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Thread: Coolant smell

  1. #1
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    Coolant smell

    So I've had some coolant issues a couple of months ago. I had to refill the coolant pretty often but there was no visible leak. I then bought a new cap for the coolant tank and then my problems stopped. But today when a friend of my dad's (who's been working as a mechanic for several years) stood by my car he said that it smells like it's leaking coolant. Should I get one of those fluids that fixes potential leaks? Or what should I do since I can't see any visible leaks, no dripping anywhere etc?



  2. #2
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    I changed my coolant a few months ago and I still get a whiff of it now and then, but have not consumed or lost a drop.

    Where was your coolant going? If it was spilling out of the expansion tank I would think it is that.

    Are you losing coolant still? If no than I would think that you are OK.
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  3. #3
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    Not sure where it went but one of the theories was that it vaporized due to a bad gasket in the cap. I think that solved the problem, at least I don't have to fill it as often as before. But shouldn't I be concerned about the smell that comes when the engine gets warm? Though it doesn't come any white smoke from the exhaust system as I heard that it would do if it's a internal leak.

  4. #4
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    My cap was leaking. There was a smell of coolant. What I did was rinse my engine bay with fresh water. Then I just washed the engine bay as I would my car, but used one of those soft bristle brushes. Long story short with the soap and water smell disappeared.
    In my dream the world had suffered a terrible disaster.
    A black haze shut out the sun and the darkness was alive.
    Suddenly a small light glowed. A candle flickered into life. A symbol of hope!
    A single tiny candle, shining in the ugly dark.
    I LAUGHED and blew it out!

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jokersmokesem View Post
    My cap was leaking. There was a smell of coolant. What I did was rinse my engine bay with fresh water. Then I just washed the engine bay as I would my car, but used one of those soft bristle brushes. Long story short with the soap and water smell disappeared.
    OK, so you think there may be coolant laying around somewhere externally on the engine that causes the smell? I'm just paranoid about internal leak, but on the other hand I don't have to refill that often any more so I guess the cap exchange did it.

  6. #6
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    Washing the engine bay doesnŽt solve a problem, but it could take away the symptoms of the old problem.
    What does your oil look like?
    Even with very small amounts of coolant in it it will look like whipped cream, and then you have a problem!
    IŽd start off by washing the engine bay, that will probably solve it, otherwise you know you have some other leak.

    Fredrik

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    Quote Originally Posted by SpeedysrtC View Post
    Washing the engine bay doesnŽt solve a problem, but it could take away the symptoms of the old problem.
    What does your oil look like?
    Even with very small amounts of coolant in it it will look like whipped cream, and then you have a problem!
    IŽd start off by washing the engine bay, that will probably solve it, otherwise you know you have some other leak.

    Fredrik
    Changed the oil not long ago and didn't notice any whipped cream. I'll try cleaning the engine bay and see if it solves the issue.

  8. #8
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    My hemi Ram has leaked a tiny bit around the waterpump gasket, for years. I keep an eye on the level when I change the oil, may be down 100-200 cc's every 10,000 miles. It now has 180,000 miles and hasn't gotten worse. I may replace the WP gasket at 200,000 miles, but for now a little 50/50 every 10,000 miles or so, and yes, even that small amount, I can smell once in a while.
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  9. #9
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    I really is amazing how long the smell lingers. I can still smell it on my Saturn and I spilled a few tablespoons of coolant early this spring working on the after cooler.

    "
    He is just fast everywhere"
    - FlyByU

  10. #10
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    Mine did this. Smelled a tiny bit here and there. Turned out the rad. was going bad until the little smell went DRIP DRIP. Side tank went.
    j

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