CYLINDER HEAD GASKET
Cylinder Head Gasket : This is a very important gasket on your engine designed to seal the cylinder head to the cylinder block. On water cooled engines, a head gasket will seal combustion chambers, coolant areas or the cylinder head and block, oil return and oil pressure on overhead cam engines. On air cooled engines, a typical cylinder head gasket will just seal the combustion area between the cylinder head and block. When a cylinder head gasket fails, the engine may loose compression into the cooling system, outside the engine, between cylinders or in the oiling system. Usually the engine will not run or if it runs may run rough. Different engine designs may have different results with a blown cylinder head gasket. Some engines appear to be fine, but quickly overheat with no explanation. Other cylinder head gasket problems may cause the engine to run rough. Smoking from the tailpipe or a milky oil may also indicate a blown or bad cylinder head gasket as well. In more rare cases, there can even be cylinder head gasket leaks where oil, coolant and or compression leak out the side of the engine.
Replacing a cylinder head gasket is a major auto repair. There are many factors to consider prior to authorizing a cylinder head gasket replacement. Engines with too high of miles, situations where a engine was extremely overheated or using cold water on an engine that is at a very hot temperature while the engine is NOT running may all be signs of when not to replace a bad cylinder head gasket. In these cases, there can be cylinder head or block cracking, stuck piston rings or a weak lower engine that will not be able to withstand strengthening the top of the engine with a cylinder head gasket replacement.
Machine work must be performed on a cylinder head when replacing a cylinder head gasket. Any time these gaskets leak, the cylinder head may be warped and if this is not machined, the cylinder head gasket replacement will not last. In most cases, cylinder head bolts should also be replaced since they will stretch and not function as well as they were designed to.
There are tests that can be performed to verify most cylinder head gasket problems. When in doubt, bring your car into Guy’s Automotive and have your cylinder head gasket diagnosed and or replaced.