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Head gasket failure related to timing belt & Water pump repair?

 
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Old 11 Aug 2013, 09:08 pm
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Default Head gasket failure related to timing belt & Water pump repair?

Hi folks,

My father has a 2001 PT Cruiser (2.4L in-Line4) and it just overheated and died due to water leaking into the engine through the head gasket. That is my understanding from the mechanic anyway. However, he had work done on it earlier this year with the following items on the estimate:

Timing Belt
Water Pump
Timing Belt Idler Pully
Timing Idler
Coolant
Radiator

The labor description is the following:

Check for overheating
Removed and replaced timing belt
Service/water pump and radiator

(FYI, it was 6.65 hours of labor with a total price of $827.21 parts and labor)

So my question is, could this repair done in June of this year be related to the head gasket failure just last week in August? I'm asking because I thought I heard that the head gasket had to be removed or replaced to do these items. If so then it could be related to the current problem and we might have recourse for the mechanic to fix it.What's the story?
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Old 11 Aug 2013, 09:15 pm
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Default Re: Head gasket failure related to timing belt & Water pump repair?

No that is not correct. The head would not need to be removed to to do this.
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Old 11 Aug 2013, 09:39 pm
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Default Re: Head gasket failure related to timing belt & Water pump repair?

It was probably leaking when they did the fix due to overheating.
It would be impossible to talk someone into doing a headgasket when it wasn't bad, but with a vehicle that old that had just overheated, it would make total sense!
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Old 11 Aug 2013, 09:47 pm
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Default Re: Head gasket failure related to timing belt & Water pump repair?

Dbl post ;-)
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Old 11 Aug 2013, 11:22 pm
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Question Re: Head gasket failure related to timing belt & Water pump repair?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mindful View Post
However, he had work done on it earlier this year with the following items on the estimate:

Timing Belt
Water Pump
Timing Belt Idler Pully
Timing Idler
Coolant
Radiator

The labor description is the following:

Check for overheating
Removed and replaced timing belt
Service/water pump and radiator

(FYI, it was 6.65 hours of labor with a total price of $827.21 parts and labor)
They did all that work & parts,and didn't replace the thermostat???.......If the old thermostat failed while hot,it could cause it to overheat,and subsequently cause a blown head gasket.......I had this happen to me on an '81 Toyota Corrolla,head gasket blew,warped the head,coolant flooded the cylinders,and ended up bending 2 wrist pins & even bent 1 connecting rod too.(Apparently water/coolant doesn't compress very well!);Hopefully it didn't do too much internal damage to your PT.
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Old 12 Aug 2013, 07:47 am
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Default Re: Head gasket failure related to timing belt & Water pump repair?

i think it looks like the mechanic gave him a good price and didnt charge him for anything extra. why stop at a thermostat? why not charge him for new hoses since it's a new radiator. why not change the alternator belt too? it's coming off anyways...

if you're looking to go pick a fight with the mechanic over the work he did you'd be in the wrong. if your dad didn't notice the temp guage getting hot that isn't the mechanics fault. it happens.

Last edited by rob342; 12 Aug 2013 at 07:49 am.
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Old 12 Aug 2013, 08:52 am
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Default Re: Head gasket failure related to timing belt & Water pump repair?

Guys these folks don't have any idea what is what on a vehicle and just come here to learn and find out what is what. So they don't jump up and look foolish. So don't beat them up ok. I like it that You folks are finding out before going off on someone.
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Old 13 Aug 2013, 09:01 am
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Default Re: Head gasket failure related to timing belt & Water pump repair?

Hi Guys,

Thanks so much for everybody's feedback. It's very helpful.

I understand that mechanics aren't psychics and they do the best they can at any one time. Good point about my father needing to look at the thermostat! (Assuming it was working. I am guessing it was. My dad is 88 and not always so with it. We have to take responsibility for our driving. I would just like to think we can rely on our mechanics to look after us. I believe the mechanic is honest and seemingly very reasonable for prices. He actually did work on my BMW before I even sent my father to him.

Anyway, apparently the engine is hosed and it needs to be replaced. He gave us a price of $3000 on a rebuilt motor and we are considering going through with it. My concern was having him do it if he hadn't done the proper job on the last service which led to this. Judging from the comments here, and our past experience with him, it doesn't seem like he's to blame.

So does $3000 for a rebuilt engine sound reasonable, and more importantly, should we even have it done on this car? It's a 2001 PT Cruiser 2.4L in-line 4. It has about 120,000 miles on it. VIN# 3C8FY4BB91T665619
My dad checked a little bit and was getting prices closer to $4000. We live in the Washington DC Metro area, in Maryland actually, and the cost of living may be higher here than most places.

In addition to the work on the timing belt and water pump I mentioned above, the same mechanic had also, over the course of the last year, performed the following work:

10/3/2012
PARTS
Ignition coil
Spark plug wires set
DESCRIPTION
Check for engine shaking and misfire
Removed and replaced spark plug wires and ignition coil
$242.97

5/31/2013 (AS ABOVE. Including it again just to show the full series)
PARTS
Timing belt
Water pump
Timing belt idler pulley
Timing idler
Coolant
Radiator
DESCRIPTION
Check for overheating
Removed and replaced timing belt service/water pump and radiator
$827.21

6/28/2012
PARTS
Front brake rotors
Front brake pads
Front brake calipers
Brake fluid
Front lower control arms with ball joints
DESCRIPTION
Removed and replaced front brake rotors and pads
Removed and replaced front lower control arms
$792.96

I asked the mechanic that if it was his car what would he do. His answer was that he would replace the engine since the car has had so much work done and that it was now in relatively good shape. (Besides the engine! Lol) He said it should last at least a few more years. I understand the engine has a 75,000 mile warranty as well.

Thoughts on this? Should I start a new thread for this particular question about replacing the engine?
Thanks!
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Old 13 Aug 2013, 09:58 am
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Default Re: Head gasket failure related to timing belt & Water pump repair?

well its not a bad price but Im unclear why you need to replace the engin
if you have the head and values done ( true up the head)
the other stuff is already new??? just asking unless some hoe the block is cracked but then again with the cost of labor it might be close to the same
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Old 13 Aug 2013, 10:30 am
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Default Re: Head gasket failure related to timing belt & Water pump repair?

That sounds like a good question although I know so little about cars I can't say. I'm planning on talking to the mechanic today to see exactly what he's doing and why he's doing it. Thanks for the incentive to think that way.
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