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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Howdy, first time poster.

I've got a 98 2L automatic with 148,000 on it.

I replaced the timing belt and waterpump on the car in a foray in "preventative maintenance" and failed to put the gasket on the water pump on correctly. If you haven't guessed yet I lost all the coolant in the car, overheated it, and blew head gasket/cracked block/etc.

It was bubbling exhaust gas out the radiator, coolant out exhaust, and after warming up would stall on idle.

I replaced the head gasket by the book, new head bolts, had the head pressure tested and resurfaced. and generally cleaned everything up.

I got it all back together and it seems to run as well as it did before this all went down. However I'm still getting some water droplets out the exhaust pipe after it warms up. When I pull the dipstick out it seems like there's alot of gas coming out, I don't know what a normal amount of blowby gas looks like with the dipstick out.

I then ran the nanotechnology head gasket repair gunk through the cooling system per their instructions; not sure if I noticed any change though.

I took a compression test, cylinders 1 through 4 read:

145, 144, 131, and 169; after a few squirts of oil they read 165, 165, 160, 200.

This seems very good.

I'm new to all these procedures and am not sure what is acceptable and what isn't.

Do I still have a breach in the water jacket, possibly in the block, that is letting some small amount of water into a cyclinder? Could I be getting those compression results and still have some kind of crack or I didn't install the head gasket correctly?

Any advice or suggested next steps would be greatly appreciated.
 

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The biggest problem you face after overheating your engine is the very real possibility of dropping a valve seat. The original valve seats, esp. on cyl #4, loosen up over time and self-destruct, taking out the piston & cylinder with it.

So, I would re-do the job, and this time either rebuilt the head with new seats, or buy a rebuilt head from a reputable cyl head remanufacturer.

When you replaced the head gasket, did you buy a complete head set and replace all the other gaskets too? (esp the intake manifold gaskets) Those can be the source of a small coolant leak.

And did you buy the correct head gasket, the traditional composite type as opposed to the multi-layer steel gasket used on 2000 and later engines?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I did get the whole gasket set and replaced the intake, imrc, exaust, egr, and thermostat gaskets. I also got a new thermostat and PCV valve.

Now that you say it though the replacement gasket looked like a fiber gasket with a really light blue color; a Fel-Pro. The original gasket is a dark metallic color that had inlaid smooth strips around the cylinders holes.

Still, can I be getting these compression numbers and still have something wrong with the engine that I should be concerned about?

I really only use this car for out of town trips to go skiing/mountain biking/hiking and need to be reasonably confident that I'll be able to drive it without serious incident.


P.S. I may try and get another head (or whole engine) soon and rebuild it and possibly port and polish it to swap on.
 

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The original Ford head gasket was slightly darker in color than the FelPro, but they are equivalent. The MLS head gasket used on later models is a sandwich of 5 thin metal layers riveted together. No mistaking the two.

There was another recent thread on this forum about the same problem as yours. After replacing his recently installed head gasket, minor leakage & compression problems were solved. It is possible to get a defective head gasket, or, more likely, to have a minor problem with the surfaces that prevents perfect sealing. You might want to consider using Permatex Ultra-Copper Spray gasket sealer on the head gasket next time to fill any imperfections.
 
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