COOLANT LEAK, PLEASE Read this and help if you can...Thank you!! - Defender Source
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  #1  
Old June 12th, 2004, 11:58 AM
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Nicholas Orros
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Unhappy COOLANT LEAK, PLEASE Read this and help if you can...Thank you!!

Fella's I need your help.

Well, I got in there today and replaced the thermostat (pain in the ass) & temperature sender to fix my failing temperature gauge in the cabin. It did fix it BUT...
NOW I've got a coolant leak somewhere between the firewall & the engine and I can't see where. The only hose I touched was the top hose to get the thermostat/sender unit off and a couple of wires and maybe one or two spark plug wires on the cap... that is it.
I put everything back together properly, and when I started filling the radiator up with some coolant I noticed a STEADY leak in the center of the vehicle, around where the transmission is. I'm ASSuming it's coming from the engine but again I don't know.

Any help is appreciated... I was just about to go out for a trail ride, but you know how it goes.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH!

Nicholas Orros

My phone # is 850-322-3508 ... if you can call and walk me through it (if it's possible that is) I'd more than reimburse you... I'm just stuck as f#ck.
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  #2  
Old June 12th, 2004, 02:04 PM
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Nicholas Orros
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as I suspected...

Well, I ran water through a few times after letting it sit & dry for a while and I think I found out where it is leaking. I guess there's not too many online today and for those that did see my post I guess they didn't want to break news.

The leak is coming from the top of the engine, from where I can see somewhere between the air intake & the engine, (the back of the engine). I can't see exactly where, it's kind of hard to get my eyes in that general area.

I don't know what next ? I guess I'm going to have to take it somewhere, unless someone can walk me through it...
If no one knows... I understand... but if anyone knows a good mechanic/lr shop SOMEWHERE in FLORIDA that would be great. I really don't trust anyone in Tallahassee and most of them won't even touch it.

Thanks

Nicholas
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  #3  
Old June 12th, 2004, 02:19 PM
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Doug Walker
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Nicholas, read your post, just don't know how to help. Are u sure the leak isn't coming from the work you just completed? Try re-doing the thermo install and re-seating gasket? Hose off the thermo housing dribbling back onto the manifold gasket? Just ideas....

Good luck.

DW
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  #4  
Old June 12th, 2004, 02:49 PM
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Yeah, my guess would be coolant running down the valley from the front - appearing to be coming from the back - of the engine. As Doug suggested, re-check your thermostat job for leaks on the bottom - use a mirror if you can't see the underside. Also check the small hose coming off the block below the thermostat - mine had a pinhole underneath right at the hose clamp and was almost impossible to find - causing coolant to drip off the rear of the engine...

SC
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Old June 12th, 2004, 04:08 PM
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Nicholas Orros
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Thank you very much guys for the answer.
I believe that's what I did... somehow the gasket wasn't on there properly.

The thermostat gasket that I took off was a kind of metal coated in something. The one that I put on was a paper one, green on one side and grey-ish on the other. I applied a VERY SMALL amount of hylomar on both sides of the gasket just so it would stick better and so I could get in that small area to put it back in.

I am going to let it cool down some, and hopefully I'll get it fixed. I'm wondering if the small amount of hylomar wasn't the 'right thing to do'. What do you guys think ???

Your answers were right along the lines of what I thought, and I'm VERY GLAD that you responded. This whole thing scared the Sh!t out of me, and your post calmed me down a bit. I'm going to have to run water until Monday/Tuesday when I can order some Amsoil Propylene Glycol coolant, which is what I'm running.

I owe you guys a tall one if you ever come to Tallahassee. Seriously.

Thanks

Nicholas
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  #6  
Old June 13th, 2004, 01:46 AM
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Peter Sherman
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If you are running plain water make it distilled & add some wetter water. Don't run straight water. Or at least put some coolant in!
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  #7  
Old June 14th, 2004, 04:29 AM
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Nicholas Orros
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Peter,
Hey, thanks for the advice. I have distilled water in there, and I'm just driving around town, so just a couple miles here and there until later on today when I can get some, shouldn't take more than a day... shouldn't hurt anything.
I don't run 'water wetter' with Amsoil propylene glycol coolant because it's not recommended and not needed, that purple stuff's the sh1t. Cuts down the heat a bit especially is this humidity swamp of FL.

