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In this video I show you how you can check for a blown head gasket in your own vehicle.
Kit used in filming -
NAPA #700-1006
Leak Detector Kit / Engine Block, Test Tools Inc
Features & Benefits
Complete combustion leak tester. No additional tools needed & no need to tap into an engine vacuum source. Tests for blown head gasket, cracked head or block, pulled bolts or studs, warped sealing surfaces.; Fluid turns from blue to yellow when a combustion leak is present. Works w/ virtually any liquid cooled internal combustion engine or generator w/ a closed cooling system.; Includes gasoline, diesel, propane, natural gas & other alternative fuels. Large single chamber design provides greater accuracy & uses less test fluid.

49 thoughts on “Test for a blown head gasket”
  1. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Bob Hudson says:

    Hello Eric, had a Ford Transit van several years ago and it would spit out fluid from the overflow, but not all the time, and only after many hours of driving. I tested it with a kit and another shop tested it a few days later when more problems arose. We both came up with negative result. In the end another shop close to where owner lived about 800km (525 miles) away said try Rislone sealant (NZ product). I had never heard of it. At $100 AUS not cheap, but it worked. Did a whole lot of research, even talking to the tech people in NZ. Chemically Rislone sealant does nothing until it comes into contact with high temp exhaust gas and then seals the crack and even reasonable sized head gasket leaks. Can stay in the system and even if system is drained and left with no coolant, does not clog up like Chemiweld does. But result was no further problems. Looks like it may have been a very fine crack in the valve seat area or something else really difficult to diagnose. Saved a full tear down and even another cylinder head (lots of $$$$). Moral is, this combustion gas tester is not 100% foolproof. I thought it was and got caught out. But an obvious one like in your test told you and the owner that car is now suitable for junk pile only. Shame considering condition of rest of the vehicle. Retired mechanic in Land Down Under.

  2. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars brandon fairconeture says:

    Can you use this test on a "closed" cooling system that has no radiator cap also? Putting it into the coolant reservoir?

  3. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Jeffrey Gomez says:

    Thank u, I’m running to autozone right now

  4. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Antonio Claudio Michael says:

    The cheap easy way to find out over gas analyzers

  5. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Jon's Pit Stop And More says:

    Thanks bud. you always got the right answers lol

  6. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Blade says:

    Hey Eric you rock man!
    How about finding a head gasket that is blown cylinder to cylinder or possibly to an oil port?
    A cylinder leak down test is probably best but very time consuming. Especially on the vehicles where the plugs are on the firewall and have to be accessed from underneath the vehicle. And then finding top dead center for each cylinder and taking a reading, writing it down bla bla bla.

    I found a blown head gasket once with a home made cylinder leak down tester on my 2000 Ford Windstar 3.8L. The gasket was blown between #2 and #3 cylinders and burning up some coolant as well. The mini van ran absolutely terrible when I finally just had to fix it.

    I was hoping there might be a way to use a smoke machine but some engines may only leak when the engine gets hot and things expand.

  7. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars R&R playing room says:

    Love to this fkng video

  8. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Zacharyau Masawdu says:

    Dpes this work on diesel cars?

  9. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Johnny Sechrist says:

    Glad they had this kit back in the 80's.

  10. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars George Rios says:

    Thanks 😊 man good job 👍

  11. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars John E. Carr says:

    Another great video.😶‍🌫

  12. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars michael turner says:

    That's an easy one it's a dodge the head gaskets blown obviously LOL

  13. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Gordon Canning says:

    For a severly overheated engine with a blown head gasket does replacing the head gasket fix the issues or if there usually other issues that keep popping up down the line? I had a similar problem myswlf and I am not sure whether I want to fix it or trade in the car.

  14. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Overlin Alaniz says:

    Will this procedure work with a car like a 97 Mustang GT with a coolant reservoir?

  15. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Dan Dotson says:

    I used the AutoZone tester and I cannot get the sapphire blue to change color! Did a test multiple times over an hour just won’t change! But I did a engine flush of the system and coolant change the day before! I have White exhaust smoke tailpipe smoke for 20 minutes and then it is absolutely clear no smoke! It’s summer! Engine seems to run fine you tell me!

