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Help out a newbie to the duramax world, i just sold my 01 7.3L superduty which is tough as nails but expensive to mod to even keep up with a stock Dmax, hence why i have jumped shiped to the GM camp. Can someone clear up the head gasket issues? I found a really nice non-oilpatch 2005 lly that I was probably going to buy this week but I'm having second thoughts since reading the threads for LLY head gasket problems. Should I be looking for an LBZ? Are the head gaskets issues only on the LLY? I will be putting the basic mods, exhaust, intake, gauges, tuner, just fun, no racing, just hauling sleds in the winter and pulling a camper in the summer. I'm not a newbie to a diesel engine(journeyman heavy duty mechanic), so please give some straight up advice.
thanks in advance.:drink

ps: great forum, lots of hardcore gearheads on here:thumbsup
 

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Headgaskets can occue in every truck, but if you push the stock turbo hard enough a head can lift, but it's not very common. Slap a big charger making 50psi of boost and the heads will lift. BUT, a rod can bend before a headgasket blows too so...

If your planning on staying at or below 400rwhp all day everyday for the next 100k miles, I wouldnt be worried about your motor ;)



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and include a AFE turbo mouthpiece or lbz mouthpiece to your list of mods and that will help with any cooling issues
 

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Can't go wrong with a LLY but if you can get your hands on a LBZ with a six speed you are that mutch better off. Also were did you hear about all these haed gasket issues? Thats news to me. Welcome to the forum also!!!
 

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its a hit and miss thing on ann LLY mine blew at 40k two of my buddies have 100k and hasnt blown yet others on the have put less than 100k miles and theres have blown, id go with the LBZ unless your gettin the LLY fairly cheap IMO.
 

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Correct me if i'm wrong but i've noticed that most all the LLY's with blown head gaskets have had tuners on them. I'm not sayin thats a reasonable excuse cause they shouldn't have any issues with just mild tunes on them, aggressive tune is a different story but mild tunes, no.

So, what is the reason the LLY's have head gasket issues? Is it just the head bolts that can't handle the added pressure? You don't hear about HG issues before or after the LLY, so why the hell is it just the LLY's?
 

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Can't go wrong with a LLY but if you can get your hands on a LBZ with a six speed you are that mutch better off. Also were did you hear about all these haed gasket issues? Thats news to me. Welcome to the forum also!!!
All you have to do is lurk on this forum for a short while & there are a ton of threads started with people having problems with there head gaskets & the majority are LLY owners & this includes myself. It is well known that GM used alot of A series gaskets in the early edition LLY & they have now corrected the problem for the most part by putting a thicker gasket on from the factory. My opinion would be to stay away from th early model LLY 2004.5 & early 2005. If you found one that is a 2005 look at the build date on the drivers door & see if its from 07/05 to the end of the production year.
 

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yeah they lowered the compression to 16.5:1 on the early 06 lly and the lbz's ,thats why the early llys are bad about it too much cylider pressure.
 

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All you have to do is lurk on this forum for a short while & there are a ton of threads started with people having problems with there head gaskets & the majority are LLY owners & this includes myself. It is well known that GM used alot of A series gaskets in the early edition LLY & they have now corrected the problem for the most part by putting a thicker gasket on from the factory. My opinion would be to stay away from th early model LLY 2004.5 & early 2005. If you found one that is a 2005 look at the build date on the drivers door & see if its from 07/05 to the end of the production year.
Well I just checked mine and it was built in 03/05, so I guess I leave it stock for a few years, :mad: Why the hell did GM change the HG's from the LB7's to the LLY's if there wasn't an issue with the LB7's?
 

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there is issues with the LB7's, most of them are tuned but they also have less cyl pressure than the LLY.
 

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I guess I'm safe....my build Oct 2005
 

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Discussion Starter #12
thanks for the great input, i guess i'll be shopping for an lbz
 

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there is issues with the LB7's, most of them are tuned but they also have less cyl pressure than the LLY.
oh really? How do you know this? Have you done cylinder pressure datalogging?

why do people just throw out this stuff when they dont even know if its true or not, only if its heresay or "I read it on a forum somewhere"

Ive broken a lot of parts on duramax's, more than probably 98% of the people on here, but I have never blown an LLY head gasket, or dealt with any blown head gaskets on 'highly' modified (big single, built trans, but no headstuds etc...) LLY's that I have worked on/built.

