Thursday, September 22, 2011

Problem with 88 Cadillac Fleetwood 4.5L?

I've got a Cadillac Fleetwood commercial chassis with the FWD 4.5L. Last time I drove it all was fine, but the other owner had it for a couple of months and replaced the radiator hose due to a small leak where the hose had rubbed through.

Now that I've got it back, the temp light comes on after very short trips of 10 miles or less. It was low on coolant when I got it and put 1.5 gallons in it to fill it up initially. I checked the next day, it was again low, and that time I put over 2 gallons in it, started the car, checked it again - and again no coolant to be seen in the radiator. When running at idle, it blows tons of white smoke out the tailpipe.

I've checked the oil, it's not overfull nor does it appear to be mixed with coolant. My initial thought was the head gasket since I'd been told one one Cadillac engine there was a special procedure for a thermostat change otherwise the gasket could blow. But, as I said it's losing over 2 gallons in less than a minute of running at idle. Also, when the temp light came on I tried to turn the heat all the way up to dissipate some of the heat, but I got nothing out of the vents (probably because there was no coolant to circulate).

Does anyone have any ideas here? I'm wanting to sell the car, and have a buyer waiting - but obviously I can't sell it if the engine is having a major issue. As I said, I haven't had the car in a couple of months so I have no idea how it was treated in that time frame, or what if anything was done to it. Also, the fan temp light occasionally kicks on as well.Problem with 88 Cadillac Fleetwood 4.5L?
Before replacing the head gaskets be sure to check the intake manifold gaskets. That engine is notorious for bad intake gaskets that give all the symptoms of head gasket failure. Also if it does happen to be the head gaskets that are bad be careful when removing the head bolts because they have a tendency to pull the aluminum block threads out when removing them. You should have a shop perform a cooling system pressure test and a cylinder leak down / compression test to determine what it is that's causing the problem because the more you drive it while overheating the more damage and money your costing yourself. Good luck and hope this helps.Problem with 88 Cadillac Fleetwood 4.5L?
22 years old and blowing 2 gallons per min out the tail pipe? You have a blown head gasket , big time. or you have a large 7 cyl water pump. 2 gallons is almost a full system. Pull the plugs. That should indicate which bank needs a gasket, Just better off to do both sides.Problem with 88 Cadillac Fleetwood 4.5L?
yeah i think its your head gasket if the smoke on the tail pipe smells like anifreze its your headgasket

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