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Looks like I'm the newest member of the blown headgasket club

Discussion in '80-Series Tech' started by Epic Ed, Mar 2, 2007.

  1. Epic Ed

    Epic Ed

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    :mad: :mad: :mad: :mad: :mad:


    See if these symptoms sound familiar...

    - Noticed engine was idling rough on commute to work.

    - Slight over heating driving in traffic on highway (shut down waaaay before it reached red).

    - Coolant boling at shut down.

    - Checked coolant level -- mysterious dissapearance of coolant. No leaks from radiator, water pump, hoses, etc.

    - Refilled with distilled water before making commute home. It took nearly an entire gallon of water. :eek:

    - Made it most of the way home with eye fixed on temp gauge before symptoms repeated (though continued to rough idle from the start of the trip). Again, no leaking coolant but gurggling, boiling radiator indicates coolent loss.

    - Once engine had cooled down at home a check of the radiator confirmed coolant had again disappeared and this time I noticed a distinct smell of exhaust. I filled it with distilled water again and let it sit over night.

    - Started it this morning and looked for the tell tale white smoke from the exhaust and within 20 seconds I was getting a consistent stream of white exhuast that smelled like coolant.


    Unfortunately I've been down this road before. Not with the Cruiser, but my 95 4Runner. The symptoms are all too familiar and I know the fix is going to be neither easy nor cheap. If this wasn't my daily driver I'd probably buy the parts and give a shot at repairing it, myself, but I need it done quickly and done right -- and that means $$. A whole lotta $$ that I really don't have right now.

    The wife is gonna kick me in the junk so I may as well get my monies worth -- things to replace while I'm having this work done?

    I'm already going to put in a new radiator. In fact, that was the project I was planning to do this weekend and probably contributed to the head gasket demise. I just did all belts and EGR valve & modulator last weekend. I suppose doing the PHH would be a no brainer, correct? I'm open to more ideas for preventative maintenance.

    Anyone know of an outstanding shop in the PHX area to get this done?

    Ed
     
  2. e9999

    e9999 You want to do what...? Moderator

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    sorry to hear that...

    you're not the only one, if that makes it any better...

    mileage?
     
  3. Bluedog

    Bluedog SILVER Star

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    When the HG goes, does the coolant get in to the cylinder and then out the exaust?


    B.
     
  4. Epic Ed

    Epic Ed

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    I think it depends on where the water jacket fails. For what it's worth the oil is still oil -- not a frothy chocolate milk, which would indicate the failure is seeping coolant into the engine. Yeah, I've seen that before, too (4Runner). It ain't pretty.

    Mileage is just under 215,000, but I bought it with 202,000 on the odometer and I have no vehicle maintenance history on it.

    Ed
     
  5. landtank

    landtank SILVER Star

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    sounds like another HG for sure. The biggest decision by far is who will do the work. Doing it yourself really won't set you that far back in time. First weekend pull everything down and get the head to machine shop on Monday. Work through the week cleaning various parts up. Put engine back together following weekend.

    If you think the dealer will get it done much faster you're kidding yourself. These types of repairs usually bog them down and they work at it in bits and pieces so as not to impact their production too much which means it can take more than a week to get done. Not all dealers but quite a few I'm sure.
     
  6. peepers

    peepers

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    what does a dealer usually charge for this?
     
  7. Cruiserdrew

    Cruiserdrew SILVER Star

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    $2K plus or minus, but likely plus
     
  8. Epic Ed

    Epic Ed

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    I've done some wrenching but I'm just not comfortable enough to think that I could get this done by myself in two weekends. If it weren't my DD it would be a different story and I'd kind of like the learning experience. But -- since I don't have much margin for error with my time frame I'm likely going to hand it off to someone who knows what the F they're doing and rent a car for the week. I have one estimate so far at $1300-$1800 depending on the valve work needed. Since mine has about 215,000 miles I expect I'll be at the high end of that range. I don't want to skimp, either. If something is worn or needs to be replaced I'm going to get it done now while the head is off.

    I just picked up the radiator this afternoon -- great guys over at Performance Radiator. Just to give them an extra plug, they do have the Koyo brass/copper radiator that is just like OEM from Toyota and it was only $231. CDan has pretty much given these his blessing and in fact recommended I pick one up. Looks great so far.

    Ed
     
  9. DTAYLOR

    DTAYLOR

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    Additional Pm list

    Careful to weigh the time some of these will take. Landtank's 2 weekend time frame is an excellent idea, but it may take longer to get some of this done.

