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Old 04-16-2015, 09:49 AM
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Losing coolant and overheating. Possible head gasket?

A few months ago, my girlfriend lost her water pump on the way to work. The pulley blew up. She said the jeep overheated and she pulled off the side of the road. I replaced the water pump and also changed the spark plugs as they looked worn. A couple of months went by with no issues. A few weeks ago, we hit the 3000mile oil change mark and i changed the oil. Oil looked fine, but noticed the reserve tank was empty. So filled it up and didnt think much about it as i did not see any leaks. Shortly after that i noticed a miss starting to develop at idle, but mostly went away at speed. Then while my girlfriend was driving around town, said the engine was starting to run hot again, popped the hood and said the tank was empty again. The check engine light came on also and said the #8 cylinder is miss firing. Now the tank berely holds for a few days. Here are a few symptoms i am noticing;

1. No visible leaks while engine is running.
2. Bubbles in reserve tank while engine is running and after it is shut off.
3. #8 cyclinder plug looks very worn and black burnt mark on side of electrode.
4. Nast gunk around oiler filler cap, (see picture)
5. Pressure testing radiator and found coolant leak coming from bottom off exhaust manifold at #8 cyclinder.

I want to make sure its the head gasket that is bad before i tear into the engine which only has 100,000 miles on it.

thanks for the help
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  #2  
Old 04-16-2015, 11:53 AM
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I think you just described a blown head sir.
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Old 04-16-2015, 11:54 AM
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Oh and that cream color oil ya got there means water in the oil.
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Old 04-16-2015, 12:13 PM
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Re: Losing coolant and overheating. Possible head gasket?

Headgasket or warped head. This engine doesnt like to be overheated and will warp the heads when done. If you deicide to change the head gasket(s) and check the head for warp, i would also let them check the valve seats. They are just pressed in place and they tend to come loose after an overheat. Would be a pitty at least to do the headgaskets now and lateron be faced with a dropped valve seat.
Did the tensioner pulley break and cause the belt to come of? This is at least something we see on the WJ 4.7, that the bearing of the tensioner pulleys looses its grease over time and finally the bearing seizes, breaking the pulley and loosing the belt. This is an item all the 4.7 and probably the 3.7 have to check once in a while, to prevent engine damage lateron.
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Old 04-16-2015, 01:38 PM
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Re: Losing coolant and overheating. Possible head gasket?

When the water pump pulley blew up, it did knock the serpintine belt off, so it drove for maybe a mile or two with no belt.

I planned on taking the head to an engine shop to see if its warped. Someone mentioned as well that the head could crack between the chamber and a water jacket. Could that have happened as well?
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Old 04-16-2015, 01:46 PM
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Re: Losing coolant and overheating. Possible head gasket?

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Originally Posted by Boomer914 View Post
Oh and that cream color oil ya got there means water in the oil.
Thats what i thought, but the dipstick looks fine and when i did an oil change a couple of weeks ago the oil looked fine. I had a 2006 Dodge Ram with the 5.7L and it had some cream gunk around the filler cap but nothing like this.
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Old 04-16-2015, 07:55 PM
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Re: Losing coolant and overheating. Possible head gasket?

If you drive short distances during colder weather, the engine will not heat up completely and it will not be able to get all the moisture out of the oil. It will mix with the oil and form a white sludge like stuff on the colder oil filler tube and cap.
The coolant leak is maybe not that big. Most probably it will leak out during the heat up cycle of the engine, when the expansion of the coolant will increase the coolant system pressure. Most probably the coolant hoses are not rock hard after driving, showing that the coolant leaked away somewhere.( or the radiator cap is bad)
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Old 04-16-2015, 08:40 PM
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Re: Losing coolant and overheating. Possible head gasket?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Frango100 View Post
If you drive short distances during colder weather, the engine will not heat up completely and it will not be able to get all the moisture out of the oil. It will mix with the oil and form a white sludge like stuff on the colder oil filler tube and cap.
The coolant leak is maybe not that big. Most probably it will leak out during the heat up cycle of the engine, when the expansion of the coolant will increase the coolant system pressure. Most probably the coolant hoses are not rock hard after driving, showing that the coolant leaked away somewhere.( or the radiator cap is bad)
Already replaced the radiator cap hoping it was a quick fix. It didnt allow as many bubbles in the expansion chamber but still seing them as the engine warms up.

I talked to a mechanic at a Jeep/Dodge Dealership, they said everything symptom i explained sounded like a head gasket issue. Im going to start tearing into it this weekend. I also wondered if i pulled of the valve cover if i would see the sludge there as well. Im looking for my smoking gun still.
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Old 04-17-2015, 06:59 AM
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Re: Losing coolant and overheating. Possible head gasket?

The air bubbles in the expansion reservoir are a clear sign of a leaking head gasket between a water jacket and combustion chamber. I won´t expect the sludge to be visible under the valve cover, but either way, the head gasket is leaking, so the head must come of and the valve cover as well.
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Old 04-20-2015, 11:37 AM
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Re: Losing coolant and overheating. Possible head gasket?

So after spending my entire Saturday tearing down the engine, it was confirmed that the head gasket blew between the rear water jacket and the #8 cylinder. It wasn't as bad as i thought. There wasn't as much sludge underneath the valve covers. The only water that was in the chamber was from when I pressure tested the engine when it was cold before i started this process.

The rest of the cylinders look fine and have no evidence of not sealing. There was no water and the plugs and chambers looked very good. I am wondering now if I should send the head to an engine shop to have the head checked to see if its warped. My thinking is that if the head was warped, it would not have been sealing in the middle chambers.

What does everyone else think?
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Old 04-20-2015, 04:18 PM
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Re: Losing coolant and overheating. Possible head gasket?

It is always a good idea to send a cylinderhead to a specialized shop to check it for warp and cracks when its removed. Depending on the milage on the engine, it could also be a good idea to let them change the valve stem seals and do a valve job.
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