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#4620406 - 01/01/18 09:43 AM Coolant leak - happy new year to me!
VeryNoisyPoet Offline


Registered: 12/16/17
Posts: 290
Loc: Massachusetts
Low coolant warning light this morning when I started the car. Found a nice little puddle under right front corner:



Took off splash tray to see fresh green drops on bottom of radiator:



Discovered the top radiator hose decided last night was the night to begin weeping. Sealant there is mechanical reinforcement for oil cooler hose fitting.



Now it's 5 F / - 15 C outside and I get to figure out why, how, and how to make it stop leaking. Happy new year! LOL crzy shrug
_________________________
1998 V70 GLT / 187k miles

"Use yah blinkah!"

"Be nice. The alternative involves an air horn and 7000 lumens of high beam."

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#4620438 - 01/01/18 10:13 AM Re: Coolant leak - happy new year to me! [Re: VeryNoisyPoet]
George7941 Offline


Registered: 05/10/05
Posts: 2158
Loc: Toronto, Canada
You are limited in what can be done in this very cold weather. Working with rubber components in cold weather is difficult.

First step is to further tighten the existing clamp. Next step would be to add an extra clamp. Hopefully this can nurse the car along for a month or two till you get some warmer weather and then you can change out the hose if necessary.

Shrink clamps are very good at preventing cold leaks. Trav, the Bitog guru on all things automotive, is a big proponent of using Hylomar to prevent rad hose leaks.
_________________________
2006 GMC Sierra 4.3l, NV3500,G80 , Mobil 1 5W30, Dexcool.
1987 BMW R80 - sold
2015 Honda CBR300R

Staying out of the right lane a lot.

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#4620455 - 01/01/18 10:24 AM Re: Coolant leak - happy new year to me! [Re: VeryNoisyPoet]
mclasser Offline


Registered: 04/13/13
Posts: 2226
Loc: The Northeast
I feel your pain man. Doing any car stuff in the bitter cold blows. I replaced a cracked coolant reservoir for my SIL last night. I had to keep taking my gloves off to pick up bolts and it sucked. The joys of winter...
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2018 Hyundai Elantra VE -- 3K
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#4620470 - 01/01/18 10:34 AM Re: Coolant leak - happy new year to me! [Re: VeryNoisyPoet]
Chris142 Online   content


Registered: 06/05/03
Posts: 16817
Loc: Deplorable in apple valley, ca
Did you smear sealer all over there?
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#4620485 - 01/01/18 10:48 AM Re: Coolant leak - happy new year to me! [Re: Chris142]
VeryNoisyPoet Offline


Registered: 12/16/17
Posts: 290
Loc: Massachusetts
Quote:
Did you smear sealer all over there?


Yes. After I replaced the cooler hoses, I noticed the oil cooler line fittings had a tendency to work loose as the hoses vibrated . Never leaked either oil or coolant, but I found noticed it when replacing the headlight on that side. Putting sealer around the fittings like that held them in place so I don't need to worry about rechecking them. Top one is super easy to check and tighten, but bottom one requires jacking up car and removing splash guard so I don't want to do that more than I have to.
_________________________
1998 V70 GLT / 187k miles

"Use yah blinkah!"

"Be nice. The alternative involves an air horn and 7000 lumens of high beam."

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#4620486 - 01/01/18 10:48 AM Re: Coolant leak - happy new year to me! [Re: VeryNoisyPoet]
Drew99GT Offline


Registered: 10/11/02
Posts: 22125
Loc: Colorado Springs
If it's just the clamp leaking, and it's a worm gear clamp, and the hose is still intact (might not be if you've cranked on the clamp trying to get the leak to stop, you should buy a constant tension screw clamp. Napa and Oreilly have them in stock. Problem solved.

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#4620654 - 01/01/18 01:47 PM Re: Coolant leak - happy new year to me! [Re: VeryNoisyPoet]
maverickfhs Offline


Registered: 12/28/16
Posts: 1975
Loc: VA
Good luck sorting it out, if hose is intact then a screw clamp would be a good option but make sure hose is warm and you are tightening it with normal force(but not overly tightening).

During this cold. anything rubber/bolt related is a royal pain.

Plus, everything hurts like a ....
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#4620663 - 01/01/18 01:58 PM Re: Coolant leak - happy new year to me! [Re: VeryNoisyPoet]
das_peikko Online   content


Registered: 01/01/18
Posts: 499
Loc: San Antonio, TX
You need a constant tension spring clamp and a set of Mayhew 28680 pliers.