  16. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars S550VERT says:

    you can remove tester from radiator and pump bulb a few times with fresh air and fluid will change back to blue and you can reuse it 😉

  17. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Ghaith Ghaith says:

    Thank you so much

  18. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars wiilam snyder says:

    Thanks for the video, will do tomorrow. I bought a 01 regal couple months and started to notice a little oil in radiator. Hoping its just intake gasket. This should point me in the right direction.

  19. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Tymty says:

    If car is a no start, can you still use this test?

  20. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Abram Oconnor says:

    Even years ago you were rocking Eric O. You got the skills, shout out from Louisiana.

  21. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars It Tueaday says:

    So I ran this test in my 02 wrx today for like 3-4 minutes starting from cold, the fluid barely changed at all, if anything at all the after fluid was just so slightly more cyan then before, but is that long enough to determine a bad head gasket? I bought it and the guy said it was on its way out, but nothing has raised any red flags as to it actually being bad

  22. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Hola! Edward Duran says:

    Would a bad intake manifold gasket on a gm 3800 cause the same symptoms? I keep having to fill up my coolant but there are no visible leaks I think its internal. I already changed the intake manifold gaskets and it continues to do the same thing. The weird thing is the car dont overheat.

  23. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Steve Elliott says:

    Got a crook alternator too by the sounds of things

  24. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Ian Newhall says:

    Looks like that one had a bunch of pressure in the rad too

  25. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Andry Bichkov says:

    Thanks!

  26. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars C 19 Commander says:

    2007 Jeep Patriot. I flushed the cooling system. my Jeep has good heat,does not over heat. is not burning coolant, no white smoke from the tail pipe. its not loosing coolant. Jeep runs fine,does not lose power.
    yet when i bleed the cooling system air cant stop coming from the Radiator.
    or bubbles from the cooling system.
    do i have a bad head gasket ??

  27. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Jeff in TD says:

    Like an NIK test…

  28. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Pat Treadwell says:

    Thanks

  29. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars chocolate squiggle says:

    Wow thanks. I've read about these sorts of tester kits but it's just so much easier to understand when you see it in action. Great practical demonstration.

  30. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars PistonShack says:

    I came from "Eric O. Gets A Honda Civic" video. Great idea to film in real time when you first found the issue.

  31. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Nadia Swaidan says:

    He did not show how to drain the radiator he did not show any. Drain all some nothing.

  32. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Nick Coo says:

    Hi all this will make me sound an idiot but here goes. I bought one of these testers of ebay and due to the fact it came to me from china and i live in Australia no fluid came with it. I ask about the fluid and was told that you can use ink and water it it diluted ink . Is this right? Nick

  33. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Bob Collins says:

    What if you have a radiator that does not have a cap and only a reservoir bottle ?

  34. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Al Verm says:

    Awesome. Thank you Eric. Love your channel. Learn so much from all your videos. Thank you for sharing your wealth of knowledge. Also thanks for the peeks behind the scenes at your shop. Priceless

  35. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Martin Crowell says:

    Hi There.
    I have an 03 Chevy Silverado 6 leader. Slow to start, But not all the time. Replaced every sensor I could think of, Cam sensor, Crank sensor, Gas filter, New fuel pump,wires&plugs, Fuel injectors. Even switched out the throttle body. Catalytic converter seems to be open. But still have a multi misfire code. Did this test and the fluid turned green but not yellow. Any thoughts would be appreciated thank you.
    Also believe on your videos have been very helpful and awesome thank you for your time.marty

  36. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars OVI-Wan Kenobi says:

    I noticed that every video on YouTube that deals with a cooling system leak always involves a Dodge Chrysler Jeep vehicle. That's a fact.

  37. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Ross Smith says:

    Would this catch an external head gasket leak? Also would it catch a leak that changes from hot to cold.

  38. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Al says:

    I think I have a head gasket leak in a 1.5 Ford EcoBoost, the coolant reservoir will drop about and 1" after 200 miles. The odd thing is when you release the pressure cap it will go back up a 1/2"…….any idea why that is? Thanks for sharing.

  39. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Salvador Gutierrezr says:

    👍👍👍👍👍👍👍👍👍👍👍👍

  40. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars jeff coulter says:

    Videos are so much better now!!!!

  41. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Steve Blankenship says:

    I’m assuming this device will also work on a vehicle which uses a radiator cap on an overflow tank like some chevys

  42. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Mark Allison says:

    Thank You !!

  43. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Crispr Talk says:

    This is all Satan's work.

  44. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Erik Johnson says:

    The shape of that tester is really something lol