View Full Version : Leaky Radiator advice needed
01-07-2013, 12:52 PM
I noticed a stain on the driveway, and the engine was running hot. I checked the radiator and reservoir tank it they were empty.
Any advice on what to do
Is this fixable at home, or do I need to brink it in. I trust our mechanic, but don't want to spend cash if it isn't necessary.
01-07-2013, 12:56 PM
i have been a tech for 32 years so i say take to a place you true and let them presure test it. and then you will know where its leaking at.
01-07-2013, 01:16 PM
it could be a bad hose..fill it up with water, get it hot, look for the leak. if it just a hose, easy fix, if radiator is leaking, there are some products that help with small leaks. if it is heating up and backing up through the overflow, the thermostat maybe stuck which is usually just two bolts and a gasket to replace. guess it all depends on how mechanically inclined you are.
01-07-2013, 01:16 PM
You sure it's not a hose knights? I'd crank her up and watch the engine when she warms up to make sure.
The good news is if it needs a radiator, they're pretty easy to insall if you want to do it yourself and save a few bucks.
If it's a blown head gasket tho, that could run into a little money.
How many miles on the car?
01-07-2013, 01:23 PM
Yeah...fill the system and heat it up. If you actually drained the whole system, it is likely a leak that you'll be able to see. Hose repairs are easy.
If it's an older vehicle and the radiator is leaking, use Bar's Leak. I say that only if it's older.
If the vehicle is under 100,000 and the radiator is leaking, do a proper radiator repair.
01-07-2013, 01:43 PM
If you end up needing to replace the radiator it's one of the easiest DIY jobs. If you are remotely handy you should be able to.
01-07-2013, 01:48 PM
Pour pepper in the radiator. It should plug any leak. Seriously, I was driving back home from UF and had a radiator leak so I was stranded on I-75. My brother came to rescue me with a shaker of pepper and some antifreeze. I made it all the way to Lakeland (and a few weeks longer) before I had the money to get the radiator repaired.
01-07-2013, 05:40 PM
Could also be a leaking water pump. Water pumps leak while the cooling system is pressurized.
01-07-2013, 06:11 PM
do nort drive it unless you are sure it is full of water or you will ruin your engine
01-07-2013, 06:22 PM
It could be an easy fix, or a job. It could be leaking water out of the water pump if it has gone bad, it has a pee hole at the bottom, it could be the thermostat backing the system up, but you said the over flow tank was empty, could be a hose, not all bad fixes, depends on the age of the vehicle and wither or not you want to quick fix it or do it right. And the radiator isn't a hard replacement either again depending on the yr and model of the car.
01-07-2013, 06:59 PM
Fill it up and take it in. Could be simple like a hose or radiator cap...both are common. Wonder how long it took to get low enough on water to run hot. You prob do not know that. Take it in ...if it is simple then the cost will reflect that.
01-07-2013, 09:58 PM
as a current tech for vw, do not put in any stop leak. they may as well call stop cooling system. you will be amazed at what else gets stopped up when people put that stuff in. any small orifices will also seal up and cause you all sorts of issues.
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