Common amount of coolant loss? [Archive] - GrandAmGT.com Forum

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lone_wolf025
09-13-2007, 10:47 PM
I'm trying to gauge what's the average coolant loss between oil changes that most people see in our cars. I ask because I just changed my oil and the coolant level had dropped a bit below the plastic seam of the tank, just like the time before, and the one before that. Now I expect a little coolant loss here and there because no system is perfect, but about an inch drop in coolant every 3 months has me wondering what others see.

I'll be rechecking under the car this weekend, but as of last week, no visible leaks, occasional coolant smell but no confirmation so could be my imagination, no noticeable climb in temps. Idle seems a little rough, but probably not an issue seeing as how the tach barely twitches at idle.

And no this isn't another LIM thread...mine was replaced little over a year ago.

WeibSunder
09-14-2007, 04:52 AM
0% coolant loss between oil changes.

silvergtjrad
09-14-2007, 05:07 AM
You shouldnt ever see coolant go down. There is absolutely no way for it to go down except a leak.

brim
09-14-2007, 07:08 AM
You shouldnt ever see coolant go down. There is absolutely no way for it to go down except a leak.

unless you have an unequal balance of coolant and water which would result in burnoff

juanvan
09-14-2007, 09:59 AM
unless you have an unequal balance of coolant and water which would result in burnoff

That most people have b/c they don't check the solution mix, get a tester to see where the coolant is at in the mix then adjust and see if you have any change

lvemy3100
09-14-2007, 10:02 AM
bad cap... out the overflow tube.... leaking lim... head gasket... water pump.... any coolant hose... thermostat housing... TB... radiator...

and my fav cause it is happening to me... leaking coolant tank nipples from jackasses messing with my car before I owned it (fixing it this weekend... if i find the time since I have the tank already)

lone_wolf025
09-14-2007, 08:19 PM
Somehow I doubt the mix is a perfect 50/50 due to me topping it off every so often with straight green stuff (the stuff you can mix with any color) so if anything its probably more coolant than water by a slight margin at this point.

Regardless, what I'm seeing here tells me what I kinda suspected: Be on the lookout for a leak. The sticky on coolant leaks mentioned a dye. Is this something I can find at the local parts store or is it a "specialty" item?

slapnuts8725
09-14-2007, 08:41 PM
There is a weep hole on the water pump. It will leak some if the seal is bad. Had mine go out not to long ago. The pumps are cheap I want to say i payed $25 for it.

lone_wolf025
09-14-2007, 09:27 PM
I remember hearing about the water pump, and actually when I do my inspection that's gonna be one of the spots I check.

Panacea
09-14-2007, 10:20 PM
If it's the pump, I'd expect to see coolant sprayed over the passenger side of the hood.

1/2dolla
09-16-2007, 01:15 AM
same here no drop of coolant level since last flush at least a year ago

lone_wolf025
09-16-2007, 08:34 AM
I just went over the whole bay and underside yesterday. No visible leaks, no coolant smell. I'm tempted to bring it in and just have a flush done to ensure I have a proper mix and to have them check the cap while they're at it. Oil was good when I changed it last weekend. Heck maybe I'll even have em clean the fuel system while I'm at it...We'll see.

drumking1721
09-16-2007, 12:50 PM
yea i havent had any loss....knock on wood. Replaced the pump when it was leaking and its great....speaking of which...i cant see the level in my reserve tank...anyone know the part # for a new one?

1/2dolla
09-17-2007, 07:07 AM
Its a little hard to see the level for me also but if you hold a flashlight or maglight upto the bottom portion and shake it a little you can then see the level.. The part # is 22688945

stewartfn18
09-17-2007, 09:09 AM
yea i havent had any loss....knock on wood. Replaced the pump when it was leaking and its great....speaking of which...i cant see the level in my reserve tank...anyone know the part # for a new one?

either call your local gm dealership or there is a whole thread listing part numbers.

lone_wolf025
09-17-2007, 01:26 PM
I swung by my mechanic and picked his brain today. He suggested to keep an eye on the level and if it drops again considerably, that I should bring it in.

Based on that advice I was going to top off the tank again to make sure its at a set level, but due to the engine still being hot I decided to sniff around. Well what I found now has me concerned...

