Well I blew my first headgasket tonight

d0n_3d

Boost is good.
Joined
Jul 14, 2001
I was coming home from Chicago tonight and came across a Z06 Corvette...well of course when I got beside him I got on it, but then a sudden loss of power came and then I saw tons of white smoke come out the back of my car...uh oh:(

Pulled over and popped the hood...sure enough around the driver side header and surrounding areas it was all wet and smoking...I was about 70 miles away from home when this happened at 12 midnight with no cell phone or anything...so I decided to "attempt" to drive home since I knew the motor was going to be pulled anyway...

well I drove home and white smoke was pretty much steadily coming out the back of my car and it was driving OK but you could tell something wasn't right...I kept on eye on my water temp gauge to make sure I wasn't overheating and kept an eye on the dash for the oil light to come on...everything was fine and temp never went over 165...I just opened the hood again in my garage and there's water and oil all over the backside of the engine compartment...downpipe, headers, valve covers, and firewall are all soaked with oil and coolant...surprisingly the overflow tank is still at the same level as before and it wasn't bubbling or didn't have any oil in it...it looked normal

so this is a headgasket eh? I am not sure which cylinder it blew on yet...but I guess people were right about slowly detonating a headgasket over time and then one day you get on the boost just a tad like I did and wham there goes the gasket...oh well now I can fully rebuild this motor this winter...did I do any major damage by driving home like I did? I figured if the motor didn't overheat that it should be acceptable just to get me home...what's all going to have to be replaced?
 
well you were looking for an excuse to rebuild it I guess you got it now. Sorry to hear about it though.:(
 
WAY TO GO DONNY BOY!



well you have like 8 months to put it back together, since you live in the frozen tundra!

as for hurting the motor if you milked the oil your bearing are toast they dont like water and coolant. you may be ok but your never really the same after poping the factory seal!


good luck.

Dathan
 
You prolly should have found an alternative way to get the car home without having to run it any more than it already had with the blown headgasket. My past experiences with blown HG's has led to the conclusion that the least the motor has to run in this condition the better! Shutting it down immediately and driving it home blown, with more than likely the oil contaminated, might mean the difference between polishing the crank and having to find a replacement. The damage that occurs while running the motor with a HG blown is unreal in most circumstances. You'd better hope that it blew into the intake and not otherwise....good luck with the rebuild!!
 
well i planned on replacing most of the engine internals anyways except for the crank...you think the crank is shot? am i going to have to get new heads too or can i reuse the stock ones and just get them ported and polished...those aren't bad are they?

what about my turbo? is that ok? it was blowing steam on the exhaust side because the water that was coming from combustion and not to mention the contaminated oil
 
With that much water, and a degradated amount of oil, getting to the bearings, you will prolly find the bearings and bearing surfaces to all be discolored. As long as no "sh*t" got into the bearings, you can prolly get away with a .010/.010 cut (machine shop will know for sure), but you prolly did not do any stress damage to the crank bacause of this one HG disaster. However, if you have been detonating the motor for years, it may be weak from that abuse.

Take a good look at the camshaft bearing surfaces as well.

Turbo should be fine if the oil level didn't go down too far and (obviously) you didn't go into boost after the fogging episode (i.e. the turbo wasn't overworked with a lack of oil supply). If the chra shaft is still tight, it should be OK.

Heads can be reused. But before you port and polish, have them checked for flatness. You prolly have some minor warpage that can easily be removed (if the cut is less than .010)
 
sounds like there isn't too much MAJOR damage done...that's good to hear...bearings are going to be replaced with steel ones...i hope the crank is ok...i am replacing the cam and rods, lifters, etc. anyways...oil level never dropped and engine coolant never rose over 165...in fact i popped the radiator cap off and it's completely full to the top and it's a healthy green with no oil in there or the overflow tank...it didn't even bubble when running...i think water got in the oil that's for sure...like i said the back of the motor compartment is covered in coolant/oil mix all along the headers, downpipe, valve covers and valley area...car was running pretty good bringing it home but was blowing white smoke big time the entire time...

that's all i know for now...any other input from the headgasket experts is greatly appreciated:D
 
:) just did mine a month ago, but i had alot more damage.had to replace #6 piston-1 exhaust, and my turbo.good news was that when i looked at the crank she was fine. I did drive her about 10miles after she let go.just replaced the rod and main bearings and all esle now she's broken in and ready to rock again. as long as it only scuffed the bearings crank should be fine, you'll find out when you take it apart.good luck:cool:
 
First thing I would do is drain the coolant and the oil and take a good look at it.
 
