Replace Head Gaskets vs Engine Assembly
This Dodge Journey came in initially for an overheating condition. Could not duplicate the 240 overheating condition that customer stated happens. Did notice it get up to around 220*F while driving. Customer had replace radiator, water pump, and thermostat with aftermarket parts.
Tested thermostat and found it barely opening. Replaced with OEM and temperatures were normal during test driving.
Car returned in a few days with customer stating temperature will consistently get up to 240* while driving. Verified ourselves by test driving for a few minutes.
Combustion leak detect fluid changed color when testing at coolant reservoir. Removed intake manifold and spark plugs and pressurized each cylinder. Found two of the cylinders on left bank caused coolant level to increase. Pressurized cooling system and watched coolant trickle into cylinder at head gasket with borescope.
My question is … Is it a safe idea to recommend head gasket replacement on both heads if block and heads are not warped beyond spec?
I don't have any information on whether the engine ever got hotter than 240*F. Customer seems careful about watching temperature.
Would it be better to simply replace the engine? Have others had good success with replacing head gaskets on these engines? I
I am aware of the magnetic tone wheels on the camshafts on these engines … so will keep that in mind if we do headgaskets.
Always weight both case, I got few shop I deal with that decide yo save the engine only to have to face a cracked block as another failure after HG/head repair. Make the customer makes the call.
I agree with you. This engine does run very nicely.
Hi Timothy, I will say this, the prettiest girl at the party is not the safest. I've known some some real trouble over the years.
95% of the time it is more cost effective to put in an engine, used or new. Less chance of error, less labor involved for customer, and job gets done quicker. Unless an engine is rare(currently working on 1957 Mercedes 190), customer has some attachement to the car staying original, and/or you literally cannot find an engine, I would just swap the engine.
Engine is unavailable from dealer. Jasper would be the option for replacement.
I am not against putting the decision on the customer, but keep in mind that no matter the decision, you are going to be married t the vehicle. I would also keep in mind that the coolant temp sensor does a great job at reading fluid temp and a horrible job of reading vapor temp. This engine may have gotten hotter than the owner thinks. Sorry that I can't provide a more solid answer.
Depends on the mileage. If it has over 120k, I would suggest replacement.
I always price both options of replacing head gaskets or replacing the complete engine and give the customer the pros and cons of both options. If customer is well informed of his options then customer makes the choice that is best for him.
I would advise an engine for the following reasons. It has been overheated and driven and overheated and driven several times. You will never know how much engine damage you are dealing with on the long term. Will it start consuming oil because the rings are now compromised? Is the engine block still good? You will married to the job and customer once you touch it.
Left head failures are common. Left head is cheaper and more available than right head. Not a bad job to repair. I've done several.
flat out, this is a high risk repair, if you repair anything that has been overheated, and you will be liable if anything goes south, YOUR WARNED, your call, if you get bit by any high risk repair you will change from that point forward, you are supposta be the expert, that's what standard the courts will hold you to. what does the manufacturer state about overheated engines? or jasper?
Hi Timothy, I have had very good results with Jasper engines on these. They carry an outstanding warranty. Modern engines are just not designed to be rebuilt or have major head work like this done in a shop environment. An operation like Jasper has strict rebuilding standards and a lot of their core engines are actually known good running LKQ engines, so they get minor machining has required…
Timothy Others have offered great advice so here’s my 2 cents. Whatever you do the legal system considers you to be the expert (so you’re married to it). We can not say for certain how hot it got. We run low tension rings (lower friction) and engine metal thicknesses are less to save weight. I suspect the engine got hotter than we hope and possibly pistons expanded and scuffed along with loss…
trouble is… those 3.6 heads are known issues. Add that to any 10 year old engine in this age of “extended service intervals”….so if the rest of the car looks good, I'd put a whole engine.
There is a strong possibility the left head was replaced under warranty extension in past and left head was replaced without timing cover removal and head bolts are possibly loose . If head was never replaced then it’s probably just a head gasket . The cylinder liner to wet jacket is very slim and the left head works harder/ hotter hince valve guide wear ( my opinions ) . I would pull head and…
In my opinion based on experience, most customers never fully admit the extent of what or how much they may have stressed a component or system. Like if they buffer their explanation, it won't cost as much. I tell them help me help you by telling me everything because regardless, I'm going to find it or figure it out, its just how much time to you want to pay me looking for it? Now, in this…
Thanks for all the good replies. Currently working on selling an engine replacement.
Customer declined engine replacement and took vehicle with a bad head gasket.