes dont get punched. lol

-Thomas

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post #29 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-30-2007, 10:10 PM Thread Starter
 
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All I can confirm is that it was machined because I took the head to the shop myself. So I would assume that it was straight but I didn't check because at the time, I wasn't the one installing it. I have a straight edge and a feeler guage in my garage, I will check tomorrow. I'm glad I decided to take on this task because I've learned alot about my car, and now I don't want to part with it, haha. =) Thanks.

Last edited by scotteiboi; 01-30-2007 at 10:17 PM.
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post #30 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-31-2007, 12:55 AM
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The headgaskets can go on the wrong way,, make sure the word FRONT is torward the front of the engine.

as you can tell some coolant passages are open and some closed,, this is designed to move the water from the front to the back.

After everything is all cleaned up send us some pics with it all clean,, nice close ups of the block.. I wanna see if there are any noticeable cracks.

Not sure if you cleaned it but NUMBER 3 piston is the culprit if you didnt,, its been steam cleaned!
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