Has your late model car started depositing puddles of coolant all over your home’s driveway and garage? If so, you’ll want to clean it up before it stains. You’ll also want to let the engine cool, find and fix the coolant leak. Otherwise you could end up with additional, more costly problems to contend with. Based on my experience with my 1997 Ford Taurus, locating the problem isn’t terribly complicated. Here are a few suggestions on how to do it:
Hoses and Clamps
When it comes to my 1997 Ford Taurus, I have found that radiator and heater hoses are often two of the chief causes of external coolant leaks. Therefore, you’ll want to think about checking them first. I have found that the ideal way to check them is to use your hands to give each hose a gentle squeeze. Then examine its entire length for cracks, nicks, swollen and worn areas. You’ll also want to check out each hose clamp. They could be loose or may have broken through the hose. After you’ve finished your inspection, replace any hoses and clamps that appear damaged or suspect.
Reservoir Tank and Radiator
Next, check out the area around your vehicle’s coolant reservoir. Sometimes they can develop cracks. While doing so, be sure to examine all sides of the tank as well as any seams. Understandably, if damage exists you’ll need to replace the reservoir.
I’d also suggest inspecting your vehicle’s engine drainage plugs and radiator. If leaks exist, you’ll need to remove, replace or repair them as well. With that said, I should tell you that removing and replacing a car’s radiator can be a time consuming task. I completed the task once and it took all day. Thus, if you don’t have the time to invest in the project, I’d suggest taking it to someone that does.
Continue by checking the area around your water pump’s seals. Sometimes the gaskets can fail, thereby sending water into places where it doesn’t belong. Personally, I would recommend using an inspection mirror to check the weep hole area. I am short-statured and find that such tools help immensely. If you see brown spots or dampness during the inspection, there is a good chance that you’ve identified the problem. As such, you may want to consider replacing the pump.
Coolant Temperature Switch
In my experience, if you vehicle continues to leak, you could have a faulty coolant temperature switch or sensor. Therefore, I’d suggest checking them as well. One way to do that is to have your machine hooked up to a diagnostic device. You can purchase a hand-held device through most auto supply stores or take your vehicle to a pro. Either way, the device will display a code that will tell you where the problems are. Afterward, you can address the issues accordingly.
Source: Personal Experience
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