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Unread 02-09-2013, 09:31 PM
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Smithers Smithers is offline
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Location: San Luis Obispo, CA
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Here we go. Symptoms: poor MPG and bad head gasket! duh

Disappointed? Not really. I knew what I was getting into buying this car. I knew the car had problems when I bought it so I offered what I thought it was worth. I got the car cheap because it was neglected and this is what happens. I knew this would happen. As with every poor machine I pick up for cheap I use moments like this to rebuild it better than new! This is the fun part! Now let's have a look. Read this picture and think about what's going on.



White or light colored exhaust valves? = High temps, lean condition, slight oil leak. High temps are usually a result of a lean condition. The seats of the exhaust valves were all beat to hell. = Lots of combustion leakage. Now how about the oil leak? By wiggling the valves left to right my machinist showed me how bad the valve guides were worn down. They were TOAST. There should be no play at all in the guides. At that point oil will get past the valves but the minimal oil burns off before it gets past the cat. All of this adds up to less performance and worst of all... the MPG was very low for this car. I'm really happy to see that everything can be fixed and it will be as good as new. And we took it up a notch and my machinist had not problem getting some more flow out of the head for me.

What's the fix? Looking at the exhaust valves once they were removed you could tell they were past their prime. New exhaust valves are in order as well as new springs. With a high revving engine my machine pro has seen abused valve spring break. We didn't take the chance of re-using them. No way. Also ADJUSTING THE VALVES is something that MUST be done on these engines every 30-40K I've been told. It's pretty easy to do and it's a cheap way to make sure your engine is performing as good as possible. No matter how good your exhaust and intake and all your other mods are... if you're valves aren't adjusted they don't mean squat.

Before the cleaning:

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