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Coolant in the oil......looking for advice.

1080 Views 7 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  Ben762x51
The car is a 2001 forester, non-turbo, 233k miles. It's actually my fathers car, but i've been fixing up things on it for him so that he can drive it again. Well at seemed well, until last night when I checked the oil. There is a coolant leak somewhere because there is coolant in the oil. I was taking the car for a test drive, and it started to run hot....etc etc.

I've replaced head gaskets on other cars, so the idea isn't new to me;however, i've never done so on a forester.

1. I'm thinking that given the observations that a/both head gaskets are leaking. Thoughts?

2. Is there any way I can check to see if it's a head gasket, rather than say an intake gasket, without tearing into it?

3. Any suggestions of things to look out for, or make sure to do, when working on these cars? I mean anything specifically related to them that is a pain, or worth knowing before diving into this?

Thanks everyone, any advice is apprecaited. Hopefully I can get the baru back on her feet.
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Well I took the heads off, and it appears that at least the drivers side had a blown gasket. I had the heads resurfaced, and a valve job done. They are looking good now; however, I have run into one problem.......

I lined up the marking on the cam gears with the markings above, and also lined up the crank marking with the marking above. I figured all was well, so I took off the timing belt, heads, etc...... Well now that I have the heads back I can't get the cam gear markings lined up with the markings above them. When I rotate the valves on the head, they rotate in 90 degree increments. The problem with that is that I can't line the markings up because as it rolls over the cam lobe (as i'm turning it) it passes up the markings.

I hope that makes sense. Anyone have any advice? This is the only thing keeping me from throwing it back together at the moment, and it's driving me a little crazy.

On the SOHC as long as the line on the crank sprocket is at 12 O'clock the engine will be in the service position, all pistons mid way down the bore.

With the crank in this position you are free to rotate the cams as needed to line the timing marks up, no chance of valve to piston interference.

The SOHC there is no chance of valve to valve interference as both the intake and exhaust are driven by the same cam and thus always in sync.

The resistance you are feeling is the cam starting to lift/open valves. Just turn the cam through it by hand slowly and be prepared for the cam want to start rotating as you pass the crest of the cam lobes.
I got the cams, and crank pulley, lined up, and the heads put on. Everything appears to be lined up correctly.

Does anyone know what the torque specs for the two pulleys you have to remove to get the timing belt off are? One is a gear, and the other just roller style. I can't seem to find it.

Also, is there a way to time the car? This might be a stupid question, but i've only ever really worked on vehicles with a mechanical distributor. I figured the timing would be correct already since things will be lined up, but then I noticed a timing tab on the engine, so it got me wondering if I'm missing something.

Thanks again!
When I replaced my pulleys with a kit from gates it said to torque them to 28 ft lbs. So I would say 26 to 32 is a good range.
As far as timing goes. Just make sure to line your camshaft pulleys up with the either the notch in the t belt cover on the drivers side or the seam of cylinder head on the passenger side for the cams (both should have the timing marks straight up). Then make sure your crank mark is also at pointing straight up (pistons in service position.)... Theres nothing else that is necessary for timing although make sure you line up the marks on your new timing belt with your cam/crank timing marks. Then I would personally rotate the engine over a few times with the plugs out and the tbelt tensioned to make sure everything works smoothly and you don't have any piston to valve contact/etc.
Sounds good. That's what I did actually. I didn't line up all the marks on the timing belt though. Well, they were all counterclockwise by two teeth....I was just having a hard time getting everything lined up (marks on the belt - timing marks) for some reason.

I took it for a spin today, and it was running well; however, when I pulled into the driveway on the way back (after about 5 miles...test run), I noticed it was running rough, so I have to figure that out now. It's basically like it has a periodic miss, but not like it's running on three. I'm hoping a new set of ignition wires will do the trick, for the old set had oil inside still. (I thought I got them cleaned out, but apparently not)

Thanks for the help everyone. Once I figure out why it's running a little rough, I think i'll be good to go. Maybe I can turn 300k on this bad dog. lol
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