    Here goes:

    Alternator brush pack
    All coolant hoses, including PHH and firewall heater hoses. There is a vender here on Mud for the hosses you cannot get from Dan, (short of buying the metal rear heater lines)
    Water Pump
    Thermostat
    Starter contacts and plunger
    Air filter
    Fuel filter
    Spark Plugs
    Dist Cap
    Rotor
    Valve grind / head shave / valve stem seals / leak test (machine shop work)
    send the upper and lower intake to the machine shop for a good cleaning
    heat tape wrap the wiring harness where it's close to the EGR tube.
    PCV valve and hose
    Valve cover spark plug tube gaskets (included in head set)
    Injector flow (RC Engineering in Torrance, CA)
    Fan Clutch
    New Head bolts
    Good time to seal PS pump (only if leaking, if not leave it alone)
    Good time to get a good look at your PS cooler (check for leaks)
    Good time to do Slee headlight harness
    Clean everything you see in the engine compartment. Much more accessable now than ever. Careful not to be too rough on the pistons, cylinder walls, top of block.
    Good time to replace accellerator cable if it needs it.
    Good time to inspect and replace steering shaft grommet and replace if needed.
    Plan on an almost immediate oil change (I would run 1 tank of gas through first)

    Also be aware if you DIY, that there will be a lot of coolant in the exhaust, so it will smoke a lot for a while. Mine took 2-3 miles before it quit smoking.

    Get a video from IdahoDoug, and a downloaded FSM before you start. Removing the hood makes things a lot easier to get to, especially at the rear of the engine.

    Call CruiserDan at American Toyota in Albuqueque, NM for parts. He'll hook you up, then hook you for life! He's a great resource.

    HTH,

    D
     
  10. landtank

    landtank SILVER Star

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    if you are not going to do this go to the club house corner section and see if there is a local club listed and ask for recommendations on shops in your area.

    You'll probably save some money and get a better quality job that way.
     
  11. johnny4ever

    johnny4ever

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    Welcome to the HG CLUB.

    Sorry to hear about your loss. I just had the HG replaced on my 97. The dealer charged me $1600.00 for the HG and an additional $450.00 for a valve job. I whined(just ask the mud-vets here)and got the dealer to discount the whole job 10%. A little over a week later I rolled out of their garage for just a hair over $1800.00. Look at my thread and others for what to do while you have the head off but you have the right idea about the PHH.

    Here is my thread which includes alot of input from the helpful mud-non-elite.
    https://forum.ih8mud.com/showthread.php?t=136872&highlight=Head+Gasket

    Hope this helps.

    J
     
  12. Thermodyn

    Thermodyn

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    Sorry Ed. That sux!:frown:
     
  13. toylndcrusr

    toylndcrusr

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    Does the coolant in the exhaust damage the cats or O2 sensors?
     
  14. IdahoDoug

    IdahoDoug

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    With all the horror stories here with independents screwing up this work, I'd gladly pay a Toyota dealer a 20% premium. At least that way the dealership is more likely to accept responsibility for giving you the truck back with the following errors:

    -broken rubber intake hose ($90)
    -radiator top tank cracked from mechanic's knee ($400)
    -radiator return nipple cracked off while removing alternator ($400)
    -check engine light on ($$)
    -coolant leak from metal hose above thermostat ($50)

    Plus they're more likely to apologize when it takes 2 weeks to complete instead of their estimated 4 days. When Robbie gets back from his FJ tour, I swear he should start a business here installing HGs mobile.

    Anyhow, props to you for catching it before it did damage. Good eye. If your truck's going to sit for a few days/week before being serviced I recommend you change the oil while it's sitting, then start it up for 30 seconds to get any coolant out of the bearings - coolant literally eats bearing material chemically.


    DougM
     
  15. nodaksn3

    nodaksn3

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    Sorry about that Ed. Just had mine done this week, at the dealer (good guys here in S.F.) Cost $1900 plus change, and they installed a new plug wiring harness because my fairly new one pulled apart when disassembled. Also got an oil change and the head machined for that price. Took them 2 days. Great mechanic,:) but he knew its a PIA to do. It's been colder than hell here for the last couple of weeks, and I don't have a garage, so DIY was out. Turned out that there was a very minor crack in the HG between #5 and one of the small coolent passages, which was pressurizing the coolent into the overflow tank, which smelled heavily of exhaust. I'd done the PHH last spring, so left it alone, and hoses are all new, as are the belts. It has 178,000 on the clock, and has always run perfectly, except the check engine light is always on. Needs new sensors, which when the weather is better, I'll install. I've had the truck 3 years without a major problem (except the main computer, got used from Cruiserparts.com, perfect $250). Good luck, Ned
     
  16. johnny4ever

    johnny4ever

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    Possible

    Immediately following my HG replacement mine threw a CEL and the code blamed the 02 sensor(?). The tech thought that when the HG blew and coolant was blown through the exhaust that that did in the 02 sensor.

    J
     
  17. Epic Ed

    Epic Ed

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    Thanks for all the input, folks. Doug, that's an excellent call about changing the oil -- I'll do that tomorrow. I've also been weighing my repair options and got a quote froma dealer that was dead on for the quote from an independant repair guy. Another plus to going with the dealer would be the discount on a rental car while it's getting fixed. The one major plus side to going with the independant is I'd be able to help him with the tear down -- I'm off all day Monday so I'd be able to spend the entire day there cleaning other stuff after the heads were removed.

    Tough call.

    Ed