On the driver's side of the motor, tucked all the way in under the t-stat housing, I saw something shiny. Upon further examination it appears to be a little puddle. Of what I don't know, but you can guess what I'm thinking... If it is the infamous LIM then that means it failed in about 14-15 months on the updated gasket...

drumking1721
09-17-2007, 03:08 PM
either call your local gm dealership or there is a whole thread listing part numbers.

chill

ryanbgb22
09-17-2007, 03:09 PM
I swung by my mechanic and picked his brain today. He suggested to keep an eye on the level and if it drops again considerably, that I should bring it in.

Based on that advice I was going to top off the tank again to make sure its at a set level, but due to the engine still being hot I decided to sniff around. Well what I found now has me concerned...

On the driver's side of the motor, tucked all the way in under the t-stat housing, I saw something shiny. Upon further examination it appears to be a little puddle. Of what I don't know, but you can guess what I'm thinking... If it is the infamous LIM then that means it failed in about 14-15 months on the updated gasket...

it is possible that the gasket wasnt seated correctly when installed...

lone_wolf025
09-17-2007, 05:13 PM
Possible.
Likely? I doubt it, but it could be anything.

In any case I cleaned out the area as best I could with a rag, and scraped up some greasy dirt. I did do some spraying with the hose last week when I changed my oil, so its possible that could've just been regular water.

In any case my coolant tank is topped off and the level marked with a marker on the side. Now I just drive it for a week and check it again, and keep checking til something happens.

drumking1721
09-17-2007, 06:21 PM
If i was in that situation i would just replace them....but thats if you have the money right now. I know during my xmas break they're getting done

lone_wolf025
09-17-2007, 06:24 PM
I have a used car warranty with a $100 deductible so its not really a matter of money. Its more a matter of I want to get this diagnosis right myself. I hate guessing its something and then finding out I was way off base...

But...if it is the gasket and it only lasted a little over a year...it means if it fails again I'll be doing it myself since the warranty is only good til 48,000 miles and I put on a little over 10,000 last year. Either that or I'll sell the car sooner than I planned...

drumking1721
09-17-2007, 06:29 PM
too many factors.......hmmm Idk dude,whats the oil cap look like?

lone_wolf025
09-17-2007, 06:57 PM
Oil cap and pcv valve are both dark. No milky color. Oil comes off the stick clean too.

Last time this happened it surfaced as an "oil leak" coming from between the trans and oil pan. This time only indicator I've seen so far is the puddle I just mentioned. That same side of the pan isn't wet this time.

I'll try and snap a picture of the area tomorrow morning when I check it again.

lone_wolf025
09-23-2007, 11:24 PM
This is making me mad... I cleaned up that spot real well. Apparently it was just greasy dirt cuz its been clean, dry, and linty (from the rag I used to clean it with) for over a week now. Coolant level hasn't dropped any since I topped it off and marked it. I swear its screwing with me... If you popped the hood and went over everything with a fine tooth comb you'd swear I was lying to ya...

Well I guess I'll check it again next week then...

lone_wolf025
03-29-2008, 01:36 PM
I was fixing up my fogs earlier today and lo and behold the engine bay stinks of coolant. Its wet around the bottom edges of the gasket and I have liquid sitting in that spot beneath the thermostat housing. Coincidentally enough I had it scheduled to go in for a brake fluid flush and tranny flush on Monday, so I'll point that out to them while I'm there. I hope I'm wrong...

350rs
03-31-2008, 07:19 AM
if that doesn't turn out to be the problem, watch for white smoke to be comming out your exhaust pipes. Means your burning collant. which obviously means a head gasket blew on ya. If its a blueish haze, your burning oil. Watch for both all the time.

lone_wolf025
03-31-2008, 08:13 AM
Haven't noticed either exhaust characteristic, but I am familiar with the colors.

Regardless, the shop is taking a look at it and they'll let me know. I'm hoping he calls back to say its fine.

350rs
03-31-2008, 08:19 AM
haha yea i hear ya. my father just replaced the head gaskets and the timing chain gasket on his 3.1 lumina. He just pulled the engine and did it himself. and it STILL cost almost 800 bucks. He got the heads worked over though.

lone_wolf025
04-21-2008, 11:03 PM
The mechanic said its fine, but my coolant level has dropped. I topped it off so we'll see how fast it drops now. If in a week its down again, I'm bringing it to someone else.

ridefas78
04-22-2008, 08:31 AM
could you pressure test the coolant system? 2 find out where its leaking from

lone_wolf025
04-22-2008, 09:16 AM
That is the common method, but I personally can't do it cuz I don't have the tools for it. But judging from all the wet spots I've seen I can wager a guess where its leaking.