Chevy Engine Noise After Gaskets Replaced

Question:
I have a 2004 Chevy Impala LS with a 3800 6 cylinder Engine. It has 76000 miles on it and the check engine light was on. My mechanic told me that my radiator was never flushed and oil was mixing in with the radiator fluid. (Sounds to me like I had a bad head gasket).

The repairs along with a serpentine belt replacement cost me over $1100 to get repaired. I started hearing a whining sound and I thought there was a bad bearing on the belt tension guide. The engine light comes back on two weeks later and it $625 to fix the EGR valve with an oil change. I asked them to check on the whining noise and the mechanic showed me was whenever the oil cap is removed, with the engine running, the engine noise stops. Says he never seen anything like that in the 20 years he been an ASE mechanic.

Says I need some valve work done and that is going to cost more. After paying $1800 into repairs, with more to come. Is this common for the 2004 Impala LS or is the mechanic looking to finance his second vacation home? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Answer:
What repairs were done for the first $1100. This sounds like a problem one of my Tech's has seen. Was there something done with intake manifold of gaskets?

VISITOR REPLY:
On Dec 16th An Engine Light error message indicating a Coolant Thermostat was needed. Replace Anti-Freeze, Intake Manifold Reseal/requiring intake manifold set, lower gasket intake and nipples. An oil change with Valvoline High Mileage Lube and Filter. Serpentine Belt Oil Drain plug, and Diagnostic Charge all for $1,034.39On Feb 19th after engine light came on again.I needed an EGR valve. Fuel System Cleaning and de-carbon. All for $627.88.

Answer:
OK. Then I have the answer as to why your Impala has that engine noise and when removing the oil cap it stops. Your engine is also burning oil. This is not a valve train problem, DO NOT have him take the engine apart !. The mechanic that did the intake work messed up. He forgot to put in the PCV valve, or forgot an O' ring on the PCV valve. This is the reason for your problem.

Question:
I had no problems with the car before I replaced the heater hose fittings. It actually cracked as I was pulling into my driveway so I don't think that I overheated the car. After making the repairs and putting it back together, the car won't start. I've had the battery checked and it's at 100%. The lights, windows, automatic seat, and everything else electrical inside the car work... except the radio. It doesn't light up or anything. It doesn't even try to start. There's no clicking noise like when the battery needs jumped.

Answer:
With radio not working, i would suggest checking all the fuses first. Is the theft / security light on the dash? If so you have a problem in the security system of the car. If not, you need to have some basic diagnosis done. First, you would need to have the purple wire at the starter checked for power when trying to start the car. This wire is the starter solenoid wire. If it does have power, then the starter is bad. If no power, then further diagnosis is needed to find out why it does not crank. Possible ignition switch, crank relay, wiring problem, etc. None of this would be related to that coolant fitting.

Question:
I have a 2004 Chevy Impala 3.8, took the upper and lower manifolds off and there are 4 coolant holes around the 6 cylinders , 2 on each side the one on passenger side in the rear was plugged with what reminded me of particle board, i removed it easily, now on the manifold there is just 2 holes both on drivers side one in front and one in back, on the passenger side front there is no hole at all it looks to be aluminum.

On the passenger side rear of the manifold, looks like a hole should be there but is filled with very hard junk like i dug out of the engine but it is not coming out so easily and it doesn't look like there is a water channel there anyway. Are all these holes suppose to be open or is this junk suppose to be in there clogging holes? And how many open holes are in the manifold?

Answer:
The holes in the 3800 intake gaskets you describe are correct. The other spots that are full of junk is just the fact that the coolant stops there and accumulates. This is normal. Dexcool antifreeze has a tendency to do that, especially if it has never been changed. Just clean the manifold real good before replacing the gaskets and re-assembling the engine.

You may also want to drain the radiator before putting it back together. After it is all done, use a good cooling system cleaning kit from the local parts store to clean out the rest of the system and drain and fill it again.


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