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Discussion Starter #1
hello everyone,i am currently looking for a rover 400.when looking at the car what things shoUld i be looking at to see if the engine has suffered from HGF.
there seems to be a lot out there with approx 40000 miles on the clock,is this when problems start.
i am looking for a 416 or better still an sdi.
 

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Steam out of the exhaust is inconclusive, especially in cold or damp weather, because water is one of the products of petrol combustion...

Check the coolant in the header tank very carefully, looking for traces of oil. A faint trace might show up as a "rainbow" effect on the surface of the coolant, although this could indicate oil traces remaining from a previous HGF that was repaired.

Give the engine a thorough workout on the test drive, then check for any drop in the coolant level or signs of coolant having blown past the pressure cap.
 

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go to a mot test station and ask the to put the exhaust gas test over the water filler cap and read the hydro carbon results, thats another way.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
thanks for the advice lads,are there any trade tricks to look out for.for example if the dealer had given the car a service and the coolent and the oil was changed.would this hide HGF.
 

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nigel3829 said:
are there any trade tricks to look out for.for example if the dealer had given the car a service and the coolent and the oil was changed.would this hide HGF.

To answer your question, IMO water and oil change alone wouldn’t easily hide HGF if the engine is run for a while. A headgasket change without a 'headsqim' would last long enough to get a car sold... probably.


There are no guarantees, but the best thing to do is go to a reputable (dealer?) and tell them you suspect HGF; they can do tests that ‘might’ put your mind at rest.


Cheaper, but not as good, Halfords do compression testers for about £20, this could give you a clue, but it is certainly not definitive proof and other tests would need to be done to confirm HGF!


HGs don’t always go between water and oil (but usually do).


If HGF is suspected, keep an eye on…


The coolant level (daily and/or before and after any long journey), it should barely move.
Check the coolant isn’t ‘oily’.
Check the dip stick and/or oil filler cap doesn’t have light brown ‘paste’ where oil should be.
Temp. gauge must not go above half-way, stop the engine if it does.
Internal heater must be working (blowing hot when warmed up) all the time, stop the engine if it fails.

...and if you get any of these, seek professional advice.

Cheers
 

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'Temp. gauge must not go above half-way, stop the engine if it does'.

That is very drastic most cars will go over halfway if they have been standing in traffic. I think what you should have said was if it goes any further then half way and the fan does not cut in then stop the car. To tell you the truth a very well cared for car will eventually suffer a HGF.
 

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Sejin26 said:
'Temp. gauge must not go above half-way, stop the engine if it does'.

That is very drastic most cars will go over halfway if they have been standing in traffic. I think what you should have said was if it goes any further then half way and the fan does not cut in then stop the car. To tell you the truth a very well cared for car will eventually suffer a HGF.
I have just sufferd a HGF in my 1996 416i at 91K. Before that the temp gauge NEVER went over half way or had any problems until it was to late. In my case, Rusty Bullets advice is sound and I wish I knew about it then.
 

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Sejin26 said:
'Temp. gauge must not go above half-way, stop the engine if it does'.

That is very drastic most cars will go over halfway if they have been standing in traffic. I think what you should have said was if it goes any further then half way and the fan does not cut in then stop the car. To tell you the truth a very well cared for car will eventually suffer a HGF.
True about the temp. gauge, but I do mean under normal driving conditions and I was being purposly 'over-the-top' because the advice was concerning someone who suspects HGF. In my experience, the temp. gauge (on a K16) is pretty static most of the time except for summer weather in bad traffic. There's no harm in being cautious I think.

Cheers
 

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Baw Flinger said:
I have just sufferd a HGF in my 1996 416i at 91K. Before that the temp gauge NEVER went over half way or had any problems until it was to late. In my case, Rusty Bullets advice is sound and I wish I knew about it then.
To be fair, I learnt the hard way, except I was guilty of driving 17 miles because I couldn't be bothered to stop (year ago now, 214 SLi), it was cold and wet and I was late for work. Remarkably, the head didn't 'pop' until I got back home (in the red all the way)!

I got a lift in to work for a while with someone with a red Rover 400... and yes... his went too!!!

This was probably down to poor servicing as the 'bleed' nipple was seized... after he was meant to have had new coolant... they probably caused an air-lock.

Cheers
 
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