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  #1  
Old 14th April 2008
shaverjeff shaverjeff is offline
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Default Head Gasket replacement time?

I think its finally time to replace the head gasket. After a 300mile trip I went through an entire resevoir of coolant. There doesnt appear to be any water in the oil but I am assuming this is a head gasket failure due to the occasional white smoke on start up and the lumpy idle. (probobly burning the wqater out of the cylinders?
Its a a few years since my last headgasket replacement and I've never done one on a saab. I searched for a good walkthrough in the forums without much luck.
Is there a walkthrough available or a parts list? Which gasket set do you guys prefer? (94 turbo vert)
I have a decent base of mods and want something that will last.
I have seen the copper gaskets but the consensus seems to be they are needed.

Thanks in advance for any input.
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Old 14th April 2008
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grif900 grif900 is offline
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The Elring gaskets work just fine. You will need a new intake and exhaust gasket too. New valve cover gaskets are advisable and replace the rubber pad in the cover that touches the timing chain while yer at it.
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Old 14th April 2008
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Twinsaabs has a good write up. No need for copper gasket. Elring is fine.

ps
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  #4  
Old 14th April 2008
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There's also a great write-up at Townsend's site (link in FAQ).
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  #5  
Old 15th April 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shaverjeff
Is there a walkthrough available or a parts list? Which gasket set do you guys prefer? (94 turbo vert)
http://www.saabcentral.com/forums/sh...d.php?t=118847
Stream-of-consciousness (aka complete waffle) diagnosis and repair of the HG on mine.
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  #6  
Old 15th April 2008
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Lots of HG stuff in the FAQ:
http://www.saabcentral.com/forums/sh...ad.php?t=62123

Elring gaskets are OE. Buy the complete head sets and you'll get the cam cover gasket and valve stem oil seals.

Stick a new thermostat in there while you're at it.

Check condition of the cooling system. If you need any new components (water pump, rad, belts) then now's the time to do it. Cooling system components for these cars are cheap.

Remember to thoroughly flush the complete cooling system, including heater matrix and the block (again, look in FAQ). All you need is clear tap water from a hose pipe. Flushing the cooling system is best practice (despite words you'll read to the contrary from others). Flush until the water runs clear - you may be amazed at the grey yuck that emerges.

Flush the radiator and heater matrix circuits separately. You don't want to flush crap from those into the block or head.
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  #7  
Old 15th April 2008
shaverjeff shaverjeff is offline
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Thanks guys! This helps a lot. I've got a good bit of reading to do.
I will order the gaskets today and hopefully start this weekend. I just replaced all the hoses and thermostat not even a month ago. I had a leaky hose for a long time. It was the small one going to the turbo so it always evaporated before it hit the ground and I never knew what was happening. After fixing that the increased pressure must have finally done in the head gasket. My assumption is that its never been changed as the car is in excellent shape and the 1st owner kept very good records.

I would also like to replace the timing chain while Im in there as I hear they tend to go around 190,000 or so.

But that all depends on how much I have to shell out for a new car as this saab was my daily driver .

I am playing it safe though and I quite driving it yesterday. There is no water in the oil but it sat overnight and drained half the resevoir into the cylinders ...
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