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Old 10-23-2010, 08:20 PM   #1
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Personal experiences w/head gasket repair kits???

I know the best way to repair a bad head gasket is to replace it but... I need a quick dependable fix for a bad head gasket. There's no water in the oil. It's just steam from the exhaust. My question is: Have any of you tried (and had any luck with) the "stop leak" type head gasket repair kits? Dura-seal, Steel-seal, etc... There's a dozen or more of these "quick fix" items on the market but I've never been in a situation where I couldn't just replace the gaskets so I've never had any personal experience with any of them. I just need to keep the car running a few more months and then I can tear into it and fix it right. ANY info would be appreciated.

Last edited by fgraves73; 10-23-2010 at 10:39 PM.
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Old 10-25-2010, 11:02 AM   #2
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Re: Personal experiences w/head gasket repair kits???

Your a newbie so you get a free pass, but many times you can find an answer to most questions by doing a simple search. Someone just asked the same question a few days ago:http://www.thirdgen.org/techboard/te...nces-stop.html (Any personal experiences with "stop leak" products???)
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Old 10-25-2010, 11:05 AM   #3
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Re: Personal experiences w/head gasket repair kits???

black pepper in the coolant
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Old 10-25-2010, 12:14 PM   #4
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Re: Personal experiences w/head gasket repair kits???

Quick and dependable are mutually exclusive when you're talking about repairing leaks.
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Old 10-28-2010, 09:58 PM   #5
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Re: Personal experiences w/head gasket repair kits???

Black pepper?! Really?!
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Old 10-28-2010, 10:31 PM   #6
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Re: Personal experiences w/head gasket repair kits???

Quote:
Originally Posted by Twin_Turbo View Post
black pepper in the coolant
waaaaaaaa??????
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Old 10-28-2010, 11:13 PM   #7
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Re: Personal experiences w/head gasket repair kits???

Quote:
Originally Posted by novafirebirdguy View Post
Your a newbie so you get a free pass, but many times you can find an answer to most questions by doing a simple search. Someone just asked the same question a few days ago:http://www.thirdgen.org/techboard/te...nces-stop.html (Any personal experiences with "stop leak" products???)

BTW. I'm the one that posted the other question. I posted it here and then decided to post it on the "general engine tech" board. I read your response on that thread. Thanks for the info and the offer to walk to me through it. I got something else to drive for now so it's not a problem any more. Thanks anyway.
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Old 11-01-2010, 12:36 PM   #8
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Re: Personal experiences w/head gasket repair kits???

the best head gasket repair kits include this

Click the image to open in full size.

lol, sorry just had to say it.
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Old 11-01-2010, 01:52 PM   #9
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Re: Personal experiences w/head gasket repair kits???

Quote:
Originally Posted by Twin_Turbo View Post
black pepper in the coolant
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apeiron View Post
Quick and dependable are mutually exclusive when you're talking about repairing leaks.


Both are true statements, but the black pepper can't fix a head gasket leak. Maybe a small radiator or heater core leak, but not something thats on the cylinder head.

OP - just do the head gasket.
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Old 12-02-2011, 09:54 PM   #10
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Re: Personal experiences w/head gasket repair kits???

Ok, I bought a 99 Cadillac sls/ north star engine at an auction and yes I see why it was at the auction.... Overheating. Since I was stuck with it I did a search on line and came across dura seal and decided to give it a try.....NOT IMPRESSED. The instructions and videos on the site make it so simple but the info sent with the bottle is much different and time consuming. Also, they "guarantee" it till you get to the fine print which is on most orders ( of course not the north star engine) offers a money back guarantee. On this one you can get up to two bottles for just the cost of " shipping " when in reality is shipping plus"handling" and now this free bottle is $29. Oh and if you decide you don't want to try it afterall... If you return it, there is a 25% restocking fee! For mine it would have been $40 to restocking.
Oh.... Did it work? I'm on bottle no 3 and no improvent.
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Old 12-03-2011, 09:11 AM   #11
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Re: Personal experiences w/head gasket repair kits???

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Ok, I bought a 99 Cadillac sls/ north star engine at an auction and yes I see why it was at the auction.... Overheating. Since I was stuck with it I did a search on line and came across dura seal and decided to give it a try.....NOT IMPRESSED. The instructions and videos on the site make it so simple but the info sent with the bottle is much different and time consuming. Also, they "guarantee" it till you get to the fine print which is on most orders ( of course not the north star engine) offers a money back guarantee. On this one you can get up to two bottles for just the cost of " shipping " when in reality is shipping plus"handling" and now this free bottle is $29. Oh and if you decide you don't want to try it afterall... If you return it, there is a 25% restocking fee! For mine it would have been $40 to restocking.
Oh.... Did it work? I'm on bottle no 3 and no improvent.
You're an idiot.
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Old 12-03-2011, 09:55 AM   #12
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Re: Personal experiences w/head gasket repair kits???

