: blown head gasket

04-12-05, 10:15 PM
1994 concours no leaking no steam and no smoking just cut off while i was drving so i took to the shop and the mechanic told me i have a blown head gasket, can some one help me understand this problem? and what are the begining stages of this blown head gasket thing.oyea 2nd cadilac first one 1984 sedan deville:crying2:

04-12-05, 11:50 PM
Get a good second opinion. Maybe a 3rd. Don't tell them what the first one said. Let they draw thier own conclusions. If they think they can get a head gasket job out of you, their judgement would then be suspect at best.

I would recommend a Cadillac Dealer or an Olds dealer. They have the most experience with the N* V8s.

Do I trust mechanics? Not very many of them....

04-13-05, 12:40 AM
usually when you have a blown headgasket, you will have white smoke coming out of the tail pipe because of water/coolant in the combustion chambers. Check for coolant in the oil, you can just look into the coolant tank or take out the dip stick.

04-13-05, 12:41 AM
If the mechanic is persian, do NOT trust him!!

04-14-05, 12:07 PM
What engine do you have in your car? The symptoms you describe do not sound like a head gasket related problem. Head gasket failures do not always present with water in the oil, or smoking coolant out the exhaust, or even as low compression on one or more cylinders. Northstars in particular often blow all the coolant out the overflow and overheat when the head gasket(s) fail.

04-15-05, 04:28 PM
The head gasket seals the cylinders to the cylinder head. When it "blows" you get a leak from the cylinder into the water jacket. Typical symptoms are overheating, caused by white hot combustion gases getting into the water and boiling it. Pull the radiator cap and look closely at the coolant while the engine is running. If combustion gases are leaking into the water jacket you will see tiny bubble rising thru the coolant.
The head gasket on a V8 seals all four cylinders on one bank. When they "blow" they fail one cylinder at a time. The cylinder with a leak (the "blown" one) will show lower compression than the other ones. I would want to see the compression gage readings before getting into an expensive head gasket job. A compression gage is not terribly expensive. Before shelling out head gasket money I would buy one, (and a spark plug wrench if you don't have one) and check the compression myself.
A blown head gasket shouldn't cause a sudden on the road failure, unless some too-smart-for-its-own-good microprocessor had a brain storm and decided to shut the engine down to save it. One a car with "limp home" that can get you back with NO WATER in the block, I expect the micro processor would let you drive the car even if it thought the head gasket was blown. If the car has been running and suddenly stops I always figure its lost ignition or lost fuel. Basically if fuel is getting into the cylinders and the ignition fires, the engine will run. When it stops running look for fuel and look for spark.
David Starr

04-22-05, 08:25 PM
thanks for your advice,and i did get a second opinion it would cost me an arm and a leg to get it fix,so how about a rebuilt?

04-22-05, 08:31 PM
thanks for replying,i got a second opinion and it is blown,so tell me what do you think of a rebuilt?

04-22-05, 08:36 PM
i have a northstar engine and i did get a second opinion and the head is blown,so what do you think of a rebuilt? It will cost me an arm and a leg to fix the head.

04-24-05, 11:06 AM
From what I've been hearing and reading, the typical cost to R&R the engine and fix it runs around $2K-$2.5K. Rebuilts are selling for around $4K, and then you are still looking at shipping costs and labor to R&R the engine. New crate motors from GM sell for around $6K with tax, and again there will be shipping and labor added to change it out. Where are you located? I could probably fix your engine pretty cheap if you could get it out and ship it to me. That way at least the VIN # on your engine will still match your car title.