OK- O rings replaced and not leaking, received my Nano, the wood trim is coming along-applying the matte finish, and now I am trying to decide if I should just go ahead and replace the head gaskets.
I am on the fence- I feel that I am losing too much coolant at idle after burping the system three times for it not going to the cylinders. I am dripping lots of water under each exhaust pipe exit-- I mean a big puddle on each side. I know when I first drove it when the temp was below freezing there was a constant cloud of water vapor-- but when driving it - in about 1 mile went away- then came back when I was at idle to drive it into the garage. Many say that their 4.6 blows condensation -but does it leave puddles on your driveway on each side? To me- new to LR's--this points to head gaskets since I cannot find another leak.
I refilled the coolant after the O ring replacement and can only burp it in the garage by running it up to 2500 rpm and holding since I do not have it tagged- and there is heavy salt on the roads up here in the mountains. During this, the temperature needle stays just left of 12:00. But after three cycles of this, I have to keep adding coolant to the expansion tank. I was hoping that the system was hard to completely bleed out without driving it. But after three cycles and still having to add about 3/8" of coolant each time to get it up to the cold mark-- I am starting to think my head gaskets are leaking.
Normally I would do a leak down and watch air go into the coolant tank-- but bumping this motor to TDC at each piston to do the leak down is a pain-- let alone screw in without cross thread into the spark plug holes. I had to go into my ZEN mode to "feel the threads" on a number of them.
Aside from adding coolant-- my big symptom is that at idle in the garage, I am dripping lots of water under each exhaust pipe. I have puddles after 20 minutes at idle.
I changed out the plugs which looked like they were in many many miles with the gaps about 50 thousands. As you know- a real pain to pull out- the threads were slightly rusty with no grease or anti-seize applied. I have seen slightly rusty threads before so I am not thinking steam.
They all looked pretty normal-- a bit of black carbon- light brown electrodes, but at the bottom side of each ground lug facing the piston, they were light white. I have not seen this before. I expected if there was a water leak then at least some of them would be steam cleaned of any black carbon. Not sure the white is a sign of most cylinder leaking.
Sooo - what is the normal series of tests to confirm--- besides a leak down? I have a radiator pressure tester- but no way is it set up for the cap used on the RR expansion tank. I could buy one off of Ebay and insert a Schrader valve-- but is this worth going down that road?
If I do just dive in and replace the head gaskets just to baseline the motor- are there any special tools which make the job easier? I have a 32 mm fan clutch removal tool- soon to get a 36mm tool for this job. I know the heat shields will be the first big pain-- any tools that make it easier?
I also know that the secondary air tubes will be a huge pain. I attempted to remove them to get a clear shot at the spark plugs but the nuts would not budge. The angle of attack is miserable for the back ones. Do most of you remove the heads with the tubes installed?
I assume APR studs- have not heard a downside except for cost. With China making so many aftermarket bits-- who do you trust to have a good head gasket kit?
Anyone have had the same symptoms --go to replace the head gaskets ---and find they were not the issue?
Thanks-- been through many of the treads-- seems like each head gasket replacement is a challenge unique to each owner and P38.