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MG MGF Technical - Replacing Inlet Manifold Gasket

I've traced a very slight coolant leak from my 97 MGF (23k miles) to the inlet manifold. I've discovered it's quite a common cause of coolant leak and I've ruled out any other reasons (no oil in the water, mayo in filler cap etc).

I phoned the dealer for some prices and was quoted £5 for the gasket and £100+ to fit it. Therefore I've decided to do it myself. It's a job I know I'll be able to do as I'm fairly skilled under the bonnet (or boot!) but I was wondering if anyone has done this already? Do you have any tips beforehand or any pitfalls I should look out for. Any idea how long I should expect it to take. It looks like it will be a bugger due to the inaccessability of the inlet manifold but I'm not making my dealer any richer. Any advice on this is really appreciated!

this might be of help to you:

~50Mb, includes all the K-engine manual.
Will Munns

Bob, if your MGF is an MPi and the gasket is the original black rubber type, then the chances are that you are spot on - these early gaskets are indeed a common cause of water leaks. We had this on our '97 Rover 214 as well...

But don't forget to thoroughly inspect the radiator, or any of the attendent cooling pipes - corrosion is a killer, and problems do start to materialise after about 5 years of age...

Good luck!
Rob Bell

I thought about attempting this myself when I discovered the same problem last year.. However, 3 of the studs you need to remove are a real pain, so access to a ramp would be very helpful. Also in the technical bulletin it was recommended to replace the fixing studs with new (and improved) items, sorry i don't have the part numbers. Given time and patience and a nice warm day or two you should be able to do it DIY. Just make sure you torque up the studs in the correct order and you bleed the coolant correctly.

I, in the end, did pay a man to do it but I really didn't fancy struggling on a cold wet January day.

Good luck
tim woolcott

If it were me I'd give them the money, undoing the lower fastenings will prove a bit of a challenge, even approaching from below. It's the automotive equivalent of wallpapering your house via the letterbox.

Dave Andrews

Your probably right. I know it's a job I'm able to do but the inaccessability of the bit I'm working on makes it a pig to work on. I was having a little poke around last night and it is daunting. Just grudge paying the money! £88+Vat to fit it! (That was including the gasket but I've already bought it so I could knock £5 off). I may try phoning another dealer but I don't fancy trying a back street garage! Arghh! This means less money to spend on mods! Bugger! If anyone on here knows anyone in the Ayrshire/ Strathclyde area who can undertake this job then let me know.

As Dave says,, I think 88 quid is a reasonable price (one K&N, D'oh). Make sure that is a fixed price and not an estimate.
tim woolcott

Phoned around several dealers to compare my £88+Vat quote. Managed to get a ridiculous £150+VAT but finally got a decent one of £79 including VAT. Can't grumble with that.

Looks like I'll have to splash the cash! I'm not really doing much to dispel this myth of the Scots being the stingiest race on earth! Just frustrating paying someone for something I know I can do myself!

That was exactly how I felt too.... At least it will put your mind at rest. If not done this could cause BIG problems later.... If you can get hold of the tech bullitin it might be useful
tim woolcott

Ooh! whats the "Tech Bulletin" and where can I get it!

NOTE: Applies only to engines with plastic manifolds, i.e. excludes VVC

MODEL/DERIVATIVE: Bulletin N o : 0002
MGF CDS. ref: M8393bu
Issue: 1
Date: 20.01.99
Vehicles up to VIN RD 504633
NOTE: Applies only to engines with plastic manifolds, i.e. excludes VVC
· Coolant level, difficult to maintain.
· Visual coolant leak from inlet manifold gasket.
· Engine may eventually overheat.
· Coolant in No. 1 cylinder / misfire
· Relaxation of inlet manifold fixings resulting in external or internal coolant loss.
· Distorted / damaged inlet manifold gasket due to overheating.
With reference to Workshop Manual repair number 30.15.08, apply the following
1. Remove old type (black) inlet
manifold gasket.
2. Remove the 3 upper manifold
3. Fit 7 new type ‘ patchlock’ studs,
part number TE 108065M to all
inlet manifold threaded holes.
NOTE: Patchlock stud end must
be fitted to cylinder head.
4. Refit manifold with modified
(green) gasket, part number GUG
704094MG and modified fixing
torque nuts FX 108047.
5. Tighten all manifold nuts to 17 Nm in the sequence shown in illustration.
NOTE: This torque figure and sequence is different to that stated in the
Workshop Manual.
6. Ensure cooling system is correctly bled to ensure no air pockets exist.
7. Pressure test cooling system to confirm no
leaks exist. If any pressure loss is detected,
carry out further investigation to establish
GUG 704094MG - Inlet manifold gasket
TE 108065M - Patchlock studs (7 off required)
FX 108047 - Torque nuts (7 off required)
Time allowance: 2.00 Hrs

Time allowance: 2.00 Hrs

At my nearest MGR Dealer that is £65 + VAT per hour = £152 + Parts.

Suggest you bite the hand of anybody who is prepared to do it for £79 - £88

Thanks for the advice guys. I'll book it in for next week. Better to be safe than sorry and all that. £79 off of next months shopping budget so something will have to give.

Choice between Mike Saturs SSK2, a new throttle body, K&N or de-cat pipe! Decisions, decisions....

Make sure that Mr £79 knows how to bleed the system correctly...Dead important
tim woolcott

or 2 nights in a tent at Silverstone talking to and drinking with lots of BBS members.

If you leave Kilmarnock soon you could be DCMs first visitor.

> Make sure that Mr £79 knows how to bleed the system correctly...Dead important

I'm sure it will be OK. Its a big dealership (Arnolds Clark - Scottish readers should be aware of them)

hmmm im thinking of paying some money just for a piece of mind. You can never be to sure, more sure when your car is a 96 P gulp!

R Jay

This thread was discussed between 17/06/2003 and 20/06/2003

MG MGF Technical index

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