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Discuss Engine problems (3.5l HO in 2000 300m)... in the rec.autos.makers.chrysler forum at Car Dealer Forums; So everything seemed to be running fine on my car, till yesterday. Did my 35km ...
  1. #1
    Clint
    Guest

    Default Engine problems (3.5l HO in 2000 300m)...

    So everything seemed to be running fine on my car, till yesterday. Did my
    35km commute back home, and when I got to the lights outside town, the car
    was idling really rough. Enough to give the car a gentle shaking.

    I got home, turned the car off, turned it back on, same issue. Rev it up,
    and it ran smoothly after about 1500rpm, but rough below that. No "Check
    Engine" light, tried doing the OBD retrieval, but I don't know if I didn't
    get one because I don't know what I'm doing, or because there wasn't one to
    retrieve. Have to check into that more later.

    This morning, I thought I'd try taking the car to work, see how it did. But
    as I pulled out, I noticed a lot more exhaust cloud than I'm used to seeing,
    especially at current temperatures. Pulled back into the driveway, and
    noticed a fluid spill about 6" in diameter. Felt kind of oily, but it
    wasn't engine out (wrong color). Pulled the car into the garage, and
    checked the fluid levels, and all seem to be good with the exception of the
    coolant level (down, but not too low yet). Ran the car for a bit again,
    noticed the exhaust cloud again. Doesn't smell really off, but not really
    normal either. Found out the fluid leak is happening at the muffler/exhaust
    system connection.

    One other reference point is that on the way home, I passed a semi on a two
    lane road, so for the first time since I've owned the car (about a month), I
    had to really tromp on the throttle. Did pretty good going from 80km/h to
    140 though!

    So my thought is a blown head gasket, causing a coolant leak. Any other
    thoughts or ideas? Any idea how many hours it is to replace that (shop
    hours)?

    I'll be posting a similar message to the www.300m.org forums, and possibly
    the DodgeIntrepid forums. Reply where ever you feel comfortable!

    Clint


  2. #2
    april1st
    Guest

    Default Re: Engine problems (3.5l HO in 2000 300m)...

    White smoke (i.e. steam) out of exhaust pipe combined with low coolant
    level seems to be pretty indicative of coolant getting into combustion
    chambers. Rough idle is probably due to the cylinder(s) in which
    coolant is getting into not firing. You can probably find out which
    cylinder(s) that is/are by pulling out spark-plugs and seeing which
    ones look freshly cleaned with coolant (i.e. clean and shiny). That
    will give you a good idea on which side of the engine gasket/head/
    block is damaged.

    Did the oil look whitish/creamy? Often when the head gasket blows,
    vapors can get into the oil contaminating it and making it look
    creamy.


    Thanks,

    Alex
    On May 15, 9:40 am, "Clint" <cneuf...@mysocks.shaw.ca> wrote:
    > So everything seemed to be running fine on my car, till yesterday. Did my
    > 35km commute back home, and when I got to the lights outside town, the car
    > was idling really rough. Enough to give the car a gentle shaking.
    >
    > I got home, turned the car off, turned it back on, same issue. Rev it up,
    > and it ran smoothly after about 1500rpm, but rough below that. No "Check
    > Engine" light, tried doing the OBD retrieval, but I don't know if I didn't
    > get one because I don't know what I'm doing, or because there wasn't one to
    > retrieve. Have to check into that more later.
    >
    > This morning, I thought I'd try taking the car to work, see how it did. But
    > as I pulled out, I noticed a lot more exhaust cloud than I'm used to seeing,
    > especially at current temperatures. Pulled back into the driveway, and
    > noticed a fluid spill about 6" in diameter. Felt kind of oily, but it
    > wasn't engine out (wrong color). Pulled the car into the garage, and
    > checked the fluid levels, and all seem to be good with the exception of the
    > coolant level (down, but not too low yet). Ran the car for a bit again,
    > noticed the exhaust cloud again. Doesn't smell really off, but not really
    > normal either. Found out the fluid leak is happening at the muffler/exhaust
    > system connection.
    >
    > One other reference point is that on the way home, I passed a semi on a two
    > lane road, so for the first time since I've owned the car (about a month), I
    > had to really tromp on the throttle. Did pretty good going from 80km/h to
    > 140 though!
    >
    > So my thought is a blown head gasket, causing a coolant leak. Any other
    > thoughts or ideas? Any idea how many hours it is to replace that (shop
    > hours)?
    >
    > I'll be posting a similar message to thewww.300m.orgforums, and possibly
    > the DodgeIntrepid forums. Reply where ever you feel comfortable!
    >
    > Clint




