Still white steam after head gasket replaced?

Discussion in 'General Motoring' started by Rocky, Jul 6, 2005.

  1. Rocky

    Rocky Guest

    94 civix lx 176k miles on block, 80k miles on head that was planed and
    checked out at the local parts store. I noticed the exhaust has white steam
    coming out the tailpipe, looking like when the head gasket went. The head
    is torqued properly.

    Sounds like possibly a defective head? Shouldn't the shop have caught this
    when they tanked the head and pressure tested it?
    Rocky, Jul 6, 2005
  2. Rocky

    Rocky Guest

    I forgot to mention, this is not the original head, but one I bought used,
    reasoning it had 1/2 the miles and would be shop tested. The car it came
    off of was a 95 that needed a head gasket, was fixed, then the owner decided
    to part the car out after a year or so.
    Rocky, Jul 6, 2005
  3. Rocky

    motsco_ _ Guest


    All cars emit steam, especially until they warm up . . . are you sure
    it's not just normal 'steam' ?

    motsco_ _, Jul 6, 2005
  4. Rocky

    butch burton Guest

    WHen the engine is cold - take off the radiator cap and hopefully the
    radiator is full up to the top - start the engine - if there is a
    compression leak to the coolant - the coolant will really jump outof
    the neck of the radiator. Your oil will also be congealed if any
    coolant gets into it. You probably have normal water vapor - cats
    cause a lot of it.

    Generally people who have warped a head on a honda i4 (overheating does
    this very handily) don't have a lot of luck when milling or replacing
    the head at keeping head gaskets in place..
    butch burton, Jul 7, 2005
  5. Rocky

    SoCalMike Guest

    its been 80k since the planing, etc was done?
    not if it was 80k miles ago :)

    does it constantly smoke like that? are you loosing coolant? are the
    hoses bulging?

    sometimes steam just happens from miosture trapped in the exhaust.
    SoCalMike, Jul 7, 2005
  6. Rocky

    Rocky Guest

    sorry, I should have been clearer - I just had the head planned a couple
    weeks ago, and finally had time today to wrap up the install of the head.
    It ran for about 3 minutes and I started to see the white steam - it was not
    as white and thick as when the gasket blew out. The car has been sitting
    for 2 months before I bought it and at least a month after I bought it and
    did the head gasket. I suppose there could be excess moisture in the
    exhaust system.

    I still need to replace the siezed alternator, and I will have a compresion
    test done by a professional. I think I need to replace the alternator from
    underneath...I could not get the bolts loose today, so I sprayed them with
    pb blaster. I noticed I also have to remove the a/c belt to install the
    alt. belt.

    I noticed the abs light came on today while the car was warming up.
    Rocky, Jul 7, 2005
  7. Rocky

    chris Guest

    I would see about getting a compression test and a possible leak down test
    if a cylinder is found out of spec with the compression test.

    chris, Jul 7, 2005

  8. Different car, many years ago...

    Dealer talked me into replacing leaking head gasket. What happened next
    was new compression broke piston ring. (Everything was sort of fine
    before (except the oil that leaked onto the engine block; after the head
    gasket, thick white smoke from the tailpipe -- I think it went away
    after the car was running a while, but not sure.) They ended up fixing
    it for free, though it took a while.
    Frank Malczewski, Jul 9, 2005
  9. Rocky

    Rocky Guest

    My gas station did the compression test and cooling system pressure test for
    1/2 hr and they said all is well. They said the white steam is gone - it
    was most lukely accumulated antifreeze in the cat when the head gasket went.
    Rocky, Jul 17, 2005
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