foxtrapper PowerDork
4/3/13 12:38 p.m.

I'm 99% certain the truck has a blown head gasket on the #6 cylinder. It blows steam out the tailpipe constantly, sucks the coolant down steadily, radiator is getting gunky, and I've a chronic misfire on the #6 cylinder.

With all the time I don't have, and various other pieces of equipment failing and demanding my time, I find myself actually considering some the magical cures in a can.

Any of you have anything good to say about any of them? Barsleak is the only one I'eve ever used that didn't scare me to death, but that's not going to work well if at all on a cylinder head gasket leak. Otherwise, seems to me that I'm just going to glue up my radiator and probably heater core, which wouldn't improve things.

But, if there is something out there that really can work and won't ruin my cooling system, I'd be pretty game at this point to try it.

Bobzilla UltraDork
4/3/13 1:02 p.m.

I've never seen one actually work like they were supposed to. I have seen them clog intakes, heater cores and radiators along with block passages and make one hell of a mess when you finally quit trying to cheat and tear it down to fix it correctly.

Tom Suddard
Tom Suddard GRM+ Memberand Intern
4/3/13 1:04 p.m.

We've had good luck with CRC fiber lock. Not cheap, but it works.

m4ff3w GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
4/3/13 1:13 p.m.

The last time this was brought up here, I think "Blue Devil" was the only one with more than 1 or 2 recommendations.

SlickDizzy UberDork
4/3/13 1:30 p.m.

I've had really good luck with K&W Nanotechnology (neon green bottle) as long as the directions are followed EXACTLY, including blocking off the heater core before using. Fixed my old turbo Saab HG and was still going when the guy I sold it to sold it himself 40k later.

06HHR GRM+ Memberand Reader
4/3/13 1:37 p.m.
m4ff3w wrote: The last time this was brought up here, I think "Blue Devil" was the only one with more than 1 or 2 recommendations.

+1, the stuff works. If you're worried about gunking up the rest of your cooling system you should probably just bite the bullet and have the HG replaced and head serviced anyway.

slefain UltraDork
4/3/13 1:45 p.m.

I years past I would have said that the best fix for a blown head gastet is an uninformed buyer, but I have since changed my evil ways.

The Blue Devil stuff works but you have to follow the directlons to the letter. Bypass the heater core and save yourself a little trouble, but know well that this stuff is a last last last ditch effort.

jere Reader
4/3/13 1:46 p.m.

I wouldn't risk it, I have heard too many sob stories about that stuff causing more harm than good.

What does the company that makes that stuff even have to loose the ~$10 or so refund, you have the motor and your cooling system.

porschenut Reader
4/3/13 2:00 p.m.

Use one, all I remember is copper color and about 20 bucks, on a 4 cylinder S10. Pretty much eliminated the consumption and the heating system. It was using a gallon of antifreeze every 200 miles, has been working for a few months. Should be OK until the timing chain breaks and kills the motor.

Dr. Hess
Dr. Hess UltimaDork
4/3/13 2:07 p.m.

My friend just blew a HG on his 1 ton dually turbo diesel, on the road, towing. I suggested it and he tried it. It got him home, 600 miles. He used the kind that you don't have to drain the coolant to use. He other choice at the time was to rent a truck to haul his stuff home, come back for the dually, etc., or stay stuck in the Florida panhandle and have the thing fixed there.

914Driver GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
4/3/13 2:12 p.m.

A bottle of Save-the-Baby is a goodt if your diagnosis is correct. Will it fix a cracked head, cracked block?

How did you determine it was a head gasket?

I'm not trying to rain on your parade, just trying to save you from possible disappointment.

foxtrapper PowerDork
4/3/13 2:19 p.m.

Well, like I said, it's steaming out the exhaust, loosing coolant, and the #6 cylinder is giving a misfire code almost constantly. Haven't pulled the plugs to admire, or done a compression check, but I think it's pretty durn likely.

Didn't think there was anything new or wonderful in the world of magic cans, just kinda wondering. They've always spooked me and I don't like them. Haven't seen anything that really causes me to change my mind.

This, and a few other reasons, was why I was nosing around about a replacement truck over in the 2013 classifieds a month ago.

If I were stuck way out on a road trip, that would be a different kettle of fish. But the truck is at home, and generally doesn't get driven all that much. It's the farm 4x4 and backup vehicle. It runs along now, I just carry a gallon or water wherever I go, and top it off every morning.

JeffHarbert GRM+ Memberand Reader
4/3/13 2:30 p.m.

If it's blowing coolant out through the #6 cylinder, that could in turn mean the cylinder is getting washed clean of oil, drastically accelerating wear in that cylinder. You could be looking at more than a new head gasket soon. Something to keep in mind.

RealMiniDriver SuperDork
4/3/13 4:24 p.m.
foxtrapper wrote: Otherwise, seems to me that I'm just going to glue up my radiator and probably heater core, which wouldn't improve things.


My daughter got a Forester from friends of my parents about two years ago. Just a few weeks ago, she had problems with it losing coolant. Took it to a shop (I'm swamped with work, otherwise I'd take care of it) that specialized in Subarus and had the intake manifold gaskets replaced. A week later, it was overheating. She also had no heat. Took it back to the shop (I'm still swamped) to get it fixed. Mech flushed cooling system and drove it around for a while, eventually losing heat again. Flushed system again, this time finding "goo" from the heater core. In the end, after flushing several times and still getting "goo", he replaced heater core and radiator.

Mom went through all the notes she took, when talking to her friends about the acquisition of the Fozzy. Sure as e36m3, about 20,000 miles ago, they put a can of "sealer" in the radiator.

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