1983 Volvo 245 • 500 miles

My car has over 500,000 miles on it. There is coolant in the oil; there are whitish globs of gunk in the oil and on the filler cap and dipstick. There is also engine grime and small amounts of waxy off-gray slime in the coolant overflow/filler tank (specifically, in a ring on the inside of the filling hole). I am willing to do a good amount of work in order to fix these problems. I am pretty sure that there is a problem with the head gasket. What should I do?
November 3, 2012.

It sounds like the head gasket is bad and needs replacement. I am giving you a walk through diagnostic to help you sort through it. Ignore the fact that it is for a chevy as that is only pertaining to the fact that is has an oil cooler that caused problems and appeared to be a failed head gasket. Read all the other material though as it will explain about a bad head gasket and oil in the coolant.