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Old 08-12-2019, 12:28 PM   #1
AniNassui
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Question Bad Head gasket vs. Intake gasket?!?

Need some advice RE: head gasket vs. intake gasket /

I was just curious what the main difference is between these two?!?
(Without getting too technical)
...I mean is one ultimately worse than the other? — Is the difference negligible because the end result could be the same??

In this real-life scenario, which would you say is more likely the cause:

2000 Buick Century fairly well cared for, maintained, etc. Has no ostensible issues, drives fine, no over-heating, etc. New battery, tires, etc.
Then, one day, on fwy at 75-80mph, kinda begins surging and then, accelerator peddle has no effect, combined with over-heating, steam, and white smoke (not from tailpipe, but from under hood). Coast off fwy and pull over. After car is allowed to cool, water added, and starts up and drives a few miles home.
Mechanic sees that oil has been compromised and is a coffee colored meringue, and dismisses the thing as a blown head gasket — basically a death nail, with the cost far outweighing the value of the car.

Which “leak” does this sound like to you? Also, am I wasting my time thinking about this? ...rather, is it a futile exercise to be even asking this question because it doesn’t matter how the oil/ coolant got mixed, the fact is they’re mixed and that’s that?? — at this point does it really matter which leak was present??


Any information would be greatly appreciated!
— Thank you in advance!!
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Old 08-13-2019, 07:16 AM   #2
CapriRacer
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Re: Bad Head gasket vs. Intake gasket?!?

Quote:
Originally Posted by AniNassui View Post
Need some advice RE: head gasket vs. intake gasket /

I was just curious what the main difference is between these two?!?
(Without getting too technical)
...I mean is one ultimately worse than the other? — Is the difference negligible because the end result could be the same??

In this real-life scenario, which would you say is more likely the cause:

2000 Buick Century fairly well cared for, maintained, etc. Has no ostensible issues, drives fine, no over-heating, etc. New battery, tires, etc.
Then, one day, on fwy at 75-80mph, kinda begins surging and then, accelerator peddle has no effect, combined with over-heating, steam, and white smoke (not from tailpipe, but from under hood). Coast off fwy and pull over. After car is allowed to cool, water added, and starts up and drives a few miles home.
Mechanic sees that oil has been compromised and is a coffee colored meringue, and dismisses the thing as a blown head gasket — basically a death nail, with the cost far outweighing the value of the car.

Which “leak” does this sound like to you? Also, am I wasting my time thinking about this? ...rather, is it a futile exercise to be even asking this question because it doesn’t matter how the oil/ coolant got mixed, the fact is they’re mixed and that’s that?? — at this point does it really matter which leak was present??

Any information would be greatly appreciated!
— Thank you in advance!!
This sounds like an intake manifold gasket to me. I think these cars are known for this.

The engine MIGHT be trash, but it is worth the look. Changing an intake gasket is a lot cheaper than a head gasket.
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Old 08-15-2019, 04:27 PM   #3
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Re: Bad Head gasket vs. Intake gasket?!?

There is a kit out there that tests for exhaust gas in the coolant. Some people call it a "block test", but I'd have that checked FIRST before you do anything else. If you have exhaust in your coolant, you definitely have a head gasket issue.
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Old 09-06-2019, 11:21 PM   #4
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Re: Bad Head gasket vs. Intake gasket?!?

One thing is for sure... you have coolant in your oil.

It depends on the engine, but some intake gaskets can also seal coolant passages. The accelerator issues sure sound like a blown intake gasket. A quick way to find out is to run the car and spray a little carb cleaner around the intake manifold and see if the RPM climbs. If it does, the intake gasket is bad.

I'm surprised your mechanic just do some quick tests to verify.
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Old 09-09-2019, 09:00 PM   #5
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Re: Bad Head gasket vs. Intake gasket?!?

Head gasket seals the engine as well as the pathways of oil and coolant. While intake manifold gasket is responsible for delivering the mixture of air and fuel to the cylinders. I think the problem is coming from a head gasket leak due to coolant leaks that result in engine steaming or overheating. But some motors are prone to coolant leaks in their intake gaskets. With this, I think its best to visit your trusted car shop for a thorough diagnostic to avoid problem that could ruin your car completely and risk your safety. Hope this helps!
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Old 09-30-2019, 04:31 AM   #6
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Re: Bad Head gasket vs. Intake gasket?!?

A head gasket seals an engine as well as the pathways of oil and coolant within the engine. An intake manifold gasket seals the cylinder heads and the intake manifold together. Information on these parts can be beneficial as they can both experience leaks leading to other problems if left unchecked.

Manifold Gasket Leak
A leak in the intake manifold gasket can lead to coolant running down the sides of a vehicle's engine. Some vehicles have become well known for springing leaks in their intake manifold gaskets. These vehicles, however, are usually equipped with plastic manifold gaskets which tend to fail sooner than other gaskets.

Head Gasket Leak
A head gasket can leak either coolant or compression. Coolant leaks in a head gasket will be discovered fairly quickly due to the fact that an engine will run hot as a result. Although compression leaks cause engines to lose a lot of their power, they will not prohibit you from continuing to drive the vehicle.

Considerations
Some motors are prone to coolant leaks in their intake manifold gaskets. There are also some vehicles which have motors prone to head gasket failure. Review consumer guides and other forums to determine if a particular vehicle is subject to head gasket failure more often than others.
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