coolant smell -- 99 SE - GM Forum - Buick, Cadillac, Chev, Olds, GMC & Pontiac chat


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Old 05-17-2004, 09:10 AM   #1
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Default coolant smell -- 99 SE

My 99 SE has a strong odor of coolant after it'* been driven for an hour or more. There is absolutely no evidence of coolant consumption or leakage, however I am still on the original upper intake. I plan on swapping it out with a new upper intake Memorial Day weekend. However, any thoughts on what the strong odor is telling me?
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Old 05-17-2004, 09:20 AM   #2
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If it smells like a coolant leak than you must have a slight leak somewhere. I assume you smell the coolant outside of the car and not IN the car. My guess is that the coolant is evaporating off the hot engine before it has time to "pool" somewhere. That'* the "smell" part. It'* probably such a small leak that you don't notice the coolant loss. If you look at the engine from underneath your car, you might see some moisture build up somewhere. Also look around the water pump'* weep hole at the bottom of the pump for any moisture.
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Old 05-17-2004, 02:43 PM   #3
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Yes, the smell is only noticable on the outside of the car. I searched underneath the car and it'* bone dry.

I can look at the weep hole on the underside of the water pump tonight.

Any other thoughts? Is this common in the elementary stages of a failing upper intake?
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Old 05-17-2004, 05:13 PM   #4
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They make this fluorescent dye that you can put in the radiator. Of course you need a black light to see where any leaks are. Also, a mechanic can pressure test the cooling system by pressurizing the radiator and then watch for leaks.
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Old 05-17-2004, 05:53 PM   #5
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Another suggestion is look @ the hood insulation.. another easy way if it'* the pump or not is that you will see a streak darker then the others and it would look darker ( cause of the coolant being thrown onto it.
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