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87 supra on silvers neo max
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
A year ago I had my 87 supra's non turbo head gasket redone with all the works;

valve treatment, machined head, new gasket for everything from header to intake runners to intake manifold. The HG bolts were torqued down to 75 ft lbs, which, according to Wreckless, is the proper way to do it.

There's an issue right now, theres evidence of another head gasket issue. I haven't opened up the engine yet to take a look, but my coolant reservoir is missing fluid, when I check the oil dip stick nothing comes out, and white smoke is coming out of my exhaust.

Except my car is running fine, the temp gauge doesn't shoot up and overheat, and it runs smoothly except at random occasions there's a rough idle.

I'm pretty sure the head gasket is blown (again), but what could have caused this? Perhaps my mechanics torque wrench hasn't been calibrated properly? It's only been a 1000~ miles since the HG job yet my car is eating shit already.

If you guys agree that it's a head gasket failure, should I just re-torque the bolts and pray, or replace it with arp ones (kinda a waste of money but I have the money) and maybe a metal head gasket from cometic (assuming the hg is compromised)?

some photos from the hg job
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I check the oil dip stick nothing comes out, and white smoke is coming out of my exhaust.
What do you mean 'nothing comes out'? As in, no oil or anything is on the dipstick? :oops:

Top off the coolant reservior with distilled water.

How much white smoke is coming out of the exhaust? Does it get worse or clear up under engine load/higher revs? What do the spark plugs look like?
 

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87 supra on silvers neo max
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I’d never do a 1uz over a 2j- but really just LS that bad boy. You’ll have money left over for suspension and power train stuff; and in the end will be a better rig
im tempted since a miata with an LS3 managed to pass carb and I really just want a daily swap into my car that gives enough smiles per gallon (the 1uz vvti being a perfect candidate). I'll keep the LS3 in my mind. My only issue is that I'm young and inexperienced, with very little tools. I do have a lot of friends with experience tho so I guess that makes up for it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
What do you mean 'nothing comes out'? As in, no oil or anything is on the dipstick? :oops:

Top off the coolant reservior with distilled water.

How much white smoke is coming out of the exhaust? Does it get worse or clear up under engine load/higher revs? What do the spark plugs look like?
Nothing is on the dip stick. The white smoke goes away after a bit, usually when it warms up. I need to take a look into the spark plugs. probably some time later this week. I'll update you guys sometime but if you all have more questions I'll be answering.
 

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Also yeah check your spark plugs , pretty much for any run condition problem they will tell you something. As far as swaps go LS is the way for the support and price tag, everything is just easier. Top it
Off with the horsepower and weight and that’s why everyone does them
 

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Nothing is on the dip stick. The white smoke goes away after a bit, usually when it warms up. I need to take a look into the spark plugs. probably some time later this week. I'll update you guys sometime but if you all have more questions I'll be answering.
Add some oil until it measures full on the dipstick! Why the hell wasn't that your first reaction to seeing nothing on the dipstick? Why are you still running the engine with low oil?!?!?!

If the white smoke is gone after it's warmed up, I can almost guarantee there's no BHG involved. Did you do the valve stem seals while the cylinder head was off? Have you done a compression or leakdown test?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Add some oil until it measures full on the dipstick! Why the hell wasn't that your first reaction to seeing nothing on the dipstick? Why are you still running the engine with low oil?!?!?!

If the white smoke is gone after it's warmed up, I can almost guarantee there's no BHG involved. Did you do the valve stem seals while the cylinder head was off? Have you done a compression or leakdown test?
I did an oil change two months ago. A little weird that I'm missing all my oil two months after, but I'll heed your advice and dump oil in it tonight. I don't think my mechanic replaced the valve stem seals. I trusted him enough (he's been a mechanic for 40 years) to let him take care of it. I havent done a compression or leakdown test.
 

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I did an oil change two months ago. A little weird that I'm missing all my oil two months after, but I'll heed your advice and dump oil in it tonight. I don't think my mechanic replaced the valve stem seals. I trusted him enough (he's been a mechanic for 40 years) to let him take care of it. I havent done a compression or leakdown test.
It's not all of your oil you see on the dipstick, just the top ~1.5 quarts or so. If you see nothing at all on the dipstick, add a full quart, then measure again. The points between the 'low' and 'full' mark is about 1qt. Many folks prefer to run a half quart over full just to help with windage tray/oil pickup issues at high G's when braking, cornering, or accelerating. Don't run more than that though.

Also look around under your car for leaks - MK3's leak oil. It's rare to have one that doesn't leak oil of any kind.

Like wise man say, there's two kinds of cars in this world. Cars that go fast, and cars that don't leak.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
To update yall;

My dad had let the car run until it warmed up earlier this morning (as of writing it is 9:25pm pst) and he mentioned the white smoke, and that it had disappeared as the engine warmed up. The exhaust smells like gas.

