horrible coolant leak, does this look like a blown head gasket to you? pix included [Archive] - GrandAmGT.com Forum

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MAC the KNIFE
05-15-2011, 08:43 PM
i'd say it was a head gasket, it started all at once. it won't leak while the car is running and i'm looking for it, but let the car cool and there will be a huge puddle.
my dad keeps saying, make sure it's not a freeze plug.
please help

while under the car, just by luck i saw 1 drop of coolant running down the block, but i can't tell exactly where it's coming from.

i tried to mark it's path and where it came from in orange in the pix.

the head gasket is green arrows,right? it dont look like the coolant has been there.

the thing in blue is the timing chain cover, right?

note. my oil still looks fine, even took the front valve cover off to inspect, and saw nothing in the oil. but obviously i'm not driving it until this is fixed.
29830 29831 29832

HOYS
05-16-2011, 12:00 AM
Your pictures aren't the easiest to digest, but I see what your getting at.

Don't just go assuming that things are broken and throw parts at the car.

Do a compression test on all cylinders. This will tell you if you have a blown HG.

What your seeing looks like it could be a HG. LIM gaskets usually don't blow out the side like that. It could be a leaky water pump, a leaky timing cover, hell a leaky hose.

Compression test and tell us what happens.

westerndragon
05-16-2011, 06:59 AM
if its the DOHC your probably blown the seal on your pump...it happened in my Daewoo and the pump leaked into the timing cover didnt know it was leaking untill i over heated and on a hunch i popped the clips on the cover and coolant poured out.

AaronGTR
05-16-2011, 05:01 PM
^He has the V6.

MAC the KNIFE
05-16-2011, 09:36 PM
yep it's the rear head gasket...






FUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU...

HOYS
05-16-2011, 11:05 PM
yep it's the rear head gasket...






FUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU...

What led you to this conclusion?

A head gasket is all of 15-20 dollars, bolt set is 30 (and you get a set of bolts for the front too!), and lower intake gaskets are anywhere from 75-90.

So. Buy ported intakes, do both head gaskets, spend about 360 bucks, a day, a six pack, and add some performance to the car.

GrandAmMe
05-16-2011, 11:33 PM
Ahhh welcome to my world a few months back!

sugar ray
05-18-2011, 03:38 AM
yup! yup! did the EXACT same job last April to my 02. Mine was the classic "LIM" failure. "Low Coolant" kept losing it internally. It was NOT nearly as bad as I thought as it was going to be. I took no chances and replaced my head gaskets while I was in there!!

I highly recommend using FEL-PRO's problem solving kit especially for the LIM gasket. Stay clear away from the GM replacements or you may be doing this job again!!

Could be a lot worse. I once did the head gasket on 89 Olds Cutlas Calias. Dual over head cam Quad 4. ARE WE HAVING FUN YET??

HOYS
05-18-2011, 09:40 AM
I have had much success with the GM gaskets for a LIM job.

SC/T02
05-18-2011, 10:43 AM
I have had much success with the GM gaskets for a LIM job.

GM never changed the product or supplier. With that being said, the same issue will happen again that has happened to 75% of the 3.4L on the road. There was a class action suite about it and GM was doing replacements for free, or would pay you back if you had to have it done. May be worth looking into.

AquaAcorn
05-18-2011, 10:46 AM
ill i have to say is make sure u get the metal gaskets or u will be doing it all over again in less than 50000 miles

kwdrake
05-18-2011, 05:58 PM
can you let us know how this work's out for you.

MAC the KNIFE
05-19-2011, 05:28 AM
Stewartfn18 spent a few hours with me taking the engine apart. these front wheel drive engine bays suck. got the LIM off, but because the radiator drain plug is stuck, you can imagine how that went. my garage floor looks like a messy orange juice factory.

i've gotta show you guys some pix of my coil packs. thinking that explains the problem i've had with higher rpm performance. and bad gas mileage.

anyway, the front head bolt that goes in near the oil dipstick wouldn't budge.
so that's as far as we got, the heads are still on.

sugar ray
05-19-2011, 07:09 PM
anyway, the front head bolt that goes in near the oil dipstick wouldn't budge.
so that's as far as we got, the heads are still on.[/QUOTE]

Are you referring to the studs that grow out of the heads that nut the exhaust on?

