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Discussion Starter #1
Hi fellow alfaowners,
Not having real problems with my GTV during the past 8-9 months, it was due for sth and what a thing.
The temperature went up to 110 and no warm air from heater , I drow back home immediately (3-4 miles),called the road help.

The guy checked the car, realized there was no water, added 4-5 liters of water, and after 10-20 seconds the water boiled. the car can still start and run but he said it is too risky to drive to the garage.
He also said he thinks the engine is DEAD! mAN, NOOO.. I said it is still running, and i just drew 3-4 miles after i realized the problem , how come!!!He said he could smell benzine in the water(i guess it is called the head tank)

So today I called a transporter to take it to the alfa service as it is so precious to me, but
Any ideas, I read the forum. It might be a head gasket, it means it will cost me over 1000 euros, maybe 2. But is it possible the engine is completely dead. I am waiting a call from the service for the information, but I am looking for some hope!!

Well, wish me luck.And any cheering up messages will be welcome.
greets
 

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It's possible you're OK. But it's equally possible that the oil overheated and thinned out and that the engine's damaged.

If it only took 4-5 litres of water, then there was still some left in the system. That *may* have been enough to keep things OK.

If you drove moderately, then even if the oil thinned out, you *may* have avoided damage to the engine.

Once the overheating has been diagnosed and solved, it would be advisable to have the engine checked - at the very least, have the sump off and the big end shells looked at. Not sure what the best way is to check for any cylinder bore scoring or valve damage ... anyone?

Bottom line is that you should have avoided driving it at all once the temperature warning light came on.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for your comments Gooman.i just called the service, the guy said the radiator is broken and that is probably the main cause of the leakage. He will tell me tomorrow precisely the overall diagnose.
I hope the engine will be damagefree.
Ah, the tempreature warning light didnt came on at all>in fact i always keep my eye on the temprature cause one of my friends had his heat gasket changed and it costed him quite a lot. Although i learned from his experience, I thought the car rides ok, and the light is not on, so let me just get back to home in 2-3 min! Was a costly idea, now that I learned...!!!
 

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Head gasket may have gone, that would explain smelling hydrocarbons/benzene in the water, but its a bit of a coincidence, gasket/radiator at the same time, true a leaking gasket could have pressurised the coolant system and finished off a weak radiator but chances are it's just your radiator thats gone, red hot antifreeze smells a bit too!, as for damaging the engine re the above scenario the chances are very small, anyway hope its just ur rad.
ps can you trust the mechanic?, its always a bit worrying when they immediately start to mention "dead" engines!.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
It was the road help guy who said he thinks the engine is dead after checking out the car for 15min.

I was shocked, cause I thought I was early(!!!) to realize there might be a serious problem(i was on my way to germany and just came back home after 5-10km),
The car was driving normal, only at the red lights I had to give more gas than usual. I was hoping some valve is out or sth(i am not that familiar with mechanics of the car) and the road help can fix it, so that I can go on to my trip of 150 miles. And after 15min he said, the engine is most probably dead. I am still afraid I will get bad news tomorrow, cause I didnt tell the mechanic at the Alfa service that I did drive the car in that condition for 5-10 km mostly in the city traffic.(wanted to see first what he finds out)

I will tell him tomorrow so that he checks if there is any damage done to the engine.
 

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Yeah its best to give him the full story, fingers crossed then, engines are a lot stronger than we usually think, it will probably be ok, let us know tomorrow.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Morning Guys,
The mechanic just called and said he has to change the radiator,750 euros. I asked him about the engine, if everything is fine with it etc. He said, he cant check it withouh changing the radiator first, cause the engine gets hot immediately as there is no working cooling.What you guys think? Is it a gamble, to change the radiator first and hope the engine is allright??
 

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I think he's right that you need to replace the rad to be able to check everything else.

But he's taking the p*** on the price ...

In the UK, you can get a new rad for £145 (plus VAT and carriage) from EB Spares. It's not a massive job to fit it. Autolusso did me a new rad, including fitting and VAT for £225.

Sounds like he's trying to hold you to ransom. Ask him to itemise his price - parts and labour.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I am sure he is inflating the price by around 100-150 euros as it is the official Alfa service.But the radiator only costs around 320-350 here in the internet.

Onderdelen » Koeling » Radiateurs » ALFA ROMEO » GTV (916C_) | 1994.09-??? - WINPARTS.nl

You are lucky to live in UK,the motoring is considerably cheap than rest of the Europe! the guy sounded like he knows what he is doing, but I will be devestated if sth happened to the engine, cause it is going to be very difficult to pay(or not) 2-3K for an engine where the car is worth 6-7K.
 

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Why can he not make a patch between the hose that goes to and from the rad, fill with water, then he would have enough time to be able to run the engine long enough to make a sniffer test (head gasket) and hear if there are any strange noises from the engine.

:)
 

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320 Euros is £280 ... at that rate it would be cheaper to order a rad from EB Spares and get it shipped to the Netherlands!

The job shouldn't take more than 2 hours (maybe even 1 hour). Even using the Winparts price, it means that your Alfa dealer is charging 140 Euros an hour for labour!

Isn't there an independent Alfa specialist in the Netherlands?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Hey GTV-TB,as I dont know much about how things work in the car, i was convinced with the arguments the guy said, and I said ok, what the hell, I have to have it fixed anyway so let's get it done.And Gooman, you are right. Probably it was possible to save 200 euros. I am checking some specialists here, if more problems occur after rad change, I will take my car to an independent Alfa garage. It is mostly duty to my inexperience with the way things work in Netherlands.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
The mechanic at the Alfa dealer just called, he said I could pick the car, after changing the radiator,the temperature stays stable, and the car rides fine.... I hope he is right, I would be happy to get away with the radiator only. I will pick it up today, keep you posted in case some problems occur(i do hope not!!)...But i will not dare to see 240Km/h again for a while.;)
 

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The mechanic at the Alfa dealer just called, he said I could pick the car, after changing the radiator,the temperature stays stable, and the car rides fine.... I hope he is right, I would be happy to get away with the radiator only. I will pick it up today, keep you posted in case some problems occur(i do hope not!!)...But i will not dare to see 240Km/h again for a while.;)
How nice, if there was any damage from overheating so had it probably shown to right so immediately.

:)
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I drew back home from the garage. 15 km, at the rush hour around 17.30-18.00... I was really scarred as the temperature went up and up..50-70-90-91-92..and i was a very tight traffic which was not helping my GTV to cool down. But it made it! Temperature swang between 85-95, was moving more than usual, but felt like everything is working. Only, still I felt , i had to give more gas to get it going. I dont know much about it, but from what i read, heat gasket might be damaged, and benzine and water are mixing.I hope not! The mechanic said everything was ok,i will take that for now!Thanks for following up guys!
 

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If water had bin leaking into the combustion chamber you would probably have had misfires at least at low rpm's.
About to give more gas to get it going, give it some time and let the engine management adjust it's adaptive
values to the new cooling.
 

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85-95 is the right working temperature.

Once it's warmed up it should never go below 85-ish (allowing for the crap dial markings!) if your thermostat is working properly.

It shouldn't go above 95-ish if your cooling fans are starting up properly.
 
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