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Old 12-16-2008, 10:12 PM   #1
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Head Gasket failure, advice?

Hi all,
Bad day. I have an 05' 4.0 with 71,000 miles.
I pulled the dip stick and noticed the dreaded milky substance that is supposed to be just oil. Then I saw that I was missing some coolant too
Sure enough I drained her out and the oil looked like a thick coffee with cream and sugar.

It was interesting, as it was draining there was a consistant white line in the mixture.

Also the jeep has been running great.

This is my first jeep but I have done head gaskets in the past. Is there anything I should look out for, or mistakes others have made that I might avoid this Sunday?

Is there anything else that would commonly cause this on a TJ that is not the head gasket?

I have the factory service manual and a father who is a pretty good tech, what should I be looking out for?

Thanks in advance.

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Old 12-17-2008, 01:30 AM   #2
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For as much as I know it is just like any ole head gasket. I mean if you wanted to wait like 2 days i would get the heads cleaned up for 200 bucks at a machine shop. Give ya a little more power. At the end of your post you asked if anything else could cause this honestly IF you saw the milk shake then the head gasket is gone.

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Old 12-17-2008, 02:25 AM   #3
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It's and 05 with only 71k on it? That is almost unheard of... is there any kind of warranty on it?

If not, the head gasket is a pretty straight forward job. I'd highly recommend using an engine hoist to hold the head up though. It's fawking heavy.
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Old 12-17-2008, 07:04 AM   #4
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that is almost unheard of. they will leak small amounts of oil on the outside after a ton of miles but i've never seen one let coolant in the oil. is it possible it overheated? i'd have the head checked for cracks at the machine shop, and definately have it resurfaced.
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Old 12-17-2008, 09:33 AM   #5
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that is almost unheard of. they will leak small amounts of oil on the outside after a ton of miles but i've never seen one let coolant in the oil. is it possible it overheated? i'd have the head checked for cracks at the machine shop, and definately have it resurfaced.
It hasn't ever overheated. I figure if I pull the head off and can't find a visible spot on the gasket where it is leaking then I will have to send out the head.

If I do see the spot I will just do the gasket and keep my fingers crossed.

Does this sound rational?

I have heard that this head is prone to cracking, is this true?


Thanks for the help guys.
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Old 12-17-2008, 09:53 AM   #6
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Actually if it is the 0331 casting it is not un heard of and I would say with the research I have done on heads and head gaskets you will find that your head is going to be cracked.Now here is the thing.You say it is running fine right! Now make sure she is good and full of coolant/water and take it for a drive if you have any long inclines of interstate roads near you go there and hold a steady 60-70 MPH up that incline and watch you temp guage go way pass the normal 210 mark.
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Old 12-17-2008, 10:02 AM   #7
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Here is a link to back up may last post.Cracked 0331 cylinder head castings - JeepsUnlimited.com Forums
I have a few more on head gasket issues if you need them. http://www.arrowheadradiator.com/pre...m_failures.htm I also have a few for replacing the head with a 7120 or 0630 casting instead of the 0331.The only thing you have to deal with there is the older heads did not have the coil rail so you have to make a bracket to bolt the coil rail down.
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Old 12-17-2008, 10:53 AM   #8
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Am I reading this right that they fixed the head cracking problem by 02?

I sure hope it's not cracked. It sounds like it is though... damn.


Thanks a lot for those links.
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Old 12-17-2008, 11:13 AM   #9
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How about a block sealer?
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Old 12-17-2008, 04:56 PM   #10
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Old 12-17-2008, 05:09 PM   #11
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Yeah it has been a while since I have read all the way through the posts but I think it did mention in 02 or 03 the head was reworked in an attempt to stop the cracking even then a non updated 0331 head could have been used.I simply would not trust any of that casting and if the head has to be replaced I would go back with the 7120 or 6130 casting.I hope I am wrong but with that much coolant in oil and the other way around if it is just the gasket it has to have a chunck missing out of it.
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Old 12-17-2008, 05:10 PM   #12
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thats why i said have it checked for cracks, that head being cracked is way more likely than the gasket failig and letting coolant in the oil (that is what is almost unheard of)

i don't think it is rational to pull the head and not have it checked.
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Old 12-17-2008, 05:12 PM   #13
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I have the feeling you must have had an air bubble somewhere in the coolant jackets if you never saw it over heat. Rip it open and see whats up. Dont forget pics Good luck.
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Old 12-17-2008, 05:32 PM   #14
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That head I posted a link to, would that have a place for the coil rail?

