Head gaskets leaking - leave the "bottom end" alone?

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Head gaskets leaking - leave the "bottom end" alone?

Postby phatmonk » Thu Jul 05, 2018 12:24 pm

Hi All,

Just like my posts a few years back, long time searcher/lurker but infrequent poster. Thanks for all the good info.

Recently the head gaskets have gone on my MY07 GTB. The car will only be driven 500 - 1000KMs per year now, down from 500+ per week. Along with belts, oil/water pumps, gaskets, head bolts and the likes I'm considering only doing the heads.

My mechanic basically said for the KMs per year it'll be driven, re-conditioning the engine or a reco engine swap is a waste of money. For good measure it has been suggested (and accepted) to change radiator hoses, thermostats and some other parts - the cost of these items is minor along with the labor that is about to happen.

Just after some thoughts, opinions and community knowledge that I don't get from the search box?

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Re: Head gaskets leaking - leave the "bottom end" alone?

Postby bigBADbenny » Wed Jul 11, 2018 8:56 am

If its not using oil, you could skip the bottom end and just go reco heads and the ancillaries mentioned, plus upgrade to the cast impeller water pump.

On my rebuilt my08 spare, pulling apart the bottom end revealed a starting to spin, lightly scored main bearing.
The oil control rings were well stuck with varnish too. Some of the valves were tight as well.
So that engine, which had hg issues too, had probably been service abused and was definitely cooked.

My current engine, an early my07, uses oil excessively around a cup per tank (previous owner service abuse, std oil etc).
It’s boost related, so probably rings, not heads... and it’s been soldiering on like that since I bought it at 150k, now 265k...!
Of course it’s properly supported with appropriate mods/upgrades and a great tune by Matt/ThrottleHappy/kido.

I’d say the later your build the more you’d want to rebuild as my08’s were far more compromised as regards build quality.
With that consideration, plus the known head gasket issue, it was common sense to do the bottom end and indeed suspicions were confirmed.

Since you know your engines history, you’re in a much better position to make the call regarding the need for a bottom end rebuild.

I used my local, very old school rebuild/reco shop: Neilzeds in Collingwood.
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