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Draincock problem

 
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Old 11 Nov 2010, 03:42 pm
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Default Draincock problem

Hello, all.

I started to change my coolant and thermostat--and then was checked by a strange draincock problem.

This is what happened: I removed the radiator cap, turned the heater control to hot, then got under the ole PT and turned the draincock counterclockwise (just like you're supposed to). The draincock stopped at a quarter turn. I got no coolant at this stop position--so I gently tried to turn it a bit more. It would not turn any more--and I was afraid to force it--and I still got no juice, naturally.

Is the draincock just stuck and I can safely turn it more without damaging the draincock--or worse--the radiator, where the draincock screws into?

I hope someone who's changed their coolant is on the line ....

Thanks,

Tim
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Old 11 Nov 2010, 05:48 pm
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Default Re: Draincock problem

Tim,

Are yo sure you didn't write to PT Do-It-Yourself.net with your problem? This sure sounds exactly like what you just said.

=====================================

I have a 2001 LE PT with 97k miles. I'm experiencing difficulty draining the coolant. I removed the radiator cap, and turned the stopcock on the bottom of the radiator (it only went 1/4 of a turn counter clockwise), but no fluid came out. What needs to be done to drain the coolant for replacement per recommended maintenance? Brendan, from Texas.

I can't tell from your description if you're draining the system correctly and or if the drain cock is simply clogged with sediment. Try to induce flow by working the drain cock back and forth to open it further.

If you can open it further, but there's still no flow follow this procedure to remove the clogged drain cock. Open the drain cock by turning it counterclockwise until it stops. Then turn the drain cock clockwise 1/8 turn. Then pull the drain cock from the radiator tank.

Although more time consuming and messy; you can try removing the lower radiator hose to drain the radiator.
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Old 11 Nov 2010, 07:18 pm
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Default Re: Draincock problem

Crewzin, thanks for your advice. No, that was some one else writing to PT do it yourself. I read his problem in your reply and could see that this is something others must run into--and not just me.

I had the car apart and needed advice right away (my daughter wanted to see a movie), so I went ahead and paid the PT on-line Mechanic for his advice. He told me that I needed to take the drain cock out also, since the design is lousy, and you have to do the quarter-then eighth-turn trick to completely remove the drain cock. My main worry was where the point of "full stop" was. You need to know that before backing off one eighth turn to remove the drain cock. And I certainly didn't want to strip out the female part of the radiator! Full stop is one quarter turn.

So I tried the trick--about 10 times--and could not get the drain cock out (the PT Mechanic told me putting it back in was a real bitch, too but it was not his design). But my thermostat seal was leaking, so I simply opened up the cap on the thermostat housing and siphoned out enough coolant to be able to remove the housing to replace the thermostat. I was successful.

I decided to wait till another day to replace my coolant (I just re-used the stuff I siphoned out and added a bit of Mopar HOAT/distilled water).

By the way, the Hayne's Manual about removing the upper manifold has a flaw. You not only have to remove the 13 mm bolt from the side of the throttle body--but you also have to remove the one in the back. They omitted this in their illustration, as well as, their instructions.

Thanks, Crewzin. I appreciate your help.

Tim
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Old 11 Nov 2010, 07:28 pm
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Default Re: Draincock problem

If I remember correctly, there's 3 bolts that hold on the upper manifold to the throttle body but who's counting. Can't take any blame for the Haynes manual. Our guide on the forum for changing plugs and wires might be better than Haynes.
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Old 11 Nov 2010, 10:49 pm
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Default Re: Draincock problem

Crewzin, you're correct. There are three bolts holding the upper manifold to the throttle body. But it's easier to remove the "two" bolts that connect the throttle body to the throttle body bracket in order to lift the upper manifold for service beneath it.

I should have followed the second "Sticky" in this forum, concerning the changing of spark plugs. It shows you (and tells you) to remove the two throlltle body to throttle body bracket bolts. But I trusted Haynes instead.

Lesson learned....

Tim
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Old 12 Nov 2010, 06:32 pm
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Default Re: Draincock problem

Crewzin, I will take your advice next week, and remove the lower radiator hose to drain the coolant. I have just one problem that may make me take the PT to a shop, however.

The original Mopar fluid tested fine--to 35 degrees below zero; however the inside of the upper radiator hose seemed to be forming a kind of rusty sludge. This sludge was not very thick a few thousands of an inch, I'd guess, but the orifices in the radiator are not very large, either. So I might just have the system chemically flushed at a radiator shop, then have them put in the Mopar HOAT that I just bought (I only used a little of it to top off the PT after changing the leaky thermostat). I'd do the job myself, but I don't want any chemicals or antifreeze running out to the street gutter--and then into the creek nearby.

Mt PT was bought new in 2003, and I haven't changed the fluid as of yet; so I suppose that just because the coolant tests well with the hydrometer, that doesn't mean you shouldn't change the coolant at the five-year mark. That rusty-scale looks like an omen to me ....

Tim
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Old 12 Nov 2010, 06:54 pm
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Default Re: Draincock problem

Sounds like a good plan to me Tim. I'm a firm believer in preventative maintenance.
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