  3. #3
    Clint
    Guest

    Default Re: Engine problems (3.5l HO in 2000 300m)...

    The oil color was normal.

    Clint

    "april1st" <alexnak@gmail.com> wrote in message
    news:1179241375.863494.105190@y80g2000hsf.googlegr oups.com...
    > White smoke (i.e. steam) out of exhaust pipe combined with low coolant
    > level seems to be pretty indicative of coolant getting into combustion
    > chambers. Rough idle is probably due to the cylinder(s) in which
    > coolant is getting into not firing. You can probably find out which
    > cylinder(s) that is/are by pulling out spark-plugs and seeing which
    > ones look freshly cleaned with coolant (i.e. clean and shiny). That
    > will give you a good idea on which side of the engine gasket/head/
    > block is damaged.
    >
    > Did the oil look whitish/creamy? Often when the head gasket blows,
    > vapors can get into the oil contaminating it and making it look
    > creamy.
    >
    >
    > Thanks,
    >
    > Alex
    > On May 15, 9:40 am, "Clint" <cneuf...@mysocks.shaw.ca> wrote:
    >> So everything seemed to be running fine on my car, till yesterday. Did
    >> my
    >> 35km commute back home, and when I got to the lights outside town, the
    >> car
    >> was idling really rough. Enough to give the car a gentle shaking.
    >>
    >> I got home, turned the car off, turned it back on, same issue. Rev it
    >> up,
    >> and it ran smoothly after about 1500rpm, but rough below that. No "Check
    >> Engine" light, tried doing the OBD retrieval, but I don't know if I
    >> didn't
    >> get one because I don't know what I'm doing, or because there wasn't one
    >> to
    >> retrieve. Have to check into that more later.
    >>
    >> This morning, I thought I'd try taking the car to work, see how it did.
    >> But
    >> as I pulled out, I noticed a lot more exhaust cloud than I'm used to
    >> seeing,
    >> especially at current temperatures. Pulled back into the driveway, and
    >> noticed a fluid spill about 6" in diameter. Felt kind of oily, but it
    >> wasn't engine out (wrong color). Pulled the car into the garage, and
    >> checked the fluid levels, and all seem to be good with the exception of
    >> the
    >> coolant level (down, but not too low yet). Ran the car for a bit again,
    >> noticed the exhaust cloud again. Doesn't smell really off, but not
    >> really
    >> normal either. Found out the fluid leak is happening at the
    >> muffler/exhaust
    >> system connection.
    >>
    >> One other reference point is that on the way home, I passed a semi on a
    >> two
    >> lane road, so for the first time since I've owned the car (about a
    >> month), I
    >> had to really tromp on the throttle. Did pretty good going from 80km/h
    >> to
    >> 140 though!
    >>
    >> So my thought is a blown head gasket, causing a coolant leak. Any other
    >> thoughts or ideas? Any idea how many hours it is to replace that (shop
    >> hours)?
    >>
    >> I'll be posting a similar message to thewww.300m.orgforums, and possibly
    >> the DodgeIntrepid forums. Reply where ever you feel comfortable!
    >>
    >> Clint

    >
    >



  4. #4
    Clint
    Guest

    Default Re: Engine problems (3.5l HO in 2000 300m)...

    BTW, thanks for the quick response!