I think its just a string of bad luck. Stuff breaks, it doesnt mean its a "problem". No duramax's have "headgasket problems". 6.0 powerstrokes DO have "head gasket problems"

you guys are all freaking out over nothing. Just drive your truck and stop worrying. :)

ben
 

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I have an earlier 05 build date LLY. I was running some pretty decent power (at the time) for 85k miles. After 85k miles I cracked 2 pistons. I tore the motor down and found 3 other pistons with huge cracks starting in the lips of the reeantrant bowl. All of the rods were slightly shortened as well. I ran that motor HARD; it didnt owe me anything. Ran flawlessly/zero problems right up until it blew up.

OH and how could I forget to mention that the factory original head gaskets (no studs or anything, I ran several different big single chargers, build trans, lots of fuel, etc) were still perfectly sealed.

Two other friends have over 100k miles on their LLY's (late mid 2004 and late 2004 build dates) also running big singles and built transmissions; zero head gasket problems.

So I guess the big LLY headgasket scare/buzz that goes around forums means nothing huh....

ben
 

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well your special arent you? dont see how its not a problem if theres a new thread on here everyday where someones blown a headgasket, and mine had a small tune and blew at 40k and theres not another truck on here ran like mine ill guarantee you that and others are still blowing them,so tell me that smartass.
 

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well your special arent you? dont see how its not a problem if theres a new thread on here everyday where someones blown a headgasket, and mine had a small tune and blew at 40k and theres not another truck on here ran like mine ill guarantee you that and others are still blowing them,so tell me that smartass.
theres probably 100 or so threads about blown head gaskets on this tiny little forum. You know how many dmax's have been made? Almost 1.5 million. Figure 300,000 were LLY's. Do the math on the failure rate.

You must just have shitty luck. Some people do and some dont. In my experience LLY's are NO MORE susceptable to head gasket failures than any other duramax, unless they have been overheated (because some LLY's do run hot). Then again not everyone drives their trucks into snowbanks either..........

In your own experienced opinion, why do only LLY's have this "supposed head gasket problem". You seem to ahve it all figured out? Do you replace your own head gaskets?

ben
 

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yes i did sent the heads to kidwell machine had the heads shaved 6 thousandths where i ran them so long blown, new exhaust and intake valves , so-cal seals & guides, did the arp studs, all myself im not payin some dumbass to screw up my truck, no one here has worked on d-maxs that much, the #7 piston was scoured a bit too, if it cant take it ill build it to take it.anything in my avatar i did myself.
 

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yes i did sent the heads to kidwell machine had the heads shaved 6 thousandths where i ran them so long blown, new exhaust and intake valves , so-cal seals & guides, did the arp studs, all myself im not payin some dumbass to screw up my truck, no one here has worked on d-maxs that much, the #7 piston was scoured a bit too, if it cant take it ill build it to take it.anything in my avatar i did myself.
no here as in the forum? apparently you dont know much about many people here on the forum then
 

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yes i did sent the heads to kidwell machine had the heads shaved 6 thousandths where i ran them so long blown, new exhaust and intake valves , so-cal seals & guides, did the arp studs, all myself im not payin some dumbass to screw up my truck, no one here has worked on d-maxs that much, the #7 piston was scoured a bit too, if it cant take it ill build it to take it.anything in my avatar i did myself.
you took .006" off the head???? I really hope you got your deck height and protrusion measured correctly. :eek:

for however much money you spent at the machine shop you could have bought some LBZ/LMM heads for cheap and not had to mess around with cutting them down.......thats really a last resort....you dont want to increase the CR anymore than you have to.

ben
 

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yes the deck height was re-done and went with c grade gaskets. i sent the heads off originally to just have them slightly surfaced but they were worse than i thought and when they tore them apart they found the valves had distoreded from extremly high egt's so thats why i put so much into them and i couldnt find anyone who had heads to sell seperatly from the motor.
 
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