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2002 gmc envoy_slt
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Discussion Starter #1
So my SES light had been coming on around Nov/December(ish) for the last 3 years, giving me the same code using the Advance Auto tech tool, P0128. First year, I added the Dex-Cool and the light went away. 2nd year, I had the thermostat replaced and Dex-Cool added (I researched the forums and I felt the T-Stat was the problem at the time). Two weeks ago, I just took it into my dealer and had them run the diagnostics. He first removed my oil cap and saw it had a milky look to it, he showed me and said it could be a blown head gasket (which didn't sound good) but said he will do a pressure check and diagnostics and let me know for sure. He called a couple hours later and said the head gasket had a slow leak and he will tighten the bolts, replace the water pump, drive belt, and the valve cover gasket. That was $800.

I get my Envoy back the next day and drive it for a couple days and my SES light comes back on. I checked my oil cap and I see the milky look again and call up the mechanic. I dropped off the Envoy and he does another pressure check and calls me with a low tone and I knew from that that I was in for bad news. I need a head gasket. It's going to cost me about $1500.

I'm just a little baffled after reading this forum because it seems most of the time it was the fan clutch that went bad but he said that was fine. Am I the only one that has had to get a Head Gasket replaced? LOL. I'm laughing outwardly but I'm crying in the inside :)

It's a costly repair but I sure can't wait to get my Envoy back. He gave me one of his cars (Isuzu Rodeo) to drive in the meantime, but it's not the same as being in my own car.
 

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2003 chevy trailblazer_ls
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this is the 2nd case I hear of a head gasket problem.
the 1st was a post yesterday by a woman- in her case- its been replaced 2 or 3 times.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
You haven't heard what before?


I think I will have him reduce the cost once it's ready although he did say he knocked off $300+, which put me at $1471 ($1500).
 

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2007 chevy trailblazer_ss_3ss
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Did you have any overheating problems? The fact that he did the first $800 work is BS...if it was leaking anway, he should have just changed it the first time and been done with it. If he was going to just "tighten" the bolts, I don't see why he did all the other work. He's basically charging you twice to do a lot of the same labor. I could see doing all that if you were going to change the gasket because your taking everything apart anyway. IMO, you got fleeced...see if he'll apply any of the original $800 to your $1500 bill.

It's got nothing to do with the fan clutch unless maybe you had overheating issues which led to the headgasket blowing.

Make sure he's going to check and make sure your cylinder head and block are not warped (might have caused the gasket to leak).
 

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i regularly check my coolant overflow bottle to see that the level hasnt dropped any. and never has since the 1st time I refilled to bring it up the the cold mark.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for the informational post, Power. I don't know if his $300+ discount is part of paying back some of the $800 but I'll definitely make sure I'm not being "fleeced". I think he was hoping he didn't have to replace the head gasket, and that tightening the bolts would resolve the leak, thus saving me some money.

It wasn't overheating, I was just reading the forum and most posts regarding the P0128 code was either the T-Stat or fan clutch problems. I'm not mechanically inclined, but I did notice that my temp was between 100 and 210, when it's normally on 210. I just didn't know if that was normal for this time of year (winter).

I'll check with him to make sure cylinder head and block aren't warped also.

He's been our family mechanic for a few years and have no problems letting him know if he's asking too much for his repair.

Anyone know what it would cost to replace the head gasket, I'd like to have a price to compare what I'm paying to.
 

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From what I've seen with that code, it happens when the engine doesn't reach normal temp (like when the T-stat is stuck open or the fan clutch isn't working right). A blown head gasket usually happens when you have an overheating problem. Maybe the code is coming on because your temp sensor is off and your really running too hot??? (I dunno, just guessing).

I have no problem with him trying to save you some $$ by tightening the bolts, but IMO...knowing that you may need a new gasket anyway, why would he replace the H20 pump & timing chain...why wouldn't he just re-torque the bolts. When he replaces the head gasket, he's going to have to take them off again, thus basically your paying him to do the same thing twice.

How many miles does it have on it? How was it running? Does it blow any white smoke?
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I have around 95,000 miles, I bought it used in 2004.

I did have the occasional problem when the car sounded like an airplane about to take off when I first start it up and then after about 2 minutes into driving it the sound went away.

I heard some slight ticking from the engine when idled...

I didn't notice white smoke, doesn't mean it didn't do it, but if it did, I didn't notice.

I agree that he probably should have just replaced the head gasket the first time around.
 

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hopefully after all this your SES light doesn't come back on:suicide::suicide::suicide::suicide::suicide:


that's not too many miles....hopefully after it's replaced you'll get a lot more miles out of it. The I6 is "supposed" to run forever.

That "airplane" sound is just your fan...it sounds like the clutch is working right, or it would continue to sound like an "airplane"
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks again Power, your posts have been very helpful.

