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Bob Is The Oil Guy and oil analysis for leaky head gasket.

Discussion in 'The Okie Corral' started by itisbruno, Mar 14, 2010.

  1. itisbruno

    itisbruno Devious Member CLM

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    I could use some experienced advice.

    Has anyone done the oil analysis Bob Is The Oil Guy recommends? If so, who did you use, what did it cost, and was it worth it?

    I suspect my old pathfinder has a leaky head gasket, and I think that an oil analysis will uncover of that is the case or not.

    If it is the head gasket, any ideas what the repair will run me? I was blessed with good looks, not mechanical aptitude, so I will have to pay to have it done.

    What are your thoughts on the effectiveness of thisapproach to see if the head gasket is a problem?

    Thanks.
     
  2. motorcyclist

    motorcyclist

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    If you have to pay to repair, just let the shop daignose the problem. If you supect a head gasket pop the radiator cap (while cold!) and start the car. Do you see bubbles? If you do your head gasket is blown to the combustion chamber. Most shops now have a gas analyzer that will detect down to parts per million and can sniff anti-freeze long before you see it bubble. Just let them do it.
     

  3. DR. HOUSE

    DR. HOUSE Everybody Lies

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    you dont need an oil analysis for a leaky head gasket.
     
  4. itisbruno

    itisbruno Devious Member CLM

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    Thanks for the tip, motorcyclist.
     
  5. 2afreedom

    2afreedom

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    Any competent mechanic should be able to tell you without having to do an oil analysis. Save your money-it looks like you may need it.
     
  6. G31

    G31 Millennium Member

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    Check for:

    -white smoke out the exhaust when car is warmed up
    -smell of coolant under the hood (sweet smell) when running or just turned off
    -decrease in coolant level in bottle

    Might cost you $1500 or more to fix. Have seen bills as high as $4000 for some vehicles. Parts are very cheap, but labor is high, and it is labor intensive.
     
  7. DR. HOUSE

    DR. HOUSE Everybody Lies

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    What kind of ride you got?
     
  8. Ol Timer

    Ol Timer ↓ hog hunter ↓ Millennium Member

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    Why do you suspect the head gasket is leaking? A cracked head or block could give similar results to the test mentioned above. Was the coolant ratio below spec this past winter?
     
  9. itisbruno

    itisbruno Devious Member CLM

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    Got the smoke and decrease in coolant level

    89 Pathfinder, it is not mine, it belongs to the dog, and the bastage can't afford to fix it.

    [​IMG]

    Coolant ratio was spot on, but my antifreeze in the bottle keeps dissipating, so it made me suspect the head gasket.
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2010
  10. TheRogue

    TheRogue

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    I believe most oil testing on BITOG, is done using Blackstone Labs.
    Free test kits + $22.50 for an analysis...

    Like others have posted, check your coolant level for any decrease, and also check your oil level for any increase.
    An increase in your oil level would be "telling."
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2010
  11. itisbruno

    itisbruno Devious Member CLM

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    Thanks for the link TheRogue.

    I was really not wanting to throw money away at this thing, but it is a good truck for an old one.
     
  12. Lee-online

    Lee-online Mul-ti-pass

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    Testing the oil wont always tell you if you have a blown Head gasket.

    You can use a radiator pressure tester and pressurize the coolant system. do this when its cold and then when its hot. if it cant hold the pressure then you need to find out where it is leaking.
    If you think its leaking into the cylinder head and being burnt then check the plugs, a plug will get a powdery build up if coolant is burning in that hole.
    Also if it is burning coolant then the O2 sensor on that bank will fail in no time.
    You can test the coolant with strips, they change color if combustion gasses are present.

    There are many reasons for coolant to be lost and many for an engine to smoke but they are not alway related.

    BTW, you can get oil tested at your local Caterpillar dealer for about $13 per sample.
     
  13. itisbruno

    itisbruno Devious Member CLM

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  14. G31

    G31 Millennium Member

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    Lee is right. It's like going to the doctor...they can't pinpoint illness for sure based on symptoms alone.

    It's as if the more you know, the more you don't. One set of symptoms can mean many things. Best thing is to get it in a shop where they can use diagnostic equip.
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2010
  15. FA5Si

    FA5Si

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    Milky-looking oil is another sign.
     
  16. itisbruno

    itisbruno Devious Member CLM

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    Are repair shops (other than the dealer) equipped to do the testing Lee recommended?
     
  17. Ol Timer

    Ol Timer ↓ hog hunter ↓ Millennium Member

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    Yes. Or you can rent a coolant system pressure tester from Autozone and do it yourself.

    Some places run specials where they do it for free, but usually in late fall. Check around, might get lucky.
     
  18. El_Ron1

    El_Ron1 AAAAAAAAGHHH!!!

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  19. BobbyT

    BobbyT

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    Oil analysis from a place like that is about metal wear on the engine internals.

    As mentioned before, you can start the engine cold with the radiator cap off to check for bubbling, and see if your oil has a milky look to it to check for coolant there. The next stop is having a shop test for you.
     
  20. ede

    ede Bama's Friend

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    there's no oil flow that a head gasket would seal. a compressions test or a test for combustion gas in the coolant would be a better course to take.