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S.A.A.B S.O.S

Rats cocks

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11 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   Nibblet

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Posted 07 January 2019 - 08:38 PM

OK pop pickers, an HGF situation occurred with the Saab 9000 at the end of last year. There is a crack somewhere at the bottom of the rad, sufficient coolant leaked out to cause an airlock somewhere in the the head and it kettled itself, albeit fairly mildly.
There's some oil in the coolant header tank too, so both oil and coolant are mixing merrily. It's laid up outside my workshop where, if I had time I'd consider having a go at it myself.
But I have no time whatsoever and won't for the foreseeable future.
Is there a shitter who feels confident to have a go at replacing the head gasket and rad for me? Naturally a substantial reward is awaiting the lucky* recipient and quantities of tea and my fantastic company will be on hand.
I have a garage with a fair amount of kit and live in south Glos.
I also live in a large house, so you are welcome to stay the night; just be aware of the rapacious cats that prowl about.
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#2 OFFLINE   colc

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Posted 07 January 2019 - 08:45 PM

Too far away, and without requisite skills...........I'm sure someone in 'shiteland will ride to the rescue.........


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#3 OFFLINE   Saabnut

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Posted 07 January 2019 - 10:37 PM

I am too far away I am afraid and lack time anyway. Good luck and have a bump

#4 OFFLINE   DSdriver

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Posted 07 January 2019 - 10:42 PM

I haven't changed a head gasket since 1971. I have opened the bonnet of my Saab and I can't even see where the cylinder head is, let alone climb in next to it. So I am afraid I will have to decline your very generous offer.
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#5 OFFLINE   Ghosty

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Posted 07 January 2019 - 10:43 PM

Shame you aren't local as me and my dad seem to have a sideline in head gaskets now, alas hes 70 and doesn't like travel much.


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#6 OFFLINE   Nibblet

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Posted 12 January 2019 - 07:02 PM

Earlier this week I got the chance to investigate further; I wanted to at least get the Saab in a position to drive it a short distance to potentially get it looked over by someone with more nous than myself.
The 9000 is very low at the front end so the rad is well below the head and there is no rad cap so filling has to be done via the overflow tank, which isn't really an overflow tank as it's part of the coolant loop rather than a dead end as on the older shite I'm used to working on.
So I parked the saab facing up a steep slope, whipped off the top rad hose and administered a dose of K-seal direct intravenous.
After a couple of couple of warm ups and a few miles drive the rad appears to be water tight. I did notice some mayo inside the top hose and there is some brown gunk in the overflow tank. There is some steam when idling but this dissipates after she warms up, there are no bubbles I can see in the coolant, no misfires and she drives great with plenty of wheelspin as any FWD Swede should.
So it looks like there is some head gasket issue but it's not in desperate need of attention- good news there. Perhaps there is a leak betwixt oil and coolant passage that seals up when the head warms up.
  • colc, Vantman, Hooli and 2 others like this
1972 Saab 96 in 2000 bits.
1988 Benz 230E, new battery
1993 Saab 9000 CSE on the naughty step
2012 Volkswagen T5 2.0tdi LWB (currently works-for now)

#7 OFFLINE   jonathan_dyane

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Posted 12 January 2019 - 09:38 PM

I don’t think the head gasket is a bad job on these with the likely exception of snapping most of the exhaust manifold studs...

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#8 OFFLINE   brownnova

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Posted 13 January 2019 - 12:44 AM

They’re pretty robust the 9000s....


My school of thought is keep going until major FTP... it’s neither good nor clever but I’m neither of those things either!

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#9 OFFLINE   Nibblet

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Posted 13 January 2019 - 12:54 PM

They’re pretty robust the 9000s....
My school of thought is keep going until major FTP... it’s neither good nor clever but I’m neither of those things either!


Not nearly as robust as a rwd Volvo but, yes, better than most. I've checked the coolant header again this morning and apart from a topping of coffee grounds it's fine. I'll see how it goes for the next couple of weeks.
As Herr Junkman pointed out on another thread, the difficulty is finding anyone who'll do the work. That was part of the reason I got interested in 60s/70s shite that I could work on myself. Now that's being hawked at ever more daft prices I've moved towards 80's shite with its complications. Eventually* the '96 will be taking over daily runaround duties.
  • Saabnut likes this
1972 Saab 96 in 2000 bits.
1988 Benz 230E, new battery
1993 Saab 9000 CSE on the naughty step
2012 Volkswagen T5 2.0tdi LWB (currently works-for now)

#10 OFFLINE   Nibblet

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Posted 17 January 2019 - 07:05 PM

Took the 9000 for a brief drive today, no issues until temp gauge started climbing. So I got out, lifted the bonnet to see coolant gushing out from under the expansion cap lid.
Hummm, switched off, coolant level drops back, a bit low now but just visible in the tank, drive back home for a closer look. No leaks from rad (K-seal has worked) or any hoses, so I find the steepest 1:4 spot on the lane, refill the expansion tank and with the cap off burp the top rad hose. Then went for another brief drive.
No heat coming from the matrix now and a soft top hose. Air seems to be getting into the coolant system from somewhere and the system isn't pressurising, I could take the cap off without any pressure escaping. Ideas anyone? I've tightened up the main rad hoses, I can only assume the overflow cap valve is buggered?
1972 Saab 96 in 2000 bits.
1988 Benz 230E, new battery
1993 Saab 9000 CSE on the naughty step
2012 Volkswagen T5 2.0tdi LWB (currently works-for now)

#11 OFFLINE   smellypoo

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Posted Yesterday, 07:54 AM

That sounds like there is a blockage somewhere in the coolant system, perhaps trapped air but possibly even due to some crud accumulating somewhere blocking flow - might be made worse by the k-seal. That would mean that the coolant isn't flowing round, so only some of it will get hot (eventually really hot and then boiling) and will get past wherever there is a weakness, such as venting as steam from the expansion tank cap. If that has already boiled away, then you'll no longer have any coolant to get hot and cause pressure.

I'd try refilling the system and 'burping' it for mush longer until I was sure the cooling system is full and coolant is circulating. Try with the cabin heaters on full and off completely in case there is a blockage in the matrix. See if the rad is getting warm/hot all over, is the bottom hose getting hot? If you find the coolant is not circulating, can you flush the system and try again?

Someone more knowledgeable might be on in a bit to tell me I'm talking bollocks, which is absolutely fine and encouraged because I'm only guessing based on an experience I had over 20 years ago with a Ford Escort that 'knew' it was about to be cubed and I am probably mis-remembering, but it seems to make sense in my head.. good luck.

#12 OFFLINE   rainagain

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Posted Yesterday, 11:45 AM

Any chance the water pump isn’t working? With the engine running do both the top and bottom hoses of the radiator get hot (once thermostat has opened)? Can you improvise a taller header to fill the coolant, e.g. a 2 litre bottle shoved in the expansion tank, filled the bottle up and then open all the bleed screws to try and make sure there’s no air still trapped.

Not exactly what I’m saying but this sort of thing:
https://m.youtube.co...h?v=-CS-Sq8w7Jg




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