How to Start A Car With A Blown Head Gasket – A blown head gasket is one of the most common problems that car owners face. It can cause a lot of damage to your engine and result in expensive repairs. One of the most frustrating things about a blown head gasket is that it can prevent your car from starting.
In this article, we will discuss how to start a car with a blown head gasket.
We will also cover the symptoms of a blown head gasket, whether you should drive with one, how long you can drive with one, and how to avoid blowing a head gasket.
Symptoms Of A Blown Head Gasket
The head gasket is a vital component that sits between the engine block and the cylinder head.
Its primary function is to seal the combustion chamber and prevent oil, coolant, and combustion gases from mixing.
When a head gasket fails, it can cause the following symptoms:
- Mixed Oil and Coolant: One of the most common signs of a blown head gasket is that the oil and coolant mix together. You may notice a milky, white substance on the underside of the oil cap or on the dipstick.
- Overheating: The head gasket also helps regulate engine temperature. If the gasket fails, it can allow coolant to leak into the combustion chamber, causing the engine to overheat.
- Car Isn’t Starting: Finally, a blown head gasket can prevent the car from starting. If there is a coolant leak, it can cause the spark plugs to get wet, making it difficult to start the engine. Similarly, if the oil mixes with the coolant, it can prevent the engine from starting.
Should I Drive With A Blown Head Gasket? 5 Steps
Driving with a blown head gasket is not recommended, as it can cause further damage to your engine.
However, there may be situations where you need to drive your car temporarily. Here are five steps to follow if you need to drive your car with a blown head gasket:
Step 1: Check Your Oil and Coolant Levels: Before driving your car, make sure that you have enough oil and coolant.
If you have a blown head gasket, there is a good chance that you are losing one or both of these fluids.
Check the levels and top them up as necessary.
Step 2: Use a Head Gasket Sealer: A head gasket sealer can temporarily fix a blown head gasket by sealing the leak. However, this is not a permanent fix, and you will still need to get the head gasket replaced.
Make sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions when using a head gasket sealer.
Step 3: Change Your Transmission Fluid: If your car has an automatic transmission, the fluid may be contaminated with coolant.
This can cause further damage to your transmission. Change the fluid before driving your car.
Step 4: Jump-Start Your Car: If your car has been sitting for a while, the battery may be dead. Jump-start your car before attempting to start the engine.
Step 5: Avoid Heavy Acceleration: Finally, avoid heavy acceleration when driving with a blown head gasket.
This will put additional stress on your engine and can cause further damage.
Tips for Starting a Car With a Blown Head Gasket
If your car isn’t starting because of a blown head gasket, there are a few things you can do to try to get it going:
Step 1: Check the Battery: Make sure the battery is charged and in good condition. A dead battery can prevent the car from starting.
Step 2: Turn the Ignition Switch On and Off Try turning the ignition switch on and off a few times.
Step 3: Check the Fuel Pump: The fuel pump may be damaged or not working correctly. Check the fuel pump to see if it is pumping fuel to the engine. If not, you may need to replace it.
Step 4: Check the Fuel Injectors: The fuel injectors may be clogged or not working correctly. Check the fuel injectors to make sure they are delivering fuel to the engine. If not, you may need to clean or replace them.
Step 5: Check the Engine Power: If the engine is not turning over, it may not have enough power to start. Check the engine power to make sure it is strong enough to turn the engine over. If not, you may need to replace the starter or alternator.
How Long Can You Drive A Car With Blown Head Gasket?
Driving a car with a blown head gasket is not recommended, as it can cause further damage to your engine.
However, you may be able to drive your car for a short distance if you follow the five steps outlined above. It is best to get your car to a mechanic as soon as possible to get the head gasket replaced.
How To Avoid Blowing A Head Gasket
The best way to avoid blowing a head gasket is to maintain your car properly. Here are a few things you can do to prevent a blown head gasket:
- Regularly check your oil and coolant levels
- Change your oil and oil filter according to the manufacturer’s recommended schedule
- Replace the timing belt according to the manufacturer’s recommended schedule
- Keep your engine clean and free of debris
- Replace the radiator cap if it is damaged or worn
- Avoid overloading your car or towing heavy loads
How Much Does It Cost to Have a Blown Head Gasket Replaced?
The cost of replacing a blown head gasket varies depending on the make and model of your car. On average, you can expect to pay between $1,000 and $2,000 for the repair.
Does a Blown Head Gasket Ruin the Engine?
A blown head gasket can cause significant damage to your engine if it is not addressed promptly. It can cause the engine to overheat, which can lead to warping or cracking of the cylinder head or engine block.
What Causes a Head Gasket to Fail?
There are several reasons why a head gasket may fail, including:
- Overheating: High engine temperatures can cause the head gasket to fail.
- Poor Maintenance: Neglecting your car’s maintenance can cause the head gasket to fail.
- Engine Misfires: If your engine is misfiring, it can put additional stress on the head gasket.
- Using the Wrong Coolant: Using the wrong coolant can cause the head gasket to fail.
- Improper Installation: If the head gasket is not installed correctly, it can fail.
How Common Is A Blown Head Gasket?
Blown head gaskets are relatively common, especially in older cars. They can occur in any make or model of car and are typically caused by high engine temperatures or poor maintenance.
Summary: How to Start a Car with a Blown Head Gasket
A blown head gasket can cause a lot of damage to your engine and result in expensive repairs. If your car isn’t starting because of a blown head gasket, follow the tips outlined in this article to get it going temporarily.
Remember, driving with a blown head gasket is not recommended, and you should get it fixed as soon as possible. Maintaining your car properly is the best way to avoid blowing a head gasket in the first place.
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