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Coolant leaking from drivers side top of rad?


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#1 black99csvt

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Posted 05 June 2012 - 09:19 PM

Ok so my coolant is leaking out somewhere on the drivers side of the car at the top of the rad. O thought maybe to replace the upper hose clamp that is there as that was easiest thing to do so I did that but it didnt fix it. It is really tight in there so I cant tell what else it could be. Can anyone help me on what this problem might be? Is there another line there other than the upper rad hose that I can see? Could my rad have gone bad? Or what do you figure?

Any help is really appreciated!

Thanks

#2 Aussie Ford

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Posted 06 June 2012 - 08:25 AM

The bad news is, there is nothing else in that area, so IF you are SURE the leak is there then the most likely cause is a radiator if it is not the hose. Sometimes those leaks can be hard to pinpoint. There is a small line that runs across the top front of the engine bay. It comes off of the top raditor hose down by the T-stat and goes to the coolant tank. That top hose is an unsual item.

AF

#3 Aussie Ford

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Posted 06 June 2012 - 08:25 AM

The bad news is, there is nothing else in that area, so IF you are SURE the leak is there then the most likely cause is a radiator if it is not the hose. Sometimes those leaks can be hard to pinpoint. There is a small line that runs across the top front of the engine bay. It comes off of the top raditor hose down by the T-stat and goes to the coolant tank. That top hose is an unsual item.

AF

#4 black99csvt

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Posted 06 June 2012 - 10:25 AM

Hi thanks for the reply. Ok so would my next step be to buy a new upper rad hose and change it? And it it still leaks it is the rad? Its to tight in there to tell where exactly its coming from. And it doesnt leak enough that you can visually see it coming out up there, it just drips out the bottom, and when looking down from the top you can see that it is running down the whole side of the rad from the top down to the bottom so the leak isnt at the bottom.

How hard is it to change rads? Luckily I am picking up a 98 SVT parts car this weekend that I can take the rad out and use if I need to. Also have a 96 SE Contour here already I could use the rad but it likely isnt the same as the SVT rads correct?

I guess first thing would be to change the upper rad hose and maybe try some rad stop leak??

What do you figure?

Thanks again for the help!

#5 Aussie Ford

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Posted 07 June 2012 - 01:13 AM

Hold on a minute..... First off don't just go replacing stuff. Now if you have another upper radiator hose handy then sure change it, but the more you talk about it the more it soundsl like the radiator. Any contour radiator will fit, but the SVT one has more cooling capacity. So to change out the radiator raise up the front of the car enough to gain clearance since it is removed from the bottom.
Remove the splash shield.
Drain the cooling system.
Remove the lower & upper radiator hoses.
Disconnect the fans, and unbolt the fan shroud. 10mm nuts one on each side.
Slightly raise the fan shroud then lower it out through the bottom.
Remove the lower radiator supports. IIRC 8mm bolts and PB Blaster is your friend.
Support the AC cooling condenser retained by tabs on the front side of the radiator. Raise it to separate it from the core.
Lower the raidator out of the bottom.

This is not a difficult operation but since things are as you say a bit compact in there you want to take your time and don't rush. While you have it out comb the fins if they are smashed up. This promotes freer air flow and better cooling.

Not long ago I installed a new radiator in my 95 ATX 4 banger and that was a PIA since I also had to change out the transmission cooling lines too.

We are here to help.

Good Luck,

AF

#6 black99csvt

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Posted 07 June 2012 - 09:26 AM

Ok so I went ahead and tried BARS coolant system stop leak, and since then the coolant leak has stopped. Am I just temperarily lucky or does this sometimes actually work when the leak is just very minor? I was surprised it worked but it seems to have so far.

#7 eliteman76

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 03:18 PM

eh, not a fan of that stuff, all it does is clog up things and make a mess.
Personally, I was having seepage on my 99 SE V6 ATX, and ended up being the seals on the rad.

I went to Keystone Automotive /LKQ, got a Canadian made radiator for like $89, and done. Yon need to look at the end tanks and see if it's leaking between the aluminum core and the plastic caps.