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Coolant leak help

 
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Old 23 Feb 2018, 05:13 pm
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Default Coolant leak help

My PT has been leaking coolant for quiet some time, Honestly I have just been busy to investigate it and make a thread asking for advice.

When i bought the car it had a real minor leak, Was clearly coming from the thermostat housing, I replaced the thermostat and the gasket for it as it looked crummy, so I figured that was it. Now that I put it back together it is leaking much much worse, like 4L in about a month.

It doesn't leak too much on my garage floor maybe a drop overnight and thats about it. I have noticed when it runs for around 10 minutes or more, and I'm stopped at a red light, I can see mist coming from the passenger side of the engine bay, escaping out threw the grill, and a decent amount of it. and I can occasionally smell coolant through the cabin when I have the air on. And when I pop the hood coolant is getting in all sorts of odd spots, like ontop of the power steering fluid tank.

My guess is that its the bottom of the thermostat housing that leaks just enough to let the hot mist out of it, I heard that its semi-common. I'm not sure the name of the plastic bit that goes below that part, Could it be that too?

Like whats the part called thats labeled as 4 on this diagram, and could it be that?



My local Canadian tire has a leak pump test kit thing I will loan this week, To try to see.
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Last edited by ajhockey3; 23 Feb 2018 at 05:29 pm.
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Old 23 Feb 2018, 05:28 pm
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Default Re: Coolant leak help

Get yourself a coolant pressure test kit. In the US, you can get a loaner one at an auto parts store. You just pay for it and get your money back when you return it (find out how long you can keep it). There used to be an inexpensive one @ about $75 which consisted of a hand pump with gauge and an adapter to test your radiator cap.



But now many stores switched over to one with a massive number of adapters and the deposit is $260!



Oddly enough, the "universal" adapter which consists of a rubber cone is the one that fits the PT.



By pumping up the pressure to 20 psi, you should see weeping from the leak if that's the culprit. If not and the pressure still drops down, you may have a headgasket leak, but first things first.

The plastic filler neck under the radiator cap and above the thermostat is cheap at around $30. The part under it where the other half of the thermostat sits is metal, not plastic.

Last edited by rsrocket1; 23 Feb 2018 at 05:30 pm.
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Old 23 Feb 2018, 05:49 pm
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Default Re: Coolant leak help

In the noted thread, your post 11 says

Thermostat Temp?

Quote:
Got a replacement bolt. Torqued it to 25 foot pounds and broke the bolt

Its in there good so ill just fix it if I ever need a new thermostat


In post 21 I said

Thermostat Temp?

Quote:
!?!?!?!? How does a broken bolt hold things together?

If you run with only one bolt, the plastic stat housing is going to break off due to vibration or cooling system pressure. You need to pull the plastic stat housing and remove the broken bolt.
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Old 23 Feb 2018, 06:25 pm
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Default Re: Coolant leak help

First thing is the pressure check to find the leak. Mine did the same thing twice, and both times it was the radiator coming apart and weeping at the seams. It blows around under the hood and if the fan goes on, it will blow everywhere.

If what @06_PB6_Touring says is correct, it sounds like you have an issue with your thermostat housing, so you should start there. As @rsrocket1 says the piece under the plastic thermostat housing is metal. #4 is plastic, #2 is metal. If you broke a bolt off in that, it is a good place to start.

FWIW, on my car there is a regular bolt and bolt with a stud that has a clip for some other nonsense to hook into. Can't remember what right now. I had a hell of time threading them. Twice I lost bolts, once never to return, and I had to use the telescoping magnet. Thanks @LionPT for reminding me to get it out of the tool box.
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Old 23 Feb 2018, 08:23 pm
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Default Re: Coolant leak help

Quote:
Originally Posted by 06_PB6_TOURING View Post
In the noted thread, your post 11 says

Thermostat Temp?





In post 21 I said

Thermostat Temp?
No where on Gods green earth will a bolt of that size be able to be torqued at 25 foot lbs, don't even have to look that one up. Most likely inch pounds.

Over time from heat and stress the bottom of the fill tube which holds the thermostat seal down to seal it slowly warps or bows which will allow the new gasket to leak with pressure after warm up.
I have in the past removed the bow by using a file or sandpaper to remove enough of the bow. set the fill tube gasket sealing area on something flat to check for the bow. Or buy a new one.

You also want to check the crimps across the top of the radiator after driving it for leaks then check the over flow tubing and the plastic tanks on the radiator for cracks. Do it when it hot.
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Last edited by JoeX; 23 Feb 2018 at 08:28 pm.
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Old 23 Feb 2018, 08:26 pm
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Default Re: Coolant leak help

Also make sure the bleed valve is closed.
At least on my car it takes a 3/8" wrench and is a pain to get into that tight space to loosen and tighten. Maybe I can't measure properly but no metric wrench fit properly but a 3/8" box wrench fit perfectly. One SAE part with all other fasteners metric???!!!
Moderate torque is all that is needed. Don't strip the threads.

and yes, a telescoping magnet is required equipment when working in the PT Cruiser engine compartment.
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Old 23 Feb 2018, 08:27 pm
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Default Re: Coolant leak help

Quote:
Originally Posted by rsrocket1 View Post
Also make sure the bleed valve is closed.
At least on my car it takes a 3/8" wrench and is a pain to get into that tight space to loosen and tighten. Maybe I can't measure properly but no metric wrench fit properly but a 3/8" box wrench fit perfectly. One SAE part with all other fasteners metric???!!!
Moderate torque is all that is needed. Don't strip the threads.
Bleeder valve is seized
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Old 23 Feb 2018, 08:30 pm
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Default Re: Coolant leak help

Quote:
Originally Posted by ajhockey3 View Post
Bleeder valve is seized
Don't fool with it if its not leaking.
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66 Ply Satellite with 273 engine swap to 69 340 4spd
70 340 4spd Dart Swinger "Those were the days my friend"
73 Charger SE
Had a few Vetts on the way 69, 85
Several Neons some flips
01 Sebring flip
Cruiser's 01, 220K Gone to a new home
Cruiser 03 133K Gone to a new home
Cruiser 06 110K Project Gone to new Home
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Old 23 Feb 2018, 10:21 pm
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Default Re: Coolant leak help

That bottom piece that thermostate sits in is held on the side of the head with 3 bolts...
a 10mm socket will fit those bolt ...
there is a gasket between that and were it bolts to the head that Might have failed Ill look for a picture......W
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Old 23 Feb 2018, 11:00 pm
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Default Re: Coolant leak help

Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeX View Post
Don't fool with it if its not leaking.
Yes, if no coolant is weeping out if it leave it alone
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