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robington

Engine Out - HGF

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I have deided to replace the head gasket, but have not yet decided whether to do this myself or put it in a garage. I was going to put this off till later in the year, but the bottom coolant hose into the rad is bulging under the pressure and rubs on the front wheel resulting in a flat spot on the hose! :o

I assume it's an engine out job?

If I do it myself, I will probably use the money saved in labour to replace some other things such as engine mounts. Any other suggestions of things to replace while the engine is out, apart from cambelt and all gaskets?

What is the best order to dismantle things and remove the engine?

As I said, I have not decided whether to do it myself yet, and any replies I get here will help me make my mind up. It's 20 years since I took an engine out of a car and that was when I restored a TR7 :sofa: (could not afford an Esprit at that point in my life!)

Thanks

Rob.

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Upgrade today to remove Google ads and support TLF.

DIY ......there are enough enthusiasts here that can help you with the project ,step by step.Furthermore i have found that the "experts" either need to charge you a fortune to make it worth their while ,,,,,or they are useless .This is meant with all respect to those who charge a fortune and are good .

I took mine out last year and also got advice here and saved a whack of cash ...used it to go overseas last year .My car is better than anyone else could have done it andi am now a better "expert "than most !!!.......except the guys on the forum.

Rules of engagement:

1.make sure you have a plan in mind

2.check TLF FIRST

3.CONTINUE AND ASK ...DONT TAKE CHANCES

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First of all, do you know for sure it's HGF?

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If you can, hire a lifting gantry ( or bring the car to me and borrow mine)

Them removing the engine is a pleasure rather than a pain.

Normal engine cranes just don't have the reach to get over the engine

Be methodical, remove only what needs to be removed label everything

Things which don't need to be removed include

Rear suspension links, brake discs. Engine surrounds

Things which give you more space by removing

Alternator, carbs dipstick tube

Have done this DIY three times now, just ask for any advice.

I'm a fan of lists . Before I start I list all the jobs , remove exhaust disconnect drive shafts etc.

Then I tick them off as I progress. Then when putting it back in another set of lists ( this time in the order that things need to go back )

Good luck

John

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First of all, do you know for sure it's HGF?

Hi Sparky

I had a sniff test done and it changed the colour, but not by much. We had to compare the new fluid with the fluid used in the sniff test carefully to decide. It was a marginal colour change. The other evidence is the blowing of coolant from the expansion tank and the bulging bottom coolant hose (6 months old) suggesting a fair build up of pressure. I admit there's no obvious symptoms, but the car is unuseable as it is and I can't think of another cause of these issues.

Thank's for the offer of the gantry John, I will think about that - is the gantry easily transportable on a flat trailer?

What about the "other things to do" question?

Are there other things I can replace while the engine is out as a preventative measure/improvements so I can feel as if I have added something to the job!

I am erring towards doing it myself at the moment.

Thanks,

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Hey Rob

I'm always wary of HGF diagnosis as so many other things can look like it. The symptoms you mention could equally result from coolant pump failure.

If all you've had so far is a marginal sniff test, I'd suggest checking for coolant flow from the pump, just in case. And maybe a blocked rad?

Or maybe you've done all this already. In that case, ignore my ramblings!

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Hi Sparky

I had the rad off last Month and that's fine now and the coolant pump was replaced last October, so that "should" be ok, although I admit I have not checked for flow from the pump, the coolant certainly seems to get around the system ok and my heater is nice and warm!

Any suggestions are welcome, because I do not fancy taking the engine out, although I expect once I get on with it I will probably find it to be not as daunting as it feels right now!!

Rob.

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Rob,

In terms of moving the gantry it could be done but it's 10 feet high and very heavy so you would need a very strong long trailer. The other issue is disassembly and reassembly it took 8 people to get it up and I haven't taken it down since!

As to other jobs to do while it's out, I would say that's dependent on what you find and what budget you have.

Obvious things would be engine mounts and snubber washers, probably the engine mount heat shield will have gone ( has on the two cars I have done but that could be a DPO issue)

Gearbox mounts

Clutch ( depending on condition )

Fuel hoses

The spigot bearing in the crank and the nylon washer on the shaft from the gearbox

Plus anything that's broken cracked split or busted.

Oh and the water pump is so much easier to do with the engine out

John

Edited by Mr_John111

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Hi John

So, the gantry is pretty industrial then!

