Without a doubt, the engine is one of the most powerful systems in your vehicle. But despite its role as the heart of your vehicle, the engine is not invulnerable to wear. When you factor the extreme environment that it functions in, it is unsurprising that some problems may crop up from time to time. The trick to steering clear of irreparable engine damage is knowing the signs of a potential problem and identifying the underlying issue before it affects other auto parts. The head gasket, in particular, has the role of keeping the different types of fluids in the engine from mixing. Additionally, it is also responsible for mitigating the accumulation of combustible debris inside the engine. With time, the head gasket will suffer from normal wear calling for immediate mechanical repairs. Below are some of the warning signs of looming engine repairs stemming from a damaged head gasket.
The moment you begin to experience cylinder misfiring, it is imperative that you have a mechanic check the condition of the head gasket. The cylinders are tasked with housing the combustion of gasoline, which is the energy required to power your engine and, consequently, your vehicle! When the head gasket is in jeopardy, it can lead to fluids mingling with the gasoline, and this causes the cylinder to misfire. It is critical to seek engine repairs as soon as possible so that a mechanic can undertake in leak testing as well as check the engine's cylinder compression, which helps with determining if other valves have sprung a leak too.
White exhaust smoke
If you are suspicious of the condition of your engine but cannot put a finger on what could be the underlying issue, you should be wary of any plumes of white smoke that come about when you are starting the car. The starting process may seem fairly straightforward but the reality is that your car is engaging in a complex number of process to get your vehicle up and running. Since these processes produce heat from the combustion of gasoline, the cylinders need to be cooled by refrigerant so that they do not succumb to damage from exposure to high degrees of heat. When the head gasket is compromised, it can develop a refrigerant leak. As a result, the refrigerant gets burned in the starting process and this produces white exhaust smoke. Postponing the need for engine repairs will only leave this issue to become aggravated causing extensive damage to not just the head gasket but other engine parts too.