    Clint

    "april1st" <alexnak@gmail.com> wrote in message
    news:1179241375.863494.105190@y80g2000hsf.googlegr oups.com...
    > White smoke (i.e. steam) out of exhaust pipe combined with low coolant
    > level seems to be pretty indicative of coolant getting into combustion
    > chambers. Rough idle is probably due to the cylinder(s) in which
    > coolant is getting into not firing. You can probably find out which
    > cylinder(s) that is/are by pulling out spark-plugs and seeing which
    > ones look freshly cleaned with coolant (i.e. clean and shiny). That
    > will give you a good idea on which side of the engine gasket/head/
    > block is damaged.
    >
    > Did the oil look whitish/creamy? Often when the head gasket blows,
    > vapors can get into the oil contaminating it and making it look
    > creamy.
    >
    >
    > Thanks,
    >
    > Alex
    > On May 15, 9:40 am, "Clint" <cneuf...@mysocks.shaw.ca> wrote:
    >> So everything seemed to be running fine on my car, till yesterday. Did
    >> my
    >> 35km commute back home, and when I got to the lights outside town, the
    >> car
    >> was idling really rough. Enough to give the car a gentle shaking.
    >>
    >> I got home, turned the car off, turned it back on, same issue. Rev it
    >> up,
    >> and it ran smoothly after about 1500rpm, but rough below that. No "Check
    >> Engine" light, tried doing the OBD retrieval, but I don't know if I
    >> didn't
    >> get one because I don't know what I'm doing, or because there wasn't one
    >> to
    >> retrieve. Have to check into that more later.
    >>
    >> This morning, I thought I'd try taking the car to work, see how it did.
    >> But
    >> as I pulled out, I noticed a lot more exhaust cloud than I'm used to
    >> seeing,
    >> especially at current temperatures. Pulled back into the driveway, and
    >> noticed a fluid spill about 6" in diameter. Felt kind of oily, but it
    >> wasn't engine out (wrong color). Pulled the car into the garage, and
    >> checked the fluid levels, and all seem to be good with the exception of
    >> the
    >> coolant level (down, but not too low yet). Ran the car for a bit again,
    >> noticed the exhaust cloud again. Doesn't smell really off, but not
    >> really
    >> normal either. Found out the fluid leak is happening at the
    >> muffler/exhaust
    >> system connection.
    >>
    >> One other reference point is that on the way home, I passed a semi on a
    >> two
    >> lane road, so for the first time since I've owned the car (about a
    >> month), I
    >> had to really tromp on the throttle. Did pretty good going from 80km/h
    >> to
    >> 140 though!
    >>
    >> So my thought is a blown head gasket, causing a coolant leak. Any other
    >> thoughts or ideas? Any idea how many hours it is to replace that (shop
    >> hours)?
    >>
    >> I'll be posting a similar message to thewww.300m.orgforums, and possibly
    >> the DodgeIntrepid forums. Reply where ever you feel comfortable!
    >>
    >> Clint

    >
    >



  5. #5
    Clint
    Guest

    Default Re: Engine problems (3.5l HO in 2000 300m)...

    In another forum, someone else suggested checking the plugs, and that the
    leak might possibly be an external leak running down the exhaust system to
    the muffler. He also indicated I should prepare for a "big bill" due to the
    size of the puddle. My notes on that follow:

    ================================================== ============================

    How big is a "big bill"? Like engine replacement big, or what? Timing belt
    replacement big?

    The plugs are new anyway (like a week old), so I'm not sure that they'd be
    terribly dirty regardless of a coolant leak or not. I don't think the plug
    change should have anything to do with the rough idle, but it could be
    related, I guess.

    I don't think there's a leak running down to the muffler, as there's no
    other leaks under the car in between. And the cloud of smoke was very
    white. There was no smell of antifreeze when the heater was turned on this
    morning.

    I stuck my finger in the overflow tank, and it had the same "feel" as the
    fluid at the leak. Kind of oily, but not really. Not water, in any case.
    The coolant level was down lower than I thought, but still in the overflow.
    There was no overheating at any time (never got above the halfway point of
    the gauge), so hopefully that will minimize damage.

