1998 Chevy Venture Engine overheating

Tiny
ALDENJEWEL
  • MEMBER
  • 1998 CHEVROLET VENTURE
  • 6 CYL
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 144,000 MILES
Engine overheated. Had already replaced the radiator because of a leak. So next was the water pump and thermostat. That didn't fix the problem, so the manifold intake gaskets were replaced. It was OK for awhile, about 50 miles. The needle will flucuate rather wildly, going up when idling at a light, then back down while moving. The radiator overflow tank will be totally full. When the bleeder valve is opened a lot of air will escape. No coolant in the oil. Mechanic says it could be head gaslet, but could also be cracked block or head. He recommends putting in a different engine. Last time I drove it any distance, I stopped at about 80 miles because it was staying very hot, opened the bleeder valve, bleed out a lot of air. What can or should I do?
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Friday, February 13th, 2009 AT 1:06 AM

5 Replies

Tiny
BLUELIGHTNIN6
  • EXPERT
Hello
Thanks for the donation.

You need to have a dye test performed on the engine that will reveal any cracks in the head gasket and the heads. I would not go buying a new engine just because of this issue. I am not sure why the mechanic would have told you to do this without first performing the tests to ensure that the heads are indeed damaged and needing replaced. If it is only a head gasket then it would be better and cheaper just to replace the gasket, not the whole engine.

Thanks for using 2CarPros. Com!
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Friday, February 13th, 2009 AT 1:20 AM
Tiny
ALDENJEWEL
  • MEMBER
My mechanic said he hadn't done the dye check, but had checked carefully and couldn't find any evidence of any leeks. I have been driving it for a couple of weeks, I open the bleeder valve when I park(usually a lot of air). Before I head out I close the bleeder valve, and often add to the radiator. The overflow tank is totally full, but the radiator will accept a couple of quarts, added slowly so air can escape. No sign of antifreeze leeks, or white vapor at the tailpipe. Where is it going? It hasn't overheated, but the needle flucuates, from cold while moving, up to hot while idling and back down again when moving.
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Saturday, February 28th, 2009 AT 10:14 PM
Tiny
BLUELIGHTNIN6
  • EXPERT
Still showing symptoms of a blown head gasket or cracked head to me. Without performing the dye test there is really no way to tell for sure if the head is cracked but if your mechanic saw no signs of the gasket being cracked than it is likely that the head itself is damaged.
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Saturday, February 28th, 2009 AT 10:27 PM
Tiny
ALDENJEWEL
  • MEMBER
Thank you for your quick reply. I'll talk to my mechanic, I guess that's why he looked for engine. He mentioned something called Blue(something)that is supposed to fill cracks, etc. Said he still had half a can(enough to do the job). He didn't like it and didn't want to use it. But my question; if the engine needs to be replaced anyway, what would it hurt to try. Do you know the stuff and what other problems it may cause?
The van looks good and runs good, otherwise.
Thanks, Alice
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Sunday, March 1st, 2009 AT 1:33 AM
Tiny
BLUELIGHTNIN6
  • EXPERT
The pressure in the cylinders during compression will usually blow away any gasket sealant that you use so I don't recommend it. Since you are probably going to be getting a new engine however, it really isn't going to hurt anything to use it as a temporary fix.
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Sunday, March 1st, 2009 AT 4:19 AM

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