How To Test For A Blown Head Gasket (1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998 5.2L V8 Jeep Grand Cherokee)

There are 4 tests that are done to find out if you have a blown head gasket on your hands. In this tutorial I'll explain all 4 of them in a step-by-step way.

The cool thing is, that you can do these tests yourself. Two of those four tests require no tools at all.

Symptoms Of A Blown Head Gasket

A blown head gasket, which is usually the result of severe engine overeating, can cause severe engine performance problems.

For the most part, blown head gasket problems fall into one of two categories.

Either the engine starts but overheats or the engine doesn't start at all.

You'll see one or more of the following symptoms when one or both of the head gaskets are blown on your 5.2L Jeep Grand Cherokee:

  1. Your 5.2L V8 Jeep Grand Cherokee is overheating.
  2. When you start the engine, white smoke comes out of the tail-pipe and it smells like anti-freeze being cooked.
  3. Engine cranks but won't start.
  4. Engine starts and runs but misfires.
  5. The engine oil is thick and tan to off-white color.

TEST 1: Engine Oil Mixed With Coolant

Engine Oil Mixed With Coolant. How To Test For A Blown Head Gasket (1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998 5.2L V8 Jeep Grand Cherokee)

One of the most common end results of a blown head gasket is the engine oil mixed with engine coolant.

So for our first test we'll check the color of the engine oil to see if it's mixed with engine coolant.

These are the test steps:

  1. 1

    Open your 5.2L V8 Jeep Grand Cherokee's hood.

  2. 2

    Pull out the engine oil dipstick.

  3. 3

    Check the color of the engine oil on the dipstick.

    You'll see one of two of things: The engine oil is mixed with coolant and a creamy tan/ off-white color or the engine oil will be its usual normal color.

Let's interpret your test result:

CASE 1: The color of the oil is a light tan, like ‘coffee with too much cream’. This tells you that you've got a blown head gasket.

CASE 2: The color of the engine oil is normal. This is good since it means that coolant isn't entering the crankcase via the head gasket.

There's still another test to do and this is to check to see if coolant shoots out of the radiator (with the cap removed) when you crank your your Jeep Grand Cherokee's engine. For this test go to: TEST 2: Coolant Shooting Out From Open Radiator.