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99RedGaSE
09-09-2004, 06:35 PM
Hi...

Ive been having a strange cooling system problem for the past coupla days...

last night i came back home, got out the car....and noticed a leaking sound coming from the engine compartment... i opened the hood, and saw that the coolant is being pumped out from the overflow tank (thru that tube right under the cap) and it seemed like it pushed out most of it, noticing the growing lake of coolant under my car, and around it. The weird thing was that the car was off.... and it was not overheating when i parked it and before that...

i took my dad's car, and drove to a gas station to get some 50/50 coolant they had, got back home and refilled the system (like it was described in the HOW TO: car is on, cap is off, heater is on...keep adding coolant) ... it seemed fine for a little while... temperature is normal while idling....the heater was blowing out cold air for a coupla mins... then it seemed to break the air cap (i could hear the bubbling sound) and it began to blow hot air... i added some more coolant.. put the cap on, let it idle for some time... everything is fine... i drove on the highway for about 50 miles there and back...everthing is cool.. temperature is normal... no LOW COOLANT light... as soon as i parked it, i noticed the temperature going up... turned the heater on....blowing cold air... LOW COOLANT light comes on...5 seconds later turns off....and i hear the coolant is being pumped out from the overflow tank again... all of it...

so it seemed to suck all the coolant from the overflow tank into the system, and then pump it all back out....

What the heck is going on with my car? its a 99 GA SE ....and i drive it alot...mostly on the highway, always going over 85-90 mph (dont like slow driving) and its got 140k miles on it.... never had any problems with it...

Im taking it to the shop tomorrow....

Any ideas on what could've gone wrong with it?

Thanks!

GTwannabe
09-09-2004, 06:57 PM
bad cap-ever change it? might not be holding pressure anymore. try a new 10-20 cap before you get charged an extra 40+ just for looking at it!
Also, after 140k miles- have you changed ALL the hoses and thermostat too?

99RedGaSE
09-10-2004, 10:29 AM
i dont really think the cap could cause this... and i have not had any leakage from the hoses, so i havent replaced them yet...should i? and the thermostat got replaced like a year ago...ive driven for over 50k miles since then tho....

...now... i refill the system with coolant....run the engine for a few minutes...and it spits most of it out... then i add more coolant....after a few mins it spits it all out....seems like lots of air comes out when it does that...

one of the mechanics that i know, said it could be the head gasket... the other said it could be the head gasket...but not necessary...could be many other things...

its getting lots of air in the system from somewhere... its obvious... what could cause that?

also..when i refill it with coolant...i can drive (or idle) for about 5-10 mins with no problems...then it starts spitting the coolant out and overheat..... no perfomance decrease within that period of time is noticed....

if u guys have any ideas on what is wrong with it, please let me know... the car is going to the shop tomorrow... i just wanna know before that on what amount of money i should be looking forward to....

thanks!

juanvan
09-11-2004, 06:30 PM
If there is exhaust in the coolant lines, NAPA sells an exhaust tester super easy to use and check the coolant res tank for fumes ~ that will tell you if you have an exhaust leak in the coolant lines ~ that would be a head gasket replacement

See if there is and air in the return line...
Check the top coolant air release, see how much pressure is in the lines..

I don't know about a head gasket going like that ~ to get that much pressure to shot the coolant out the return line would have to be pretty bad ~ and you should have notice it earlier slowly first

Cap would not cause this problem ~ if the cap failed ~ that is realy realy realy rare ~ the system would not pressureize b/c air would leak out ~ since there is no pressure then they can be no squerting

Something is causing pressure in the system, just telling where its coming from

2002AmSE
09-12-2004, 08:59 AM
From experience with flushing the radiator, it is the cap. It uses the pressure to push the air out of the cooling system and back into the tank, and without that pressure the air heats up and expands and your coolant moves backwards, which also means out. If there is pressure the coolant is forced through the system properly and the air is forced through, and essentially is removed from the system.

If you have ever done a flush, remember that about 8 mins past when it reaches your full engine temp and it has been blowing hot air that all of the sudden the fluid level rises really high, well usually you would throw the cap on to avoid it from coming out. Well once the cap goes on the level drops. ...See what is happening with yours is the cap isnt holding its pressure and instead of the level of fluid going down, it continues going up, and it goes out.


I dont know if this makes sense or not. It costs about $10 for a new pressure cap, get a new one, fill your tank up and tighten it down fully and see what happens.

99RedGaSE
09-12-2004, 05:28 PM
hmm....

ok....it could be the cap....but!

first of all... why is there an overflow tube thats coming out from the tank? the one thats right under the cap? i mean, why is there a pressure cap, if the air can freely come out from that tube? unless...the pressure cap blocks the hole from the inside.... in my case it doesnt...is it supposed to?

coz...what i did was.... tighten the pressure cap...and blocked the tube....now theres nothing coming out from there, and i've driven the car for like an hour... and it didnt lose any coolant...it doesnt overheat, and the air is hot coming from the heater...

well, now at least i can make it to the shop, without a tow truck, but theres definately something wrong with it...