Oh yeah, and as an update for those who read the previous posts:
When I installed the thermostat gasket the bolts didn't make themselves through both holes of the gasket (meaning.. I messed up.. doh!) so no matter how much I tightened it, nothing helped. Took'er apart, used the old gasket and worked fine.

'Tanks

Nicholas
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Old June 14th, 2004, 09:07 AM
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I would not go too much more than 20ftlbs on on most bolts on your engine trans or center diff.
& straight water boils at 212 coolant 260 water & wetter water 280+-. Plain water is not good. You need lube for your pump wich wetter has.
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  #9  
Old June 14th, 2004, 09:31 AM
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Nicholas Orros
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Peter,

Hey, I appreciate the info. I ordered some coolant early this morning so I should have it sometime around noon... I know it's not good to run just water, there may be some coolant in there still, so I should be 'ok'.
It's only about 2 miles away, then back... Hopefully she'll hold in there.

Thanks again

Nicholas
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  #10  
Old November 22nd, 2008, 11:32 AM
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Reviving an old thread instead of starting a new one.

I read the posts above but my situation is a little different. I noticed a puddle of antifreeze on my driveway yesterday. It seemed to come from the rear of the engine on the drivers side. It's really hard to see back there and I was wondering if there is a hose or something that can cause a leak in that area. The engine runs fine, the temp is normal and the coolant level is fine (for now).

Any ideas?
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  #11  
Old November 22nd, 2008, 11:38 AM
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That area is usually bad news, but may not be.

Is the intake valley gasket wet? Sometimes it may leak in the front near the thermostat, and run back along the top of the engine and drip off the back. If the leak is in the back, could be the head gasket or a freeze plug, neither of which are fun.

Best way I've found to track those down is to get everything nice and clean, and dry, then use some of that indicator dye in the anti-freeze. It also helps to check when the engine is hot, since the pressure is higher and some leaks may only show in that situation.

-Hans
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  #12  
Old November 22nd, 2008, 11:57 AM
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Yep, there is some coolant in the valley. It could be coming from the front I guess. I'll have to search in more detail.

The shop here that I like will do a pressure test (I think thats what he called it) to find the leak for around $40. Seems like the easier way for me.
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Old November 22nd, 2008, 01:31 PM
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Pressure test is the way to do it, just be warned that it will find EVERY leak.... even the ones that aren't dripping yet. Even marginal stuff that will leak soon, but hasn't failed yet, may show up.

-Hans
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  #14  
Old November 22nd, 2008, 05:13 PM
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Mike
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Check the hoses coming out of the intake manifod. Hose clamps can loosen over time.
If it is coming from a hose, check for cracks...better yet replace them...
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  #15  
Old December 21st, 2008, 10:37 AM
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Did the pressure test but nothing showed up. Mechanic seems to know where its coming from (head gasket?) and said that it will just get worse with time. I am not losing coolant very rapidly but I smell it from time to time. The repair seems to be a PITA. Has any of you done this repair?
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  #16  
Old December 21st, 2008, 12:18 PM
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Andrew Najarian
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Head gaskets aren't that bad, but the shops charge an arm and a leg worth of labor. Plus, you have to replace the head bolts, and should replace the intake bolts, which adds to the cost. If you've done them a few times you can knock it out in a few hours, but if its your first time it may take a full weekend. If you're not comfortable ripping half your engine apart, you should either pay a shop to do it, or host a wrenching party. There are plenty of CO guys that would probably be able to help you out for free beer! The good news is, it sounds like you are just leaking coolant onto the ground, which is a lot better than mixing coolant and oil (which often happens when head gaskets go).
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