Might have blown my head gasket?

So there was a huge storm last night and on my way home from work i made a turn and hit a huge puddle my car stalled out but after a few attempts i got it to start again and made it home, well i woke up today and attempted to drive to the store on my way my car stall a few times then something blew? My car died and started spraying oil i check my oil cap and its covered in “milky” oil car cranks but wont turn over. Its a 06 civic si

check your air filter to see if it is dry. if your motor sucked in water i would not expect it to run enough to spray oil. where is the oil leaking from?

My filter was soaked after i hit the puddle but dry when i went to run it this morning. The oil was leaking from The general area of my oil filter? Im not entirely sure i couldn’t get under to check.

Sounds like “blew” is a shattered piston/rod, most likely making a hole in an engine block, then the “spraying oil” is what follows from attempting to rotate crankshaft and oil would definitely fly around.

This car has to be assessed by a competent mechanic, but so far the likely diagnosis looks bad.


So i should probably just get a new engine all together?

I would assume you are not going to install it yourself, but rather delegate that to some trusted mechanic, aren’t you?

If yes, then you will start from making the same mechanic to inspect your engine current condition and give you options.

It can be a remanufactured engine, junk-yard engine… or maybe something more trivial.

Start there.
Do not rely on the internet forum, where nobody would be able to tell you for sure what to do

No you need to have a mechanic get a hands on look at it. They can tell you if this 13 year old vehicle is worth investing a new (or more likely) used engine in it

too bad insurance does not pay for motor repair when you have a flood incident. why not? if you spun out and went in a pond and sunk your car you would have coverage.

Well i work at honda mfg funny enough so if i do go the route of a new engine then i can easily install it myself. Thank you all for your opinions and insight.

Make sure you know what you’re getting into before you start swapping the motor yourself. If you had to ask the initial question, that makes me wonder if you’ve done an engine swap before. If you haven’t, get a buddy who has to at least stand around drinking beer and supervising. There are lots of pitfalls for first time swappers.

Ive done plenty of swaps at work granted those are with brand new never ran engines but I’m assuming the concept is still the same. I plan on taking it into the nearest service center to check if the engine is even salvageable.

If the engine has to come out, you’re still stuck with an 06 Civic. It would be better for you to get a real car. It might be better for the environment to fix or replace the engine. Thinking long term, there are many other old Civics out there that run and won’t cost anywhere near the price of an engine. It’s easier to save a running one.

I’m assuming you’ve installed engines in brand new vehicles on some kind of assembly line

Not exactly the same things as removing an engine from a 13-year old vehicle and transferring parts from the bad engine to the good engine. You’re going to be dealing with rusted and seized hardware, brittle wiring, and so forth, things that are not an issue on the new cars you deal with at your work

And I’m assuming you would swap the engines at home, not at work, correct . . . ?

I don’t know about you, but since I’m just an employee and not the owner, I’m not allowed to work on my own vehicles at my place of employment, not even after hours

Doing that kind of work at home would be a lot harder, too, as you’re probably not as well set up, as far as power tools, air compressor and cherry picker go

The 2006 Civic Si has the bigger engine, yes? If so, that means it’s the less common one, which makes finding a suitable engine that much more difficult

If there is a hole in the block, maybe the OP can see it without going under the car. The front on the engine should be easy to see. The firewall side is harder, but using a mirror might work. If nothing is visible, get it up on jack stands and look from the bottom. I suggest this because towing to the service center might cost a lot, and maybe the diagnosis can be made in the driveway. If not, the service center is still an option.

well, motor cranks but wont turn over. odd problem. he might mean it wont start. my starter turns over my motor just fine.

There do seem to be a lot of people who don’t understand that “cranking” and “turning over” are the same thing. This leads to a LOT of confusion when trying to get solutions to a problem.


Not even close. This thing better be in first class condition before I would even consider an engine swap .

You were given a good advise above on checking it yourself for the “hole in the block” and such, to avoid unnecessary towing costs.

Considering it is 13+ years old vehicle, presumably you go with a used engine from a junk yard, which is totally OK, but if you did not do it before, it will be more involved than taking a new engine from the cellophane at your official workplace.

Let me jot down few areas popping up and maybe other [professional] mechanics here will give more:

  • when selecting used engine, you have to insect it very deeply
  • having the “dirty” engine in front of you is better than having the one cleaned by recycler: you can see if engine had some leaks and such, otherwise you might go for the [unpleasant] “surprise”
  • inspect visually under the oil filler plug, oil level stick: heavy residue (more than “straw color on metal”) is a “no go”
  • make sure to remove spark plugs and inspect them for oily reside, any oily residue is an immediate “no go”
  • if you have a “snake camera” ($10) handy: inspect cylinders - if engine was sitting on the shelf for a long time, it might get rust and would be a “no go”
  • rotate the crankshaft by the harmonic balancer bolt: should go smoothly for few full turns
  • get some paper towels and make loose “plugs” to where spark plugs normally are located: as you rotate the crankshaft, these have to be popping out if engine has any compression in the related cylinder
  • if you can see the the camshaft from the oil fill hole (or if valve cover is removed): you can try rotating crankshaft “backward” and check if it has any lag in moving the opposite direction, if yes - then the timing chain is stretched and must be replaced (or it is not “your” engine)

if your inspection shows that a used engine is a “candidate” for transplanting, you have to consider doing some “preventative maintenance”

  • replace front and rear crankshaft oil seals
  • replace valve cover and oil pan gaskets if you have any signs of possible leaks
  • replace spark plugs even if old ones looked “ok”
  • depending on used engine alleged age, consider adjusting valves and replacing valve stem seals, just because it is so easy to do while engine is out in the open
  • consider replacing water pump, once again, it is easy to do and it is cheap insurance against issue
  • etc…

Still wanna do it ? :slight_smile:

You could not figure out how to look under the car to see where the oil leak was coming from but you are confident you could swap engines.

Do you think it is possible you are overestimating your capabilities?


Let me take a wild guess here… 06’ Honda Civic, a puddle and I will bet some form of low hanging Cold Air intake or Airbox modification? Did you leave that little detail out?

Civic’s can go thru puddles all day long deep enough to touch the bottom of the door frame (at a reasonable pace) with no problems whatsoever. But if you messed with the Air intake system for the engine…you will have an issue exactly as you describe and thusly Hydro-lock the engine by going thru a deep puddle.

I’m also guessing that you are one with limited engine diagnostic/rebuild skills, yet with a little bit of wrench turning, parts swapping “skill”. Just enough info to get you into real trouble.

Let us know how low your Cold Air Intake dips down, and or what your Airbox mods were and this thread will be much more useful to you. No stock Civic on the planet will wet its air filter by going through a “puddle”. Either that puddle was up to your side mirrors or you installed a CAI and it was thirsty for a drink of water that day. Which is No Bueno for reasons we could elaborate on if you like.