Solving Your Car’s Coolant Loss Problems
Experiencing any type of coolant loss on a car can be a very dangerous situation because, without it, the engine is in danger of overheating and that can lead to several very dangerous problems. However, the good news is that, in most cases, solving the problem is as simple as changing a hose or adding more coolant. In addition, if you are so inclined, solving the coolant loss problem can be an easy do-it-yourself job. Here are some of the things that you need to consider if you are experiencing coolant loss.
Superficial Reasons for Coolant Loss
Some of the simplest reasons for coolant loss have to do with the pipes or the radiator. The good news about that is that you can simply top up the coolant and let the engine run for about ten minutes so that it will start running the coolant. Then, all you have to do is to check the entire system and see if it is leaking. Once you find the source of the coolant loss, which can be either in the rubber to steel tubes, or from the radiator itself, you will need to bleed the system and change that part. When you are done, you can refill the entire system, bleed it, which in most cars simply means running the engine with the radiator cap of until it burps out all the air, and then you are done.
Dangerous Reasons for Coolant Loss
The real problems only emerge if you cannot find the source of the leak. Before you go any further, though, and get worried about the serious problems that may be causing this, make sure to check if the coolant is not simply escaping through the overflow tank as that may happen, particularly if you drive in heavy traffic during hot summers. However, if that is not the case then it may very well be that the head gaskets are worn and they are allowing coolant to sip into the engine. From there it is burned and, in addition to causing more pollution than it should, it is damaging the engine. Therefore, you will need to stop by a garage and they will be able to change the gaskets for you in a couple of hours.
Expensive Reasons for Coolant Loss
If changing the gaskets does not solve the problem, there may be an issue with the engine. This could prove to be very expensive. Either the engine block or the head could be cracked. These can be tiny cracks that a mechanic might not detect if he is not looking for them. You will need to go back and have them check the engine. In the end you might consider scrapping the car altogether and buying a new one rather than spending the money for such an expensive fix as changing the engine or the engine head.
Solving the Coolant Loss Problems
If the engine head or block is cracked then the safe solution is to change them entirely. There are specialists who may be willing to weld the cracks for you but they would certainly reappear in a few years. If the gaskets are worn then you could change them and, as long as you are very careful and clean off any remains from the old gasket, it is a relatively easy and safe job to handle on your own. However most of the times the problem will be a leaky hose or radiator and if that is the case, you certainly can try to change them on your own.
If your engine is running perfectly and the only problem is that you experience coolant loss then there is really no point in worrying too much about it. Any of the more dangerous causes for coolant loss, like a cracked engine block, will also manifest as a loss in power of the engine. So start by checking the engine on your own and make sure that your problems are not generated by the normal loss of coolant through the overflow tank. In addition, if you are not sure in your technical abilities then simply have a mechanic check out the problem for you.