Did I blow a gasket?? - Pontiac Solstice Forum
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post #1 of 76 (permalink) Old 05-12-2019, 12:25 PM Thread Starter
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Did I blow a gasket??

Yesterday I was driving down the highway around 65-70mph to meet the car club for breakfast and a trip into the mountains to visit a castle. I was 28 miles into the drive and only saw boost twice in that time. I barely depressed the accelerator pedal to switch lanes when I was met with a large cloud of smoke and an immediate check engine light. I pulled to the side of the highway and cut the engine off. Got out of the car and checked the oil dipstick - it was definitely low but was above the add oil mark and was normal oil color (no milky white). Opened the oil fill cap and smoke came out. There were no leaks of anything, anywhere. Started the car and it ran rough with no smoking while at an idle, any amount of gas given and white smoke was coming out the rear end, I cut it off. I assumed I had a blown head gasket got a tow back to my house.

The car:
07 GXP with 37k miles, Trifecta tune, DDM charge tubes and CAI, Solo high flow cat, PAW intake and TB spacer.


Bought a compression checker from Harbor Freight and found:
Cylinder 1 - 85 psi
Cylinder 2 - 0 psi
Cylinder 3 - 85 psi
Cylinder 4 - 100 psi

I'm going to go rent a different compression gauge from AutoZone in about 45 min to see if mines faulty.

1 engine code - P0302 - Bad number 2 cylinder

Question - could a blown head gasket really affect all 4 cylinders?

The cars not been driven hard in it's life - does this even make sense?

Could I of overheated the block due to low oil (are there low oil CEL lights, bc I never had one; also the cars never leaked oil in it's life) and therefore warped the head (water level is still perfect)?
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post #2 of 76 (permalink) Old 05-12-2019, 03:01 PM Thread Starter
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Update - O'Reillys compression gauge shows the same values as the Harbor Freight.

Could a simple Trifecta tune really blow the head gasket? It's been driven less than 1500 miles since the tune was performed.

I just don't get it - and all 4 cylinders to boot!?!
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post #3 of 76 (permalink) Old 05-12-2019, 06:24 PM
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Here's my take on tunes. How many miles do you have on your car? I had mine dyno tuned when I had 35k on it...so it was fairly "new". Honestly, the cars are all getting to an age now where if you didn't have a tune before, putting one in now is going to almost certainly create issues, up to and including a head gasket. Had my car had 60+k on it, I would have NEVER had it tuned. Bad things happen to weak/worn parts when you introduce new stress levels.

How many pounds of boost was your tune set for? Anything over 20psi is a bit much for these engines if all stock. I would say if there was no white smoke out the back you might have a fuel issue, but with white smoke, it sound terminal....

If it's any consulation, you did the right thing by immediately shutting it off. Hopefully you can put a new head gasket on it and your good. If you are going that route, the sooner you the coolant out of the turbo, the less damage there will be to the bearings and you might just get away without having to put a turbo on it too....

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ZZPerformance dyno tuned - 286HP, 317ft/lbs of torque at 23psi of boost.

Last edited by The_Ghost; 05-12-2019 at 06:28 PM.
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post #4 of 76 (permalink) Old 05-12-2019, 09:02 PM
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It's probably a head gasket. Hope for the best.

The tune likely had no impact. It also could be a valve. You just had the intake off.

I would pull the head and have a look.

At least you did not puke out three quarts of oil...again like I did lol

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post #5 of 76 (permalink) Old 05-12-2019, 10:47 PM
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I'd blame bad luck but not the Trifecta tune. I'm at 198K miles and have had my tune for quite a while. There is a warning light if you overheat. If you didn't see it (I have) there's a good chance its "just" your head gasket.
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post #6 of 76 (permalink) Old 05-13-2019, 01:07 AM
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Some LNF engine block were porous
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post #7 of 76 (permalink) Old 05-13-2019, 07:58 AM
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Originally Posted by SSolstice View Post
Some LNF engine block were porous
That is true but small in number and I thought they failed catastrophically and the issue was pretty obviously a hole in the block?

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post #8 of 76 (permalink) Old 05-13-2019, 12:56 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you everyone for your time and responses!

A question - could the head gasket issue truly be the cause of ALL 4 cylinders to be low in compression?

