I have a 2006 with a 5.7 Hemi. Last week it over heated, never got to the red but it smoked like crazy.
The water in the reservoir was a chocolate milky color for some time before the over heat.
The radiator was cracked at the bottom and we replaced the radiator.
To move the car I put it in Neutral with the key in the on position, left key in the on position for several hours while radiator was changed.
This is what happened next:
1. Engine would not start battery wear, replaced battery. Old battery was 5 years old, anyway.
2. Car started but would not idle, engine would shut off.
3. Checked oil, it was low so we added and started right up and kept idling.
4. Engine started to miss fire badly. Changed all the plugs, the old plugs in cylinder #7 were bent.
5. After checking extensively #7 cylinder was not firing, with white smoke coming out of the exhaust. Codes were P0300 and P2320
6. I said must be a blown head gasket.
7. I call the dealer and asked how much is a head gasket replacement? Took my name and checked my records said about $1,500.
8. I drive the truck to the dealer a 25 minute drive. Truck smoked (white smoke) for about the first 10 minutes then stopped.
9. Could not go past 35 MPH truck would miss fire really badly, and shake the truck.
10. Left it at the dealer for a day and a half they called and said “you have a blown head gasket”, you need to change it, and the head may be bad as well, could be bad valve on cylinder #7.
11. Gives me an estimate of $2,100 for both head gaskets and maybe $800 for a new head. About $3,000 + to repair.
12. With 177,000 miles on the truck, the service manager asked if I would want to trade in and get a new one.
13. Dealer offered $3,000 for truck as is. I look at the brand new 2014 and took for a test drive; it’s sweet, real sweet.
14. I kind of get the feeling I am being pushed into a new car. This 2006 is in excellent condition I have tried to maintain it well oil changes every 5,000 miles, new tries just 2 months ago, changed filters etc…………
15. So my dilemma is does it really sound like a head gasket? Or could it be an easier fix? The # 7 spark plug (new) did not show signs of firing. All the others are firing. Also there was some oil on the #7 plug as well. I guess I could just tear it down and rebuild the engine for kicks but might be an ongoing project.
Thanks for the advice in advance……………….