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87 4WD carb wagon cooling system issues

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A friend of mine has an 87 carbureted EA82 wagon and she started having some cooling system issues with it this morning. She drove it to her school, which is about a mile from her house, adn she said abotu halfway there her temperature gauge was nearly pegged, and then when she pulled into the parking lot and parked, it went back down to normal. After class, she dumped like a half a gallon of water into it, and started it up, everythign seemed normal except for the antifreeze dripping from the tailpipe. She also said there was a puddle underneath it that was abotu the size of a fist, that was brown in the middle and black on the edges, but I had her check her dipstick and her oil was not foamy or milky or anything. I am leaning towards a cracked head, since I know those like to crack in the exhaust ports.

Any ideas on finding which is cracked other than dropping the exhaust and watchign for drips? I have a good passenger side head, but if her driver's side head is bad, does anyone on here have a carb EA82 head they'd be willing to part with???

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If the passenger side head is screwed its a direct bolt on. If the drivers side head is screwed all you need to do is plug the EGR bunghole thingie with a bung of some sort

 

Heh heh I said bunghole :D

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Head is cracked.

A compression test may tell you which side is FUBAR.

Heads are the same for either Driver or Passenger sides, on non-turboed engines, except for the EGR passage. (This one wonders if one can't drill-out that passage.) It's the cam cases that you can't swap.

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although I talked to her today, and she says that now it is acting fine, although she did find another puddle of mixed water and oil underneath it this morning :-( but she said it didn't overheat at all last night. She said it got a little hotter than normal, but then like 30 seconds later it was back at normal again.

 

Would a compression check make a cracked head show up if it was cracked in teh exhaust ports?

 

I know there is a check to determine if there is hydrocarbons in the coolant, but I don't want to go spend $30 on a tool, does anyone know if you can get test strips to determine this?? I don't want to tear into it if nothing is wrong with it.

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What I was told by Bob (he sold you the freeze plugs Andrew)...

 

Leakdown tests tell you whats REALLY going on

 

compression tests only tell you so much...

 

Dunno if that helps, dont know how to do a leakdown test... but thats what he said when I had the 87 turbowagon compression tested.

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Leakdown tests show the cylinder's ability to hold air. Normal leakage is about 10%, much more than that and you know you have probs. I've seen engines develop compression pressure that was low but within spec, but have 40% leakage. Not good. Although if her head is cracked in teh exhaust port like they usually do, a compression or leakdown test wouldn't show it, since it;s not in teh combustion chamber.

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Most shops will perform a coolant system leak down test test for only a few sheckles.

If it show it is leaking down, pull the plugs and crank it

If H20 spues out a Cyl -> headgasket

if H20 comes out the exhaust -> the head is cracked

 

hope this helps

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Leakdown tests show the cylinder's ability to hold air..... Although if her head is cracked in teh exhaust port like they usually do, a compression or leakdown test wouldn't show it, since it;s not in teh combustion chamber.

 

cracks in these heads ussually start from the little spot between the valves. every head Iv'e ever taken off has it. It is a matter of whether the crack goes far enough back into the head to get to a water passage. If that crack has grown that far it would create an open path out of the cylinder and you would see a drop in compression. However ussually these cracks only go about a half inch to an inch up into the wall seperating the intake/exhaust ports. You can look by removing the valves and peakin up in there. Crack has to run almost 2 inches up into the head before it hits any water passages.

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my 87 was heating up, and was losing coolant. it turned out that i had a pinhole leak in one of the top hoses behind the carb (the little ones), and i had leaky intake manifold gaskets. the amount of work it takes to do IMG's is small, and may be worth trying before you get into the HG's. these two things fixed my overheat issue. I had coolant dripping out my exhaust ports also.

 

I also replaced the tstat while i was at it.

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Can be a combination of problems. Check the condition of the radiator and the cooling fins. Is the puddle coming from the side or the middle of the engine (water pump leaking). A quick HG test is to start the car with the raditor cap off. If its a major issue the car will start vomiting coolant asap. If its little the car will burp when the thermostate open, then top off if needed, and see if there are bubbles in the coolant.

Do you know how many miles are on this car? When was the last time it was serviced or had the timing belt/water pump changed?

 

nipper

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lol I fixed that car a LOOOOONNNNNGGGG time ago... Had a cracked head lol when I dropped the exhaust pipe off there were coolant droplets in the exhaust port :-P

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