To prevent leaks in the head gasket, keep the coolant at the proper level and mixture. Since the water pump can also affect the head gasket, make sure it is working by listening for noises and making sure it's not loose.
To keep the head gasket going strong when driving a car that has a turbo or super charger, keep an eye on the amount of boost these parts create. If the boost levels are too high, it can create a cylinder pressure that is higher than normal, which negatively affects the head gasket. It can also help to avoid downshifting in a vehicle with a manual transmission. Though downshifting can help to save the brakes, it also puts a lot of pressure on the cylinder head because the engine increases the revolutions per minute while slowing the car down.
If the head gasket does start to leak or otherwise fails, the repair is very expensive. As of 2015, this service is estimated to range from about $1,100 to $1,400 or more. Most of the costs that come into play with a head gasket repair are due to the labor and time involved, as the part itself usually costs less than $100.