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2006 rad level

 
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Old 20 Oct 2016, 09:27 am
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Default 2006 rad level

Hi experts, I'm new here and my names Paul.
We had an overheat a couple weeks ago in our 2006 non turbo cruiser that I chalked up to a low rad, possible minor leak over time.
Refilled the coolant system to the cap while running then replaced cap. Resevoir is overfull to hot level when cold. Everytime I pull the cap off a cold engine the visible coolant level has dropped below the passage for the upper rad hose but not to the level where you could see the rad cap which it did after the overheat.
What is the visible coolant level on your cold engines?
Under any circumstance should the thermostat be visible?
Thanks very much.
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Old 20 Oct 2016, 10:05 am
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Default Re: 2006 rad level

Hi, welcome to the forum. The first thing you should do is go to the new members section and introduce yourself and tell us about your Cruiser. What is the mileage and any work recently done on it.

As to your problem,

You should be no more than an inch or so from the cap on a cold engine. As the engine warms up, the coolant expands, opens the pressure valve on the radiator cap and goes into the reservoir. As the engine cools down, the coolant contracts creating a vacuum that pulls coolant from the reservoir back into the system.

You should never be able to see the thermostat.

You didn't mention the level of the coolant in the reservoir when the coolant level is down in the fill tube. Is it still high in the reservoir or has that drained completely out?

If the reservoir still has coolant in it, first areas to check would be the radiator cap gasket for cracking, the overflow reservoir line for cracks, kinks and/or blockage. Also check for any wetness or staining around hose connections, and the base of the thermostat housing.
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Old 20 Oct 2016, 10:36 am
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Default Re: 2006 rad level

If you didn't already, you need to burp the cooling system using the bleeder valve located below the thermostat housing.

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Old 20 Oct 2016, 10:43 am
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Default Re: 2006 rad level

I usually just keep filling it until it is full and then do it every time it cools off. After a week it is fine. NE winters are hell on those bleeder screws. You have to keep checking it anyway. I've done it with the funnel and the car running which also works okay and makes about the same mess as the bleeder screw. You would be surprised how the car can keep swallowing coolant after you fill it and drive a bit. Last time I did my radiator I was convinced I had a leak, but after about a week and a decent amount of water, it has remained steady for months. <as always, knock on wood>
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Old 20 Oct 2016, 11:33 am
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Default Re: 2006 rad level

The coolant level in the resevoir is at the full hot level when its cold. Maybe the rad cap is faulty? Does that happen often? I can replace it and burp the system. Sounds like it is not sucking it back out of resevoir maybe? Thanks.
P.S. what is burp procedure?
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Old 20 Oct 2016, 12:52 pm
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Default Re: 2006 rad level

Quote:
Originally Posted by contaucreek View Post
The coolant level in the resevoir is at the full hot level when its cold. Maybe the rad cap is faulty? Does that happen often? I can replace it and burp the system. Sounds like it is not sucking it back out of resevoir maybe? Thanks.
P.S. what is burp procedure?
Just open the bleeder valve and fill with coolant until it runs steadily out the valve. Then close it. It makes it very easy to get the air out of the engine.

If me, I'd go ahead and get a new radiator cap just to eliminate that possible cause. Once you've filled the engine with the bleeder valve open it should be full. After that just fill the reservoir to the cold line. If the reservoir then overflows after the engine heats up, you may need to do a chemical test for compression gas in the coolant as a sign of a blown head gasket. This is pretty common among PT Cruisers.
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Old 20 Oct 2016, 02:00 pm
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Default Re: 2006 rad level

Be careful with the bleeder valve,, don't break it off.
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Old 20 Oct 2016, 02:59 pm
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Default Re: 2006 rad level

I would suggest checking the hose going from the radiator cap to the overflow reservoir tank. If that hose has loose fittings on either end or cracks in it it will allow the coolant to go into the reservoir tank but may not go back into the coolant system allowing air to get into it.
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Old 20 Oct 2016, 04:54 pm
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Default Re: 2006 rad level

I just checked level again. Engine warm not hot. Removed cap, there was pressure and the level was just under the cap. I think it has worked its way into a normal condition. Thanks for helping everyone.
P.S. I am a mode door cable repair expert now too...
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