Originally posted by salvageV6
First thing I would do is drain the coolant and the oil and take a good look at it.

going to do that in a little bit here...i will let you know what it looks like
 
Originally posted by Scott231
You will learn alot by pullling the oil pan and inspecting the garbage in there.

I'd pull the motor at this point. Document everything with a digital camera and put the hardware away in labeled bags/boxes.

If you pop it and stop it, you can get away with swapping the head in the car. If you run the car with a blown gasket, there is no benefit to leave the motor in the car.

Port the heads while they are off.
 
How cold was it outside when you did it?? Seems like the colder it is the more hg's decide to go this time of year, leans out. I know I've had to lower my boost the last few days since it got pretty cold over the weekend and boy am I glad I did!! Although I'm gathering parts to put a motor together over the winter, I'd still like the original to stay in tact for a back up if I ever need it.

Sorry to hear that man:( But you were wanting a 10 sec motor anyway so now there's no excuse:D !! Good luck!
 
:( Oh bummer man, that sucks :( At least you got the winter to get her rebuilt, Better :) Stronger :D Faster :D
Hopefully you didn't F up any reusable engine internals.
At least you at the right place to ask questions and get ALL the right answers for your rebuild. ;)
Tarey D.
 
Originally posted by d0n_3d
oil level never dropped and engine coolant never rose over 165...in fact i popped the radiator cap off and it's completely full to the top and it's a healthy green with no oil in there or the overflow tank...it didn't even bubble when running...i think water got in the oil that's for sure...like i said the back of the motor compartment is covered in coolant/oil mix all along the headers, downpipe, valve covers and valley area...car was running pretty good bringing it home but was blowing white smoke big time the entire time...


Hmm, havent you had unexplainably high BLM's forever? Maybe you have a leaking intake manifold thatg finally let go?

If you saw steam out the exhaust, you would NOT have a full radiator after a 70 mile drive.

Is it possible, the intake leaked and sprayed crap on the exhaust/crossover etc and that is the "smoke" you saw since the car was moving?

Of you you physically see it coming out of the tailpipes, and it smells"sweet" like coolant?
 
BANG!

"However, if you have been detonating the motor for years, it may be weak from that abuse."

Hmmmmmm..... let me think back to that time we were cruising in your GN.

You: "what is all that tap tap tap sound when I stand on it?"

ME: "huh! might want to back off the boost a bit"

Sorry about what happened. You have a deadline ya know....... Spring Fling '04.

Remember the dream.........
 
Originally posted by TurboJim
Hmm, havent you had unexplainably high BLM's forever? Maybe you have a leaking intake manifold thatg finally let go?

If you saw steam out the exhaust, you would NOT have a full radiator after a 70 mile drive.

Is it possible, the intake leaked and sprayed crap on the exhaust/crossover etc and that is the "smoke" you saw since the car was moving?

Of you you physically see it coming out of the tailpipes, and it smells"sweet" like coolant?

HOLY COW I THINK JIM HIT IT RIGHT ON THE BUTTON!

YES i did notice that when my car was idling after this happened there was NO smoke coming out of the tailpipes...it was smoking towards the back of the motor compartment...in fact while i was driving and people shined their headlights at me i noticed that the smoke was all spread out underneath the car while moving...not just in the location of the tailpipes...

wow Jim you nailed it...i bet my intake gasket let go instead of the head gasket...because i am telling you my radiator is still full and so is the overflow tank and there's no oil or milkshake or anything in there...i still haven't drained the oil yet but will check that tomorrow...we may be on to something here...
 
Originally posted by d0n_3d
<snip>but then a sudden loss of power came and then I saw tons of white smoke come out the back of my car...
So, was this a little white lie? (no pun intended) :mad:
Were you fogging for mosquitos or was this a little white cloud that you really weren't sure of the size or color?:confused:
 
another thing, why would my motor compartment be covered in oil and water towards the back? does that normally happen during a headgasket failure? i thought that was internal damage...

also how the heck could i have driven 70 miles straight and the motor ran fine for the most part and did not once overheat nor oil pressure dropped??? i am still pulling this motor out for a rebuild anyways but i would rather know i don't have so much damage done by a headgasket rather i have an intake gasket that went which isn't so bad...
 
Dood get a freakin' bucket and drain the oil already. ;)

When I had a hose let loose the back of the motor got covered in hot coolant and loosened everything up dirt/oil/leaves/bugs and the critters living in there weren't happy.

Hot water will do that.

Then again you couldn't have lost that much coolant and made it 70 miles. :eek:

Find out how much oil is still in the car and drain it. Have a looksee. :)
 
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