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  1. #1
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    Possible Head gasket Failure 2009 Astra CD Auto Z18XER.

    Hi guys
    Thanks for adding me. Im from Sydney and just picked up above vehicle last Friday night. Im stoked having paid only $2500 with 1 months rego + brand new battery. I have been driving past this car for almost 11 months where it has been parked up not being used. I helped the lady owner drop a new battery into it and thats when I learned odometer said 194,800 kms. Also the Multi Function Display didnt come up.The following day I brought a compressor over and pumped up the tyres + test drove it.The discs were really heavily rusted I thought but have cleaned up well since driving it.It drove really well.

    I knew there was something wrong with it when I looked at the oily substance under expansion tank yellow cap. It wasnt obvious then that it was engine oil and read up about coolant mixing with Automatic Transmission Fluid with some of the Astras on the web. I convinced myself that was the problem and an easy fix ie external trans cooler , flush cooling system + flush automatic. The coolant bottle/cap didnt smell of engine oil , It didnt really smell of anything and def not milky both that or the oil filler cap. The engine oil has a dark golden colour.

    Since getting it home Ive gone right through the car and it seems to have a head gasket problem. The engine oil is like golden syrup meaning its thick. It hasnt overheated but the expansion bottle has a sludge of engine oil + water it would seem. Im not taking anything apart until I diagnose this correctly but at this stage it would seem Im up for a head gasket replacement. I hope its just that and nothing else like a crack in the engine block. Im not driving it until I sort this out as I dont want to make it worse. The concern is the engine oil being syrup like and why is it in the expansion bottle.

    Im going to put 500 ml of diesel in the engine oil and let it idle/circulate and do an oil change (cheap oil at this stage) I need to see it overheat or something before dismantling anything.

    Thoughts? Thanks in advance.
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  2. #2
    OpelAus Enthusiast HoldenAstra's Avatar
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    Check oil cooler, also a friend of mine had rocker cover gasket failure as well on this car.
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  3. #3
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    Ok I will have to have a look for the oil cooler as I`m still getting acquainted with the car.
    It seems the oil in the expansion bottle is engine oil.
    The thing that threw me off diagnosing a head gasket was the fact that the cap and the bottle didnt have that characteristic engine oil smell.
    Also no milky oil anywhere. Im wondering If that is because the engine oil is full synthetic.
    Also the Oring on the expansion bottle cap has lost its elasticity and has deformed. It definitely wont seal now and will certainly overheat. A mechanic I know said he wants to see the oily cap and went on to say he hasnt heard of Astra`s that have head gasket issues.

  4. #4
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by HoldenAstra Click here to enlarge
    Check oil cooler, also a friend of mine had rocker cover gasket failure as well on this car.
    Thank you HoldenAstra It turns out my oil cooler may be cracked somewhere and letting engine oil into the coolant.
    The spare part is @$600 so not happy about that especially if this is a common problem. Im about to call Holden to see If this part has been superseded.
    I have also tracked down a replacement oil cooler in China which delivered comes in just under $200. I will have to wait @ 4 weeks for that to arrive though.

  5. #5
    OpelAus King Dingaling dutchy's Avatar
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    Check europe for genuine parts too.

    Sent from my E5823 using Tapatalk
    2013 Astra sport 1.6T, asteroid grey, AFL+ adaptive bi-xenon headlights, FlexRide adaptive chassis control, 19" wheels, group buy door sill plates, carbon tint, de-lettered, smoked side indicators, Mtech short shifter, GM pedal covers, EDS Motorsport ipf stage 1
    http://www.opelaus.com/forums/showth...554#post821554

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    Ok so today I cleaned out the expansion tank with some dishwasher powdered concentrate. It did clean it somewhat but I had more success when I sprayed 1/3 of a can of degreaser into it and sloshed it around to lift the sludge sitting on the bottom. I then refitted the tank back into the car after rinsing it a couple of times. Refilled it with tap water up to the line and screwed on the cap. After going for a quick run around the block I popped the bonnet and found the tank to be contaminated with engine oil again.

    From what Ive read on the net oil in the coolant can come from the oil cooler or a Front Cover Gasket - GM (24405911). With the oil cooler I can purchase the whole assy or the cooler itself and the gaskets/seals. Has anyone done a autopsy on the cooler to find out whats going on?

    Is there some way of determining what is leaking or do I bite the bullet and do both the cooler and the front cover gasket? along with new cam belt kit etc. Cheers

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