Automotive Repair Blog: Tips, Facts, and Fixes

What are the Symptoms of a Blown Head Gasket?

The news of having a blown head gasket can be quite upsetting and stressful. But, what exactly is a head gasket, what is its function, and how can you tell that you have a blown head gasket? Read on to understand everything on the head gasket.

What Is a Head Gasket?

The head gasket is a panel placed between the cylinder head and the engine block. It is one of the essential components in your car's combustion chamber. It serves as a barrier to prevent engine fluids from leaking into cylinders. It also ensures that the motor oil, flammable air fuel, and water coolant in the engine do not contact each other.

Blown Head Gasket Causes

The engine operates in extreme conditions of intense heat and pressure. If the heat becomes too much, the engine overheats, resulting in a blown head gasket. Also, a detonation can cause the head gasket to fail as it damages the fire rings or armors, allowing pressure to leak and thus blowing the head gasket.

Symptoms of a Blown Head Gasket


Overheating can be a result of various reasons, one of them being a blown head gasket. Oil leakage into the coolant system slows the ability to cool the engine, causing it to overheat.

Discolored Fluids

The main role of the head gasket is to prevent engine fluids from mixing. If you notice that the fluid is discolored, there is a chance that the head gasket has failed, resulting in the mixing of fluids.

External Leaks

Your vehicle's fluids are supposed to be in a closed system, and so, any external leaks should be a sign that something is wrong. In case of a blown head gasket, coolants or oils might leak out from the seams of the cylinder head and the engine block.

White Exhaust Smoke

When starting your vehicle, you should watch out for white smoke from the tailpipe. The smoke can be differentiated from other fumes or moisture by a sweet smell, which tends to last even as the engine warms up.

If you notice any of the above signs, do not hesitate to visit an auto repair shop to check your car. It might seem costly, but the more you delay, the more it gets worse and the more you are likely to spend. If you need head gasket repair, feel free to bring your vehicle into our auto repair shop today!