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#4620665 - 01/01/18 01:59 PM Re: Coolant leak - happy new year to me! [Re: VeryNoisyPoet]
4wheeldog Offline


Registered: 04/23/12
Posts: 1462
Loc: East Mountains, NM
Given the temperature, it is possible the leak is caused by something shrinking.
If it were me, I would fill the radiator and reservoir, run it until warm and recheck for the leak.
Just sayin'.

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#4620799 - 01/01/18 03:55 PM Re: Coolant leak - happy new year to me! [Re: VeryNoisyPoet]
eljefino Offline


Registered: 06/15/03
Posts: 32631
Loc: ME
Agree, run it until warm so stuff will be less brittle before you do "whatever".

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#4620858 - 01/01/18 04:49 PM Re: Coolant leak - happy new year to me! [Re: VeryNoisyPoet]
andyd Online   content


Registered: 09/25/04
Posts: 7138
Loc: Marshfield , MA
Yes, drive to the auto parts store for more coolant and maybe another clamp. Cranking on cold, brittle ABS plastic with steel tools is fraught with potential fail. Maintaining coolant levels is all you need to do with this until the weather gets warmer
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Thick oil is better grin2

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#4620882 - 01/01/18 05:13 PM Re: Coolant leak - happy new year to me! [Re: VeryNoisyPoet]
VeryNoisyPoet Offline


Registered: 12/16/17
Posts: 290
Loc: Massachusetts
Hose is only 4 years old and still feels flexible even at these freezing temps. It was still really leaking with zero pressure. Took the hose off and figured out why. Hose clamp was a little tired looking, and there's a design / manufacturing flaw in this (presumably) aftermarket radiator. Look at the ridge left over from the plastic molding process. There's one on top and underneath, and they run all the way along the hose nipple. Suddenly there's a leak path if the hose and clamp loosen, shrink, or shift even a little. I'm more surprised it didn't leak worse/sooner!



I painstakingly shaved the ridges down with 400 grit sandpaper until I can't feel them there anymore. Hopefully that gives a smooth surface to help the hose seal. I'm warming up inside now, then I'm headed back out there to fill it up and see if it holds water.

_________________________
1998 V70 GLT / 187k miles

"Use yah blinkah!"

"Be nice. The alternative involves an air horn and 7000 lumens of high beam."

Top
#4621096 - 01/01/18 07:51 PM Re: Coolant leak - happy new year to me! [Re: VeryNoisyPoet]
eljefino Offline


Registered: 06/15/03
Posts: 32631
Loc: ME
Nice find! RTV is your friend if you don't get this sorted.

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#4621155 - 01/01/18 08:42 PM Re: Coolant leak - happy new year to me! [Re: VeryNoisyPoet]
VeryNoisyPoet Offline


Registered: 12/16/17
Posts: 290
Loc: Massachusetts
Got the hose secured again. The OEM Volvo clamp has seen better days, but the econo-pack screw clamps do not inspire confidence either, so I used both. A hairdryer worked great to warm hose and nipple to 90F / 32C to soften things up before tightening the clamps. It held water without any signs of leaking for about two hours now, so I'm confident I have a temporary repair that won't lose the better part of a quart overnight like it did before.




Since it is now 3F / -16C outside and I like to keep my fingers unfrozen, I'm done for the night. I'll take it for a test drive tomorrow if I don't see any signs of leakage after all that time.
_________________________
1998 V70 GLT / 187k miles

"Use yah blinkah!"

"Be nice. The alternative involves an air horn and 7000 lumens of high beam."

Top
#4621169 - 01/01/18 08:52 PM Re: Coolant leak - happy new year to me! [Re: eljefino]
George7941 Offline


Registered: 05/10/05
Posts: 2158
Loc: Toronto, Canada
I had a bad experience with RTV on a rad hose. This was on a Ford 4.9 "Big Six" engine where the thermostat housing end onto which the top rad hose slides on has no barb. There is only friction retaining the hose on. RTV made it slippery and the hose slid off when the pressure built up to the rated 15 psi in the cooling system. I put the hose back on after wiping the RTV off and did not have any further issues.
_________________________
2006 GMC Sierra 4.3l, NV3500,G80 , Mobil 1 5W30, Dexcool.
1987 BMW R80 - sold
2015 Honda CBR300R

Staying out of the right lane a lot.

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