Intake Gasket Failure Question

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My understanding is GM claims that the DexCool coolant is responsible for intake Gasket Failures. My understanding is also that the intake failures have been happening since
around the mid 1990's. Isnt that before they even started using Dexcool? If I am wrong on that then I stand corrected. In any case if GM new that the Dexcool was the problem then why didnt they just have a recall to drain the dexcool and refill all the cars with the green stuff? Would this be because GM would then be admitting to a known problem? The problem has been around for 10 years unaddressed year after year. GM used to make some of may favorite cars...Hotrod Chevelles, GTOs Camaros etc. But GM ....you done changed. I just dont know if I still want to be your friend.
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Jack L. Spratt wrote:

On the contrary. GM says Dex-Cool is god's gift to man. They wouldn't still use it otherwise. Any problem is the owner's fault for not checking the coolant's quality with a refractometer often enough. (according to the AC Delco guy that taught the last after-work training seminar I attended.) GW
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?????????
My refractometer only shows freeze point...
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aarcuda69062 wrote:

Which would, of course, be higher if the Dex-Cool to water ratio was higher or lower than ideal. The statement from the Delco rep, may or may not be hogwash, but supposedly.... If the Dex-Cool to water mix is not within a few points of the 50-50 range, the mixture becomes VERY acidic, and THAT is the owners fault for not maintaining the 50-50 mix, not the Dex-Cools fault. The main dilution of the ideal mix comes from air in the system. How does air get in? Bad radiator cap. GM never said they were five year caps, just five year coolant. GW
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Gosh, any wonder why Toyota, Honda, Nissan and even Hyundai are kicking the **** out of GM in the marketplace ??????
John
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Jack L. Spratt wrote:

No, GM does not think that Dexcool has anything to do with gasket failures. The intake gasket failure is due to a poor design that relies on low clamp loads and the fact that a technician ought to know how to torque bolts and use loctite in these particular applications.

Intake gasket failures on GM 60 degree engines have been happening since they started making the engines in the mid 80's. When they first came out in the X-bodies and A-bodies....we were doing intake gaskets all the time. Same problem.....coolant would get in the engine oil. Different style of gasket....same basic end result...coolant in oil. There has also always been a problem with oil leakage from the RTV end gaskets. This is due to two problems.....poor preparation of the surfaces by the technicians....and the fact that RTV gaskets will inevitably leak no matter what you do.
Ian
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On Sat, 02 Apr 2005 18:22:04 GMT, "shiden_kai"

How can you blame it on the technicians or poor preparation on a factory new engine? It is GM's fault - pure and simple. A design that uses low clamping loads combined with gasket materials that cannot seal under low clamp load conditions is poor design, no ifs, ands, or buts about it.
Not fixing the root problem is the result of the bean counters looking at the cost to repair the desihn vs the cost to repair under warranty, taking the average lifespan into account. Simply put, they figure it is cheaper to replace a few thousand gaskets a year than to redisign the engine.
What they fail to take into account is the loss of sales due to customer dis-satisfaction and anger.
And they wonder why they couldn't sell enough Oldsmobiles to make it worth while retaining the marque - and now either Pontiac or Buick (or possibly both) may well follow suite.
Used to be the cry was "kill all the lawyers".. Soon it will be "kill all the accountants". Between accountants and lawyers, manufacturing jobs are relentlessly being driven out of the USA , and close behind, out of Canada as well.
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snipped-for-privacy@sny.der.on.ca wrote:

I was talking about the RTV section of the gasket. Eventually they all do leak, but I and other techs that I know that take the time to use RTV properly don't see the intake gasket back leaking from the RTV very often. But the one's that dont take care, usually are re-doing them.
The entire engine design is suspect....but you are right, bean counters will do us in.
Ian
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I am a member of this club, 98 Lumina 3.1 once when it was under warranty and now again at almost 80k! I plan on replacing the coolant fluid with the good old fashion Prestone green antifreeze. Does anyone think all this trouble may be from the new dex coolant or just crappy design?
wrote:

