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1998 DeVille Executive 4.6 Northstar
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18 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
My question is has anyone used Bars leak on a 98 DeVille 4.6 Northstar blown head gasket? I just bought a clean 98 DeVille Executive drove it for a week then it overheated on me. Only drove 60 mph at the most,mostly in town driving no freeway. So I barely got to really get to know the car but kinda like how it looks and would like to keep it if possible. I'm reading alot about this motor and the head gasket issue and the bolt problem as well already looked into just replacing the head gasket and bolts and new thread inserts. But read about the common problems when doing that and the other parts the may end up needing work just because of the engine getting pulled out. I think it's a blown head gasket because I smell gas in my coolant resavoir and I see no visible leaks.
 

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2012 SRX Luxury
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395 Posts
Lots of people have tried stuff on them. There's lots of plugging products out there. Do they work on a Northstar ? Sometimes, kinda for a short while. But the real fix is to send the engine out to a real rebuilder who can fix the real issues. The head bolts and holes which stretch out and strip the threads. It's more complicated than just adding some "junk" into the cooling system. Lots of posts on it everywhere. Google is your friend.

Steve
 

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1998 DeVille Executive 4.6 Northstar
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18 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
I've read all that and I know the real fix is to just fix it lol Is it really worth it possibly having to pay upwards to 3000 just to get that covered. I payed 1400 for it and the body and interior are in very good condition and it seems it's been well maintained? I guess is more question.
 

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White Diamond '03 DHS (with DTS floor shift)
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Is it really worth it possibly having to pay upwards to 3000 just to get that covered.
That's a question only you can answer, but it is the only option IF you want it to last. Dumping any repair-in-a-bottle snake oil in it will be a temporary fix at best.
 

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2002.5 F55 CORSA STS, 2014 Explorer XLT FWD
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69,835 Posts
I see that you're in Michigan. Talk to Joe Blau at Midwest Cadillac Repair in Palatine, IL - just NW of Chicago. He is the resident expert on Northstar head bolt repair problems.

As posted, don't use temporary fixit magic goop. It just makes future engine repairs tough or impossible.

If the rest of the car is in good shape it's worth the engine repair cost.

I need to ask the operative question: Have you checked the coolant purge line for flow?
 

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'85 Sedan de Ville, '10 CTS-V
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571 Posts
I suggest you read about the various products (miracles in a bottle) out there. Pick one, then follow instructions carefully. A miracle is worth trying for 1/100th the cost, $30 vs $3000. (Just going off the price listed on this thread no experience personally).

As a side note:. "I just got it a week ago" motivates my recommendation...
 

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1998 DeVille Executive 4.6 Northstar
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18 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
It's been parked since it Overheated and I haven't checked the lines yet was going to do so before I did any big money repairs and I also read about the coolant resavoir having to be replaced and the purge lines as well because of getting clogged was thinking on doing that as well first.

How do I know or find out if someone has used such goop before on this engine any tell tale signs? Before I go any further with anything I guess that is a good question as well.

I suggest you read about the various products (miracles in a bottle) out there. Pick one, then follow instructions carefully. A miracle is worth trying for 1/100th the cost, $30 vs $3000. (Just going off the price listed on this thread no experience personally).

As a side note:. "I just got it a week ago" motivates my recommendation...
And also motivates my questions lol it is what it is I got it cheap and don't have 3000 to drop on it right now
 

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2002.5 F55 CORSA STS, 2014 Explorer XLT FWD
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69,835 Posts
Sealant use - muddy coolant in the surge tank, slickery brown goop in the coolant hoses.

Check out the purge line and the water pump drive belt tensioner pulley.

Rent an exhaust gas block tester from a parts store, go for a drive, come home and do the block test. You're sampling the airspace over the coolant to detect exhaust gases. That's the yes/no head gasket bolt hole failure test.

Stupid question........ What was the indication of "overheat"? What happened and where was the temp gauge needle/bar?
 

