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PART TWO ~ 2005 Pt Cruiser Will need new head gasket

Discussion in 'PT Cruiser' started by Fullpass, Jan 25, 2017.

  1. Fullpass

    Fullpass Member

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    New Thread

    I'm a slow learner...But like to learn...by hands on I guess..I had started a thread about maybe needing a head gasket, thought the problem was solved...PT must stand for "Pain N The...something"...lol. The car doesn't over heat, but air in the system keeps pushing a bit more coolant up into the overflow tank, not allowing it to drain back...even when the car has cooled down...the upper radiator hose still feels firm...when opened, no coolant in the upper radiator hose...but the hose had a lot of pressure in it, very firm.

    So I'm pretty sure, now after driving the car..."time will tell factor" its the head gasket...such a slow leak to...pressure tester indicated one...but pressure had been so gradual thought maybe a gauge thing.

    Did the new cap, bleed, flush, new coolant, power wash radiator, checked fan, everything works fine..fine on/off...stat opens...car had...flow to and back to the radiator in town, but now after putting some more miles on the car on the highway...100...no more flow back...

    WHAT IS THE BEST HEAD GASKET TO PUT ON...BRAND...UPDATED VERSION ~ MLS MULTI LAYERED STEEL are they the better ones...Felpro...all sorts of kits on eBay...which ones should I stay away from...

    The other question I have after doing some reading...all said and done...after install...Is a Tech Scan tool needed...to put the car in a learn mode for the crank position sensor...timing? Can you do this some other way...yes will have all the cam/crank pistons in the correct position/marks...Still need Scan tool?

    One more...do you really half to disconnect the AC lines to pull the head...can you just vent the stuff to the atmosphere?

    A lot of great threads here and on youtube...might get this project started the 26th..motor mount looks to be the biggest pain.
     
  2. ImperialCrown

    ImperialCrown Moderator Level III Supporter

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    OEM MLS is the only gasket I would use. Mopar part# is 4884443AD.
    You probably don't need the scan tool. Cam/crank can be reset/relearned if you really needed to. Do you know someone with a high-end scan tool?
    The A/C compressor and hoses can be moved out of the way. You don't have to reclaim the system.
    Do the timing belt, idlers and water pump while it is apart if you don't know the last time they were done.
    The head gasket is a pretty big job for a beginner. A shop and a guy who's done these before is a better proposition. Air tools make the job go faster. You will want a service manual. Prepping the head/block surfaces for the new gasket is very important.
    You will need a small mirror and straight edge to confirm the cam timing mark alignment as you can't look straight at them.
     
  3. Fullpass

    Fullpass Member

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    Thanks ImperialCrown,

    The goal...to have it done in a week...book says 6/8 hours...Mopar part # 488443AD head gasket..is that a improved design head gasket I hope. Yes, on timing belt, idlers and OEM water pump. Yes understand some may be in better position to do the job..and others in better position with wallet..to just have it done..Its just me, and going to half to tackle the project..The thing is...I like working on cars, spend my time on the net, youtube, watching and learning and DOING :) AND Will Appreciate any help...would like to get another 80,000 miles out of the engine. Thats a good tip, straight edge and small mirror...critical really. Will label on connectors, take pics, videos of engine compartment, put all bolts in sandwich baggies.

    If I can move the AC stuff out of the way..that would be great...had the radiator out before, unbolted from condenser, allowed the condenser to move a bit and lines, would that be enough or should I unbolt the compressor to...move out of the way...

    Auto zone has some loner tools, puller/crank, torque wrenches lbs, torque wrenches inches/lbs...understand the difference when torquing and sequence of torquing when installing head and intake/exhaust cams keeping things in an order/placing back everything into original place...L/R numbering everything.

    But Tips are important two, like the mirror and straight edge...anything to help would be great. Plan on leaving exhaust manifold bolted up to head when removing...I hear about the support bracket under it need to be removed...sticking point..

    The tear down looks straight forward, raising lower engine in order to get to some of the bolts..getting bracket out, to access the timing cover, cams/sprockets.