Good question Rob - I'm curious of that too?
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post #9 of 76 (permalink) Old 05-13-2019, 02:02 PM
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Typically when the head gasket fails it is localized to the adjacent cylinder(s) but you won't know till you pull the head and take a look

Good news is cleaning the intake is a lot easier. :-)
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post #10 of 76 (permalink) Old 05-13-2019, 05:53 PM
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I don't see it being a head gasket issue. It would take multiple failures to effect all cylinders. I'm thinking something caused the cam timing chain to jump a couple of teeth on one of the cams and slightly bend some valves. I don't know what else would cause low compression on all cylinders. Let us know.

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post #11 of 76 (permalink) Old 05-13-2019, 06:21 PM
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I meant to post this yesterday....a bit of humor.

You're title reminds me of the Walrus and penguin joke....If you don't know it, post here and I'll PM it too you.
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____________________________________________

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Fujita CAI
ASAP T2 stripes and badging
Windrestrictor V2 lighted in white
Windrestrictor lighted door sills lighted in white
DDM Works IC Piping
Undercar LEDs in white to match Windrestrictor

ZZPerformance dyno tuned - 286HP, 317ft/lbs of torque at 23psi of boost.
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post #12 of 76 (permalink) Old 05-13-2019, 07:34 PM
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Okay, I'll bite. What's the walrus and penguin joke?
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post #13 of 76 (permalink) Old 05-13-2019, 09:21 PM
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If its the one I am thinking about its not about a walrus and a penguin. Depending on the version its about a walrus or a penguin, and it is a bit crude.
You have been warned: https://www.google.com/search?q=walr...hrome&ie=UTF-8
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post #14 of 76 (permalink) Old 05-14-2019, 12:45 PM
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**Edit**
@Z06-GXP's suggestion about the timing chain makes a LOT of sense - much more so than a head gasket. You might start by pulling the timing chain cover and seeing how far off it is (assuming that's the issue). It's *possible* that the chain can jump without actually bringing the valves into contact with the pistons if it didn't skip too many teeth.

If your gasket goes and the engine overheats - which will happen very quickly - the resulting warpage in the head could very easily affect multiple cylinders. The pattern you mentioned indicates that there's a serious breach near cylinder #2. If it's bad enough to actually get ZERO compression, it would have to be a very large break.

Normally, for zero compression, I would suspect a valve (or even a loose spark plug). But, you'd have to have at least four bad valves on different cylinders in this case. And, a stuck valve wouldn't give you 85 or 100 psi. I'd bet a beer that it's the head gasket.

While you're in there, may as well do some ARP head studs.

Regarding tunes on a high mileage engine: I've been running RPM's stage 2 on my 105k mile LNF for awhile now with no issues. 165psi across the board.

Since it's easy, you may as well go ahead and do the oil test. Add a teaspoon or so of oil to each cylinder via the spark plug hole before running the compression test. Also, on the off chance this isn't obvious, compression numbers will be way off if the test is performed on a cold engine, and the gas pedal has to be on the floor when performing the test in order to keep the throttle open. Don't worry about fuel as the ECM recognizes this as a command to open the throttle while not injecting any fuel.

The oil in the cylinder will also give you more accurate numbers when testing a cold engine.

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'07 GXP, Werks Big Wheel K04 and tune, Solo catless downpipe, TCE Wilwood 6 piston front brakes, 4-piston rears , stainless brake lines, slotted/drilled rotors, BC Racing BR coilovers, Performance Autowerks intercooler, DDMWorks CAI, charge pipes and braces, RPM rollbar

Last edited by raygun; 05-14-2019 at 12:55 PM.
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post #15 of 76 (permalink) Old 05-14-2019, 07:01 PM
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Quote:
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Okay, I'll bite. What's the walrus and penguin joke?
See JohnWR's vid....

____________________________________________

Solo Street Race exhaust
Fujita CAI
ASAP T2 stripes and badging
Windrestrictor V2 lighted in white
Windrestrictor lighted door sills lighted in white
DDM Works IC Piping
Undercar LEDs in white to match Windrestrictor

ZZPerformance dyno tuned - 286HP, 317ft/lbs of torque at 23psi of boost.
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