99 9-5 Too Hot!

My daughters 99 9-5 lost the plug in the radiator along with all the antifreeze. The car got very hot before she found a place to pull
over. Now that the plug has been replaced, it is hard to start and does not have much power.
This is my first experience with a Saab so I don't know what to expect.
Is this a known failure, losing the radiator plug?
What normally happens in this case, blown head gaskets? warped heads? de-tensioned rings?
I need to decide whether to look for a replacement engine right away, or have the engine tore down to inspect for damages.
Any insight would be appreciated.
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Oliver wrote:

Sorry to hear the bad news.
Start with a compression test. That should show if there is a blown headgasket and therefore low compression, which would explain explain both the sumptoms you describe.
I hope I am wrong.
Regards Charles
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Oliver wrote:

I don't see how it can suddenly loose the radiator plug. If there was a leakage, it would gradually loose water; this should have been picked up by regularly checking the cooling level. Has the radiator been worked on recently?
It could be a blown head gasket if you're lucky. But it doesn't sound too good. The car should never have been driven for any length in this condition.
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Just as she came off the freeway at 50mph, there was a cloud of smoke(steam) that flew up behind the car. She started to pull over, but before she could stop, the engine quit. She was in the middle of the ramp and some guys at a local gas station came to her rescue. They put the car in neutral and rolled it down the hill to the station where it was towed to a garage.
Apparently, the Saab has a plug for drainage instead of a petcock and no leaking was seen. A check of the driveway & garage supports this. This is why the catastrophic failure of the plug blowing out seems plausable.
The plug has been replaced, the car started and driven a few 100 feet, but no power seems to imply no compression. This could be either gaskets or rings. I'm hoping its gaskets.
I will know on Tuesday. I will replace the engine (found one in Houston from a 2001 with 30K miles) or have the gaskets replaced. If it is easy to check the gaskets, I'll do that first.
Thanks for the responses
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Oliver wrote:

If the engine got *HOT* the head will be warped. It will need to be taken to a machine shop and have it resurfaced before you refit it on the engine.
Charles
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OK youve convinced me, bought another engine.
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