    Anyway, I just got back from taking the car to the garage, and the guy who
    saw me drive in was pretty sure that it was some sort of coolant leak just
    from the cloud. Even before he knew why I was coming there. So it's
    probably a question of how bad, and how expensive. *sigh* On the hopefully
    plus side of things, the local shop has two guys with extensive Chrysler
    experience... They did express surprise that this engine would have a head
    gasket issue; it wasn't something they'd seen on them in the past.

    I'll post back when I get the news. For posterity's sake, if nothing else.
    BTW, I'm also due for a timing belt change. The guy at the shop indicated
    that doing one at the same time would save on labour. Does that make sense?
    If so, at least that's a cost saving... Gotta look at the bright side of
    things!

    Clint

    "Clint" <cneufeld@mysocks.shaw.ca> wrote in message
    news:sLi2i.183871$DE1.128426@pd7urf2no...
    > So everything seemed to be running fine on my car, till yesterday. Did my
    > 35km commute back home, and when I got to the lights outside town, the car
    > was idling really rough. Enough to give the car a gentle shaking.
    >
    > I got home, turned the car off, turned it back on, same issue. Rev it up,
    > and it ran smoothly after about 1500rpm, but rough below that. No "Check
    > Engine" light, tried doing the OBD retrieval, but I don't know if I didn't
    > get one because I don't know what I'm doing, or because there wasn't one
    > to retrieve. Have to check into that more later.
    >
    > This morning, I thought I'd try taking the car to work, see how it did.
    > But as I pulled out, I noticed a lot more exhaust cloud than I'm used to
    > seeing, especially at current temperatures. Pulled back into the
    > driveway, and noticed a fluid spill about 6" in diameter. Felt kind of
    > oily, but it wasn't engine out (wrong color). Pulled the car into the
    > garage, and checked the fluid levels, and all seem to be good with the
    > exception of the coolant level (down, but not too low yet). Ran the car
    > for a bit again, noticed the exhaust cloud again. Doesn't smell really
    > off, but not really normal either. Found out the fluid leak is happening
    > at the muffler/exhaust system connection.
    >
    > One other reference point is that on the way home, I passed a semi on a
    > two lane road, so for the first time since I've owned the car (about a
    > month), I had to really tromp on the throttle. Did pretty good going from
    > 80km/h to 140 though!
    >
    > So my thought is a blown head gasket, causing a coolant leak. Any other
    > thoughts or ideas? Any idea how many hours it is to replace that (shop
    > hours)?
    >
    > I'll be posting a similar message to the www.300m.org forums, and possibly
    > the DodgeIntrepid forums. Reply where ever you feel comfortable!
    >
    > Clint



  6. #6
    Steve
    Guest

    Default Re: Engine problems (3.5l HO in 2000 300m)...

    Clint wrote:

    > In another forum, someone else suggested checking the plugs, and that
    > the leak might possibly be an external leak running down the exhaust
    > system to the muffler. He also indicated I should prepare for a "big
    > bill" due to the size of the puddle. My notes on that follow:
    >
    > ================================================== ============================
    >
    >
    > How big is a "big bill"? Like engine replacement big, or what? Timing
    > belt replacement big?
    >
    > The plugs are new anyway (like a week old), so I'm not sure that they'd
    > be terribly dirty regardless of a coolant leak or not. I don't think
    > the plug change should have anything to do with the rough idle, but it
    > could be related, I guess.
    >
    > I don't think there's a leak running down to the muffler, as there's no
    > other leaks under the car in between. And the cloud of smoke was very
    > white. There was no smell of antifreeze when the heater was turned on
    > this morning.
    >
    > I stuck my finger in the overflow tank, and it had the same "feel" as
    > the fluid at the leak. Kind of oily, but not really. Not water, in any
    > case. The coolant level was down lower than I thought, but still in the
    > overflow. There was no overheating at any time (never got above the
    > halfway point of the gauge), so hopefully that will minimize damage.
    >
    > Anyway, I just got back from taking the car to the garage, and the guy
    > who saw me drive in was pretty sure that it was some sort of coolant
    > leak just from the cloud. Even before he knew why I was coming there.
    > So it's probably a question of how bad, and how expensive. *sigh* On
    > the hopefully plus side of things, the local shop has two guys with
    > extensive Chrysler experience... They did express surprise that this
    > engine would have a head gasket issue; it wasn't something they'd seen
    > on them in the past.
    >
    > I'll post back when I get the news. For posterity's sake, if nothing
    > else. BTW, I'm also due for a timing belt change. The guy at the shop
    > indicated that doing one at the same time would save on labour. Does
    > that make sense? If so, at least that's a cost saving... Gotta look at
    > the bright side of things!



