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I need advice from a motor mechanic

(22 Posts)
Lambchops Wed 15-Oct-03 13:01:44

I suppose this isn't really a topic for mumsnet, and there have been such spats recently about sexism but I really am a bit of a dipstick (pun!) when it comes to cars. So, do any of you have the knowledge or maybe your DH/DPs (avoiding any sexism here) to answer my question.
We had a 1997 Rover Sterling 2.5i automatic with about 53,000 miles on the clock. A couple of weeks ago some oil had leaked into the coolant. We were advised to get rid of the car as quickly as possible as it was probably the cylinder head cracking. Were we given the correct advice? Any knowledgable people have an opinion?
Thank you in advance

doormat Wed 15-Oct-03 13:12:00

You were given the corect advice lambchops.

If the cylinder head goes, it is alot of money to repair.

lou33 Wed 15-Oct-03 13:13:33

This may help , or maybe this ?

oliveoil Wed 15-Oct-03 13:14:49

My dh is a mechanic but I can't ask him as he is at a friends funeral today . I can ask him tonight but be prepared for a longwinded answer, with diagrams probably.

dadslib Wed 15-Oct-03 13:15:20

Message withdrawn

oliveoil Wed 15-Oct-03 13:21:24

Do you know all this cos you are a man

JOKE! I was not involved in the recent mudslinging!

dadslib Wed 15-Oct-03 13:33:40

Message withdrawn

oliveoil Wed 15-Oct-03 13:39:57

Ooooh smell that testosterone (sp?)

Jenie Wed 15-Oct-03 13:43:50

I don't want to appear sexist but cars are imho a mans domain, I'd never be able to look good in overalls

Dadslib - good to see you back

Lambchops Wed 15-Oct-03 15:50:50

Thank you. We have actually already got rid of the car but I wondered if we really did need to get rid of it. It cost us a lot of money that could have been spent on other things.
Hooray for Mumsnet! And I do appreciate the men on here (Dadslib, Tom and others) although I am as guilty as the next woman of, just occasionally mind, making the odd disparaging comment about men in general!
But thanks for the car advice. I am not worrying so much that we bought a new car unnecessarily.

dadslib Wed 15-Oct-03 16:20:02

Message withdrawn

philippat Wed 15-Oct-03 17:04:11

While we're asking motor advice:

I have a car that no one is ever going to take off my hands. Does anyone know how I go about scrapping it? Will it cost me?

dadslib Wed 15-Oct-03 17:08:19

Message withdrawn

whatsaname Wed 15-Oct-03 17:16:14

If you want to get rid of cars - just dump them next to my house, that's what xp has done!

waterbaby Wed 15-Oct-03 17:20:56

YOu used to be able to give them to the local Fire Brigade, but I think thats been stopped now... might be worth a check! Two of our student wrecks died and went to heaven in that way - with the first, which was annoying the *** out of me as it kept breaking down, it was exhilarating to watch it being cut up, with the second (my first car) they burnt it - much more sad!

PamT Wed 15-Oct-03 18:28:00

Mayonnaise on the oil cap can mean that the head gaskett needs replacing and if you catch it in time the cylinder head will be ok. Other symptoms are high temperatures, lots of water being used and when the radiator cap is removed and the engine started you can see the water bubbling. I had the head gasket replaced on my old polo last month, oil and filters changed and new thermostat for a total cost of £160 (small local one man garage). The cylinder head had to be sent away for skimming and the job took 4 days.

Now the flaming fuel pump is on it's way out!

Philippat, we had to scrap a caravan this year and would have been charged £40 by the scrap yard, the council didn't want to know and no one else was interested. We advertised "free for spares" in Adtrader ( and couldn't believe the response - not bad for free advertising. You may well be able to get £50 or so for spares on a car.

doormat Wed 15-Oct-03 18:59:28

phillipat just phone up local scrappies and ask them to collect it and will they charge you for this.
Some do charge, others dont.

SoupDragon Wed 15-Oct-03 19:00:18

Philippat, what sort of car is it? I stuck my non-running, slightly rusty MkII Escort on Ebay and got £130 for it.

philippat Wed 15-Oct-03 19:12:09

ooh, good thought re ebay.

The thing runs fine, but unfortunately it's american and thus left hand drive, impossible to get parts for (and therefore a bit useless to sell FOR parts too), blah blah blah. And just a crappy little suzuki so no glam US car appeal.

But in ebay world it's just possible there's someone crazy enough to want it. I'll give that a try first followed by the firemen (who could resist).

SoupDragon Wed 15-Oct-03 19:59:46

I set my start price at £15 which covered the listing fees (which are more expensive for cars than the usual ones).

Lambchops Wed 15-Oct-03 22:30:16

Dadslib, oh dear, you sussed me out straight away. However,in my defence, it's not the first time DH has embellished the truth/pulled the wool over my eyes concerning cars and I just had this wee niggle yet again........
I still appreciate your advice though.
Lou33, thanks for these links. Next time I need information I'll try Google. I rather like Mumsnet being able to advise on cylinder head gaskets aswell as painful nipples!

SueW Wed 22-Oct-03 23:59:15

Lambchops - did you see Watchdog last night (Tues)? A feature about the K series engines in various Rover models inc Freelanders, MGFs and others and their head gaskets lasting not even half the length of time/mileage yours did.

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