My 95 Geo Metro Lsi 1.0L had a blown head gasket. I replaced the gasket and drove the car for approximately 120 miles before it started spitting and sputtering. Then it died just before I got home. I pushed the car home and started taking it apart.

I found out that the camshaft pin that fits in the cam gear had broken, and the timing jumped like crazy. I checked the bottom end out and everything looks okay. It rolls over easily, and there is no metal in the oil. I ordered a new head and upper engine gasket kit.

I got the whole thing back together, and tried to start the engine, but it just turns over -- "does not try to start at all". I checked the compression and it was 75 psi across the board. After I did the first head gasket, I had 175 psi across all 3 cylinders.

I am wondering if I have my timing wrong and if that can cause low compression. I also put some oil in each cylinder and let it sit for 10 minutes, then did another compression test; it jumped up to 100 psi. My pistons don't look cracked and they hold diesel fuel with no leakdown overnight.

What could be causing these problems?

  • Who ever changed my wording needs to change it back. I do not agree with how you have reworded what i wrote.
    – Adam
    Sep 18, 2013 at 22:33
  • If you're seeing 75 psi, I doubt the timing is horribly wrong. When my timing belt slipped, I had no compression at all and the engine turned freely with almost no resistance. I suppose it's possible that you're just off by a few notches, but I'd look for other causes... Sep 20, 2013 at 17:29
  • The original form of your question was riddled with bad grammar and had a title that provided no useful information about the contents of the question. I didn't change the content, I just made it clear. Please see mechanics.stackexchange.com/help/editing and maybe Can I prevent others from editing my question? for more info.
    – jscs
    Sep 20, 2013 at 19:21

1 Answer 1


Depending on how bad your timing was off you may have bent your valves in the heads causing poor seating and bad compression.

Also maybe your timing is still off.

  • I order a new head thinking it was the problem. Installed it and took the old head to get it checked. The head was slightly warped. i had them surface it and install new valvestem seals. so atleast i have an extra head now. I do still think my timing is off but i put #1 at TDC and line up my timing marks. I will take it back apart this weekend and triple check everything again. Thanks for the reply
    – Adam
    Sep 20, 2013 at 15:12

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