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Guest Message by DevFuse

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Figured I'd ask the Experts...Head Gasket, and cracked Head?

ej25 blown Head Gasket HG coolant Oil Head corrosion

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4 replies to this topic

#1 suprunner


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Posted 17 August 2013 - 10:49 AM

Hi all,

Current vehicle of question: 1999 Outback Wagon, 2.5l DOHC, 120k, Second owners...

This is a friend's car that I'm helping out with, and am hoping to get some good insight. Knew that this would be the place.


The car was bought last October, and has had 9000 miles put on it by a very calm and
defensive driver... They started noticing the thermostat
indicating it getting hot. After watching it, they noticed the coolant
was low, and that they needed to add. Then they noticed air being forced
into the coolant reservoir. They took it to a few independent subaru
shops, and got the same answer: Blown Head Gaskets, and bad Viscous
Coupler (for a different post....).

So we pulled the motor, and started getting the heads off. It had the old style HG
and they
were both bad My question has to deal with the driver side head in particular...

While taking the intake camshaft retainers off, a pressurized aqueous
solution squirted out at us from under the retainers. Also, two of the
camshaft retainer bolts were heavily corroded. Is this a sign of a
cracked head? I plan on submerging the head in a tub of water, and
spraying compressed air into the retainer bolt holes. If there are bubbles
from anywhere, I'm assuming the head is bad? Should we be concerned
with the block internals being compromised? How much should another head
cost, and should they just slap a 2.2L in there (I'm in favor...)?

The oil that we drained from the pan is not chocolaty/frothy. And there was
maybe a gallon of coolant that drained out of the system.



Edited by suprunner, 17 August 2013 - 09:53 PM.

#2 Gloyale


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Posted 17 August 2013 - 10:57 AM

Heads don't ussually crack.  Little wiff of oil from under the bolts is common/normal.


If the bottom end is good, and it hasn't been overheated badly then just get the heads surfaced and put new gaskets in.


If there is reason to believe its been overheated severly, then ditch it and go 2.2

#3 suprunner


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Posted 17 August 2013 - 01:24 PM

Heads don't ussually crack.  Little wiff of oil from under the bolts is common/normal.


This wasn't oil that came out. It was water/coolant (aqueous) that beaded when it met the residual amount of oil left on the retainers and camshaft.

#4 Fairtax4me



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Posted 17 August 2013 - 05:09 PM

Not sure how coolant would get there unless the bottom of the hole is drilled into the water jacket in the head. Heads don't normally crack that high up. Cracks are almost always in the combustion chambers, between the chamber and the jacket or into one of the valve ports.

#5 WoodsWagon


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Posted 17 August 2013 - 08:41 PM

Put a little rtv on the threads of those cam cap bolts when you put it back in if you're worried about it, but likely it's a non issue. If they were leaking there, coolant would be showing up in the oil, not overheating.

Put some new mls headgaskets in it and call it a day. Sounds like it was running good and not badly overheated so the rest of the motor is probably fine.

Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: ej25, blown, Head Gasket, HG, coolant, Oil, Head, corrosion

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