    Concerns would be, cracks in cylinder head, block walls...warped head..I do have feeler gauges down to .001 thousandth, no straight edge though to go across head.

    Other concerns would be intake/exhausts cams journals...snugging them up first/lightly in torque sequence but not torqued...so not to snap the cams or journals.

    CONCERN ~ when unbolting journals from cams...what is the best position to have the cams in ~ least amount of tension/load on cam..should I go in reverse torque sequence a little bit at a time up/down the cam...to unload the cam...some cam lobes might be pushing valves down..is the concern..dont want to crack anything

    Imperial..I'm up till 2am doing my homework..I see your up to..maybe you can keep looking over my shoulder..hints/help all good...Of course other members can chime N to...

    Giving myself the go ahead on the project.

    Project starts at noon today...but will be up early till its done..

    If a good PDF manual is available...just let me know...or can download a section of one.
     
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2017
  4. chuzz

    chuzz Active Member

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    Do you have a carpenters metal framing square? That's a GREAT straight edge. I have one and it's really come in handy over the years.
     
  5. Bob Lincoln

    Bob Lincoln "CHECK FAULT CODES" Level 2 Supporter

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    Why would you unbolt journals from cams for a head gasket job?
     
  6. djsamuel

    djsamuel Active Member Level 2 Supporter

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    You have to remove the cams to get to the head bolts.
     
  7. Bob Lincoln

    Bob Lincoln "CHECK FAULT CODES" Level 2 Supporter

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    Ah...OK. Hope I never have to do that on my wife's car.
     
  8. Fullpass

    Fullpass Member

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    Chuzz...metal framing square

    Great Idea! Have two or three, bought at a sale...

    Update...upper/lower intake off...fuel rail... labeling everything connectors, vacuum hoses, lots of pics to put back together

    Did see this when separating upper/lower plastic intake...around the intake mating seals...some coolant...not on one, but all four intake ports...half a tea spoon on each...that dosent sound good to me..
     
  9. ImperialCrown

    ImperialCrown Moderator Level III Supporter

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    I would pause here and try to find out why coolant is in the intake plenum-to-intake manifold ports. Is it also inside the intake manifold runners? Could it have accidentally splashed here from intake removal or from the thermostat housing removal?
    I doubt that this coolant came up from the cylinders or is head gasket leak related.
     
    pt006 likes this.
  10. pt006

    pt006 Member

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    Surface finish on the head is important. Unless the head is really clean [no pits around the cylinders], I'd have it remachined at a good shop.

    You can use a spaghetti box or a bent piece of aluminum flashing to check the camshaft timing marks. Cut it about 1" wide by 5"long. Bend it 90 deg. about 1 1/4" from one end. This side lays over the timing belt. Lay it over the belt at the cam sprocket bolt and trim the long end until it is in the center of the bolt. Slide it over the belt till it's over the timing marks. If correct, both cam marks should be even with the trimmed end of the tool and the crank sprocket mark should be as shown in a diagram. Be sure you double check this step. Too many bad stories.

    To remove the cam journals; mark each cap, back off the cap bolts 1/2 turn at a time to keep the shaft parallel to the head. To install; find, buy, make a shim ~ 3/8" or 5/16" thick. Put it under the cap, snug the bolts very lightly. Remove shim. Repeat for all others. Then work the cap bolts down 1/2 turn at a time.
     
  11. Fullpass

    Fullpass Member

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    Imperial Crown, I did see underside of the hood over the radiator cap...a big mark in the sound suppression material...released pressure from the cap, must of went straight up underside of the hood when overheated, So maybe when the car overheated, it collected/settled around the intake plenum upper/lower matting surfaces..I did not see coolant inside the runners; however, once I removed the lower/bottom of the intake, looking into the head ports...Cylinder # 1 just happens to be on the beginning/opening or ending/closing of the intake stroke..anyway both intake valves are at least partially extend...Iooking at the #1 cylinder intake port, lots of black sludge, had looked like black carbon, but soft and wet, I did go out and re look at the valves...Of the two intake valves, the one on the left when looking at the motor from the front, has the black sludge on the back side of the intake valve and up the valve stem some...and the rest of the ports had some wet black sludge, Starting at the #1 cylinder, left side of engine, and looking down the cylinedr head ports to the right...smaller amount of black sludge in ports going from left to right side of cylinder head..and valves..I tried to upload some pics...files are two large...camera has a very high resolution..maybe can set resolution..down to 8 from 14...file should be smaller next time. The sludge wipes of with a rag...its soft...Would that sludge be from valve stem seal...engine didn't smoke..leaky head gasket? No coolant detected on oil dip stick. Cheap brand oil?

