Engine Difficulty Of Head Swap? 2000 V6


New Member
Jun 26, 2013
Good morning.
I just recently bought a 2000 pony that has no compression on cylinders 5 & 6.
The car doesn't leak or burn coolant nor does it overheat.

Previous owner replaced the entire fuel rail, 6 injectors, plugs and wires, and coil all before pulling the cylinder compression...

The passenger side of the motor is 100%, 180+ PSI on 1 - 3.
The car runs but of course with a misfire CEL.

I'm almost positive it has valve issues on the driver side head.
My plan is to replace or have the current head overhauled.

Has anyone heard of this happening?
I have done plenty of work on cars but typically nothing deeper than replacing the intake or working with fuel injectors\fuel rails, etc.

What would the difficulty level and or % of success if I was to attempt a head replacement myself?
I'm very competent with motors and diagnostics but I've just never tried to pull a head before.

Thanks very much for any input you might have? :)
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That is…until I whipped out my Bissell
Mod Dude
Feb 18, 2001
The 3.8L is notorious for head gasket issues. It's possible the gasket defect is between the two cylinders and does not connect to coolant or oil jackets. The compresson is being lost to the other cylinder.

This could possibly be a $100 head gasket job...and that's it? Gotta pull the head to find out


New Member
Jun 26, 2013
Thanks for the reply!

Indeed that was the other possibility I had figured.
I think the actual head removal would be no problem, the part I'm weary of is removing the rocker arms, etc. and putting all that back together.

Have you ever reviewed the Auto Zone "repair guides" for something like this? Seems pretty thorough and I have faith I could pull it off just a little worried. :|

I found a re-manufactured head with warranty for $200. (With Valves and Springs)
Figured buy that, and plop it on there.