I did the same thing earlier like 4 hours ago and it looks like it looks good. I checked the oil, it was murky and very very very low. It looks like I've been naughty with it lol, as I've been redlining the shit out of it recently (been going to too many car meets). I filled it up, a bit more than I should have, and called it a day.
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tl;dr the oil is fine and we can move on from that. Except I still need to do a compression and leak down test, which brings me to the coolant.

None of these answer the coolant issue. My coolant is randomly disappearing after a week of daily driving. I know I'm a big stupid idiot for not replacing the coolant hoses (theyre damaged from the overheating and blown hg 12 years ago) but it didn't seem urgent until now. Whenever I flush the radiator, there are black specks that come out of the flushing, which is definitely from the damaged coolant hoses. One other thing, when I had flush the coolant last week, I decided to clean out the radiator cap. The radiator cap now has this rubbery gunk on it. Perhaps this is a result of the black specks heating up and melting into this brown gunky stuff? Also the radiator was replaced in august with an OEM one. So definitely the hoses.
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I'll post an update in this thread once I get a compression test, and probably again at the end of the year once the coolant hoses are settled down and I have updates for you guys (updates as in, whether or not my car continues to leak coolant).

Thanks for your contributions guys!
 

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After reading your post, maybe some of the old valve stem seals are leaking. I can't imagine doing anything with the head off and not replacing all of the stem seals though. A full upper gasket kits usually come with valve stem seals. I would check on that with the folks who worked on the head.

Bad stem seals can cause the smoke you are seeing when the engine first starts and also the oil consumption. There are ways to replace stem seals with the head still on but those methods are tedious when you have to repeat 24 times. Probably better to just remove the head again. Especially since you are worried about coolant loss and condition. If you choose to open it back up make sure you remove the block plug and flush the system out good.
 

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There's plent of places to lose coolant beside the head gasket. Check the heater valve on the firewall. Check for leaks from the small hoses under and around the intake manifold. Check for seepage or leaks at the radiator especially the header tank seams. The radiator cap can also be a problem. And of course the ultimate bad boys, the two 90 deg elbows on the pipe that runs under the exhaust manifold and the rubber cap on the pre-89s. Check for coolant in the foot well carpet and pray it is not the heater core, that is a serious pain to replace. If you have a coolant pressure tester hook it up and see how you do. If the system is maintaining pressure the radiator hoses should feel firm with the engine off and warm.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Update;

After cruising speed limit for about a week now, I haven't encountered any coolant issues. Perhaps something clogged up my coolant and the pressure caused it to leave through one of the cracks in the hoses?
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radiator piping outlined in blue and crack circled in red.

Maybe that's just a sleeve for the coolant hoses and I'm tripping about it. Again, it hasnt leaked any coolant. Maybe the heater core is leaking like what 3p141592654 mentioned. If memory serves me right, the window heaters were on. (disclaimer; I know nothing about the heater core system besides the blower motor resistor located near the heater core)

As for my oil issue:

I admit. I've been using autozone STP 5w-30 regular oil. Which could be the reason for my car eating so much goddamn oil.

Since my engine should be well broken in already, what oil should I run? My car is a 7mge with 109k miles with a full rebuild (to reiterate, every gasket was replaced and the head was machined) Right now its not that hot and the highest temps are 75 degrees with very very cold winds. I think I should stick with the 5w-30 since the mechanic that worked on the engine recommended it, but also said that I could do 10w-30 if I wanted to (I brought up to him that it was the oil recommended from the TSRM). If anything, I'll just switch to a name brand synthetic oil for 5w-30. I know that iron blocks and aluminum heads could benefit better from specific oil brands, but if theres no such thing available then I'll stick to synthetic 5w-30. Let me know your suggestions, or if my idea is solid (and extra information is welcome).
 

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With a light and a mirror, you can look up into the duct on the right side of the transmission tunnel to see the heater core. Look and see if it's crusty.

For the non-turbo engine, Pennzoil Ultra Platinum 5W30 is an excellent choice. Also, you can run a larger filter, like the Wix 51515. There's plenty of room for it.

It's more important to run the right coolant, since there's iron, aluminum, and brass in our cars. Toyota Red is a perfect choice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
With a light and a mirror, you can look up into the duct on the right side of the transmission tunnel to see the heater core. Look and see if it's crusty...
You're awesome, thank you for the recommendations. As for coolant, I'm running Peaks universal ethylene glycol coolant since I dont know where to get toyota red locally. I'll probably switch it up once I replace my radiator piping. As for the heater core, I'll take a look sometime later and update.
 
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