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Author Topic: Head gasket changed, still leaking...  (Read 1365 times)

August 20, 2017, 11:52:35 am

acidtonic

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Head gasket changed, still leaking...
« on: August 20, 2017, 11:52:35 am »
I have a 1983 Volkswagen Rabbit with the original 1.6 diesel engine. 270k on it. Had a lot of white smoke and was consuming coolant. Previous owner took off the power steering belt so the water pump wasn't getting turned properly.

I've since fixed the power steering, installed a new power steering pump belt, and can see that coolant is flowing into the reservoir as the engine runs.

Decided to change the head gasket because I had coolant coming out the back left corner of the block and my hoses were swollen when it was hot. White smoke smelled like coolant too.

Put in a new original Victor head gasket, replacing a 3 notch with another 3 notch. Followed the instructions to a T using a torque wrench. Warmed it up, did the additional tightening with a breaker bar. After driving around for about 20 minutes I could hear the exhaust tone change, and when I got back home, again coolant was trickling out of that back corner and my hoses were swollen again.

Time for a new head? Pistons looked good when I pulled it. I took some photos perhaps I should upload them, but it might take me a bit.

Really want to get this thing going. I noticed on the parts place website, they have a reman and a new head. The new one looks like a different brand of head, are those just as good as the OE heads? Is there any weird break-in procedure besides just bolting it on?

Of course I have a Bentley, and I also timed the fuel pump when I put it back on with a dial guage. I'm set to 1.04 millimeters and it was starting easily and running well. Previously it was at 1.00 and a bit sluggish so I advanced it a bit. I think the pump is tired though and it's leaking a little bit of fuel out of the top of the pump where the throttle is.

Appreciate any advice here. I have two gaskets but I know better than to try that....

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« Last Edit: August 20, 2017, 11:55:09 am by acidtonic »



Reply #1August 20, 2017, 11:58:35 am

acidtonic

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Re: Head gasket changed, still leaking...
« Reply #1 on: August 20, 2017, 11:58:35 am »
Forgot to mention that I also put in a brand new 180 degree thermostat when I had the power steering pump off.

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Reply #2August 20, 2017, 01:46:44 pm

ORCoaster

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Re: Head gasket changed, still leaking...
« Reply #2 on: August 20, 2017, 01:46:44 pm »
Well that is a poor turn of events.  Original head gasket lasts thousands of miles and the new one doesn't get 50. 

You described most of the conditions we generally want to know about except the condition of the head.  Did you prep it in any way?  Did you measure it for flatness tolerance?  You can probably still salvage this one as the 20 mile mark probably didn't mess up the head gasket any.  I would pull that head again and be real particular on cleaning it, even to the point of doing an oil sand on a large piece of glass with some wet sand sandpaper.  Oil it instead of water sand it.  You can get the paper at most hardware stores. 

Depending on how warped it might be I think I would start with something like 320 and work up to 600 grit.  You float the head on the paper in a figure eight pattern.  Look for a Libby post that describes the process.  I have smoothed out a slightly warped head in the past using that method. 

Then there is the issue of bonding.  Get some Halomar or at the very least some copper spray.  Coat both the head and the gasket and lower it in place and set it with some thumb pressure then put the head on.  Your bolts should still do the duty required of them as well.  You didn't give them the extra tweak at 1000 miles yet as you were 980 short changed. 

Good luck and keep us posted.
Now Own 1981 Caddy as the NEW DISTRACTION to all that is around me.  Project Away!

Reply #3August 20, 2017, 02:56:18 pm

acidtonic

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Re: Head gasket changed, still leaking...
« Reply #3 on: August 20, 2017, 02:56:18 pm »
I didn't do too much to the Head besides a light sanding. I did use hylomar spray and new head bolts. I heard another mention that the ARP studs are better so I may grab those.

The head seemed very flat but that passage right where it's leaking seemed as if it was bending upwards. It looked rather obvious to the naked eye. There's also cracks between the valves on every single cylinder. The fourth one has two cracks and I'm afraid if those joined together, a small chunk of metal will fall into the chamber. So a new head maybe in order anyway.

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Reply #4August 20, 2017, 07:50:55 pm

vanbcguy

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Re: Head gasket changed, still leaking...
« Reply #4 on: August 20, 2017, 07:50:55 pm »
Cracks in the block around the head bolts are very common on early 11mm engines... I'd be looking in that direction.

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Bryn

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Reply #5August 20, 2017, 08:02:20 pm

acidtonic

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Re: Head gasket changed, still leaking...
« Reply #5 on: August 20, 2017, 08:02:20 pm »
This one is a 12mm engine.

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Reply #6August 23, 2017, 05:52:26 pm

acidtonic

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Re: Head gasket changed, still leaking...
« Reply #6 on: August 23, 2017, 05:52:26 pm »
If I just don't want to do this and decide to get a new head, is the old head worth anything more than a core?

The price of a new head is only a couple hundred bucks and I dont want to keep doing this. Id rather know im done for awhile and not fear adding a turbo in the future due to a head near the edge of failure.

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Reply #7August 24, 2017, 12:35:59 am

ORCoaster

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Re: Head gasket changed, still leaking...
« Reply #7 on: August 24, 2017, 12:35:59 am »
If the price is only a few hundred for a new one I would lean that way.  If the cracks are suspect then use it as a core.
Now Own 1981 Caddy as the NEW DISTRACTION to all that is around me.  Project Away!

Reply #8September 01, 2017, 06:21:27 pm

vwzzuk

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Re: Head gasket changed, still leaking...
« Reply #8 on: September 01, 2017, 06:21:27 pm »
I'd take your head into a machine shop (that can cut aluminum and steel in the same pass on their machine) and have them check it first.

Sounds like it is warped and not flat enough to seal properly or has a crack somewhere in that corner. Machine shop can pressure test it, cut it flat or line bore it if necessary.

You might look with a magnifying glass in that corner of your block for any hairline cracks. Sand the top of the block with a long board to clean the surface for a great seal with a good head.

 
--Dave

82 Rabbit Pickup, 1.6NA
91 Jetta, 1.6NA
87 Samurai, 1.9TD AAZ
92 Sidekick, 1.6TD

Reply #9January 03, 2019, 09:03:43 pm

JameBUYv

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Head gasket changed still leaking
« Reply #9 on: January 03, 2019, 09:03:43 pm »
This is an old thread, but the problem still remains.  I tried PSP 6, but the HD AVI export is still broken.  Has anyone had any success?

Reply #10January 23, 2019, 04:38:10 pm

smutts

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Re: Head gasket changed, still leaking...
« Reply #10 on: January 23, 2019, 04:38:10 pm »
Swirl chambers likely cracked into the coolant passages too. There is a lot of heat going on in there, with no water pump it would'nt take long for a grievous injury.

Reply #11January 30, 2019, 03:16:14 am

Howardpak

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Head gasket changed still leaking
« Reply #11 on: January 30, 2019, 03:16:14 am »
i paid 30 for my gti head gasket, cant remember if i got it at mates rates or not though lol
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