I had a leak in my coolant system ( adding about a 1/2 gallon of antifreeze a month or so) and it was coming from around the water pump area.
I took it to a mechanic and had it pressure tested twice with no problems. They told me that some water pumps leak a bit after time. Offered to replace pump but informed me that it was a 6 hour job plus cost of part and that I may be better off just topping off the coolant weekly.
I decided to buy some radiator sealant (Prestone) and it took care of the leak! I was overjoyed....however.....
Since then (about two weeks) I have seen major fluctuations in my temperature gauge (runs very near red) when I am at a stop sign/light. As I drive the gauge returns to normal.
I have also noticed that the fan NEVER runs anymore. I can go for a drve for an hour, come home and park it, and no fan. Before the sealant the fan would be running after a 20 mile drive.
The last oddity that happened was yesterday. I was on my way home form work and after the first light the gauge was not going down like it normally does. I turned on the A/C on a whim and the gauge almost immediately went down.
So what *** you think? Sensor, thermostat, fan motor? I wish I could put a bullet in it and leave it for dead, but unfortunately that isn't n optiion.
I have had exatly the same problem with our Lantra, the issue can be two fold, the fan switch which is located next to the temperuture sender(has two wires going to it) can be faulty, I used an electrical splicer that has a metal piece in to short out the two wire, this solved problem one of power to the fans.
Part two was the fact that this was caused by one of the fans (main Fan) stopping, as the motor on this is a sealed unit, you will need to get a replacement fan if this is the issue.
But if you short out the two wire from the switch when the engine is hot, this will tell you wether you need to go further.
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A 50/50 mix is a ideal. Antifreeze has two benefits when properly mixed. It protects the coolant from freezing down to -40 degrees Fahrenheit and it helps remove heat from the engine.
Diluted coolant in the short term is not harmful. Long term it could lead to the accelerated corrosion of vital cooling system components. Anti freeze also offers lubrication to the water pump. Less concentration will equal less lubrication.
If your son is adding water than there is a leak. Adding water until the leak is fixed is fine as long as the temps don't get below freezing and the problem is addressed as soon as possible.
If you've added two gallons of antifreeze, you need to find out where it's going. Make sure the antifreeze you are adding is diluted with water in a 50/50 solution. Pure antifreeze has little freeze protection and boils quickly. If there is no visible leak, check your oil for coolant contamination. Fill the radiator and leave the radiator cap off. Put the heater controls on hottestsetting, but do not turn the heater on. Start the engine and watch the coolant. If the coolant level drops, add more to full. If the coolant is flowing thru the radiator when you first start the engine, the thermostat is stuck open and needs to be replaced. If the water is not flowing, then keep an eye on it and wait for the thermostat to open. Add antifreeze to keep the radiator full. Look for air bubbles or lots of foaming in the coolant. That would indicate a blown head gasket and the reason you are losing antifreeze. If there's no bubbles, and the coolant level stays full, put the radiator cap back on and see if the heater is working better.
On the 4 cylinder you will need 1 1/4 gallons of antifreeze mixed with an equal amount of distilled water for a 50/50 mix. On the V6 you will need 1 5/8 gallons of antifreeze mixed with an equal amount of distilled water for a 50/50 mix. Make sure and use the correct type antifreeze.
overheating is most likely a bad thermostat, but the coolant loss is a second big concern. Does the exhaust look like steam? You could have a cracked block and the coolant is leaking into the engine. Also check the oil for contamination.
Is the reservoir boiling over or is it just leaking? If it is just leaking you need to repair it with silicone sealer or a special PVC repair kit. If it is boing over you need to find out why. Is the fan running? Turn the A/C on and the fan should run continuously. If not then check the fuse. If the fuse is good check the fan itself by applying 12 volts directly to the fan motor. If the fan is good then replace the thermal relay. Now, if the fan is running as it should then your thermostat may be stuck closed, the radiator may be clogged internally or externally. Clean the radiator of all bugs and debris on the coils. Remove the radiator cap and start the engine with the radiator full. You will see the coolant start to move when the thermostat opens. if you do not, then the water pump may be defective but not likely unless it is leaking or making noise. It is probably a stuck thermostat. Drain the system with the heater set to hot. Flush the system with plenty of water from a garden hose. Replace the thermostat, and fill the system with a 50/50 mix of Antifreeze & Distilled water or buy it premixed. 1 Gallon antifreeze with 1 gallon distilled water will do unless you buy premix and it will take 2 gallons. Don not use tap water! Leave the cap off and start the engine and keep adding coolant until you see no more air escaping and you can add no more. If the system has bleeder valves use them to remove any trapped air. This should solve your overheating problem unless the worst case scenario has happened. A blown head gasket. If you see white smoke from the exhaust, a white foamy substance on the underside of the oil fill cap of dipstick, oil level is overfull, or miss on one or more cylinders, you may have a blown head gasket.
i do not know exactly but that size vehicle usually holds almost two gallons, fill it up, put the cap on the radiator, run the vehicle until the temp guage is at normal operating temp, then turn the vehicle off. after about a 15 min wait, use a rag and take the radiator cap off slowly and make sure there isn't any pressure behind it. after removing, top off the radiator again and fill the overflow tank to the max level. this should get all the air out and get you on the road again. check again everytime you get gas for a couple times making sure that the level is good.
If your coolant level is dropping, I would suggest that you take a good look at the water pump. That is a very common coolant leakage probelm area on your vehicle. I change 2-3 a week.
Hope this helps.
you know the fans are ok most honda have a two terminal switch at the right corner bottom of tthe radiator if you put a jumper across this terminal the fans should kick in, this indicates that the coolant temp sensor is bad replace it, secondly some honda have a temp sensor located right on the thermostat housing and you can disconnect the wire and just ground the wire and the fan should come on so replace the temp switch last thing to check for is coolant leak around the readiator seem i mean the edges the radiator being fiber glass may have hair crack through which antifreeZe keeps leaking out the only suggestion for honda is to replace the radiator.