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My Engine leaks coolant. I ran through the troubleshoot in the manual for a 1989 Dx 3dr 1.5l. I squeezed the hose and pressure was maintained, what could be the problem at this point?

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  • yadayada
    yadayada May 11, 2010

    Let me get this straight, you see no external leaks i.e. coolant under the cat?

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Check your oil for water and see if your exhaust smokes white, if not check the water pump weep hole and look for anything obvious, you can also buy a radiator pressure tester you put in place of the cap and pump air into the system leave this on for an hour or so until you can find the leak....would be a head gasket if you have water in the oil, or white sweet smelling smoke out the tailpipe please rate -jeff

Posted on Sep 05, 2008

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1 Answer

Is it dangerous that my car 1989 olds calais 2.5 is leaking water from the over flow hose


this is normal only if the coolant reservoir has been overfilled recently,there should be a "max" and "min" level on the side of the reservoir and has to be kept in between these marks.
my concern is that if it needs to be topped up often that indicates a leak either externally or internally,
any signs of fluids on the ground,or a sweet smell in the vehicle?under the hood is there any signs of a white or pinkish powdery substance around hoses,engine components,take a good visual looking for these telltale signs.
remove the reservoir cap,top up fluid to the max if cold,min if hot,start the engine,can you see if there are bubbles forming?if so,internal engine leak,head gasket,cracked head,block ect..
i like to perform a coolant pressure test,its a pump that is connected to the reservoir,the pump is then manually pressurizing the cooling system to a max of 12-15 lbs and should hold and maintain this pressure for about 10 min.if it drops below this within 10 min,there is a leak,re pressurize the system to 12-15 lbs(as indicated on reservoir cap) and now start looking for the source of the leak.
good luck, hope this helps

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1 Answer

Where can the coolant be leaking from?


If you ran a pressure check and it held pressure for 5-15 minutes then that should be good. If the pressure test failed then look around the engine water pump, the coolant hoses, by the freeze plugs on the side of the engine block, around the intake manifold where it bolts to the head(s), and where the head gasket is between the head and engine block just to name a few. Start the engine up from cold and check the radiator cap to see if it has pressure in the coolant system before it warms up (approx. 5-15 minutes). If it hisses when you open up the radiator cap and/or is bubbling thru the radiator/reservoir(may need to raise the engine speed to see the bubbles) it probably has an internal leak like a bad head gasket and that is why you do not see the coolant leaking (it is being burned up inside of the engine). On the other hand if it smells hot then it most likely has a leak on the engine and that is what you are smelling.

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it has to be either leaking somewhere, or it is going through the engine-check passenger floor for heater core leak, or a hose/clamp leak near or over the exhaust. Is the system holding pressure when hot? {squeeze the upper radiator hose when hot, you should feel it as a solid hose, that is not collapsed}. If you have pressure, it is some sort of external leak if you do not see smoke coming out the exhaust.

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at first,try to add coolant slowly to the radiator not to the reservoir,then start the car ,keep adding coolant on it ,until it is very full.u should see the radiator fan should be also running ,then that is the right tempature.drive a little bit & observe the tempature is the normal or not."""but if u have a coolang pressure tester""",u should do a pressure test & see any leak.it might somewhere in cooling sytem leak.hope it wasn't too late,it might cause head gasket burn,it will turn out a big job.

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have a coolant pressure test done on the system and find the leaks. If it is an old radiator with plastic tanks then the tanks may be split (common) -check radiator hoses for splits and radiator cores for leaks. If the hose is enlarged past the clamp replace it as it is about to burst anyway check water pump and check all points where hoses are clamped onto aluminium housings as they corrode under the hoses.

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it is overheating. low on coolant/ thermostat stuck shut? see if both radiator hoses are hot.

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1 Answer

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one of two things could be happening... either the radiator is low on coolant or your thermostat is stuck (which if it is stuck you will have to replace) . But first let engine cool down, you need to check coolant level, squeeze one of the radiator hoses even if engine is cooled down to make sure there is little or no pressure in cooling system then remove radiator cap/coolant bottle cap to check level.by the way if it is low you will need to figure out why.. the obvious reason is a leak you may have to go to a shop and have system pressure tested to locate leak to repair.. good luck to ya.. hope this helps

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Overheat, i can smell coolant coming from the engine


NEED TO REPLACE HOSES AND THERMOSTAT. OVER HEAT CAN DAMAGE THE STAT, MAKE SURE THE FAN IS WORKING WHEN THE MOTOR GETS TO OPERATING TEMP. SQUEEZE THE TOP HOSE TO SEE HOW MUCH PRESSURE IS IN THE SYSTEM BEFORE YOU REMOVE THE RAD CAP .. CANT SQUEEZE IT ? DON'T REMOVE IT ! , PEPPER MAKES FOR A GOOD FIX ON THE ROAD RAD LEAKS

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1 Answer

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first check to make sure there is the right amount of coolant in it check the radiator cap what I mean is that it is holding the right pressure if it is 16lbs then it takes 16lbs of pressure for the thermastat to open also put on a glove and while the engine is running and it gets up to temp squeeze the upper radiator hose and if it opens up in your hand that is a sign the water pump is still working check the condition of the drive belt

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