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Head Gasket Repair


steveo412

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hey all,,i will be doin my headgaskets on my 94 eldo,after weeks for replacing parts,coolant crossover seals,radiator,cap,water pump,coolant res,all hoses,heatcore,,the car ran fine but was losing coolant with no leaks,,oh no!i started seeing white smoke and water from the exghaust,i also smelled a funny smell in my coolant res,i pulled all the plugs and didnt see any plugs that were cleaner or looked different,so i did a combustion gases test,and it turned out postive of a gasket leak,i allways come to caddyinfo for advice,thay have alot of great people on here willing to help,if anyone has any info on the steps i should be taking please speak out,i will posting lots of pictures and my progress,,thanks steve

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There are several routes that you can take, any one of which will fix your head gasket problems likely forever:

  • You can TimeSert your block and replace your head gaskets, or have it done,
  • You and use the inserts that NorthstarPerformance makes and sells in lieu of TimeSerts, and you may use his studs in lieu of head bolts too,
  • You can get a rebuilt engine,
  • You can get a remanufactured engine, or
  • You can get a used engine (you know that there are no guarantees here, though).

CTS-V_LateralGs_6-2018_tiny.jpg
-- Click Here for CaddyInfo page on "How To" Read Your OBD Codes
-- Click Here for my personal page to download my OBD code list as an Excel file, plus other Cadillac data
-- See my CaddyInfo car blogs: 2011 CTS-V, 1997 ETC
Yes, I was Jims_97_ETC before I changed cars.

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thanks jim,i ordered the timeserts a total of 20,i will be doin all the threads,i also got a gasket set,,i thought about northstarperformance studs,but there alittle pricey,due to the money i allready spent,i also was looking a used engines,but like u said there is no guarantees,i think my best bet is the timeserts,,,steve

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you need the timesert install tools as well. unless you can borrow the tools. or buy them and sell them when done.

I am lending Steve my timesert kit.

Pre-1995 - DTC codes OBD1  >>

1996 and newer - DTC codes OBD2 >> https://www.obd-codes.com/trouble_codes/gm/obd_codes.htm

How to check for codes Caddyinfo How To Technical Archive >> http://www.caddyinfo.com/wordpress/cadillac-how-to-faq/

Cadillac History & Specifications Year by Year  http://www.motorera.com/cadillac/index.htm

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Steve sent me this PM

sounds good mike,i cant start the car till after i get everything here we need,i bought the book off ebay 24.00,,should be here this week,im geting the gaskets at the partbin,there the cheapest for felpro 226.00,,,the bolts i will get a napa,there on order,should be here tomorrow,i think there 70.00,,,the 20 timeserts are paid for,i got them denlors tools,,i found them to be the cheapest at 29.00 per 10,,,i bought a nice airtool set,i think it will come in handy,the pulles i will barrow from nappa,there good guys down there,i can rent a angle gage and the torque wrench,thay got nice sets,maybe 20.00,napa will do the heads,im not sure what thay charge,but i heard there good,,im just trying to think ahead,i will be doing long days of reading,i will take good pictures for u mike,theres detailed form on how to take the engine out,and im sure i will be asking alot of questions,i did the work mostly on all my caddys,i like to work on them,my dads a sargent in the army,hes a tank mechanic,30years,,he know hes cars to,to bad he wont be there,im on my own on this one,i should be ok,mechanics in my blood i guess,but these northstars are hard to work on! is there any parts or tools u think im missing? steve

I questioned where he was buying his timeserts. I would think that I would want to buy direct from timesert.com, he is buying them here, what do our members think?

http://www.denlorstools.com/home/dt1/page_41138_273/time_sert_northstar_inserts_11155_package_of_10.html

I don't think that it is prudent to reinvent the wheel or to buy cheap parts on ebay or similar places, what do you guys think?

Pre-1995 - DTC codes OBD1  >>

1996 and newer - DTC codes OBD2 >> https://www.obd-codes.com/trouble_codes/gm/obd_codes.htm

How to check for codes Caddyinfo How To Technical Archive >> http://www.caddyinfo.com/wordpress/cadillac-how-to-faq/

Cadillac History & Specifications Year by Year  http://www.motorera.com/cadillac/index.htm

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This is just my opinion...but...

As much work as it is to do a TimeSert job on a N*... personally, if I wasn't using Jake's studs...I would use nothing but the REAL THING from TimeSert.

I would "NOT" trust aftermarket.

But...That's just me.

Do it right or leave it alone.

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The people at the link seem to be dealers for TimeSert. If it were my car I would call TimeSert and ask them if these guys were dealers for their product. If so, then, sure.

I've noticed that Amazon.com sells car parts. They listed my EBTCM module. They have become, in part, a buyer's service, providing the lowest available price for items that have more than one reputable source.

But, again if it was my car, I would stick with the reliable suppliers, i.e. GM dealers, Rock Auto, and others identified by Caddyinfo people and vouched for by "us."

CTS-V_LateralGs_6-2018_tiny.jpg
-- Click Here for CaddyInfo page on "How To" Read Your OBD Codes
-- Click Here for my personal page to download my OBD code list as an Excel file, plus other Cadillac data
-- See my CaddyInfo car blogs: 2011 CTS-V, 1997 ETC
Yes, I was Jims_97_ETC before I changed cars.

