Is there a cast iron or improved design exhaust manifold available for the 2.0 in my '85 Wagon?
I burned the center of the original manifold where the four tubes are welded together at the collector two years ago, and I'm pretty sure I blew out the Dorman replacement manifold now in the same place..
Are the ones on the '87 to '89 2.0 engines different/ improved/ interchangeable?
I know I can buy another one or have this one welded, but I'll be back into it in another two years...
I know there was a recall on the California emmissioned ones back in the day, but I wonder if they improved them.
I just think it's a piss-poor design....
~ Mike ~
The 90 is cast iron, and should fit.
I checked that, Frank. The '90 Cavalier 4 cylinder engine is a 2.2 with an aluminum head. The 89 was a 2.0 with an aluminum head as well. The aluminum heads have evenly spaced exhaust ports and the old, cast iron 2.0 heads like the one on my '85 Wagon have larger gaps in the ports between the one and two cylinder and the three and four cylinder.
I've found a couple different manifolds for the early 2.0s, so maybe I will try the other style.
~ Mike ~
Just for reference's sake, here are the two different steel 2.0 exhaust manifolds:
Under the heat shield where the four pipes collect is where I am having my issues.
It they are only welded together underneath and that burns out eventually and then it leaks.
Notice how close the #2 and #3 ports are together.
This one appears to have a collar welded around the areas where the pipes collect including where they merge up top.
I think this might be a stronger and better sealing setup.
This is a 1990 to 1997 2.2 exhaust manifold:
Notice how the ports are evenly spaced.
~ Mike ~
This is a picture of the manifold I have installed without the heat shield installed:
~ Mike ~
Here is a picture of my manifold:
The leak is right in the center - no bigger than 3/16"
Note the header paint remaining even after 2 1/2 years.
Shouldn't have to change manifolds every other year....
~ Mike ~
Weld it? Coat hanger and a propane torch? I dunno, my 87 2.0 had a cast manifold... iirc...
Mike, I happen to have ran across an older gentleman that shared a 1st gen story with me regarding manifolds.
He told me he had a Cavalier very much like the Wagon I have, but he couldn't remember what exact year it had been. Fellow said he bought it new. Only problem he remembered having was....you guessed it - the manifold cracking. He explained how he kept returning it to the Dealership to have another Manifold replaced under warranty just to have it crack again. He got so tired of the problem he simply traded it off.
Up until your post I had thought his might have been an earlier Cast Iron version. I guess his was the Stainless tube variety after all.
Wonder if you might be able to take yours to a good exhaust shop and possibly have them weld up a custom header for it?
Also I wonder could you have a defective engine or transaxle mount causing extra stress on the manifold from the engine torque? Just a country fried idea.
Just my thoughts and or share on said topic.I know these 2.0 are known for the exhaust manifold to leak in that area as you already know.I swapped my e/m for a new one several years ago and no issue.However I do not run my j much and less time on the engine running.I would as a simple fix over welding use some quick steel to fill the area.This is easy to use and it will with stand cracking and actually thru multiple heat cycle's get's stronger! I had to use this on my 77 IHC bus as my exhaust port on the head was cracked and leaked some kind of bad.I used quick steel on that port with the exhaust removed and built it up,sanded smooth and it Never leaked again.Now if I could keep those doughnut gaskets on the pipe to pipe from wearing out I would be super happy.The nice thing about quick steel is that it sets up fast,can be sanded and painted and cures out fast!Just my simple take on a annoying problem.
Orlen, There are no bad tranny or engine mounts on my Wagon. The car only has 52K on the clock. They are like brand new.
The problem as I see it as it's just a poorly designed header/ manifold to begin with. They only welded the pipes on the bottom in the collector collar and not across the top. Headers run their hottest at the collectors and the constant heat/ cooling cycles on my short 5 mile jaunts to and from work and the bad design causes cracking at the weakest spot - the center.
I think what I'm going to do is try the differently welded header/ manifold I pictured above and have the one that is on the Wagon now welded up properly as a backup.
It ain't that hard to switch out, so what the hey ?
~ Mike ~
You can keep an eye out at the yards for 1st Gen 2.0's and scoop up any extra manifolds that happen your way. Keep a few on hand if you can!
You make me wonder how I've managed to get by with the manifold on the old wagon. I've had that same one on it since I got it in 2001 and it has been my daily - to and from work on my short 7 mile (one way) trips during all that time as well.
Guess I just been extra lucky.........
I wonder Orlen if you have the manifold with the collar welded in.
I also found a bunch of 87 to 89 used 2.0 exhaust manifolds on Ebay. They appear to be cast iron, but have exhaust ports that are evenly spaced like the 2.2s...
I got my replacement manifold from Amazon and they claim Dorman offers a *limited lifetime warranty* on that manifold.
Guess I'll see how good that warranty is.......!
~ Mike ~
If you are lucky enough to find one, 1st gens '82 through '84 did come with the Cast Iron Manifold. You obviously have to plug up the extra plumbing but at least these have the center Siamese Exhaust Ports. Isn't it a wonder there wasn't issues with cracked valve seats with those center exhaust valves together like this!
Something to look around for anyways. You just might find one on the internet somewhere.
If I understand it correctly, the heads on our 2.0s are very similar to the V-8 Chevies from back in the day. they look very similar and have the same porting setup too!
Amazon is just going to refund me the money for the manifolds, so now I wonder if I should go by that collared-style manifolds or just have mine welded up.....?
~ Mike ~
Not just an OHV problem unfortunately.
I am on my second exhaust manifold. I paid HUGE $$$ for mine back in 1993 when it went (like $400 or some crazy amount). Mine is also mild steel and not cast so I am expecting that it is not the FOREVER part. I was thinking of going with the 2.0 setup to get the cast manifold to fix this once and for all but decided to keep it as is for now... Too many other place to throw money I guess.
Well, I find now that Amazon wants their leaking manifold back in order to give me a refund, so I bought this styled one on fleabay:
The manufacturer of the manifold was a Canadian company called Hermoff. I understand that company was bought out by Dorman back in the mid/ late 90s, so I can't find a lot of feedback about the quality of their product, but the price was right.
Got it for less than half the price I paid for the Dorman one. The welds look a bit "splattery", on this one, but substantial and and appears sealed completely enough to give it a try.
I'm going to clean up the weld splatter and bake some exhaust ceramic coating on it and see how it goes...!
~ Mike ~
Decided to replace my annoyingly noisy gutted-out catalytic converter while I was screwing around with the exhaust.
GOOD CAT ! :
A LOT quieter and starts way easier with the replaced (and badly needed) back pressure !
~ Mike ~
Nice updates.I will say when I had my cat done with new pipe back to the muffler I kept the old muffler.However when I did my rear end work I cut and added a cherry bomb muffler.I left my muffler off for a week or so and the less restriction and noise was actually very cool sounding(not loud) just strong.I will say the car seemed peppier and then added the muffler a week later with all the right couplings.
Well Ron, I have added a stainless turbo muffler I purchased from Summit Racing, but the combination of the gutted-out catalytic converter and turbo muffler just made it too free flowing which made it harder to start because of the loss of back-pressure, and annoyingly noisy.
The car starts first try like it used to, has more and steadier power, and it has just the right amount of growl when you are into the throttle.
I used stainless clamps purchased from Summit Racing too, so the only thing I may have to replace in the future is the pipe between the cat and the muffler..
~ Mike ~