Coolant tank leak

The coolant tank leaks and empties quickly.
Experienced mechanics share their insights in answering this question :
Hello. If the coolant is leaking that fast then you should be able to see the vehicle leaving a puddle on the ground. If it is leaking onto the ground then it can be from a number of places. If it is towards the front of the vehicle then it may be the radiator leaking or a hose. If it seems to be coming from closer to the firewall then it is the water pump. The water pump is the most common cause of an external leak on this vehicle. If it is not leaking any coolant on the ground then it may have a leaking head gasket. A mechanic would do a block test to verify if this is occurring. If that is the case the engine will need to be disassembled and repaired.

How to Identify and Fix Common car Problems ?

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Corrosion within the radiator is one of the leading reasons that coolant leaks. As the tubes get older and weaker, you may get sediment or debris inside that causes a leak. The sealing gasket between the tank and the radiator can also wear out, and that could lead to a leak.
Look for signs of coolant leakage—a light-colored residue or stain—around the radiator cap, on hoses throughout the engine compartment (check the ends where they are clamped to other components) and on the radiator itself. If it looks like a hose is leaking near a clamp, try tightening the clamp with a screwdriver.
If the coolant level is dropping and there is no external leak evident, then the coolant is probably leaking internally, into the engine. If the car has recently overheated then this could have caused the head gasket to fail. If it has, it could be leaking coolant into the combustion chambers.
Since overheating is a significant risk, you`ll need to drive to the nearest repair shop. It`s not recommended to drive without the proper coolant levels lest you run the risk of engine failure.
Chances are you have either a radiator cap leak, internal coolant leak or an external coolant leak. The longer you wait the higher the coolant leak repair cost will be. Learn how to diagnose your antifreeze leak and learn what to do next.
Technically speaking yes you can use plain water in your cooling system but it isn`t recommended as a long term solution and certainly not in extreme weather conditions.
This deteriorated liquid can trigger severe harm to your engine by failing to control the temperature. Therefore, manufacturers suggest replacing the coolant periodically. It is recommended you change coolant after the first 210,000 km (140,000 miles) or 120 months, then every 30,000 km (20,000 miles) or 24 months.
Antifreeze (aka coolant) is pumped through your vehicle`s engine as you drive, absorbing excess heat and exchanging it with the outside air. That means an antifreeze leak could cause the engine to overheat — and that can lead to major engine damage.
How much coolant loss is normal? Providing that the engine is running well, with no leakages or damage, you can expect a coolant loss of 0.25% every four to six months. This means a loss of two to three ounces a year is completely normal.
Yellow – Yellow fluid indicates a radiator coolant leak, which can happen if there is a loose hose clamp or a damaged o-ring. This is vital to fix as soon as possible. Green – Green fluid can point to an antifreeze leak. Antifreeze can start to leak when certain hoses, fittings, or clamps have worn out.
If you do see a coolant leak under your car, it could be from a blown head gasket, but it could also be from a number of other problems. Typically, if the head gaskets look normal, the problem is in the radiator. Remember, the coolant cycles through the radiator to lose heat it collected in the engine.
Broken radiator hose or hot pipe is easy to fix with Rescue tape because it can handle temperature up to 500F and pressure up to 950 PSI. | Rescue Tape is extremely durable, but when it comes time to remove it, it does not leave any sticky residue like a duck tape.
Water will NOT keep the engine running cool enough. It will boil and evaperate quickly as well. If you use regular tap water instead of DISTILLED water to mix with the antifreeze, then the minerals in the tap water will collect inside your engine, radiator, and heater core…
For normal driving of 12,000 to 15,000 miles per year, five years will pass long before the odometer hits 150,000 miles. So, for most applications, five years is the recommended service interval for changing the coolant.
A functioning cooling system is crucial to the ongoing performance and health of your car`s engine, so it`s important to make sure the coolant/antifreeze level never drops below the minimum fill line marked on the reservoir.
Slow Coolant leaks are extremely difficult to diagnose. Unlike leaking oil, slow coolant leaks leave barely any residue behind. Coolant is half water and it`s other ingredients that don`t form a sticky residue so the slow leaks usually don`t leave an evidence trail.
Pressure testing is used to check for leaks in the cooling system and to test the radiator cap.
A coolant/antifreeze leak can occur for a variety of reasons, including a blown radiator hose, a bad hose clamp, warped head gasket, or the most common reason, a foreign object kicked up by the truck in front of you penetrating the radiator itself.