    Well, hope to get the engine mount brackets off/out today...timing cover off..maybe loosen bolt on harmonic balancer, cam sprockets, Before doing all this, was thinking of getting a compression tester...check each cylinder, probably still could do that without the intake on...just take the plugs out, put the compression tester on one cylinder, crank 5 sec..kind of late for that test...but would like to know...when new head gasket is installed, would like to do the test again...make sure I have good pressure. Then when the system is buttoned up...leak down test on radiator again..

    PT006...glad to see you are still here...good idea with the straight edge supported by timing belt..Now as for the shim idea...have any pics of that..somthing that sits on top of journal and under bolt heads..guess don't understand how you are placing the shim..understand it helps displace the load...maybe it will make more sense to me when I get the valve cover off..
     
  12. dana44

    dana44 Well-Known Member Ad-Free Member

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    I can't recall that the cams actually need to be pulled to get the head bolts out, but verify that, I don't think I had to. You do need to remove the upper sprockets of the cams in order to get the upper motor mount out of the way in order to change the belt, which is something you should do at this point, I had a belt break (stripped the cogs) at 85.000miles), so it might be time to take care of that while doing this work, it's a little bit of a pain, would hate to have to tear it all down six months down the road. AC compressor isn't much of an issue, alternator doesn't need to be removed other than the belt, bottom pulley needs to have the proper puller or they are a pain, they are pressed on and has to come off to change the belt. If you do have to pull the cams, make sure to mark the caps and get them in the proper order. Heads are pretty tough, very few crack, but do check it over visually. The MLS head gaskets are the best, it does sound like you carbon tracked the gasket and pressure is pushing past the surfaces, it does happen. I know there are special cutters/sanding materials for the head and block cleaning, still find 600grit wet/dry sandpaper and a couple 45degree cross hatchings to ensure the surface is flat still works for me, I have a half inch thick, 4X8 piece of glass I use to verify flat surfaces, never had an issue when done.
     
    ImperialCrown likes this.
  13. ImperialCrown

    ImperialCrown Moderator Level III Supporter

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    I have used a 15mm swivel or flex socket to remove the head bolts. For accurate re-torqueing, you want a straight shot at the bolt head. I think that torqueing with a swivel at an angle may change your final torque. Your final 1/4 turn will still be a 1/4 turn with a swivel or flex socket.
    A 3/8" drive swivel may fracture under high turning loads and cause injury. You may want to use a 1/2" drive swivel if it fits down in there.
     
  14. djsamuel

    djsamuel Active Member Level 2 Supporter

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    You definitely have to pull the cams to remove the head bolts. I've done it a few times and each time wish that wasn't the case. Not difficult, just an extra step that I wished wasn't needed.
     
  15. Fullpass

    Fullpass Member

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    Update,

    Well, put some time N today...didn't get as far as hoped...removed upper exhaust shield, loosened lower exhaust shield bolt, that allowed me to unbolt the 4 bolts on the bottom of exhaust manifold...unbolted exhaust manifold from back side of cylinder head...removed the exhaust manifold, a sensor is mounted on the back side of the block...wire was pretty tight...thinking the wire would break when raising and lowering the engine to remove the engine mount to get to the timing cover...removing the engine mount will be Fridays job...Harmonic balancer ,timing belt..etc..

    Just to be clear, not much done...but pretty much laying across engine to get to those four bolts, removing exhaust manifold...But able to move on to the next step just fine..so far.