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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
This morning going when I went to park at work, I smelled the tell-tell "sweet" antifreeze smell coming from my car. Running late to work, I didn't pay much more attention to it than that.

Fast forward to 30min ago when I get here to school and I got that smell again. This time I popped the hood and took a few pics...







I'm pretty sure that means I got a bad head gasket, lol. I searched around for tips on how to tear down the top end of the motor, and didn't find too much of anything other than THIS and THIS. I'll search more thoroughly later, but I'm here at school to take a final.

Also, would this explain why when I did my spark plugs back in May that some of the spark plug chambers were full of oil and coolant as seen HERE and HERE.

I'll get another picture or two showing where coolant has been seeping from where the head meets the block (valley side) as these pictures don't show that angle. But from what can be seen, below the intake a small pool of coolant is there and the dried coolant is running down from the heads. Looking at the other threads, I see that I should at least look at hoses that carry coolant such as the heater core, and the one that runs from the rear of the block to the front and replace if necessary.

This is real unfortunate timing for me right now as my future at work is uncertain....
 

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Looks to me like a coolant leak from the intake Stock Intake rite?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
That looks to be part of the issue. But, how likely is it that the head is blown at this point? Likely, not likely?
 

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The intake probably corroded at the seal to the head at the plastic under the crossover. I've seen this personally once, but my original npi aluminum manifold was showing signs of failure when I removed it too.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
So, if the issue is just the intake, just get a new one then seems to be the fix? I got a "new" PI intake, but it had issues.....



 

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That looks to be part of the issue. But, how likely is it that the head is blown at this point? Likely, not likely?
The head gasket is underneath the head. Thats an intake gasket or intake manifold leak. More likely the intake gasket, but you wont know if the intake manifold is cracked until you pull it off. Good time to replace it with a PI intake with the aluminum crossover.
 

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If you blew a heat gasket you'd be burning coolant/oil out the exhaust or getting external leaks in the valley or side of the block, not defying gravity and climbing into the spark plug holes

Coolant seeping from where the head meets the crankshaft???? What????
 

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Looks like you blew out the intake manifold gasket, or the intake is shot. Either way, dump the intake being it doesn't have the upgraded aluminum crossover and if you feel like doing another upgrade, get a PI intake.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
The head gasket is underneath the head. Thats an intake gasket or intake manifold leak. More likely the intake gasket, but you wont know if the intake manifold is cracked until you pull it off. Good time to replace it with a PI intake with the aluminum crossover.
That's the most likely area where this has failed then, a failed intake manifold gasket. Possibly a failed intake manifold?

I have a PI intake ready to go (pictured in my last post), but it has that small crack in it already....

If you blew a heat gasket you'd be burning coolant/oil out the exhaust or getting external leaks in the valley or side of the block, not defying gravity and climbing into the spark plug holes

Coolant seeping from where the head meets the crankshaft???? What????
I've blown head gaskets before, and you're right, I have experienced exactly what you said here. I'm just presuming that this is also a cracked head gasket since coolant has dried just below the head gasket on the valley side of the engine block and whatever hasn't burned off has collected in the valley (last picture of my OP, hard to see). Just that I'm not getting any of that spewing white smoke from my tail pipes.

And, crankshaft was the wrong word, I meant to say the block on the valley side.
 

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If you blew a heat gasket you'd be burning coolant/oil out the exhaust or getting external leaks in the valley or side of the block, not defying gravity and climbing into the spark plug holes

Coolant seeping from where the head meets the crankshaft???? What????
exactly my thoughts. :confused:

there is a 99.9999999999% chance that this is not a blown head gaskets, and just a measely intake manifold gasket that is shot.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
exactly my thoughts. :confused:

there is a 99.9999999999% chance that this is not a blown head gaskets, and just a measely intake manifold gasket that is shot.
I'm not getting spewing white smoke coming from my exhaust and / or engine bay, so I imagine it's safe to say that it's not the head gasket?
 

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I have a PI intake ready to go (pictured in my last post), but it has that small crack in it already....
The only place that intake is ready to go is in the garbage. Get a good (one without any cracks or other damage) PI intake with the aluminum crossover, a new set of gaskets, and swap them on.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Have a spare one you want to get rid of? :)

Oh, and I have the gaskets already. I bought them a while ago, but never did the job as I didn't have a garage and knowledge to do the work back then. Now, I just don't have the knowledge, lol.
 

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The only place that intake is ready to go is in the garbage. Get a good (one without any cracks or other damage) PI intake with the aluminum crossover, a new set of gaskets, and swap them on.
+1 Informative! I had this problem with the red cougar.

The big thing going for the swap is that the gasket for the PI intake lands in a different spot than the corrosion from the original gasket. :)

I wire brushed the surface to remove the white aluminum rust/dust, dug out where it was pitted, and then filled all the pits with RTV while I was installing the intake.

I pretty much glued it in with rtv, but YMMV with that approach. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #16
OK, separate but related questions:

1. Why would oil be in the spark plug chamber?

2. If I keep driving around like this, what are probable worst case scenarios?

Of course, I'm not going to drive it around like this until it blows up further, but I do still need to get home (50 miles or so from where I'm at now).
 

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1. Leaky valve cover gaskets/grommets and/or PCV grommets/hoses. Very common at their age.

2. You could run low on coolant and overheat. It will only get worse. Keep an eye on your coolant level and you could limp it for a while
 

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Why not just pull the intake off and KNOW what the problem is instead of guessing what it is????

If it's a gasket, get a set of NPI gaskets, and put them on. That will buy you some time till you find a good PI intake with an aluminum crossover.

Don't overcomplicate things.......... running it as is, is just looking for troubles down the road. I wouldn't drive it as it is.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Why not just pull the intake off and KNOW what the problem is instead of guessing what it is????

If it's a gasket, get a set of NPI gaskets, and put them on. That will buy you some time till you find a good PI intake with an aluminum crossover.

Don't overcomplicate things.......... running it as is, is just looking for troubles down the road. I wouldn't drive it as it is.
I won't drive the car as it is other than to get home from class tonight.

I already have a set of gaskets I bought a few months back, I just haven't installed them yet - obviously.
 

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wow, another living plastic coolant crossover! someone else had one of these on here recently. i was under the impression greater then half of them left their owners in a cloud of steam when they blew at the seams and covered the alternator with coolant. :D

i would definitely loose that NPI plastic one before that happens. amazon sells the FRPP PI intakes for something like $180, that's where i got mine. little bit of red RTV and one of those and you would be set for another 50-60k. otherwise like others have said, anouther set of gaskets on this plastic time bomb is only going to buy you a few more oil changes if it isn't already cracked.

of course it would be an opportune time to pull the valve covers and change those gaskets as well. and your plug wires are probably swollen from the oil contamination and should be replaced.
 
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