How Dangerous Is a Cracked Head Gasket to the Engine?

Automobile Diagnostics advises that a cracked head gasket can be very dangerous to the engine. Normally, the reason why the head gasket cracked is that the engine was running too hot. Once the gasket cracks, the engine’s temperature will increase exponentially. We will explain why below. The cracked head gasket will also dilute the motor oil, and this can damage the engine beyond repair.

Significant Coolant Loss

The head gasket is one of the most important parts in the engine. This gasket protects the cylinder block from coolant and motor oil. It also seals the block so that compression builds up inside of it to produce engine combustion. When the head gasket cracks, the coolant will leak into the cylinder block and into each cylinder. This causes a significant loss of coolant in the engine.

An Overheating Engine

Naturally, this coolant loss is going to cause the engine to overheat if it wasn’t already. In fact, no matter how much coolant to add to the cooling system, it will continue to leak into the cylinders until you have the head gasket replaced. As such, you will not be able to drive your automobile without the engine overheating all the time. This can cause additional engine damage.

Scorching Hot Coolant

In fact, the engine can get so hot that the coolant temperature can rise above the boiling point. When this happens, the coolant that is left in the radiator will start to boil. This produces pressure inside of the radiator that can cause the radiator cap to burst. You know what happens next. Scorching hot coolant sprays all over the place. You never want your engine to be this hot.

White Engine Exhaust

As we mentioned previously, the coolant will continue to leak into the cylinders until the head gasket is replaced. If you fire up the engine, the coolant will be burned along with the air and fuel that are in the cylinders. This will create white engine exhaust. You may see this exhaust flowing out of the tailpipe if the engine is producing enough of it.

Milky-White Motor Oil

Finally, we also mentioned previously that the blown head gasket will dilute the motor oil. Specifically, the motor oil and coolant will mix. If you have deluded motor oil circulating through the engine, it cannot protect it properly. Rather, it could damage it beyond repair.

Automobile Diagnostics in Columbus, IN, would be happy to help, so set up a service visit today for your automobile.

Photo by skhoward from Getty Images Signature via Canva Pro

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