    For what its worth, the Chrysler 3.5 is NOT noted for blowing gaskets.
    Actually, its not noted for anything bad- its a great engine. The 2.7 on
    the other hand... :-p Even if it is a head gasket, its well worth
    fixing (fixing RIGHT, including checking the head and block surfaces for
    flatness and machining if necessary) and keeping.

    You said you haven't had the car long, right? I gotta wonder if the
    previous owner overheated it, or otherwise knew the gasket was failing
    and unloaded it for that reason.

  7. #7
    Clint
    Guest

    Default Re: Engine problems (3.5l HO in 2000 300m)...

    Yeah, the thought of it getting dumped when the previous owner knew about
    the problem has crossed my mind... I'll probably drop them a note when it's
    all said and done, but I doubt anything will come of it. For all I know,
    the head gasket was blown already, and they just dropped in the magic
    tablets to try to stop it temporarily. Then when I tromped on the gas to
    pass the truck yesterday, it just opened it up again. Who knows... I did
    try flooring the throttle a few times when I test drove it, and nothing
    happened (besides acceleration). And I have run at least 1500 km's on it
    since I bought it, including an 800 km jaunt my wife did with her sisters
    out to the mountains.

    The shop just called, and they found the #5 plug as "wet", so there's
    definately a leak somewhere in there. But until they find out what exactly
    it is (gasket vs. cracked, head resurfacing required, etc), they couldn't
    say too much *sigh* And they can't find out too much until they pull the
    head off, which will be happening shortly. Initial estimate is $800 for the
    head gasket replacement. All prices in CDN$. They quoted me $500 on the
    timing belt change, and at least half of that was labour, so I'll save that,
    anyway.

    Clint

    "Steve" <no@spam.thanks> wrote in message
    news:G5ydnc_h7sECv9fbnZ2dnUVZ_hynnZ2d@texas.net...
    > Clint wrote:
    >
    >> In another forum, someone else suggested checking the plugs, and that the
    >> leak might possibly be an external leak running down the exhaust system
    >> to the muffler. He also indicated I should prepare for a "big bill" due
    >> to the size of the puddle. My notes on that follow:
    >>
    >> ================================================== ============================
    >> How big is a "big bill"? Like engine replacement big, or what? Timing
    >> belt replacement big?
    >>
    >> The plugs are new anyway (like a week old), so I'm not sure that they'd
    >> be terribly dirty regardless of a coolant leak or not. I don't think the
    >> plug change should have anything to do with the rough idle, but it could
    >> be related, I guess.
    >>
    >> I don't think there's a leak running down to the muffler, as there's no
    >> other leaks under the car in between. And the cloud of smoke was very
    >> white. There was no smell of antifreeze when the heater was turned on
    >> this morning.
    >>
    >> I stuck my finger in the overflow tank, and it had the same "feel" as the
    >> fluid at the leak. Kind of oily, but not really. Not water, in any
    >> case. The coolant level was down lower than I thought, but still in the
    >> overflow. There was no overheating at any time (never got above the
    >> halfway point of the gauge), so hopefully that will minimize damage.
    >>
    >> Anyway, I just got back from taking the car to the garage, and the guy
    >> who saw me drive in was pretty sure that it was some sort of coolant leak
    >> just from the cloud. Even before he knew why I was coming there. So
    >> it's probably a question of how bad, and how expensive. *sigh* On the
    >> hopefully plus side of things, the local shop has two guys with extensive
    >> Chrysler experience... They did express surprise that this engine would
    >> have a head gasket issue; it wasn't something they'd seen on them in the
    >> past.
    >>
    >> I'll post back when I get the news. For posterity's sake, if nothing
    >> else. BTW, I'm also due for a timing belt change. The guy at the shop
    >> indicated that doing one at the same time would save on labour. Does
    >> that make sense? If so, at least that's a cost saving... Gotta look at
    >> the bright side of things!

