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8 Posts
Discussion Starter #1

Hope someone can help.

Recently my exhaust has been sounding a bit dodgy and the idle revs are a bit all over the place and the orange engine electronics management/emissions? light has been coming on now and again on the dashboard. There is some loss of power when pulling away from stationary but other than that it seems ok.
The temp gauge has been higher than normal and the coolant resevoir has needed topping up, and when I have, the resevoir has been frothing and gurgling. When I first observed this I just put it down to the engine being hot because exhaust fumes are not being taken away from the engine in the normal manner.

I took it to a Mr Tyre yesterday and described my problems hoping I just needed a new part for the exhaust system somehwere.

When I mentioned the coolant needing topping up the first thing the guy did was to look at my dip stick to see if water was getting into the engine and there was, so seemed to suggest the head gasket had gone and coolant was getting in.

A "block test" was done and he produced a kinda of a giant pipette and showed what is inside my engine; more water than oil!

What exactly is a block test?

I pressumed it would involve some sort of pressure/compression test on the engine?

Anyway he confirmed that the head gasket had gone and needed to speak to the "boss" to see when he could fit the repair in. I'm guessing the "boss" is the only proper mechanic in the place as the rest are just tyre/exhaust fitters?
A cost of @£400 was mentioned for a one/two day job required. Mentioned possibly no actually parts required, but engine needed taking apart, cleaned, "skimmed/stripped?" whcih needed to be done at a suitable engineers.

I was a bit wary of a tyre place, not a proper mechanics/garage doing this sort of thing and wanted a second opinion, so a I called a two man mechanics/garage small village place I sometimes use as I trust them to give it to me as it is, far more than somewhere like Mr Tyre.
This chap agreed for the most part and on the costs invloved. He said to be wary of these types of places for this sort of job as you need a fully qulaified mechanic to do such a job and Mr Tyre type places are just mainly full of tyre fitters etc.

I intend to get the small village mechanics to do the job for me, and hope it doesnt set me back anymore than I have already stomached.

Does all this seem to make sense to any of you experts?

What is invloved in fixing my head gasket? Have I pretty much summed it up> I would really appreciated a better more detailed breakdown.

I am hoping it is not too serious and havent damaged the engine any further as I know sometimes head gaskets going can produce spectactular losses of power and other problems, whereas my car still has an ok power output?????

I am not driving it anywhere now until I take it to the garage on Monday morning.

Aoplogies for the long post. I just wish to understand more about my problem and hope it is "only" going to cost me £400!

Many thanks.....

VXon Frontera Monkey
9,882 Posts
Hi sounds a pretty reasonable price but make sure the price covers the whole job and ask what is being replaced and what is being checked as it is a good idea to replace the waterpump,tensioners and cam belt at the same time along with any leaking crank and cam seals get a written quote as i have known people to be ripped off at the last minute also ask what brand of parts he will use as VX parts are pretty good prices compared to pattern

Premium Member
2,524 Posts
The head gasket is the gasket between the top and bottom end of the engine...i.e. between the head/s and the replace the gasket/s you have to remove the head/s basically removing the whole of the engine top the cam belt connects the top and bottom end of the engine for timing purposes syncronising the two parts this will need to be removed as part of the process, hence suggesting replacing this and the tensioners as this would be another fairly big job if subsequently your engine is almost certainly dead to the world if either the cambelt or the tensioners fail...

Its quicker and easier to simply change the engine so if you can get one at the right price then this might well be your best option...make sure you get the ECU, wiring loom and main ancilliaries with it though so the old engine can just be unplugged removed and the new one plugged in its place

p.s. I'm not a mechanic, just what I have picked up from here and some if any of what I have said is wrong, please correct it :)
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