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2002.5 F55 CORSA STS, 2014 Explorer XLT FWD
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I edited my last post to insert a question ............
 

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1998 DeVille Executive 4.6 Northstar
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18 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
Well it came across my dash shut engine off high temperature and the low oil and low coolant lights came on At that point I pulled over checked the tempature it was reading only 220 so I popped the hood seen a little bit of steam coming from the resavoir so I shut it off. Let cool down for twenty minutes so I could check the resavoir. When I turned the car back on it was still reading low coolant and the oil turned to zero oil life. I have not tried to drive it or have I tried looking at the purge line yet since then because 1. I don't know squat about this car or motor and 2. I'm scared of what I might find

I did smell gas in my resavoir
 

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2002.5 F55 CORSA STS, 2014 Explorer XLT FWD
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"smell gas" ............ exhaust fumes or raw gasoline? Raw gasoline would be practically impossible in the coolant.

Correct coolant level is 1/2 full, cold.

An engine overheat sets oil life to 0 and a coolant loss sets the coolant low message.

Is the water pump turning?

water pump drive pulleys.gif
 

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1998 DeVille Executive 4.6 Northstar
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18 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
I'd say exhaust fumes.I do have a hole in one of mufflers as well. Water pump is turning.
 

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1996 Deville
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31 Posts
I'm having similar isuses on a 96 DeVille ... debating the same thing ... my repair quote was $3200 ... I had already changed the theromostat, oil, coolant ... purge line is flowing ... haven't done resevior yet ... I have my own thread gong on ...I've seen a guy use it on a Caddy on Youtube ... but it was a 2005 .... Bars .... my car will drive mostly fine for 25 minutes ... then start rising up in temp ... sometimes it "runs away" to 255 , other times it goes to 236 and drops right back down to 206 or so ... the most recent advice was to take out my thermostat (even though I changed it already) and run it without one for awhile .... I ordered my chemical test online so I am still waiting for it ... it sucks doesn't it ... I can drive locally for the most part ... but can't trust it ...
 

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1998 DeVille Executive 4.6 Northstar
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18 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
Hell yes it does. Because I was really liking how it was driving and then bam
 

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1996 Deville
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31 Posts
... I recently have been asking what the possibilities of buying a new thermostat that was bad out of the box were, 1 person said "not likely" but two lifelong mechanics said absolutley ... they have seen it numerous times ... that's when the one told me to run it without one for awhile ... which I am going to try soon. I have zero signs other than the overheating ... no white smoke (although people here will say Caddy's won't have that sign) no milky oil ... no ticking ... no loss of power ... but one guy told me pretty adamantly DO THE BLOCK TEST ... like 1,000 times ... I think they got tired of my bitching :)
 

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1998 DeVille Executive 4.6 Northstar
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18 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
I know you can test themostats by throwing them in boiling water and seeing if it opens it's good if not it's bad
 

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1996 Deville
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31 Posts
I know you can test themostats by throwing them in boiling water and seeing if it opens it's good if not it's bad
I read if you do that test you can't let the thermostat touch the pan ... have to hold it with plyers ... I know it's a stretch but what if the stat only acted up every so often or stuck on occasion ... who knows ... I do electric work ... I've seen plenty of things happen you wouldn't expect and no expert would have thought of ... I kinda figured the guys here wouldn't like the idea of "snake oil" and they don't ... I paid $4800 for my DeVIlle over 10 years ago ... 165k miles now ... drove it to upstate NY from Cincy 5 years ago no issue at all ... one day the battery was dead so I left it idling to charge the battery and walked away and forgot it ... 45 min later came back to it overheating .... pinhole in upper hose ... big mistake ... changed hose but then it's been running hot after 25 moinutes of driving ... sometimes overheats ... sometimes comes back down ... maybe one of us can be the guinea pig for the other ... whoever tries BARS first?
 
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