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I agree also, if they are dealers Jim. I don't want Steve to make any mistakes here trying to save money

Pre-1995 - DTC codes OBD1  >>

1996 and newer - DTC codes OBD2 >> https://www.obd-codes.com/trouble_codes/gm/obd_codes.htm

How to check for codes Caddyinfo How To Technical Archive >> http://www.caddyinfo.com/wordpress/cadillac-how-to-faq/

Cadillac History & Specifications Year by Year  http://www.motorera.com/cadillac/index.htm

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Personally if I weren't going to use Jake stud kit, I'd use Norm's inserts. They have a coarser thread pitch (like Jake's and what GM finally went to) but then he would have an added expense not being able to use Mikes install kit, so that may be the better (cheaper) way to go.

On second thought, didn't Timesert go to a coarser thread in accordance with GM's update and do away with the old pitch?

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Personally if I weren't going to use Jake stud kit, I'd use Norm's inserts. They have a coarser thread pitch (like Jake's and what GM finally went to) but then he would have an added expense not being able to use Mikes install kit, so that may be the better (cheaper) way to go.

On second thought, didn't Timesert go to a coarser thread in accordance with GM's update and do away with the old pitch?

I don't know Ranger but if that is true, its another reason to go direct to Timesert. Steve really should have had MY timesert KIT number, as the drill and tap are tailored to a specific timesert. Ill get the number and post it later.

But I would want to use a coarser thread myself

Pre-1995 - DTC codes OBD1  >>

1996 and newer - DTC codes OBD2 >> https://www.obd-codes.com/trouble_codes/gm/obd_codes.htm

How to check for codes Caddyinfo How To Technical Archive >> http://www.caddyinfo.com/wordpress/cadillac-how-to-faq/

Cadillac History & Specifications Year by Year  http://www.motorera.com/cadillac/index.htm

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i will call denlors tools and ask them,i can also return them if u guys think its fishie

Steve run your purchases by this board before you buy stuff, dont be impulsive, take your time.

Keep this line my Dad used to say in mind

"If you don't do it right, don't do it at all"

Pre-1995 - DTC codes OBD1  >>

1996 and newer - DTC codes OBD2 >> https://www.obd-codes.com/trouble_codes/gm/obd_codes.htm

How to check for codes Caddyinfo How To Technical Archive >> http://www.caddyinfo.com/wordpress/cadillac-how-to-faq/

Cadillac History & Specifications Year by Year  http://www.motorera.com/cadillac/index.htm

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Ok my timesert kit is # J-42385-500 (M11 x 1.5 kit)

Did you determine if Denlors is an official distributor?

Pre-1995 - DTC codes OBD1  >>

1996 and newer - DTC codes OBD2 >> https://www.obd-codes.com/trouble_codes/gm/obd_codes.htm

How to check for codes Caddyinfo How To Technical Archive >> http://www.caddyinfo.com/wordpress/cadillac-how-to-faq/

Cadillac History & Specifications Year by Year  http://www.motorera.com/cadillac/index.htm

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well its not on timserts distributor list,but there are real close places to pa that i can order from that are on there list!,like u said,i have to make sure we get real timesert,i do whana repair it again due to aftermarket ones

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You don't need to have any work done to the heads like valve grinding, stem seal replacement, etc. The valve stem seals are viton and will last virtually forever.

Concentrate on Timeserting the block and re-sealing the lower end. You'll be good for 300,000 more miles.

Kevin
'93 Fleetwood Brougham
'05 Deville
'04 Deville
2013 Silverado Z71

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watch the chips when you drill the block. do not let them fall into the waterjacket or oil return holes. most folks clean the headgasket surface and lay down a bunch of strips of tape to seal off the area. just poke some holes thru the tape for the headbolts holes for the drill fixture.

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And DO NOT use Scotchbrite to clean anything.

Ahh, the guru lives on....

Pre-1995 - DTC codes OBD1  >>

1996 and newer - DTC codes OBD2 >> https://www.obd-codes.com/trouble_codes/gm/obd_codes.htm

How to check for codes Caddyinfo How To Technical Archive >> http://www.caddyinfo.com/wordpress/cadillac-how-to-faq/

Cadillac History & Specifications Year by Year  http://www.motorera.com/cadillac/index.htm

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good luck to you, I am having my 97 done at the local dealer because Idont want to have any issues.

Just because the work is done at a dealer doesn't mean you won't have issues... My '97 STS was "repaired" by a dealer before I bought it. The dealer was too lazy to use the drill fixture and drilled the holes too deep in the block. Due to the loss of thread engagement, the repair did not hold and the dealer would not stand behind their work. The previous owner of the car sold it to me to cut his losses.

Make sure the dealer uses the drill fixture and puts the warranty in writing. Repairing the Northstar can be done properely by a DIY. It is not difficult, it just takes time.

Kevin
'93 Fleetwood Brougham
'05 Deville
'04 Deville
2013 Silverado Z71

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