Lower Intake Manifold Or Heater Core [Archive] - GrandAmGT.com Forum


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01-31-2005, 07:48 PM
I have a 1997 Pontiac Grand Am SE with about 54,000 miles. For the last two winters, I have been getting that sweet smell when the defroster was on. I kept an eye on the coolant recovery tank and the level was at full cold, and I never had to refill.

A couple of days ago, my low coolant light came on for about five seconds. The temperate gage was in the normal area. When I got home, the coolant recovery tank was about three inches below the full cold line, but there was no visible signs of a leak. I checked the oil to see if it was milky beige (coolant mixing with oil). It looked okay. The dealership took a look at the car and said it was the lower intake manifold. When I asked them about the sweet smell, which I thought would be associated with the heater core, they said the same smell can happen with the LIM and the heater/defroster would bring that inside the car. Does this make sense? I have been thinking along that it was the heater core instead of LIM

Thanks for your help.


01-31-2005, 08:06 PM
Well, I'm guessing you don't have a warranty which explains why they'd tell you it's the more expensive repair of the two. The air for the ventilation system is pulled in from the cowl area. It would take quite a leak to get the smell of coolant all the way from the engine compartment.

Can you see coolant leaking from anywhere around the engine? This really does sound like the heater core is leaking.