The following pictures are from my "crap" citroen axgt. Recently the car has been running strangley giving the odd cough and splutter here and there. I had the carb off a week ago and gave it a good clean out removing a lot of crud and stuff. It ran fine for a bit but suddenly the spluttering on idle/half throttle returned again, so i chucked some carb cleaner down it and there was almost no difference, still hawked like it was running on two cylinders on half throttle. I then left it for a day or two, fired it up and took it to crail. all seemed well again, 16.6 seconds on the strip beating a few callys and gsi astras. i was well impressed.
On my last run facing my mate in his cally valver he was on his own and i was four up in an attempt to loose "6-0 to me at this point", I finally lost. But during the run a water hose burst forcing me to retire.
Anyway i botched a repair and continued home without a heater. Just as i turned into my drive the car started to chugg again so i decided to take the head off for a closer look and this is what i found.
From the pictures, the cylinder on the right and head crown on the left is where the head gasket was indicating a problem. The evidence suggests the leak was minor possibly only occuring when cold/warming up or something. But the discolouration on the exhaust valves on the left hand side (with reference to the picture below), were worrying me a bit.
Would the colour of the valves be down to water leaking through the head gasket? or possibly another problem.
Forgive me if I'm wrong but don't those sooty, black piston crowns look as if it's running a bit rich?
Have you been running neat water in the cooling system? Because an engine with wet liners needs a strong antifreeze mix with, preferably, de-ionised water. If not, the head gasket will rot.
I didnt know about the need for antifreeze. It had plenty till the pipe burst then i ran home on the tap water from the toilet portocabin at crail. but this couldnt be helped
The car may have been running richer since i cleared out the carb so i will be getting that checked out later. Although the plugs seem fine so it may just be carbon build up on the crowns. Skimming work getting done tomorrow and i am gonna clean the valves grinfd them in etc.
As for the astra gsi thing. The ax just blows it away off the mark but the gsi crawls back fast 50 or so metres from the end, another 20 metres and they would have me. I was surprised how much it gubbed a vtr (15 car legnths). but i suppose they get much better MPG so they cant be burning enough feul to go fast and they weigh a fair bit more