Re: Head gasket time approaches.... - Saab 9000 Bulletin Board -

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Re: Head gasket time approaches....
Posted by MT-Erik [Email] (#1104) [Profile/Gallery] (more from MT-Erik) on Mon, 28 May 2018 18:30:06

In Reply to: Head gasket time approaches...., Noel [Profile/Gallery] , Sat, 26 May 2018 11:31:49
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Hi Noel-
I've done this twice on 9000's. If I could do it, you'll be fine. I used Quasimotors' write-ups extensively, which has good info and good pictures.

Here are the parts I replaced:
Front crankshaft oil seal, balance and timing chains, all chain guides for both, cam sprockets (2), balance shaft chain tensioner, timing chain tensioner, lower balance chain sprocket, lower timing chain sprocket, cylinder head bolts, cylinder head and valve cover gaskets, intake and exhaust manifold gaskets, injector O-rings, turbo oil return gasket, turbo to exhaust downpipe gasket, serp belt, spark plugs. The is as complete a list as I can recall.

The drive sprocket for the timing chain showed a lot of wear, and the one for the balance chain less wear. The cam sprockets also showed wear. You can see an asymmetry in the teeth, and I think Quasi mentions this.

I also had the alternator overhauled at a local shop, replaced a couple of hoses that felt a little soft, and it's a good time to check your engine mounts and to think about the age of your water pump. I replaced mine with a rebuilt at the time.

As far as milling the head, a local shop cleaned it up nicely, with the original valves, but new valve guides. You already know, I'm sure, to ask them to mill off the minimum amount necessary to get it flat.

Do not hone your cylinders, whatever anyone tells you. It's tempting, while you're in there, but you'll probably be able to see the factory honing marks, which is astounding for any engine at advanced mileage, I think. If you hone them, you'll burn oil like crazy until you replace the engine. This mistake caused me to get a replacement engine from a wreck, and then my second cylinder head gasket job came when that engine had another 140K miles on it (had 60K when I got it from the wreck).

I think the extent of the job you want to do depends on how long you'll keep the car. I was planning to keep mine for another 10 years (ended up keeping it 16, rust in peace). If your compressions are good, you'll probably be fine not overhauling the bottom end. I wouldn't mess with the camshaft or cam bearings. Make sure you put the camshaft caps on correctly. One side has an oil pick-up tube on it (I think the intake side).

No need to remove the hood. Plenty of room. The turbo hook-up is a beast. I forget what exactly was the issue, but it was a struggle, getting socket wrenches with U-joints in there.

It took me about 3 weeks the first time and 2 weeks the second time, working evenings and weekends. Of course, the second time, my son was older and helped tremendously.

best of luck,
(formerly Erik919kT)

_______________________________________ - Erik _____________________________ '87 900S 3-door (sold) '88 9000T (rust in peace) '91 9000T (son drives) '93 9000 Aero (daily driver) '95 9000 CSE (RIP) '01 9-5 LPT wagon (RIP) '02 9-3 Viggen (daily driver)

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