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Old 01-05-2002, 12:01 PM
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Torque on Head bolts? I'm getting water

I torqued my head bolts down to 70 newton . that's all I did. It had 215K on the engine and I used the same head bolts but put new washers on them. The bolts seemed tight. I'm geting a little bit of water in the oil. Should I have replaced the head bolts they were 120mm ? I'm worried that the head is not tight enough.
I'm not driving it until I figure it out.
The manual said something about using a regular wrench and tighten the bolts twice by 90 degrees.
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Old 01-05-2002, 12:11 PM
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Your post did state the year and model of the car but if the torque spec. required two ninty degree rotations and they were not done you shoul replace the head gasket again and include the ninty degree rotations.
This advice assumes the head is straight (you did have it checked did'nt you?)
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Old 01-05-2002, 12:16 PM
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1989 300E , should I replace the head bolts also?
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Old 01-05-2002, 12:34 PM
pmizell's Avatar
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Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Houston, Texas
Posts: 838

YES! Replace the head bolts .... they're only like $1.50 each and the reason you have to replace them is they stretch the first time they're torqued. You won't achieve the same torque again, and might strip the threads if you try to retorque them again.

The 90 degree rotation is done after you torque to the required 70nm. After torquing to 70, follow the torquing diagram sequence and turn bolts 90 degrees. Then return to #1 AGAIN and turn 90 degrees again going in sequence. The head is then secure.

Good luck!


'91 300E, 206k miles

Last edited by pmizell; 01-05-2002 at 12:41 PM.
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Old 01-05-2002, 12:49 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: New Bedford, MA USA
Posts: 1,583
You should always use a torque wrench to tighten head bolts(first stage requires about 55 ft/lbs). Then, they are sequentially tightened thru two stages of 90 degree increases. That is, after initial torquing, repeat the sequence of 90 degrees for each bolt two times. DO NOT TIGHTEN THEM THRU 180 DEGREES ONCE. Do it in three stages as the book states. BTW, since you have already squashed your head gasket, with your previous eforts and since that was the presumed cause for your initial problem, I would seriously recommend not using that head gasket again. They are not designed for repeated use.
Jeff Lawrence
1989 300e
2000 Dodge Grand Caravan SE
No matter what you fix, there will always be something else to fix..
"Warranty" is just another way of postponing the inevitable.
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Old 01-05-2002, 04:41 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 18
When I torqued my head on my '92 300E I seem to remember that you should wait in between the initial torque to 70nm and each 90 degree cycle. I did not replace the head bolts. But, I did make sure they were well lubricated with motor oil. The last cycle of 90 degree turns was interesting. You actually could feel the head bolts stretch. Also, you work from the center of the head out. There should be instructions included with the head gasket.
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Old 01-05-2002, 07:15 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2000
Posts: 368
Initial torque varies according to engine. I think 103s is 70nm. 104s 55nm, etc.

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