MG-Rover.org Forums banner

1 - 14 of 14 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi guys,

A few months ago the coolant in my 111 was low, so I topped it up. I hadn't done this since I bought the car, so didn't know what kind of coolant was in it, so I used a generic halfords blue coolant 50/50 mix.

Noticed the other day that the coolant was low again so I had a look in the expansion tank and there was quite a lot of brown foam on the cap, and rusty looking bits in the coolant. When I filled it up a few months ago the coolant was a clean greeny blue colour with no foam.

I was concerned about a head gasket so checked the oil, but this is fine and there's no residue on the cap or anything. The engine hasn't been running particularly hot either and the exhaust fumes have been normal.

What do you guys reckon is wrong? Is it definately a head gasket, and how much would this cost to fix? Could it be anything else - I read somewhere that you can get this problem from mixing different coolant types but I don't think this would cause the level to be low.

What problems will I get if I continue to drive with a broken gasket, will it do permanent engine damage?

Thanks,

TC
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
35 Posts
I have read ( in the past in these forums I think) that you can get a leak from the oil to the coolant, but not coolant to the oil at the same time. It's not looking good. When my metro 100 went about a year ago I was quoted £450 to repair it. In the end I scrapped it instead. You MUST keep the water topped up on the metro. It probably will turn out to be the head gasket. I guess someone more knowledgeable than me will be along shortly to help out.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Just had another check, and ominously there is a bit of foam on the oil cap now.

How much are the parts required? I've heard this job is labour intensive, and I'm going up to Newcastle next week so I'll try and get it done there. Labour is much cheaper up there than in Cambridge (£75/hour is just ridiculous).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Actually, just thinking, is it safe to drive to Newcastle with this problem? I've got no engine symptoms, it doesn't overheat, and it'll probably save me money... as long as it doesn't cause further damage on the way.
 

·
Registered
rover_45
Joined
·
11,619 Posts
To be honest there is not enough info there to say it's a HG problem. It could be down to many things. The good news is if there is no problem with it then keep driving it. Even if the HG goes the 8V engines will keep running but just drink alot of fuel. Also they tend not to need the head skimming so it's just a gasket change unless the head has warped which would be rare. I myself would flush it and see. Also mixing coolant can cause some horrid colours in the expansion tank.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Just randomly read about k-seal. Worth a go before I take the car in, as I've heard mixed messages? How will I know if it's worked?

Thanks for all your help guys,

TC
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
107 Posts
Hg

/i had a head gasket go on my Polo 1.3i...in bloody birmingham...the clue was low/no water, creamy oil cap, temperature guage up to Max, then buzzers went off and the dash illmuniated with numerous red lights indicating iminant death of the head gasket....The B*****ds wanted 750.00 to fix it Back up North VW specialist did it for 165.00! Also that morning power dropped off aswell...in my other car a Nova there was steam coming out the exhaust!!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Just spoke to the garage in Newcastle. He said he wouldn't drive it up if I think the HG is going as it can go at any time.

He also said they always skim the head just in case, and that I'd be looking at around £350. He said he'd replace the gasket for around £230, but that he really wouldn't be comfortable just doing that. Said might not be worth it on a 10 y/o rover 100.

Bit depressing. Any thoughts?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,490 Posts
depending on your situation - time/money/skill etc why dont you give it ago yourself?

plenty of info around the net and in haynes manuals and if the car hasnt overheated the the head should not have warped, but you can always send it for a skim yourself.

but if you dont have much time then either find a new runaround or get it fixed.

if your r100 is a good one, condition and rust wise then it is probably worth saving. you wont get another car for less then £350, but you could probably find a place that will do it cheaper if you look around. just make sure they know what they are talking about and use the vac method of refilling coolant.
 

·
Registered
rover_45
Joined
·
11,619 Posts
Well on the 8V models you dont need to skim the head. I have done a fair few on the 8V engines and only skimmed it once due to it nearly melting. Aslong as it's not overheated you will be fine just changing the gasket, cambelt, water pump and thermostat.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Just been round to a local garage, really helpful mechanic spent 15mins looking it over. He said it looks like there's oil in the coolant, and most likely source is the head gasket.

However, as the coolants only going down over a matter of months, there isn't that much oil, there's no water in the oil, there's no exhaust fumes in the coolant (he tested it with some blue indicator solution), the car isn't overheating and the coolant is flowing and pressurising well he says it's probably only a tiny problem.

His advice: Keep some water/antifreeze in the car and keep running it while topping up occasionally. If coolant starts to go down quicker then I should get it seen to, but not to worry if it stays as it is. He said I should change the coolant too. He also said K-seal is bad news for Rover100s as the water pipes are narrow and easily clogged.

Also, he spotted that there was a big crack in the small plastic L-shaped thing that's apparrently an air connector. He replaced it with a bit of tubing, but says I should try and find a proper replacement. Any idea what it's called as I don't know where to start?

All this for free, that mechanic has made sure I go back to his garage for all my future work.

What do people reckon? Better to get it seen to for £250-£350 when I'm up in Newcastle or risk it failing down here and being lumbered with the £500-600 i'm being quoted? I've got to be realistic as, although I love my little rover, it's probably not even worth £500 and maybe I'm throwing good money after bad.

Phew, long post. Thanks for all your help guys.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,067 Posts
Some of the 8v Metro have really slow HGF, which only let a tiny bit through,

you could probably get away with a good coolant flush and keep checking the collant level regularly, I have a spare metro on 94k which is like this, doesn't over heat but loses water slowly with a tiny bit of oil which collects in the top of the expansion bootle.

If your going on a long journey, take a spare bootle of water just incase.
 

·
Registered
rover_100
Joined
·
233 Posts
Some of the 8v Metro have really slow HGF, which only let a tiny bit through,
It happened with my Metro 1.1, the mayo started around 100k miles (or even before, I can't remember now) but the HG was only replaced at 114k miles after I have burned it with a bad bad air bleed, or even no bleed at all... :minxy:

No skim needed, just a lot of time to clean the cooling system and the engine, and ready for a new life. I sold it with 156k miles and it was still perfect about HGF and compression.
 
1 - 14 of 14 Posts
Top