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EXTERNAL hg leak on phase I EJ25?


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9 replies to this topic

#1 hankosolder2

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Posted 09 September 2010 - 11:29 AM

Bought a '98 OBW 5MT about 4 years ago from a dude who claimed it sprung an external HG leak following a T-belt job. I noticed a strong smell of coolant and dripping on the passenger's side of the car (didn't really scrutinize.) I drove the car home (60 miles@ highway speed) topping off the coolant once. It never overheated, and the leak seemed to stop once the engine got up to temp.

Since the engine was (I thought) a DOHC EJ25 with 180K miles on it and piston slap, I pulled it and installed an EJ22.

After I pulled the engine, I noticed that there was a rebuilder's tag on the block! I would have analyzed the problem further if I had known the engine probably had less than 100K on it...

Long story somewhat less long, I now have a pressing need for a cheap automatic car and have found a 97 OBW with a lunched T-belt. I'm thinking about doing the HG on the EJ 25 from the '98 and putting it in the '97, but I'm concerned about the external HG leak. That's not the normal failure mode for an EJ25, so I'm worried that there might be something seriously wrong with my donor engine. Has anyone experienced an external HG leak on a phase one? What was the cause?


Nathan

PS: Sorry for the 'extended narrative.'

#2 Rooster2

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Posted 09 September 2010 - 02:33 PM

Since you have the EJ25 out of the car, and really don't know its reman history, it may be better to replace the HGs and pulleys, so you know everything will be good. No better time to redo the HGs then when the motor is out of the car.

#3 hankosolder2

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Posted 09 September 2010 - 04:55 PM

Oh, I was planning on doing the HGs...it was more a matter of "does an external coolant leak from the engine mean a badly warped or cracked head, etc."

Nathan

#4 johnceggleston

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Posted 09 September 2010 - 05:02 PM

Oh, I was planning on doing the HGs...it was more a matter of "does an external coolant leak from the engine mean a badly warped or cracked head, etc."

Nathan


it doesn't matter, for 100$ you can have them resurfaced and be good. the only stumbling block would be if it was cracked, but the machine shop will check that and although anything is possible cracks heads is not a common problem on these heads. at least not discussed here very much.


the only risk i'm aware of in replacing head gaskets on a ej25 is if the bearings have been cooked. i would think a re-manned engine would have a lower risk of this.

#5 hankosolder2

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Posted 09 September 2010 - 05:18 PM

Good point. I'm pretty sure the bearings are OK, as it wasn't overheating even when driven @ highway speeds. Unless the PO was really slack about topping up the coolant....

The thing that worries me is that I never actually verified that the leak was coming from the HGs... so I suppose it could be a core plug, crack in the block or something crazy.

Maybe I'll see if I can just find another EJ22 and play it safe.

Nathan

#6 SchwarzeEwigkt

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Posted 10 September 2010 - 11:53 AM

Those hardly ever develop external coolant leaks. You're sure it wasn't the water pump or a hose or something?

I'm not accusing you not being thorough enough, but with the odds being what they are, it's something else.

#7 hankosolder2

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Posted 10 September 2010 - 05:52 PM

Oh, I was by no means thorough! The leak was definitely from the pass side, not the center water pump region. I pretty much took the PO's word that the leak was from the HG. (He did the T-belt job himself, so he wasn't a total idiot.)

Maybe I can find some way of pressurizing the entire long block assy off the car to see if I can find the leak prior to stripping the engine down.

#8 themoneypit

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Posted 13 September 2010 - 07:06 PM

hook a radiator to the 2 hoses and fill it.. once coolant comes out of the two heater core hoses, bypass them and put a pressure tester on the radiator.. that should work?? no?

#9 hankosolder2

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Posted 13 September 2010 - 08:25 PM

Good idea! The deal fell through on this car anyway, but if I ever attempt to use that engine in another car, I'll try to pressurize it & see what happens.

#10 johnceggleston

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Posted 13 September 2010 - 08:44 PM

hook a radiator to the 2 hoses and fill it.. once coolant comes out of the two heater core hoses, bypass them and put a pressure tester on the radiator.. that should work?? no?


why do it with water, couldn't you just do it with air??

rig a piece of piping form the top hose to the bottom hose and plug or cap the heater hoses, and pressurize it.

how much pressure. 10 psi ? or more?




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