Head gasket stuff


o.k not to beat a dead horse but here are more questions about head gasket repairs.

1. how sure can one be of a blown gasket/cracked head without taking it apart? is there some sort of pressure testing that someone can do?

2. how much is too much to pay, i need a low and high range here.

3. what’s the cheapest way to repair the head gasket. i.e. buy the parts separately and give them to mechanic to install. any advice is much appreciated!

thanks so much family.


  1. A cooling system pressure test can be done, and if the gasket is blown and/or the head is cracked, coolant will seep into the cylinders or possibly outside the block or head, depending on where the leak is.

  2. Depends on if it’s a cracked head (meaning a new head is needed) or just a head gasket. The cheapest won’t be much below $1000 (figure $800 at the bottom), and you can easily double that or more on the expensive end.

  3. The cheapest way is to do it yourself, since then you’re only on the hook for the cost of the gasket and a new set of head bolts, as well as replacement antifreeze to refill the system after the job is done. It’s pretty time-consuming and not a job for a novice DIY mechanic.

  1. Compression test, cylinder leak-down test, and block test (testing for the presence of exhaust gases in the cooling system) will narrow down the diagnosis. Only by removing the head can it be determined if the head is cracked. Fortunately, this is a rare occurrence.

  2. Impossible to say without knowing what kind car this is, and what engine it has.

  3. Most mechanics will be reluctant to allow you to provide the parts, especially for something as mundane as a head gasket. Your savings would be only a few bucks at most (the vast majority of the cost will be the labor, not the parts), and the mechanic won’t warranty the parts. Of course, the cheapest way to get the job done is to do it yourself, but if you have to ask these questions, this repair is likely beyond your skills. Absolutely no offense intended here; depending on the vehicle, this can be an absolute bear of a job without a full complement of mechanic’s tools and equipment.


the easiest and quickest way is to just check the oil like you do to see if you need oil if it is a head gasket the oil will be mixed with the water or coolant so the color won’t be like how oil should look it will appear gray or just won’t look like oil


thanks for this. the oil looks like oil!


btw, this is a 1995 honda accord ex. with only 96000 miles.


It’s 13 years young. At this age, anything can go at any time.