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Light coolant leak
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enniskillen
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 08, 2009 9:14 pm    Post subject: Light coolant leak Reply with quote

I just a light coolant leak today 25 cent piece size from a day. I don't have time to get it fixed before I drive home to California on Friday from Washington state. I have driven to Seattle (200 miles round trip) and Olympia (250 miles round trip) over the past two weeks with no problems. Just keep some extra coolant and water on board to compensate for any loss on the way?
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koolmoe
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 09, 2009 8:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd say so for a leak that small. Take your time on the drive with a couple rest stops every half-tank, or at least at fillups, and check the leak is a drip or stream and your coolant level. Note after running the bus hard for a while, the overflow tank will appear with all the coolant 'in the system' (right?)....so don't be alarmed it looks low and refill to the top.

I overfilled my coolant a few months ago - with the result of a cracked overflow tank that needed to be replaced.

Of course, your temp light comes on, stop immediately, let 'er cool down, and see what you have.

I drove my former bus, Smokey, cross country with a slow oil leak. Topped it off every few hundred miles and really pissed off the tailgaters from Pennsylvania to Cali and back Wink
KM
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ftp2leta
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 09, 2009 8:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pinpoint where the leak is! If is a hose ready to burst... that 25 cent could become a lot of dollars Smile

Ben
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Tristar Eric
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 09, 2009 9:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Drop in to your local Subaru dealer, ask for a bottle of their coolant system conditioner. It will work miracles on your leak. Less than $2 a bottle. The stuff is make in the UK, I have no idea what's in in, I just know it works.
They developed it for their leaking heads on the 2.5 engine.
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Wildthings
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 09, 2009 10:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ftp2leta wrote:
Pinpoint where the leak is! If is a hose ready to burst... that 25 cent could become a lot of dollars Smile

Ben


I would go with Ben on this one. You need to figure out what the leak is before you take off. If you don't feel you have time to look at it and figure out what it is, how will you have time to deal with an inoperable car out in the boonies somewhere.

Someone has posted that he runs his WBXer with an unpressurized cooling system. Don't know if he just drilled out his pressure cap or what. Without pressure leaks often will go away or at least be greatly diminished.
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morymob
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2009 3:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wildthings wrote:
ftp2leta wrote:
Pinpoint where the leak is! If is a hose ready to burst... that 25 cent could become a lot of dollars Smile

Ben


I would go with Ben on this one. You need to figure out what the leak is before you take off. If you don't feel you have time to look at it and figure out what it is, how will you have time to deal with an inoperable car out in the boonies somewhere.

Someone has posted that he runs his WBXer with an unpressurized cooling system. Don't know if he just drilled out his pressure cap or what. Without pressure leaks often will go away or at least be greatly diminished.
It's me that runs the no-press sys and since '93 & on 4 diff WBS's with no problems,a 1/16" drilled hole in an old cap. FIRST u have to make sure your cooling sys is up to par to start with,should be anyway. Idid it to be more reliableand to stop the leak problems u have with this much plumbing/connections. No reason to ever switch back, my 2cts.
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enniskillen
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2009 12:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the replies. I took it by my mechanic and he took a look and couldn't find anything. Said it could just be "wheeping" but whatever it was shouldn't cause any problems. He added some Wynn's radiator sealant just for peace of mind. I'm at Sea-Tac now waiting to pick up my Dad from his flight and have had no problems. Knock on wood. If anything were to happen my Dad has his AAA premium membership.
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enniskillen
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 11, 2009 3:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Now in Ashland, OR- no problems.
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mikls63rag
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 12, 2009 5:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good to hear you have made it there so far. If you are still losing coolant on your way home. You may want to stop at a shop and have them do a pressure test on your system and listen and look for any leaks. UNLESS THIS TEST IS NOT RECOMMENDED FOR VANAGONS. I had a very small leak for days that I never found where the coolant was leaking from while sitting. It only leaked with the van running. The pipe coming from the water pump to the thermostat was the culprit. It had started out very small puddle one day and the next day it was a flood! I ordered the pipe from van cafe and it was here in 3-4 days. BUT I'm in the Midwest, you are on the west coast, it may be much quicker for you! Wink

http://www.van-cafe.com/home/van/smartlist_10/1984_1985_vanagon_manual_transmission.html
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dbcdad
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 12, 2009 6:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I too agree you should find out where the leak is. On March 24th I took my mother to Josuha Tree for her 85th BD and at Jumbo rocks , where we reflected my childhood camping there, I noticed a small leak on my 1987 syncro. I could not pin point it but kept my I on it. We got down to the south entrance and it was leaking alot more. It was the water pump going out. Filled it with water and proceded. Went maybe 70 Miles and was really overheating,more coolant comming out. I had another 50 miles to go. I made it home to Redondo Beach but it took a couple of times stopping to fill the system. Washington to California is a long way so be prepared to fix it on the way. I have a separate switch on this one for the secondary fan speed which I used alot to keep things cool. On my other Vanagon, 1987 Wolfsburg, I just had to replace the little hose going to the thermostat housing. It was leaking like yours and got bigger. It is my daily driver for work and when I pulled in front of my house it was steamming pretty bad. So fix it before you go. Sorry for the long post but I dont want to hear of a blown engine due to a small leak.

Good luck , David C
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enniskillen
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 12, 2009 8:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm in Bakersfield, CA now. . After the sealant was put in the coolant in Port Angeles, WA I had zero coolant leaking, no aroma of coolant. I do now have a small oil leak which I'm going to track down tomorrow and fix.
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