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wrote:<BR>&gt;&gt;<BR>&gt;&gt;&gt; How can you blame it on the technicians or poor preparation on a<BR>&gt;&gt;&gt; factory new engine? It is GM's fault - pure and simple. A design that<BR>&gt;&gt;&gt; uses low clamping loads combined with gasket materials that cannot<BR>&gt;&gt;&gt; seal under low clamp load conditions is poor design, no ifs, ands, or<BR>&gt;&gt;&gt; buts about it.<BR>&gt;&gt;<BR>&gt;&gt; I was talking about the RTV section of the gasket.&nbsp; Eventually<BR>&gt;&gt; they all do leak, but I and other techs that I know that take the<BR>&gt;&gt; time to use RTV properly don't see the intake gasket back leaking<BR>&gt;&gt; from the RTV very often.&nbsp; But the one's that dont take care, usually<BR>&gt;&gt; are re-doing them.<BR>&gt;&gt;<BR>&gt;&gt; The entire engine design is suspect....but you are right, bean counters<BR>&gt;&gt; will do us in.<BR>&gt;&gt;<BR>&gt;&gt; Ian<BR>&gt;&gt; <BR>&gt; <BR>&gt;</FONT></DIV></BODY></HTML>
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Nice dexcool article you mentioned.
I have a question about coolant recall for my 2000 Buick regal (LS, nonturbo). I have been changing dexcool every year and it has 65000 miles. GM is sending me recall notice every 3 months to care recall. The recall will expire in July 2005.
My question is since I have been changing coolant regularly and no overheating problem, do you think I should still take the care to delaer or just ignore the recall. And if you can explain what's in the recall besides tightening the bolts.
DonW wrote:

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violet_lightening snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com says...

After cleaning the surfaces real good I use McKanica red High Temp RTV around the corners of the intake as well as round the coolant passages on the gasket. With some thread locker and that McKanica RTV there are no repeat leaks. Great stuff!

In my experiance Dexcool is still far better if the leaks are repaired correctly. When I remove plastic gaskets that have been running conventional green coolant I find most of the plastic material is missing and whats left of the gasket is very brittle. I also find a lot of pock marks in the aluminum which will never re-seal without good RTV. However the rubber beads built into those gaskets are usually swelled up which is the "only" advantage the silicon based coolants give you. (until they blow out from lack of plastic material)
Dexcool contains a plasticizer which softens up the plastic gaskets ever so slightly. For the 60deg motors this is a huge problem considering they dont have a very good clamping load on the gaskets and the gaskets are taller and thinner around the passages. For the 3800's lower intake gaskets this isnt much of an issue.
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I am very angry that the intake gasket failed on our 2002 Oldsmobile at 40,000 miles or so ... well before the first coolant change was even scheduled. This was not the result of a bad service tech, but a horrible design.
Normally I have a low view of the class action lawyers, but when companies put these kinds of problems knowingly in the field for decades, well, they have it coming to them.
John
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Why? The problem was well known and documented long before 2002.
As long as people keep buying their garbage designs, GM will keep cranking out garbage designs.
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John Horner wrote:

Well, wait until everyone starts seeing all the head gasket failures that we are seeing on the later model 3.4 engines. Of course, the head gaskets are simply seeping coolant to the exterior of the engine, but they are leaking all the same. Oh well, keeps me busy.
Ian
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When I was having problems I re-torqued the intake manifold bolts. There were loose bolts. This seemed to have done the trick. This also worked on the valve cover the oil pan and a part around the output shafts on the transmission.

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WOW I never realized all the trouble with these engines. I am amazed they would let this known problem continue for so long.

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Why not? The small block Chevy camshaft problem went on for decades...
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wrote:

they
What problem are you referring to?
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Improperly heat treated camshafts.
Did hundreds in and out of warranty, as I'm sure Ian did also.
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