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B&S Head Gasket

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Are you suppose to used gasket sealer on a head gasket. I was just curious. A guy told me today to use it. It's on a Briggs 16hp single cyclinder. The gasket is the steel type. He said it would leak for sure if no sealer was used on the aluminum head. Any help will be helpful. Thanks Steve

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Hi, Make sure both surfaces are clean and put it on. We always surface the head with a flat plate and sandpaper. Lay the sandpaper like 80 grit on the plate and push the head over it, rotate it 1/4 turn stroke it, rotate 1/4 turn stroke, etc. until the space between the bolts is cleaning up. The heads are always pulled down under the bolts and this gets then flat again. Wash the head with soap and water, blow dry and install with no sealant. Be sure the threads are cleaned on the bolts and in the holes and then tighten in the sequence shown in the Briggs manual and do it in three steps. Follow these steps and you should have no trouble. The reason for the hot water wash is to get the abrasive out of the head. Like a honed cylinder or a shot blasted part, solvent wil not remove the abrasives. Only soap and water will. Honing a cylinder and not washing it well with hot soap and water [then oil as soon as blown dry]will guarantee a short lived repair. This is the most improtant step. If you shot blast parts you will see this if there are threaded holes. Cap screws may even twist off going in, if you don't do the wash and blow out first. Good luck, Al Eden

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