Four Things That Contribute to a Cracked Head Gasket

A cracked head gasket is serious and you’ll fork out a couple of thousand dollars to have it repaired. There are four specific things that contribute to a cracked or blown head gasket and some of these things are unavoidable. This is why older cars often suffer from blown head gaskets. As head gaskets age, they can no longer withstand the engine combustion. Accurate Auto can help if you believe your head gasket has blown. If it has, here are four things that might have contributed to its demise.


Your vehicle’s combustion engine produces a ton of energy and pressure. When you turn the ignition to fire up your engine, your engine literally fires up. Air and fuel are mixed in the carburetor and sprayed into the combustion chamber where the spark plugs ignite it. There is tremendous pressure in the chamber, which generates tremendous force every time your engine cylinders fire. 


Along with the combustion force and pressure comes heat. Your cooling system is designed to keep your engine’s temperature under 220 degrees Fahrenheit, but the combustion chamber houses extreme temperatures. This extreme heat along with the temperature variances between the engine block and head gasket can stress the gasket to the point of rupture once age has worn it down.


If your engine is running too hot on top of everything else, you’re sure to crack a head gasket eventually. It’s important to keep your engine coolant filled to maximum capacity at all times to ensure it protects the head gasket. You should also have the coolant flushed and refilled per your vehicle manufacturer’s factory maintenance schedule. Excess heat will expand the head gasket and crack it.


Finally, vibration wears down all of your engine parts over time and you can’t avoid vibration. Not only does your engine vibrate while it runs, but you also have road vibration. Time takes its toll on the head bolts, too, which will expand and contract the older they get. This creates friction between the bolts and the head, and, you guessed it, this friction can wear down the head gasket.

Preventative maintenance and repairs when you need them help prevent your vehicle’s head gasket from cracking. Preventative maintenance replaces worn down engine parts and keeps the engine cool with coolant and oil changes. Accurate Auto can take care of your vehicle’s maintenance and repairs. We have three shops in Oregon, so call us today to schedule an appointment.

Photo by Stocksnapper from Getty Images via Canva Pro