Coolant Leaking From My Car

antifreeze leak

I have written you several times and I have always had good luck on you discovering the problems and saving me lots of money as the very few mechanics here will keep your car forever and try to charge you excessive or unless you go to them and suggest the problems up front.  Like I said you have saved me a lot of money that way.

I inherited my aunts car.  It has set in storage until a couple of months ago.  I would start it and drive it once every week to keep it running. 

I put it in storage and have been trying to save up for a brand new motor to put in the car because that car is in perfect shape and looks brand new still today.  It does not have one nick or scratch on it.  I was going to put a new motor in it so it will last many more years.

Here is the problem the car has 172,568 miles on it.  The motor runs very good.  However the problem with it has me and seems to have my mechanic baffled as well.  2 months ago when I pulled it out of storage I noticed the coolant leaking on the ground.

I had my mechanic look at it and he fixed the leak he saw.  It does not leak any coolant anymore on the ground.  However you still have to add coolant to the coolant reservoir tank and to the actually radiator every 2 days or it will severely overheat.

Also the temp gauge will wildly fluctuate into the hot region most of the time or unless you have just then added the coolant to the reservoir and radiator.  Where could the coolant be going too and what could be the problem with this car?  It used to be you had to add to the reservoir and radiator every 4 or 5 days.

I would also like to note that when the car is overheating it seems like the motor runs poorly but when I stop and add the coolant to the reservoir and radiator the engine goes back to running properly.

What should I do to correct this problem and what do you think this sounds like.  Like I said the engine runs really good and the car is in excellent shape so I can not afford to junk it.

Thank you for taking the time to read this.  Sorry about the length of this email but I feel like if I give you a good background on the problem and vehicle you can suggest what problems it could be having.

 

Hey there,

Well I would get a cooling system pressure test done FIRST before you do anything else. That simple and cheap test will help you determine if you still have an external coolant leak or an internal leak like a head gasket.

With a head gasket leak, I would expect to see white smoke out the exhaust pipe, water in the engine oil, engine missing and running bad, coolant on the spark plugs etc. and you did not mention any of those.

When the engine runs real hot it will run poorly as well so that makes sense. Get the test done and if you need me just email me back with what you have found out.

Also make sure the electric radiator cooling fans are coming on under the hood as the engine warms up.  You could just be overheating enough that the coolant is boiling out of the overflow bottle.

A restriction inside the radiator is something else I would be a little concerned with due to the age, mileage and the fact that this car has been sitting up for so long. Rust, calcium and deposits build up at the bottom of the radiator and will restrict the flow of coolant in the engine.

The engine will overheat if there is not enough coolant flowing inside and boil over any remaining coolant in the overflow bottle…or out of the bottle and onto the ground.

Please share this with your friends
Austin Davis

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