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VW MKIV-A4 TDIs (VE and PD) This is a general discussion about A4/MkIV Jetta (99.5-~2005), Golf(99.5-2006), and New Beetle(98-2006). Both VE and PD engines are covered here.

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Old August 1st, 2018, 13:40   #1
drexer13
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TDI(s): 2004 Jetta
Default Head gasket only lasted 6000 Miles

Hello Everyone,

Im just looking for a bit of advice. My car is a 2004 Jetta with a bew. It has a Garret turbo, straight 2.5 exhaust and a cold air intake. Boost peaks at around 24 psi. The PO installed everything and had it tuned. I just (6000 miles ago) finished putting the motor back together after the cam and lifters self-destructed. I took the head to a buddy who pressure tested it, milled it flat and installed new valves guides. I reassembled the head and put the motor back together, and now 6k later the head gasket is blown.
What do you guys think might have happened?
Are there some common mistakes I might have made putting this thing back together?
Could the increase in boost pressure have anything to do with it?
Where does everyone get their parts? Is it possible that I just received a junk gasket?
Anyone else had a similar experience?
Any help with this is really appreciated.
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Old August 1st, 2018, 13:51   #2
Mike_04GolfTDI
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Did you use new head bolts and torque them correctly, and in the correct pattern?

First stage, 30 lb-ft
Second stage, 44 lb-ft
Third stage, turn 90 degrees
Fourth stage, turn 90 degrees

Was the correct thickness gasket selected based on piston protrusion?

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Old August 1st, 2018, 13:52   #3
mr.loops
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Hmm. Could be the HG at fault or possible installation error on your part

Got to ask; did you install new head bolts? Was it correctly torqued to spec?
Was the block checked for flatness?


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Old August 1st, 2018, 14:06   #4
pdq import repair
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Did the headgasket blow for sure? What are the symtoms? Where did you get the parts? Did you replace the bolts? Blow the holes before assembly?



Many many variables to conclude anything at this point.
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Old August 1st, 2018, 14:12   #5
drexer13
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Thanks for the responses guys I really appreciate it.

I did use new head bolts, I used the tightening pattern in my manual and torqued them according to the instructions. The deck of the block was also well within spec as far as flatness goes, but I didn't prep it in any other way except for giving it a good cleaning. is there something else I should have done to help the gasket seal better?
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Old August 1st, 2018, 14:32   #6
Mike_04GolfTDI
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Other than making sure the head and block are clean and flat, and the bolts are torqued according to specifications, there's not much else to it.

If you're sure the head gasket has failed, I guess the only thing to do now is pull the head off and have a look.
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Old August 1st, 2018, 14:57   #7
drexer13
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"Was the correct thickness gasket selected based on piston protrusion?"

No, I just matched the gasket thickness from the old gasket. Ill be sure to take that into account when I order parts for round two. Thank you

"Did the head gasket blow for sure? What are the symptoms?"

I’m sure the gasket is done. Initially I just noticed that the boost was way down, I thought it was probably a blown hose, but when I popped the hood I noticed the coolant was black instead of red, then I noticed a bit of oil seepage between the head and the block, then I had my wife sit in the car and rev it bit and found that exhaust and boost are also escaping between the block and the gasket. Miraculously it doesn’t look like there is any coolant in the oil but jury is still out on that.

"Where did you get the parts?"

I bought a cheap gasket kit with bolts off of eBay. But the head gasket itself I bought from another reputable online dealer. (I hesitate to name names because this could have very well been user error.) It came in a VW box so I assume it was oem.
Maybe the cheap bolts are to blame?

"Blow the holes before assembly?"

I ran a tap down each hole to make sure there were not any buggered threads and then I did indeed blow the holes out before assembly.
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Old August 1st, 2018, 17:12   #8
IndigoBlueWagon
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There are a lot of sub standard torque to yield bolts out there. I think you found your problem. You're running 10 PSI more than stock boost. I would only use OE VW head bolts in this case.
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Old August 1st, 2018, 17:36   #9
flee
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If this happened to me I would probably buy the ARP's the second time around.
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Old August 1st, 2018, 18:00   #10
drexer13
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Thats funny I was just looking for some arp head studs.
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Old August 1st, 2018, 18:22   #11
flee
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I assume your buddy is skilled at skimming a TDI head.
I would check it again and make sure he didn't take off so much that the valves
are now out of spec for extending past the head. It's something like 1.0 mm.
You didn't deck the block so just match the factory gasket's # of holes.
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Old August 1st, 2018, 19:13   #12
IndigoBlueWagon
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No genuine ARP studs for PDs.
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Old August 1st, 2018, 19:13   #13
drexer13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flee View Post
I assume your buddy is skilled at skimming a TDI head.
I would check it again and make sure he didn't take off so much that the valves
are now out of spec for extending past the head. It's something like 1.0 mm.
You didn't deck the block so just match the factory gasket's # of holes.
Thanks I'll check when I pull it apart again. I didn't even check when I assembled the head the first time. My buddy has been doing head work since he was 13 and hes in his 40's now. So I usually just take his word for when he tells me its good to go.
The original gasket was a 2 hole so Ill order another one. Is the factory gasket okay for a higher boost motor or should I be looking for something else?
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Old August 1st, 2018, 20:00   #14
ktmkris
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Kerma has arp headstuds for the pd engine. They are pricey though
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Old August 1st, 2018, 20:04   #15
mr.loops
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drexer13 View Post
Thanks I'll check when I pull it apart again. I didn't even check when I assembled the head the first time. My buddy has been doing head work since he was 13 and hes in his 40's now. So I usually just take his word for when he tells me its good to go.

The original gasket was a 2 hole so Ill order another one. Is the factory gasket okay for a higher boost motor or should I be looking for something else?


Make sure to post some pics of the pulled HG.


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