Last post on Aug 14, 2012 at 5:19 PM
You are in the Chevrolet Cavalier
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Chevrolet Cavalier, Engine, Sedan
#57 of 76 Re: overheated; possible head gasket problem [bella14]
Jun 22, 2009 (1:31 pm)
Sounds like I have a very similar problem with my chevy. Was wondering if you would be able to let me know what you have found out and/or what work you have done to fix the overheating. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
#58 of 76 Re: Head Gasket problems..... [mandi77]
Oct 09, 2009 (8:36 am)
it actually isn't just the 95's. it is the 90's in general. i have a 91 cavalier RS that the head gasket went out on. it sux. but i went and got a head gasket kit from NAPA and will be puttin it on this weekend. have you tried replacing the head bolts???
#59 of 76 CAVALIER ENGINE CHECK LIGHT
Dec 28, 2009 (3:11 am)
I'm in New Zealand, where we have a lot of Toyota badged RHD Chevy Cavaliers. Everyone said 'don't buy one' but what did I do?? They have a reputation for trouble here and are virtually worthless, and many get broken up for parts when still perfectly ok. I've had a good run with my 96 2.4G for 4 years needing only an alternator, but lately that dreaded engine light has been playing up. For a few weeks when I turned the key on, the gauges all flickered and it made a static type sound. I had to turn the key on and off until it didn't do it and it went fine. Now thats stopped, but now the engine check light only comes on about every 10th time I turn the key, and there's no way it'll run until that light comes up. Once it starts up, no problem on the road, runs smooth and strong, and idles perfect. Looks from other replies that its emissions syetm related, but is any particular sensor likely to be the culprit. Our GM dealers don't want to know about these cars, nor do Toyota dealers, so I'm not sure we can even run the diagnostics.
#60 of 76 98 2.2 Head Gasket Issues
Oct 02, 2010 (5:09 am)
I bought a 98 w/ the head gasket out. I pulled it apart, milled the head, used a 0.020 head gasket shim and a new head gasket. It ran great for over a year.
I then had an issue and lost the serpentine belt. It got hot immediately. Fixed the belt and it was then blowing compression into the cooling system and this caused the water to blow out of the coolant tank. I pulled the head again, milled it again and put it back together with new bolts and gasket. It ran great but still had the compression in the cooling system issue.
I am so good at this by now, it took just 1 hour to pull the head. The head gasket and shim looked great and this was confirmed by my machinest. This was not confirmed but it is my feeling that the current head I have is cracked. Machinest thinks so too. No water leaks to the outside, no water in the oil, no sign of water in the combustion chambers, but compression in the radiator. I then noticed many coolant holes in the head, that open to the block, but the head gasket does not have holes in it to allow the water to pass. This prevents water from circulating from the head to the block as this is a reverse flow cooling system.
I bought a used head. It is guaranteed to not be cracked. In looking at the used head, I can see the V track where the old head gasket allowed water from the head to the block on this head. I have been using FelPro head gaskets. I tried to look at a Victor and GM but no one has that head gasket in stock to compare.
The cold water comes from the radiator and enters the head on the passenger side end. It travels to the drivers side and should allow some water to flow down through these steam holes in the head and block. The current FelPro gaskets will not allow this water to pass. The water then gets to the drivers side end of the block, travels down into the block, and then back to the passenger side where it comes to the thermostat. Since the water cannot pass, due to the head gasket not having the holes to allow circulation, steam is being generated in the head as the coolant is not properly circulating to prevent this. I may not have a cracked head. It may be these pockets of steam that are being generated to is causing the pressure in the coolant tank. I am going to go with the used head though to make sure.
Will be pondering this question today. Will also take some photos so I can show what is happening with the head gasket issue. Saying that FelPro screwed up the gasket is something major and I am not yet doing so. At present, I am thinking of a new head gasket, using a gasket punch to open the 18 holes that are not in the new head gasket, and screwing it back together with the newer used head.
Will keep you informed. Your thoughts.
#61 of 76 Car finally shows problems
Feb 13, 2011 (9:38 pm)
I've recently received my father's car ('99 2.2L), which had been perfectly reliable for the past 8 years (believe it or not) without anything major involving the engine.
2 weeks ago, there was a large "bang" that seemingly came out of nowhere- right from the engine. All the indicators and lights were normal - so I was pretty surprised. Ever since then, I've had problems with the car failing to start, rapid overheating (at idle the needle is above normal), coolant leakage, and white smoke coming from the exhaust.
Now I know that it's EXTREMELY likely that it's a broken gasket.. But now I've just realized with all the comments that's this is a pretty common problem..
Was I lucky to not have this problem until now? And how much would it cost to repair the damages? Keep in note that I have had to drive around a bit when the needle was in H.. So I think the damage might be pretty high.
#62 of 76 Re: Chevy Cavalier 1996 - Overheating Problem...! [oscorp]
Jun 17, 2011 (5:41 pm)
It sounds like you have the exact problem that my mother in was having with her car. We thought it was a headgasket but it turned out to be a clogged coolant system.
#63 of 76 Can't seem to fix it
Aug 13, 2011 (6:49 pm)
I have a 2001 Cavalier with 275,000 miles on it. I have had the head replaced three times in the past and now am having more trouble. My water pump, thermostat, radiator are all new. I replaced my head gasket due to the exhaust escaping into the water ports and forcing coolant out through the resevour. This thing would build up so much pressure that ever drop of coolant would blow out the tank. Strange thing is that the coolant hasn't ever gone through the exhaust pipe (no white smoke) and there isn't any water in the oil. I finally broke down and baught a new head and another new gasket and again new head bolts. I followed every instruction to a tee (this ain't my first walk through the park) and when I was finished I started the car up and it seemed to be running fabulously. I sat there and watched it get warm and was satisfied that everything was o kay but I turned my back to pick up my tools, the darned thing started blowing coolant out the reserve tank again. Can anyone please please please give me some guidance on this? I've never seen this happen in this way and I'm at the end of my rope. I can't understand why it's doing this.
#64 of 76 Re: Can't seem to fix it [burnedoutrob]
by MrShift@Edmunds HOST
Aug 14, 2011 (7:31 am)
Well if you were SURE that exhaust gases were escaping into the coolant (by using a test kit to show combustion gases in the coolant), and putting on a new head didn't fix it, then you must have a crack in the engine block.
If you didn't actually test for combustion gases but assumed so, then perhaps you have a badly clogged radiator.
#66 of 76 Re: Can't seem to fix it [burnedoutrob]
Aug 27, 2011 (3:05 pm)
you need to run some prestone cleaner thru it to clean your system and make sure that you bleed the air out of the system b/c that can led to overheating and too much pressure build up. put about half bottle of the cleaner thru it for about two or three days, drain it and run the rest of the bottle thru for another two or three days and drain it again. fill it up with coolant but only the dex cool coolant and make sure to bleed the air out. let it run for about 30-45 mins the just bleed the air every coulpe of mins once it warms up and the should fix your problem