Here is what I am thinking I am going to do thanks to all of the great input.
I think I am going to replace the head with a reman 7120 head that I will buy on ebay.

I read in that one thread that often times the shops, even with magnaflux testing, can't detect these cracks. This causes me to think the hastle and cost of having it checked, along with the risk of a misdiagnosis, outweighs the greater cost of a reman head.

At leat that way I iwll know it is fixed and not have to worry about it which is worth a lot. That head I posted, will it do the trick?

Thanks
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Old 12-17-2008, 05:37 PM   #15
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you're gonna have to explain what you're calling a coil rail. maybe i'll be kicking myself because i'm drawing a blank, but i've never heard of a coil rail. i've heard of a fuel rail, ignition coil, coil spring, but no coil rail.

someone smack me if i'm being stupid, and its obvious, at least i am willing to say i got no idea what that is.

edit: oooohh, i just figured it out, direct ignition. i was picturing every side of the head, and it hit me, spark plugs, then coil pack.

there is a casting for the bolts that hold that on, i would just call the guy.
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Old 12-17-2008, 05:47 PM   #16
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I will call him tommorow, that seems like a pretty good price doesn't it?
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Old 12-17-2008, 05:56 PM   #17
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almost too cheap, how do you make money checking the head, doing a valve job, cleaning and resurfacing the head at that cost.

and think about this, that head you're buying could be exactly like the one you have. all he's gonna do with your head you have to send him is test it, and rebuild it. he probably isn't doing a valve job, probably just seeing if they hold water and if it doesn't leak much, he cleans it and resurfaces it and thats it.

so if you're worried about not catching a crack with magna flux, the head you'd buy from him is in the same boat. if he even takes the time to do that.
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Old 12-17-2008, 06:03 PM   #18
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So where should I buy one?
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Old 12-17-2008, 06:12 PM   #19
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Old 12-17-2008, 06:32 PM   #20
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the least u should do is open it up to see whats up.
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Old 12-17-2008, 10:43 PM   #21
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So where should I buy one?
i'm not really saying don't buy one because it was cheap, but keep in mind you aren't buying a virgin head. it could have come off a jeep with 250k, and its only as good as the guy inspecting it, and doing the work on it. thats all i'm saying. and if you don't see the casting numbers just ask the seller. i'd say you're best bet would be find a used head with the good casting number, that was known to be working fine, not necesarily rebuilt. have it checked and you're on your way. then you aren't depending on someone elses work, or potential cover up.

i bought a block and a head, uninstalled off some hillbillies, the head was "rebuilt" and the block was machined. long story short, the head had a hillbilly repair done to a crack, and it didn't pass a pressure test. they know they rigged that head, and passed it along. i almost built the engine with that head without testing it cuz it was "rebuilt" glad i paid for the testing, because i really wasn't going to. i did spend about 20 hrs porting and polishing it though. good practice
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Old 12-18-2008, 09:32 AM   #22
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I am interested in using an older 7120 head without the mounting location for the coil rail.

Any advice on making a mounting bracket?

Is this the only difference between these heads?

Would this work for sure?
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Old 12-18-2008, 09:53 AM   #23
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No the 7120 casting was used on I think 97-99 and do not have the threaded holes in the head for the coil rail mounting bolts.I have a page somewere to show how to do this.Really all you will need is something to hold down pressure on the rail because it is already firmly push onto all 6 plugs.If I can find the site I will post it.

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