I still would like to know what a dealership or another shop would charge for a head gasket replacement.
 

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Thanks again Power, your posts have been very helpful.

I still would like to know what a dealership or another shop would charge for a head gasket replacement.
keep us posted on this for sure.

also you have a 2002 so i would DEFENITLY look at the sticky above in cracked cylinder sleeves ,, Please review it atleast before you hit 100K.
Josh
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks Jozuah, I actually checked that thread about 2 hours ago, my VIN doesn't fall under the ones listed.

I will definitely update once I get it back also.
 

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Thanks Jozuah, I actually checked that thread about 2 hours ago, my VIN doesn't fall under the ones listed.

I will definitely update once I get it back also.
although im glad you dont have to deal with GM on that issue , im sorry in a way too, hope you get that 800 beans applied to the service. In every shop i have worked in if a diagnosis fails that miserably and they try a fix that is known to very VERY rarely work, they will just bow their heads and eat the 800 bucks, cause technically you could file a BBB case agaist them for that diagnosis. if head bolts are loose theres a reason , and that reason needs to be corrected , once a head bolt is set to torque, they need to be replaced, so re-tightening the bolts is not a common thing to do, especialy at 95K miles aprox..
my 2cents on the issue, i just hope you get resolution and can run away and never go back to that place.
Josh
 

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Thanks again Power, your posts have been very helpful.

I still would like to know what a dealership or another shop would charge for a head gasket replacement.

Your welcome...glad to help.

$1500 sounds OK. Maybe a tad high being that you already have a new h20 pump and timing chain...but most of the $$ is labor, not parts. I needed one done in a Subaru...the estimate was for over $2k (but that included a reconditioned cylinder head as well as new h20 pump and all belts/hoses).

Good Luck.:thumbsup:
 

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although im glad you dont have to deal with GM on that issue , im sorry in a way too, hope you get that 800 beans applied to the service. In every shop i have worked in if a diagnosis fails that miserably and they try a fix that is known to very VERY rarely work, they will just bow their heads and eat the 800 bucks, cause technically you could file a BBB case agaist them for that diagnosis. if head bolts are loose theres a reason , and that reason needs to be corrected , once a head bolt is set to torque, they need to be replaced, so re-tightening the bolts is not a common thing to do, especialy at 95K miles aprox..
my 2cents on the issue, i just hope you get resolution and can run away and never go back to that place.
Josh
I absolutely agree with Jozuah. It's been a few years since I rebuilt any engines or replaced any heads (I'm not as young as I used to be) but the last few I did had "torque-to-yield" (TTY) head bolts. In most cases you tighten these bolts with a torque wrench to a fairly low number, then the bolt is given an additional turn or two to a specified angle (say an additional 45 to 90 degrees) to load the bolt beyond its yield point for maximum clamping pressure.
I don't know if the I6 engines have these bolts, I would think they do. Regardless as Jozuah said if one bolt was loose, you have a major problem that needs fixed.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
A major problem such as what?

Unfortunately I don't know what you mean by TTY or what could cause a head bolt to become loose.

I don't like being uninformed about things (although it's impossible to know everything) so I appreciate the assistance given this is definitely an eye opening experience.
 

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A major problem such as what?

Unfortunately I don't know what you mean by TTY or what could cause a head bolt to become loose.

I don't like being uninformed about things (although it's impossible to know everything) so I appreciate the assistance given this is definitely an eye opening experience.
every bolt on earth has a specific torque value. this value is set by the engineers that decide the application for each bolt. where head bolts are concerned that value is determined by the bolts tensile strength, and application of force to the head gasket and clamping pressure of the mating surfaces on the head and block (or deck as something called) now, lets say you have a torque value of say,,,,,,, 75 foot pounds there is an actual wrench used to go to 75 foot pounds, then an additional say 75 degrees of the compass. the value then may go up , but the MIN torque for that bolt is set at 75 foot pounds, now turning it an additional 75 degrees stretches the bolt to whatever the max stretch ( and at this point the bolt is at its strongest) is determined by the engineers that designed that bolt for that application. *big breath* NOW, your bolt is at 75pounds + 75 degrees , your shop that you took it to says , "bah dont worry buddy, ill just tighten them a bit more" now the bolts structure has been compromised and actually ends up with LESS clamping force than it had been set to from the factory. SO, your bolt is now basically a weak, heat cycled, oil lubricated "pin" with ridges.

on another topic, the aluminum that the bolt is fastened against (the threads) is also compromised, as with the additional force used to breach the TTY (torque to yield yield being the point at which it passes its point of stretch and now starts to twist "yield") so your bolt that was once tight is now loose and has done damage to the threads in the hole.

im sorry for the long post , and i hope that made sense , im not the best with words.
josh
 
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