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Intake manifold gasket or head gasket


dfor's Avatar
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11-20-03, 01:16 PM   #1  
dfor
Intake manifold gasket or head gasket

I have a 98 GMC K-2500, 5.7, 350 with 104,000 miles. It is losing radiator fluid. White smoke comes out the tailpipe along with drips of water at an idle. I just changed the oil this morning and no water in the oil pan. Is there any easy way to tell if it is the intake manifold gasket or head gasket? Thanks for the help.

 
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11-20-03, 02:02 PM   #2  
My guess would be the head gasket or a cracked head.....but i havent seen any of the newer style heads come through cracked. Intake gasket leaks usually go external or into the oil


Im not sure if a compression check would tell you either way in this case.

anyone wanna double check my answer?

 
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11-20-03, 02:02 PM   #3  
You can have the cooling system checked for exhaust gases but I can't see how the intake would cause the white smoke unless I'm forgetting something about the design of it.I think you will find bad headgaskets or a cracked head.If you tear it down make sure you get the heads checked at a machine shop.

 
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11-20-03, 04:38 PM   #4  
By the sounds of it you should be able to remove all the plugs and pressure test the radiator. Then just wait for it to run out of one of the cylinders. It sounds like it may be bad enough to show up that way.

 
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11-21-03, 12:53 AM   #5  
mike from nj
steam out the tailpipe is normal on cold days on a cold engine, dripping water is almost always normal.

can you stick your pinky inside the oil fill cap and scrape anything off the top of the valve cover from in there, this is where the coolant ends up first, as sort of a milky foam, and not soon after it's right in the bearings.

 
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11-21-03, 06:14 AM   #6  
change the oil.....remove the thermostat....and sell it.


just kidding is it running rough? are the plugs normal color? is the engine light on?

 
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11-21-03, 06:23 PM   #7  
Originally posted by mike from nj
steam out the tailpipe is normal on cold days on a cold engine, dripping water is almost always normal.

can you stick your pinky inside the oil fill cap and scrape anything off the top of the valve cover from in there, this is where the coolant ends up first, as sort of a milky foam, and not soon after it's right in the bearings.
Right on! I call it butterscotch pudding! Look at the bottom of the pcv valve also for the stuff.
A cracked head or headgasket would be extremely rare for this engine. They almost always come in needing an intake or a water pump. The intake might not show up readily, unless you know exactly where to look.

 
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11-21-03, 06:43 PM   #8  
doclove
Hi.You say it is steaming but no coolant in oil.You did not say if you were losing coolant.If you are loosing coolant it could be a intake.I have replace many for that problem.You should look at plugs to see what cylinder it is.It seems most of the time it is 6-8 cylinders but I have found others also.Rick

 
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11-21-03, 06:47 PM   #9  
Originally posted by bigguy05641

Right on! I call it butterscotch pudding! Look at the bottom of the pcv valve also for the stuff.
A cracked head or headgasket would be extremely rare for this engine. They almost always come in needing an intake or a water pump. The intake might not show up readily, unless you know exactly where to look.
I agree with you, you should then tell the original poster where to look.The site is about helping people.


Last edited by davo; 11-21-03 at 06:57 PM.
 
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11-21-03, 07:07 PM   #10  
? and give away all my secrets?
just kidding. Okay. Where the intake meets the heads, at all four corners, look for that reddish stain of dried dexcool antifreeze, it might also have a whitish appearance. You might need a mirror to see the rear corners, and I like to use a flashlight, you know the kind that has the light on the end of a flexible wire about six inches long? That way, you can get the light right in where you need to, there's no shadows. I use these lights alot to look at brake pads with the wheels still on.....they work well. You'll need a good light to look at the corners in the front, to get behind the drive belt accessory brackets......

 
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