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Q: buying car needing head gasket repair on 2002 Saab 9-5

want to buy used saab 2002 turbo...needs head gasket this such a big deal..does it go on most cars at a certain # of miles thanks karen
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It may just need a head bolt retorque, which is a manageable repair with engine in-frame. You remove the DI cassette, then valve cover, which should be 30min job. That gives access to the head bolts. Loosen and retighten to spec, then replace all removed parts.

If you really need a new head gasket, that's an engine pull, which is at least 10 hours labor.

Saab's have lots of minor problems, but the core components are durable. I have a 2001 Saab 9-5 with 214000 miles. Still with original engine, tranny, turbo. Keep your oil changed regularly with synthetic at least each 10K miles, change 1/4 tranny oil with oil changes (which is easy as oil change) and you'll have a long lived car if you accept that you need to fix lots of little things that can add up, but less than a car payment.
It may need a lot more than just a head gasket repair, which is a major repair. You are looking at a car which is known to be a money pit. I'd suggest to stay away from this car and consider other brands, unless you have money to burn.

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