: 110,000 miles, what else should be done along with head gaskets?

10-15-09, 10:57 PM
I'm gonna be having the head gaskets done on my 98 Eldorado soon, going to be using the Northstar Performance stud kit, but my question is what else should I do (just to get it out of the way) while the car is apart and the engine is out? I'd much rather spend the money now while the car is going to be apart and the engine will be out, rather than just doing the head gaskets and then having other stuff start failing shortly after.
What should I do? I plan on keeping the car long term and want to be able to drive without any issues down the road. How can these motors be made bulletproof? (or close to bulletproof)

10-16-09, 11:25 AM
The engine is already bulletproof. If you have no (or only slight) oil seepage from the pan or halfcase seals (they are not gaskets) then do NOT disassemble the lower end. The crank, rods, wrist pins, rings and pistons will last longer than you or me. Just have the stud work done by a GOOD mechanic, clean the piston tops and combustion chambers (don't even take the heads apart), use cam lube on the cams/followers/chains on reassembly, and use a good oil in the engine's recommended viscosity rating. If your mechanic concurs, replace the nylon timing chain tensioner and guide slippers. If any of the plastic vacuum lines to/from the throttlebody are cracked or the rubber connectors look dead, replace it all with proper sized rubber vacuum line. Cheap insurance. Use a WIX 51522 oil filter.

10-17-09, 11:27 AM
Hey Sub, on a 2000+ Northstar I would leave the cams in the heads, but the 99 and older flat tappet design definitely should be pulled because many of the tappets on the exhaust side will be worn. Instead of buying new, I would make a trip to the local pullapart and grab used ones, but try to get tappets on the intake side since they don't wear as bad.

10-17-09, 11:33 AM
Yeah, I should have hit on the " '98". I'd hate to have to replace a set of exhaust cams and followers on a pre-2000 though. A local yard or Car-Part would be the best bet in that case............

10-20-09, 06:23 PM
If a Check Engine light bothers you then you should have the mechanic replace the TCC solenoid if yours isnt already gone then it will be soon.