Head Gasket Replacement — Common Volkswagen Maintenance Services at Carter VW in Seattle
Blown head gaskets seem to always happen in pairs. First literally, when your vehicle suffers damage to a crucial gasket deep in the heart of the engine where combustion takes place — and then again metaphorically, when you realize how much it could cost you to replace!
However, there is good news. The resilient durability of German engineering means that, once this gasket is replaced and we take a long, hard look at your VW engine, the result will be, essentially, a full engine restoration! That means your car will be ready to serve you faithfully for another 100,000 miles or many, many more. And with proper maintenance, you can avoid a blown head gasket altogether.
Why Does my Volkswagen Need a New Head Gasket and Why is it so Expensive?
Motor oil circulates through the engine, lubricating fast-moving metal parts and keeping them free of dirt and debris. Coolant also flows through the engine, in different channels, keeping the engine cool. And inside the combustion cylinders, air and fuel are perfectly mixed and ignited to generate the power that makes your vehicle run. In between all these channels and crevices and cylinders? The head gasket, keeping them all separated.
Due to the stresses of time (and often accelerated by neglect), the head gasket can begin to fail, allowing coolant and/or motor oil to leach into the cylinders, among other things you definitely don't want happening in the engine. This can cause engine overheating, a rough idle and white smoke from the tailpipe. Eventually, the engine will overheat so utterly that it can even destroy itself.
To replace this gasket, we'll have to pull the cylinder head(s) off the engine block. Basically, this involves completely disassembling the engine — a time-consuming process best handled by factory-trained experts. The resulting labor costs are why a head gasket is among the more expensive automotive repairs. On the bright side, any work necessary to restore your engine to its former glory can easily and conveniently be performed while the engine is disassembled. So, once this gasket has been replaced, you'll have a refurbished engine and be well on your way to many more years of happy VW driving.
How do I Avoid a Blown Head Gasket?
A properly-maintained vehicle should easily give you hundreds of thousands of blown-head-gasket-free miles. The most common cause of premature head gasket failure is engine overheating. Excess heat will stress the gasket, cause metal to expand and contract and eventually cause the head gasket to fail. To prevent engine overheating, be sure to have your oil changed regularly. Dirty, aging oil won't do a good enough job lubricating and cooling your engine's rapidly-moving parts. Eventually, this could manifest as a blown head gasket — or other engine problems with similar-sized repair bills.
How to Book a Service Appointment at Carter Volkswagen
You can schedule your service appointment right here on our website. Or, if you have questions before you arrive, give us a call at the phone number on the bottom of this page. We look forward to meeting you! If time is of the essence, feel free to stop in today without an appointment. Walk-ins are always welcome at our service center, conveniently located at 5202 Leary Avenue Northwest, Seattle, WA 98107.
The Carter Advantage Sets us Apart from the Rest
With hassle-free loaner cars, free vehicle inspections, regular shuttle service, complimentary Wi-Fi and courtesy settings personalization, you'll get more during every maintenance visit at Carter Volkswagen. We call it the Carter Advantage. It's our dedication to earning your business through friendly, knowledgeable service and a comfortable, connected waiting area. Best of all, you can rest easy knowing your Volkswagen is being cared for by the experts. It's why we think the Carter VW service department is an even better value than neighborhood mechanics and national service chains.