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Old 02-09-2003, 10:37 PM   #1
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What causes a head gasket to go bad?

Hey guys,
My head gaskets are fine, but I was wondering what causes them to go bad, just out of curiousity. Is it from high revving, poor oil change intervals/ tune up intervals, or not waiting for it to warm up? Just a little curious, thats all.
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Old 02-10-2003, 01:38 AM   #2
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I know overheating at motor really bad is a sure way to do in a head gasket. I'm sure there's other reasons for head gasket failure (besides inproper installation)......
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Old 02-10-2003, 01:57 AM   #3
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I heard the only major thing is over heating, and just if you have a peice of junk it will give out from wear.
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Old 02-10-2003, 02:11 AM   #4
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hmmm

this is somthing i also cannot figure out for myself......

i just rebuilt my 383 with all new parts and for some reason my head gasket on the passenger side didn't seal properly...... i can tell from the green and white oil mix right on the edge of the head at the head gasket seal......... and funny thing is mine never has ever gone past 160 at any time, and will barely reach that until the thermostat opens then it goes below it......
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Old 02-10-2003, 05:11 AM   #5
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improper torqueing sequence and improper ft lbs of torque. Dirty mating surfaces, manufactures defects, not sealing the threads of the head bolts, bad scratches on the mateing surfaces worped heads, worped block deck etc
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Old 02-10-2003, 10:20 AM   #6
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Re: What causes a head gasket to go bad?

Quote:
Originally posted by PimpRod92RS
Hey guys,
My head gaskets are fine, but I was wondering what causes them to go bad...
Usually, it can be traced to bad parenting. (Or any of the other causes listed above.)
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Old 02-10-2003, 02:30 PM   #7
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my pops said reving a cold engine can do it, like if u jump in it and drive instantly and let it rev up and what not.
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Old 02-10-2003, 07:49 PM   #8
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mama says bad head gaskets is caused by engines not being happy because their owners dont pay 'em enough attention
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Old 02-10-2003, 07:52 PM   #9
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ok i set myself up for that one lol. good one i must say
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Old 02-10-2003, 08:02 PM   #10
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not that it would be a concern of yours, but too much boost will blow a head gasket very easily (along with lots of other damage if the motor isn't built for it).
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Old 02-11-2003, 02:29 AM   #11
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Detonation Major cause
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Old 02-11-2003, 07:34 AM   #12
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OK, that's enough....

#1 cause is overheating. #2 is age. #3 is over-torquing.

Analyze your situation when it happens. If #1 & #2 are not present, it's probably #3.

#4 would be warped parts. Obviously they don't often just up and warp by themselves; see #1. Inadequate prep at build up, when using used castings from the world at large, can give you a case of #4, from somebody else's #1.
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Old 02-11-2003, 01:46 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by rezinn
mama says bad head gaskets is caused by engines not being happy because their owners dont pay 'em enough attention
ditto
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Old 02-11-2003, 02:55 PM   #14
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yea when i first bought my formula it had 32k miles on it... thats all.... the catch is.... it sat for like months at a time he almost never drove it (thinking it was better for the car, but it's really not).... all the gaskets dried and hardened... then when i bought it and drove it everyday everything just blew. Head gaskets , intake gaskets, water pump, you name it. Age is a big factor.
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Old 02-11-2003, 11:19 PM   #15
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very true, everything that involved my coolant system had to be replaced be cause the car sat for 16 months.
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Old 02-11-2003, 11:49 PM   #16
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This Camaro I have now sat for a while too. One thing after anotheris going on it I think the water pump is getting noisey now.
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Old 02-12-2003, 01:52 AM   #17
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Re: hmmm

Quote:
Originally posted by badgta
this is somthing i also cannot figure out for myself......

i just rebuilt my 383 with all new parts and for some reason my head gasket on the passenger side didn't seal properly...... i can tell from the green and white oil mix right on the edge of the head at the head gasket seal......... and funny thing is mine never has ever gone past 160 at any time, and will barely reach that until the thermostat opens then it goes below it......
I have the same problem, seepage. I used the Felpro 1010 gasket and torqued to ARP specs using moly on the washer/bolt face and ARP thread sealant for the threads. I've read other people having that problem as well.
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Old 02-12-2003, 04:42 AM   #18
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Re: Re: hmmm

Quote:
Originally posted by james_85Z28
I have the same problem, seepage. I used the Felpro 1010 gasket and torqued to ARP specs using moly on the washer/bolt face and ARP thread sealant for the threads. I've read other people having that problem as well.
i wish now that i had my blocked decked and pressure checked as well....

when i pull the heads off this time they are getting checked for cracks and warpness and pressure checked as well before they go back on....

i had some small pitting on my block but nothing that couldn't seal...... hopefully somone will come along a read this and see why it's imparitve to have all this maching and checking done to the most minuite detail.....

i checked my block for warpness as well as magnafluxed it and didn't see nothing, but i guess it can be cracked inside the casting as well and not show up...... if it still leaks this time then i will have the cooling system tested and see if it is the block.....

btw, the heads are brand new afr 190's out of the box.....
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Old 02-12-2003, 09:16 AM   #19
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Age mostly related to difference in thermal expansion of alum heads and cast block can do it. The alumimum moves more than the cast iron. Thru thousands of cycles it might cause the metal ring on the head gasket to slowly creep towards the cylinder boar then poof a nice steam cloud out the tail pipe.
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