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Old 01-02-2008, 08:01 PM   #1
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Default Advice needed QUICK! Thermostat/Coolant. !!!FIXED!!!

As you may have guessed from my posts over the last month, I've been having some cooling system issues...but I haven't been able to nail them down.

About a month ago I had code PO128 which remedied itself the next day. The coolant looked a bit low, so I added some. 2-3 weeks went by and PO128 returned. The next day it was gone. Seems like intermittent thermostat? I don't know. So I top off the coolant again. And I see it literally pouring out of the passenger side of the engine. I thought it was a leaky hose / overflow reservoir (might still be).

I've known there was a coolant leak of some kind of several months now. It'* odd - I would top the coolant off in the tank to the fill level, and it would drop to nearly empty within a day or two, but it would never get completely empty, so it'* obvious I'm not leaking ALL of my coolant out.

I was driving around shopping the other day and stopped at Wal-Mart. Everything was fine, no check engine lights, nothing. When I returned to my car an hour later there was a large puddle of coolant underneath my passenger side wheel. I started it up and drove it home carefully, with the temps between 200-215ish fluctuating alot. Also, the heat did not work!

Would a bad UIM/LIM leak a large volume of coolant like that, and with the engine OFF? What else should I look for? A friend of mine thinks the thermostat is bad, so the engine is getting very hot and expelling coolant through some kind of valve (I have no idea what he is talking about, lol). Keep in mind, there are NO check engine lights, even though the coolant mysteriously leaked out. Wouldn't there be a SES light on for a bad thermostat?

I just started a new job 2 weeks ago and drive 35 miles both ways...can't afford to miss work! Thanks guys!
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Old 01-02-2008, 08:44 PM   #2
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How many miles are on your car?

A 10 min. drive can empty your reservoir if the leak is bad enough on the LIM Gasket, and yes it can spill out without the engine running.
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Old 01-02-2008, 08:53 PM   #3
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96,000.

Well that sucks. I certainly hope it'* not the damn UIM/LIM
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Old 01-02-2008, 08:56 PM   #4
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yeah, mine has 140,000 and I just did my LIM gasket, last year I did one on another car with 85,000 miles.

I hope it'* not either, but check the two coolant elbows below/attached to the tensioner assembly...they are plastic and crack easily.
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Old 01-02-2008, 09:51 PM   #5
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Your code 28 is caused by the thermostat being stuck open. That should be the least of your concerns. Your UIM or LIM gaskets are failing and allowing the coolant to be ingested into the combustion chamber. You need to address this ASAP.

http://www.bonnevilleclub.com/forum/...e=article&k=38
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Old 01-02-2008, 10:47 PM   #6
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Thats what I feared. Damn. What'* this going to set me back, and how hard is it for someone who'* never even changed spark plugs to do?lol

Also...it'* been going on for several months, but never to this magnitude until within the last week. Have I done any permanent damage?
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Old 01-03-2008, 08:29 AM   #7
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I don't have time to wait for shipping and all of that with an online order, so my options for acquiring these parts are either Advance Auto, AutoZone, or Napa.

I believe I found the correct LIM ( http://www.autozone.com/R,APP708141/...ductDetail.htm ) if anyone could advise that it is correct, that'd be great.

I can't seem to find the rest of the parts on AutoZone'* website.

I plan on attempting to tackle this tomorrow.
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Old 01-03-2008, 08:34 AM   #8
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If you think you aren't able to tackle it yourself, PM me and maybe you can come to my house (Lorain County) or maybe I can head out that way.
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Old 01-03-2008, 09:28 AM   #9
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Yes that is the correct package from AutoZone. Keep jumping online and I can walk you through it... I just did it yesterday. Good Luck!!
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Old 01-03-2008, 11:15 AM   #10
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Whoa! Wait!

A large EXTERNAL leak from the passenger side of the engine is almost always a failing water pump (it has a weep hole that spits out coolant when the shaft seal fails) or the plastic coolant elbows mentioned earlier. It may just be a failed hose or connection.

When the LIM gasket fails in such a way that coolant leaks to the outside of the engine, it is usually a seep - a very slow leak that may not need to be addressed immediately. Coolant on the outside of the engine is not an engine killing problem - unless you drive the car with no/low coolant and overheat it! A cold heater core is a sign of low coolant in the engine. The engine killer is when the LIM gasket fails internally allowing coolant to enter the combustion chamber and/or the crankcase oil.

Spend your money to fix the external leak (water pump and/or elbows, etc.) first. Then order the APN kit and aluminum LIM gaskets.

Borrow or rent a car if you have to, but please don't risk overheating your engine by driving it when you know you have a serious coolant leak. A cracked coolant elbow can become a broken coolant elbow and expel all of your coolant in a very short time. Leaking water pumps can seize and break the serpentine belt leaving you with no coolant circulation.
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