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Engine swap maybe?

791 Views 7 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  oldeerslayer
So this is a weird one. I have a 1982 Chevy s10 2.8l v6 (carburetor). I've had water in my oil since I replaced my water pump. But at the same time I replaced my timing chain cover/ water pump mount (one in the same).
So I thought I had blown head gaskets, so I did a compression test but all cylinders were good (better than before most of them). Well me and a two buddies tore it apart to the heads, the valve covers are in-between the air intake manifold and the heads. Well there was a good 1/16" height gap between the air intake manifold and heads so water was going through the water jackets in the heads straight into the block. I was wondering if I could put a different air intake, heads and valve covers to be more like a small block, valve covers just on the heads, or should I just engine swap to a 4.3?
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I'm confused. What was causing this "gap"? Unless you pulled the intake manifold, nothing should have changed there when you made this repair. It's not uncommon for the intake to appear to not line up with the head where they join, which is why they are notorious for leaking. (I got a fix for that too), so don't assume that if they don't line up that it's because they aren't at the base. Now, that being said, when you put a new manifold gasket on, it's imperative that you make sure that the intake is completely flush. It should have guide studs on each 4 corners to ensure that. The intake MUST be torqued down a bit at a time to ensure that the pressure is even as it goes down. There is a sequence. Many, many years ago as a young guy I somehow missed one of the bolts on the old 2.8 and it was getting coolant into the block. It's easy to screw up.

Now, if you have not touched the intake during this repair, my guess is that what is really happening is that timing cover/water pump housing isn't sealed well or that seal has become broken. It's important to note that a couple of the bolts that pass through the water jackets there hold the water pump on. There is a brace you can fabricate (in the Haynes and other manuals) to keep pressure on those two areas so that you may remove the pump without removing the front cover. If you just start jerking on the pump without that brace, you CAN break that seal and allow coolant into the engine. If you started getting coolant in the engine after this kind of repair, I don't think the intake is or was your issue if you hadn't touched it and there was no water in the coolant before. Also it's a good idea to put a little RTV on those bolt that pass through the water jacket. No globs. Just a little on the threads.

And remember, the 2.8 family is a 60 degree V6, so the smaller angle is why the head interferes with the intake. That's just by design.

Hope this helps.
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