Ever see the myth busters episode where they were testing things to fix a radiator leak? The pepper did work for small leaks as i recall, though a head gasket it might be something entirely different. The reason that worked was it tries to exit the leak hole and gets caught there. They also used eggs. The thing about the egg is it circulates through the system until it cooks. After cooking it too clogs holes as it tries to escape.
I'm not saying an egg is the thing to try either, as it can clog your heater core, thermostat for a while until it falls apart, its really just a temp fix. But would it really cause any more or less damage than that 'fix all' in a bottle.
I used the head gasket fix in a bottle before on a van i had. Afterwords my heat was terrible. I think it clogged my heater core a bit. And when all is said and done, and the time comes to fix it the right way all the pepper, eggs, or crap in a bottle is still in your system, or maybe by that time its gotten worse and mixed with your engine oil.
Just my 2 cents.
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Old 12-03-2011, 10:11 AM   #13
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Re: Personal experiences w/head gasket repair kits???

I didn't have the money for the repair so it was worth a try. After the last treatment #3 last night I could go about 12 miles instead of 5 before it overheated. This morning it was back to just 10 miles.
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Old 12-03-2011, 11:53 AM   #14
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Re: Personal experiences w/head gasket repair kits???

you probably would have spent LESS if you bought a top end gasket kit in the first place. the items they used on mythbusters were one of those "your in the middle of the desert and have no other option" fixes. good to get you back on the road long enough to make it to a repair shop and thats about it.

ive had to do the egg in the radiator once in my truck. drove it the last 15 miles to a shop. wound up having to replace the rad, and the heater core, and have the cooling system flushed thoroughly.
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Old 12-03-2011, 12:51 PM   #15
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Re: Personal experiences w/head gasket repair kits???

But it isn't just the parts ..... It's the labor I couldn't afford
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Old 12-03-2011, 01:22 PM   #16
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Re: Personal experiences w/head gasket repair kits???

you can do it with basic hand tools in a matter of hours. you dont need any specialty tools other than a torque wrench and (maybe)a timing light, both rentable from the local auto parts store. and labor is free if you do it yourself.
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Old 12-04-2011, 07:40 AM   #17
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Re: Personal experiences w/head gasket repair kits???

Quote:
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you can do it with basic hand tools in a matter of hours. you dont need any specialty tools other than a torque wrench and (maybe)a timing light, both rentable from the local auto parts store. and labor is free if you do it yourself.
Not on a Northstar you can't. Those engines are a PITA to work on. Not only that but the threads for the head bolts usually pull out of the block as well. There is a reason why that car was at auction!! None of this matters though because indyladygeek@ya signed up here after a Google search to post about Cadillac issues on a GM F-body forum, in a year old thread no less. Cooling system additives designed to stop leaks can work, but only on small EXTERNAL leaks only. THEY NEVER WORK ON BLOWN HEAD GASKETS.
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Old 12-04-2011, 08:52 AM   #18
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Re: Personal experiences w/head gasket repair kits???

ha, i didnt even pay attentio to the northstar thing. im seeing more an more new people asking non 3rd gen questions these days. since thats the case, im out of this thread.
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Old 12-04-2011, 10:33 AM   #19
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Re: Personal experiences w/head gasket repair kits???

Alright now....guys I'm actually a 49 yr old fat woman that out of necessity had to learn these repairs. Never before this week had I changed oil, spark plugs, drained a radiator, or changed a thermostat..... So with that said ... If I was on the wrong thread because I don't know what third generation is ( I just saw the cooling part), or if I sounded ignorant in other areas, forgive me.
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Old 12-04-2011, 10:33 AM   #20
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Re: Personal experiences w/head gasket repair kits???

... Oh... And outside in the freezing rain to boot....
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Old 12-04-2011, 10:51 AM   #21
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Re: Personal experiences w/head gasket repair kits???

Yeah if it's a northstar engine the "do it yourself' thing goes right out the window. Especially if you have little automotive knowledge. A friend of mine bought a Caddy at auction with a blown head gasket. He's been a Chrysler mechanic for about 30 years and figured he's do it over a weekend. Once he called our local gm dealer to ask for a gasket set he realized there was MUCH more to it than a simple gasket fix. The threads pull out of the head and it turns into a nightmare sometimes even for seasoned mechanics. And you might as well replace the starter too while your in there if its the internal design type.
If you have a Caddy with a northstar and its got a bad head gasket, and you lack the funds to do the job right its best to send it to the next guy. Craigslist or ebay that thing. Then take the money and go buy yourself a nice third gen.
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Old 11-09-2012, 12:02 PM   #22
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Re: Personal experiences w/head gasket repair kits???

I've been using DuraSeal at my shop for a few years now for my customers who can't afford an actuall head gasket replcement and I've had good results with it. I've done around 30 maybe 40 or so cars and trucks with the Dura Seal head gasket sealer and pretty much got a full seal the first time out with it. A few needed a second application to get the full seal going but they send it for free anyway. I'd say it's a great sealer and most people who would tell you that it would'nt work have never even did the research on why it's so different than the other water-glass sealers that are out there. They probally don't even know that dura seal is the only non-water glass sealer out there... Carl's Auitomotive
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