Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Possible blown head gasket?

asked by on

I recently just bought this car as a project car. The car was being driven without an air intake and aftermarket headers on. Possible transmission leak and definite coolant leak. I replaced the overflow tank but I could still smell the sweetness that accompanies burning coolant. I was continually putting more coolant in to keep the engine from overheating before I replace the engine. I need the car to work for a while yet so I can keep driving it while saving for the new engine. Anyways, I checked my car yesterday as it was seemingly starting to overheat and it was out of coolant. I got a friend to deliver coolant to me and parked, but I was watching and checking the engine and as I pulled off the radiator valve it smelled like fuel was in where my coolant was. Now, I'm assuming this is a blown headgasket and nothing much more than that. If not could you tell me what it would be and the steps I could go about to start repairing the engine.

My car has 200000 miles.
My car has a manual transmission.

I believe you are on the right track. Anything mixing with coolant or oil is a definite blown head gasket. However, you may even have a cracked head due to the fact that you are running out of coolant. Check the oil and see if the oil is a milky color. This is a definite sign too (however these aren’t the only signs). You will need to take your car to a local shop and have them see if they can repair your car. Good luck and I hope you can get your car running properly again.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. Possible blown head gasket?

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: My car starts but only runs for 3 seconds before it shuts down

Hello - Is your Check Engine Light on? If so, you can check the trouble codes yourself to diagnose the problem, or you can have a mobile technician, such as one from YourMechanic, come by at your convenience and diagnose...

Q: cranks but wont start - 2010 Hyundai Accent

Hello. If the code remained on after the sensor was replaced, then it may be possible that the fault is with the wiring or the ECM. I would verify that the wiring and connector to the sensor are in good...

Q: After replacing radiator started fine twice then third time wouldn't start

If the engine cranks at adequate RPM, be sure there is adequate fuel in the fuel tank and that the fuel is not old. Download any OBD-I trouble codes that have been stored and examine those codes for diagnostic clues....

Related articles

P0240 OBD-II Trouble Code: Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance
P0240 code definition Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance What the P0240 code means P0240 is an OBD-II generic code triggered when the Engine Control Module (ECM) detects the intake boost...
P2428 OBD-II Trouble Code: Exhaust Gas Temperature Too High Bank 1
P2428 code definition A P2428 trouble code signifies that the PCM has detected a problem in the exhaust gas temperature sensor circuit in bank 1, which subsequently contains the number one...
How Much Does a Mechanic Make in Vermont?
Automotive technician jobs in Vermont have an average mechanic salary of $37k, with some mechanics earning a salary of $53k.