If so......when i did my LIM / Head gaskets I too had the exact same problem. I know a GM mechanic who has done several LIM/HEAD gasket's on the 3400's and he said these studs are simply hit and miss. More then likely you will snap one or more of these studs off when attempting to remove. It is almost unavoidable. They seem to seize and removing without snapping can't be done. If your doing the head gaskets NOT a big deal because the heads are coming off anyways. If your JUST doing the LIM gasket then breaking one of these forces you to remove the head. Once the head is out you simply easy out and re-tap and re-thread the holes. Some of them remove like a knife going through butter. A seized one, you will know right away

You "WILL" have to purchase new studs from the dealership as you will never find correct replacements at auto part stores. They soaked me for $9 / per stud. Thankfully I only broke 2 of them when removing. He did suggest using a thin film of "never seize" on these and all other exhaust bolts when putting things back together.

MAC the KNIFE
05-19-2011, 10:09 PM
no, i'm talking about the actual head bolt going into the block

thanks though. and the never seize is a good idea

02GT_SkyHigh
05-20-2011, 09:46 PM
Damn good luck with the tear down.
Best off figuring it out once cause then after that you'll be good for all your own repairs.
I do recommend having a IN/LB torque wrench when you put it back together. I had 2 stripped rockers thanks to a half ass LIM right when I got it. (not done by me...) Just a heads up...

AaronGTR
05-21-2011, 09:53 AM
GM never changed the product or supplier. With that being said, the same issue will happen again that has happened to 75% of the 3.4L on the road. There was a class action suite about it and GM was doing replacements for free, or would pay you back if you had to have it done. May be worth looking into.

Actually GM did change the LIM gasket design and material. I should know... I've replaced enough of them on peoples cars. Still not as good the felpro premium set, but there are as good as the basic felpro set and do the job. And the class action law suit had to do with the dexcool. They might have had one for the original LIM gasket design as well. I think both were settled out of court though so there was never a verdict as to what was at fault. There was a set deadline as too how long people had to make a claim and get their LIM gaskets replaced though. It's not like people can just keep going to GM for the next 10 years to get free LIM gasket replacements. :rolleyes:

ill i have to say is make sure u get the metal gaskets or u will be doing it all over again in less than 50000 miles

See above. I've done several LIM repairs with the new GM gaskets and not had any more failures. I believe it has more to do with installing them properly and with doing good maintenance on the car than with the actual gasket.

AaronGTR
05-21-2011, 09:55 AM
What led you to this conclusion?

A head gasket is all of 15-20 dollars, bolt set is 30 (and you get a set of bolts for the front too!), and lower intake gaskets are anywhere from 75-90.

So. Buy ported intakes, do both head gaskets, spend about 360 bucks, a day, a six pack, and add some performance to the car.


He already has a ported upper.


It definitely was the head gasket though. He told me they pressurized the cooling system with nitrogen and they could see where the coolant/bubbles where coming out from between the head and block. He took the rear head off and sure enough the gasket was split right at the middle coolant passage on the side of the block.

GAGT_99
06-11-2011, 09:46 PM
I had a similar issue just a week ago. My wife's 99 GT blew oil all through the cooling system and it came out through the coolant over flow tank drain tube. I only noticed it because of the brown puddle under her car. I popped the hood and sure enough back near the firewall was a coolant & oil sludge mixture all over where the over flow drain tube drains down. I checked the over flow tank and it was nothing but sludge.

FYI
It turned out to be the intake manifold gaskets, which is common on a car with over 100k miles.

AaronGTR
06-11-2011, 10:25 PM
I had a similar issue just a week ago. My wife's 99 GT blew oil all through the cooling system and it came out through the coolant over flow tank drain tube. I only noticed it because of the brown puddle under her car. I popped the hood and sure enough back near the firewall was a coolant & oil sludge mixture all over where the over flow drain tube drains down. I checked the over flow tank and it was nothing but sludge.