Yes, that does look a bit of a challenge to transport, so it looks like I will have to try this with an engine crane. Where I work there is a 2 post lift they sometimes let me use, so I am hoping to do it there and that way I will be able to spend a couple of hours a night after work on the car.

Thank's for the list. There's a few things there I would not have thought about, so that's appreciated.

Rob.

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I can't see a marginal head gasket failure making one hose bulge. The sort of pressure you would need to make a hose bulge would rapidly expel all the coolant from the pressure cap....and since that would limit the pressure in the cooling system to the normal limit, why would one hose bulge? I would want to be sure that the hose itself was OK before tearing into the engine. The "sniff" test seems to be open to interpretation, as I understand it you had to try hard to convince yourselves that you had a leak. Maybe you haven't...... I think you'd need a relatively immense pressure to get a hose like that to bulge, without there being some internal structural failure of the hose itself. Maybe it's rubbing because it's too long, or at the wrong angle? What value pressure cap are you running....remember the pressure in the system will be a constant throughout.

However.....taking the engine out for the first time is an adventure!!! Good luck.....

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Hi John

I share your doubts about the diagnosis of a head gasket leak because it's not ravingly obviously blown, and I would rather not have to do this job, so if there is an alternative diagnosis that's easier to fix I would welcome it. I have been experiencing coolant leaks all around the car since I had it and everything has now been replaced or repaired - that's all the hoses, the rad, The otter switch and the water pump and frankly I am puzzled about the whole thing and slightly frustrated that I have never resolved this and as a consequence am limited to a 40 mile radius of where I live due to coolant loss!

I am a couple of weeks from unbolting anything (if I do it), because I would want to plan it around a few other things, but the current symptoms are -

Marginal sniff test failure

Expansion tank overflowing (with 15lb cap)

Any other things to check? - I am going to do a compression check tonight if time allows.

Thanks - I do appreciate your comments.

Rob.

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Hi

I had a pressure test done on the coolant system and it came out ok. Not had a vacuum test done though, never heard of that before..

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Often the same kit used for the pressure test can be used for a vacuum test (and vacuum refill). The coolant is drained and 24-26 inHg of vacuum is applied, the system should hold this for at least 30 seconds.

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Dumb question but is your thermostat working properly? Is everything really hot in front when your cap relieves?

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Ok, I have done a compression test this evening, however I could only slightly finger tighten the adaptor into the plug hole and could not really nip them up as I could not get my fingers down there and did not have a tool to do it.

DSCF0546_1024x768.jpg

The numbers from the cambelt end are 80 psi, 78 psi, 90 psi and 85 psi. Not great, but I think the result may be influenced by what I said earlier. I need to do it again with better equipment. Here are the plugs - no 2 was a bit oily.

DSCF0523_1024x768.jpg

DSCF0528_1024x768.jpg

You will like the next one - No 4 cylinder. I washed the car then put it in the garage, could that be the cause?

I mopped the fluid up before removing the plug.

DSCF0522_1024x768.jpg

I am still no clearer really and will get a professional compression test done when I can.

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Hi, In my experience ..........When your everyday car is at normal operating temperature feel how "sqiggy" one of the water pipes into the rad is.

Get your esprit upto normal operating temperature and feel a similar sized pipe, probably at the front into the rad. If the Esprit is significantly harder to squeeze then I would suggest it is likely you have a head gasket issue. Not quaranteed and not very scientific but in my experience over the years it is an extremely good tell tale.

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If those compression readings are on a hot engine with wide open throttle, then you are due a top end rebuild anyway, (I also just hand tighten my compression tester to do my readings). Also looks way too rich to me. does it burn much oil? I wonder if you still have a system full of those white crystals somewhere leading to localised overheating...

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The compression readings were with a cold engine. I clean forgot about the need to warm the engine first.

The engine leaks oil, but I don't thing it burns much.

Ill do the readings again, this time with a warm engine.

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What kind of compression reading should I be getting?

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iN TERMS OF COLD ENGINE ....THE READINGS APPEAR ACCEPTABLE.

If you were hot ,north of 9 would be ok so i dont think you have any problem.

Do you get a misfire or a cylinder hop.?

The bulge in the rad pipe is one of two things ,build up of pressure (blockage in system0 or the pipe is too large (diameter) and is an appearance only.

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Ill do the readings again, this time with a warm engine.

And make sure the throttles are held wide open.

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And they should all be within 10% of each other.

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Thank's for the info, I will try and get round to it again Thursday evening.

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