Relevant Questions and Answers :

the most relevant questions and answers related to your specific issue

No coolant in the reservoir. Seen low coolant message. I added 2 quarts of 50/50 coolant. Still getting the message. How much coolant doe it need?
ANSWER : Hi there. For the coolant light to go out, you would need to have the coolant between the low line and the full line for the light to go out. If the coolant is low and keeps on being low, then look for any signs of coolant leaks. You may have to use a coolant pressure tester to pressurize the reservoir to allow the leak to be found.

If you need further assistance with the coolant being low and the warning light being on, then seek out a professional, such as one from Your Mechanic, to help you.

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Over heating coolant not siphoning back into coolant over flow tank
ANSWER : Hey there:

It’s common for many mechanics to make the mistake of mis-diagnosing the cause of an overheating situation; especially when they assume it’s a thermostat issue. The problem could be caused by a blockage in the coolant tubes running from the radiator to the overflow tank and back to the radiator. However, it also may be due to air trapped in the coolant lines. I think a good idea would be to contact a different ASE certified mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, and have them complete a coolant flush, which should remove any blockages in the coolant tubes and may solve your problem.

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My car is spitting coolant from the overflow tank
ANSWER : Hi and thanks for contacting YourMechanic. Check the coolant strength to see what the protection is. A good protection will read 164 degrees Fahrenheit. Check the radiator cap to see if the seal is torn or if the release valve inside the cap has failed or is sticking open. A radiator cap can cause the system to boil and spit out all of the coolant.

If you have good coolant and the radiator cap is new, then the thermostat could be sticking causing your coolant to heat up too much which in turn causes the system to boil. To check if the thermostat is working, start up the vehicle when it is cold and watch the coolant temperature gauge. When the thermostat opens, the gauge will drop a little.

If the gauge does not show this, then, when the upper radiator hose gets hot, right after the thermostat opens, the coolant flows through the hose and you would be able to feel this. Plus, the hose will begin to get cooler as the coolant travels through the hose. If the thermostat was replaced and you still have a boiling issue, then the head gasket has burned on the engine.

If you need assistance, then seek out a professional mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, to help determine why the car is overheating and why the coolant is boiling out.

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My car has a coolant leak
ANSWER : Hello. The most common cause of a random coolant loss on this vehicle is a leaking intake manifold gasket. It commonly starts leaking coolant into the engine, which will be burnt off or will leak externally. I typically do a pressure test and a dye test on the system first to see if I can locate an external leak. If nothing is found, then I do a block test to make sure that there is not a head gasket issue. If nothing shows up there, then I replace the intake gaskets. If you need to have this done, consider YourMechanic, as a certified mechanic can come to your home or office to diagnose the coolant leak and replace the intake gaskets if necessary.

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My car is leaking coolant and telling me to stop the car and check coolant.
ANSWER : Going by your description and the age of the car, I’m going to guess you have a problem with your water pump. The water pump has a rotating seal that often doesn’t leak unless the engine is running. If your water pump is leaking you might be able to see a drip from the bottom of the engine front cover. Before jumping to any conclusions though, you should have a professional pressure test the system to be sure. If you contact Your Mechanic. they can send a technician to your home or office to check out your leak and tell you what it will take to solve it.

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Car leaks coolant when left overnight
ANSWER : Hi there. In some instances, after a radiator is replaced, a coolant line can be left loose by accident or can come loose as the hose clamp gets hot. If the car is parked on a slight uphill slope, the radiator coolant might be leaking from one of the top cooling lines or from the radiator overflow reservoir hose.

The best way to know exactly where your vehicle is leaking coolant from is to have a local mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, come to your location to complete an inspection to determine the source of the leak.

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Oil leaks into coolant & coolant leaks into oil
ANSWER : If the engine is not overheating or running badly, then yes an oil cooler is most likely the issue as it it will allow oil and coolant to mix. Other possibilities are a bad cylinder head gasket or cracked block, but this will generally affect how the engine runs as the combustion chambers are also affected. To have this checked, you may want to enlist the help of a mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, who will have the tools and expertise to diagnose the oil/coolant leak mixing and perform any needed repairs.

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Coolant leaking from top of coolant tank
ANSWER : You either did not get the coolant cap tightened completely when you topped it off before or you have a defective cap. Replace the cap and refill the system while making sure the cap is on all the way. If the problem persists and you suspect something is wrong, then have a certified mechanic, like one from YourMechanic, diagnose the coolant leak firsthand for you. Good luck.

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