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Old 01-14-2007, 11:59 PM   #1
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Default Coolant smell with heater on

I know this is usually a sign of the heater core going out, but there'* no leak under the dash and no leaks outside the motor. I've been keeping my eye on the coolant level too; it'* been staying steady and oil is clean.

If the heater core was to leak, is there a provision for it to drain from the bottom of the car?
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Old 01-15-2007, 03:01 AM   #2
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Please don't post mechanical problems in General Chat.

Moving for you.
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Old 01-15-2007, 03:22 AM   #3
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the heator core could possibly be leaking into an area where you cant see but you can smell it. im not sure about the 'provisional' thing though...

edit: oops, this is in 2000-2005, not general anymore, sorry if i posted outside of my years
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Old 01-15-2007, 03:29 AM   #4
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You said there aren't any leaks under the hood, but is there a coolant smell at all from under the hood? If there is any hint of a coolant smell it can easily reach the cabin area because the intake for the HVAC is right in the cowl.
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Old 01-15-2007, 03:45 AM   #5
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I guess the main thing I was asking for information on is whether or not the heater core has a drain going to the outside of the car in case it was to leak. Seems like I ran across some information in regards to that somewhere, but was never able to verify it.
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Old 01-15-2007, 03:57 AM   #6
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no, I don't believe it does.
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Old 01-15-2007, 04:08 AM   #7
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So that means then that if the heater core was actually leaking, then there would be coolant leaking from under the dashboard then, right?
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Old 01-15-2007, 04:10 AM   #8
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Not necessarily. Heater cores usually leak at a pretty slow rate and the air moving over it can easily evaporate the coolant. Gotta think, it'* pretty hot air in there so evaporation wouldn't be that difficult. Do you get any fogging of the windsheild with the car set on Defrost?
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Old 01-15-2007, 04:12 AM   #9
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No, the defrost setting clears up the foggy windows quickly.
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Old 01-15-2007, 05:25 PM   #10
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If you're smelling coolant through the heater and you don't find any leaks around the heater core, then your next bet would be that you may have an intake gasket leaking. When your intake gasket leaks, it burns off of the exhaust and that steam gets sucked into your heater from the blower. I would stop driving the car if you have an intake leak and get that fixed asap.

My car is at that shop now having my lower intake gasket replaced and how i knew it was going bad? I smelled it coming in through the heater. So i took it to Pep Boys for cooling system diagnostic where they stick die in your cooling system and sure enough, lower intake manifold gasket leak.
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