PT Cruiser Forum  

Go Back   PT Cruiser Forum > General Forums > General PT Cruiser Discussions

PT Cruiser Forum

Head Gasket?

Like Tree1Likes
  • 1 Post By Handy_Cruiser

LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1 (permalink)  
Old 30 Dec 2013, 10:03 am
Fresh Cruiser
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 1
Default Head Gasket?

Hey guys, I bought this PT cruiser a few months ago and about two weeks ago the water pump went out. I took it to the mechanic since I was in the process of moving and he swapped it out. I picked up the car last week, drove it for 4 days and coolant started leaking causing it to smoke white from under the hood. I took it back and he replaced the radiator cap assuring me that the cap was the only malfunction. I drove it home and went to work the next day to have the same issue happen, but only worse. I drove it home after work (because I've had enough of it's fits) and it did not have hardly any issues at all. It did not overheat, there was virtually no smoke, but the temperature gauge would fluctuate between a quarter and three quarters hot the entire way home.

I got it home and filled it back up with coolant, letting the air bubbles come out as the need without any issues. When I got it all the way full I put the cap on and started to see what was happening. The engine started smoking out of the head, it looked to be like it was from the head gasket or intake manifold gasket. So there I pinned it. I took the cap off to find that the pressure in the system was skyrocketed and it was overfilling my reservoir and spilling on the exhaust manifold.

However, the next day I wanted to jump my farm truck so I started the PT while it was cold out and I did not have one of those symptoms. It warmed up like normal, stayed around the right place, until it was finally warm enough and then the smoke from the head appeared and the smoke from the tailpipe (which is very little, maybe 1.5x normal) started to appear.

My question is, if a head gasket is blown wouldn't it be at all times? It seems that the head gasket would fail cold or hot, which is why I am leaning towards something else, such as a crack in the block? I also could see the thermostat being stuck and it heating coolant to boiling, forcing the thermo open and causing huge pressure changes?

Have any of you ever experienced any of this before?
Reply With Quote
  #2 (permalink)  
Old 30 Dec 2013, 01:18 pm
Handy_Cruiser's Avatar
Obsessed Cruiser
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Arkansas
Posts: 10,676
Default Re: Head Gasket?

This sounds like a classic blown head gasket.

Often there are no symptoms until the head heats up or until pressure builds up in the cooling system while hot. For this reason, pressure testing of the coolant system often cannot prove that a head gasket is not blown. I've seen poor old cars with blown head gaskets that last literally for years as long as the owner does nothing but drive them to the grocery store less than a mile away once a week. And I've seen some that you can almost run indefinitely as long as you leave the radiator cap loose.

But before going any further, I'd first remove the thermostat and then assure the radiator fan is working. With the fan working and thermostat removed, if the cars does the same thing when warmed up, then it's very likely a blown head gasket.

By the way, while looking for a good PT to purchase I found many with bad head gaskets. I believe this was usually a second order effect to bad radiator fans. But it does indicate that PT head gaskets are more prone to blow when the engine over heats than on some other car models.
UptownSport likes this.

Last edited by Handy_Cruiser; 30 Dec 2013 at 01:23 pm.
Reply With Quote
  #3 (permalink)  
Old 30 Dec 2013, 02:46 pm
NitroPT's Avatar
Obsessed Cruiser
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: USA kalyfornia
Posts: 16,111
Default Re: Head Gasket?

Before you drive to much more or "JUMP" to conclusions about what you think is wrong or what forums are telling you......

I recommend:

Do or have done a simple but proper **Cylinder Compression Test.
Do or have done a *Combustion Leak Detector test.

*This test can accurately check for leaks caused by blown head gaskets as well cracked blocks warped heads.

** If you get 2 a joining low cylinders this would be a sign to check further for a cylinder sealing problem like a blown head gasket.
All cylinder giving a low compression should be followed up be a Cylinder leak down test.

You can easily do the chemical test yourself for around 25-30 dollars.
See:Lisle 75500 - Combustion Leak Detector
To view larger pictures simply "click " on the picture!

Dalai Lama
"Share you knowledge. It's the best way to achieve immortality."
Reply With Quote

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
PT Getting New Cylinder Head, Head Gasket, Water Pump. What Could I Mod? 06turbolite Tech & Performance Forum 8 14 May 2013 09:16 am
03 pt turbo oil in water new head gasket fresh head strokedoutss General Turbo Discussions 7 17 Apr 2013 04:22 pm
Whats the Head flat spec. for head gasket. Busted_PT Tech & Performance Forum 7 26 Apr 2012 08:16 am
WARPED HEAD / SCORED CAMSHAFT / BLOWN HEAD GASKET amadeo Tech & Performance Forum 5 12 Apr 2011 01:03 am
head gasket how to tell if bad BeagleDad Tech & Performance Forum 18 18 May 2010 09:53 pm

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:57 pm.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.2
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
LinkBacks Enabled by vBSEO 3.6.0 PL2 © 2011, Crawlability, Inc.