FYI
It turned out to be the intake manifold gaskets, which is common on a car with over 100k miles.


Well, that wouldn't exactly be a similar issue then would it. You had a lower intake gasket failure, which is common on these engines with high miles or cheap gaskets. He had a coolant leak from a head gasket failure. Not quite the same thing ;) and he didn't have any oil and coolant getting mixed.

SC/T02
06-12-2011, 10:26 AM
Actually GM did change the LIM gasket design and material. I should know... I've replaced enough of them on peoples cars. Still not as good the felpro premium set, but there are as good as the basic felpro set and do the job. And the class action law suit had to do with the dexcool. They might have had one for the original LIM gasket design as well. I think both were settled out of court though so there was never a verdict as to what was at fault. There was a set deadline as too how long people had to make a claim and get their LIM gaskets replaced though. It's not like people can just keep going to GM for the next 10 years to get free LIM gasket replacements. :rolleyes:

No they did not change suppliers or the product, only the design, not the material it was made of (IE: The product). They will still break down over time because of the fiber material being eaten through by Dex Cool

http://www.dslreports.com/forum/r18060155-GM-Class-Action-Lawsuit-Intake-Manifold-Gasket

http://sueeasy.com/class_action_detail.php?case_id=215

http://www.topclassactions.com/close/14-gm-dexcool-engine-coolant

Should still be ok for another 3 years with GM covering replacements.

AaronGTR
06-12-2011, 03:37 PM
No they did not change suppliers or the product, only the design, not the material it was made of (IE: The product). They will still break down over time because of the fiber material being eaten through by Dex Cool

http://www.dslreports.com/forum/r18060155-GM-Class-Action-Lawsuit-Intake-Manifold-Gasket

http://sueeasy.com/class_action_detail.php?case_id=215

http://www.topclassactions.com/close/14-gm-dexcool-engine-coolant

Should still be ok for another 3 years with GM covering replacements.


Since when does posting links to a bunch of other forums talking about class action law suits pass as technical evidence that no change was made? A lot of stupid people sue for a lot of different reasons... doesn't mean they know jack **** about cars. :rolleyes:

SC/T02
06-12-2011, 08:21 PM
Since when does posting links to a bunch of other forums talking about class action law suits pass as technical evidence that no change was made? A lot of stupid people sue for a lot of different reasons... doesn't mean they know jack **** about cars. :rolleyes:

I believe 2 links were still showing the open case for the lawsuit for repairs, then 1 forum. But I may be wrong. Yes many people sue for many reasons, but when you have over a 72% fail rate on a product, I believe it is a valid reason to hold the company responsible.

Point is, 1 free replaced OEM unit at GM's dime still good for 3 more years. It also was to show it is not just for Dex Cool issues, but also the LIM. The supplier and the product materials did not change, only the design.

I have the esclated corporate office assistance line if anyone needs it to make a claim. Most cases, they will make you pay, then cover up to X amount.

AaronGTR
06-12-2011, 09:22 PM
I had mine for well over 3 years and never had any problem. Never had any problem with my factory coolant either. IMO in most cases it comes down to improper installation or improper maintenance by the owner.

sugar ray
06-16-2011, 09:30 PM
Ya Aaron...I did read that the Dexcool was to blame and not so much poorly made gaskets. I have heard of people having to do this job TWICE simply because before it was a wide known issue on the 3.4, GM mechanics were simply replacing the LIM gaskets with the original ones that couldn't handle Dex Cool to begin with. Thus, they were getting the same result. Once it was a well known issue, GM had their gasket changed which was an improvement over the original.

Which makes me ponder this question.......

A lot of people that changed their LIM gaskets did an engine flush at the time completely removing DEX cool and switching to standard antifreeze. I wonder if anyone ever changed out their LIM using an "original" GM replacement combined with standard antifreeze? If so.....did that original GM gasket hold up? I am leaning to YES it would hold up just fine.

Just a thought anyways....