    >
    >
    > For what its worth, the Chrysler 3.5 is NOT noted for blowing gaskets.
    > Actually, its not noted for anything bad- its a great engine. The 2.7 on
    > the other hand... :-p Even if it is a head gasket, its well worth fixing
    > (fixing RIGHT, including checking the head and block surfaces for flatness
    > and machining if necessary) and keeping.
    >
    > You said you haven't had the car long, right? I gotta wonder if the
    > previous owner overheated it, or otherwise knew the gasket was failing and
    > unloaded it for that reason.



  8. #8
    sqdancerLynn
    Guest

    Default Re: Engine problems (3.5l HO in 2000 300m)...

    Have them change the water pump too. Make sure the oil gets changed. Drive
    it 100 mi & chanage the oil again!!!


  9. #9
    Steve
    Guest

    Default Re: Engine problems (3.5l HO in 2000 300m)...

    Clint wrote:

    > Yeah, the thought of it getting dumped when the previous owner knew
    > about the problem has crossed my mind... I'll probably drop them a note
    > when it's all said and done, but I doubt anything will come of it. For
    > all I know, the head gasket was blown already, and they just dropped in
    > the magic tablets to try to stop it temporarily. Then when I tromped on
    > the gas to pass the truck yesterday, it just opened it up again. Who
    > knows... I did try flooring the throttle a few times when I test drove
    > it, and nothing happened (besides acceleration). And I have run at
    > least 1500 km's on it since I bought it, including an 800 km jaunt my
    > wife did with her sisters out to the mountains.
    >
    > The shop just called, and they found the #5 plug as "wet", so there's
    > definately a leak somewhere in there. But until they find out what
    > exactly it is (gasket vs. cracked, head resurfacing required, etc), they
    > couldn't say too much *sigh* And they can't find out too much until they
    > pull the head off, which will be happening shortly. Initial estimate is
    > $800 for the head gasket replacement. All prices in CDN$. They quoted me
    > $500 on the timing belt change, and at least half of that was labour, so
    > I'll save that, anyway.
    >
    > Clint


    You might still be lucky, its remotely possible that it could be a lower
    intake gasket and that its sucking coolant in the intake runner. Usually
    those leak out externally, though.

  10. #10
    Clint
    Guest

    Default Re: Engine problems (3.5l HO in 2000 300m)...

    More details....

    There was good news, and bad news. On the good side, there was a
    concern yesterday that there might have been a piston/valve collision
    as part of the fun. Don't know why they were concerned about that in
    particular, but there you go. That didn't occur, and there was no
    cracked head or warpage, so that helps.

    On the not so good side, it appears that this was caused by a plugged
    EGR valve (I think he said) that caused a build-up of pressure. That
    caused the head gasket around the #5 cylinder to blow. So there's a
    few more gaskets and valves that need to be replaced. But since
    everything is yanked apart anyway, it's just a matter of parts cost,
    rather than additional labour. They were planning on putting in a new
    water pump, and the old one was showing signs of leaking anyway.

    Current estimate is $600 for parts, and $600 for labour. Could have
    it back as early as tomorrow night, if he can get all the parts in a
    timely fashion. I asked him if the previous owner could have tried to
    hide the damage to sell it, but he didn't figure that was likely.

    Clint



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