Coolant Leak?? pics pics pics
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  1. #1
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    Coolant Leak?? pics pics pics

    I was sitting in almost two hours of stand still traffic yesterday and noticed there seemed to be some really hot air coming from the vents. I didn't use the a/c at all.

    Today I go to check my oil and notice white/pinkish stuff splattered all over the place. The driver's side headlight, p/s resevoir, fans, belts, hood latch, intake box and hose got hit too. I assume this is a coolant leak. The car is not overheating and I can't find a leak. The engine seems hotter than usual but the 1.8t seems to be always cooking under the hood. No CEL and temp was at an exact 190. The coolant level is a little above mininum and is just a little lower than when I checked a week or so ago.

    Check out the pics...anyone else ever get a leak like this? It's on both sides of the front of the engine bay so it seems extreme to me. My first thought is that it looked like paint but coolant quickly entered my mind. Hopefully the intake just sucked up some bird sh!t but I doubt that is likely (the intake hose is cracked from an accident) . 2000 1.8t 5spd ATW















    Last edited by droop17; 07-03-2008 at 05:06 PM.

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  3. #2
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    looks like sumone jerked a massive load in your engine bay. lol

  4. #3
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    I'd rather refer to it as bird sh!t lol. How the heck do I clean this up??

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    I cleaned up most of the mess but I think I'm gonna put the car on ramps and clean it from underneath as well. What a PITA. So far the coolant level hasn't changed but I'm worried about sitting in traffic again. Any ideas how or where the leak started from? Maybe 390 will read this and can diagnose the problem.

  6. #5
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    My only guess would be that a seam let go under pressure on the radiator, but it's hard to tell where the point of origin is from your photos. It doesn't look like much coolant was lost (if that's what it was), so you might not be able to see a change in coolant level in the tank. Also - it doesn't have the customary G12 pink color.

    Once you clean it up this weekend, I'd take it out for a short drive in some stop 'n go traffic to heat things up and then stop and take a look under the hood for leaks. Good luck.

    Very odd.

    Richard

  7. #6
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    It could be where the outer radiator frame mounts with the coolant fins. I have seen leaks at the seal where they meet. Under heat\pressure it can start to spray your engine bay...

  8. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by atsffan View Post
    My only guess would be that a seam let go under pressure on the radiator, but it's hard to tell where the point of origin is from your photos. It doesn't look like much coolant was lost (if that's what it was), so you might not be able to see a change in coolant level in the tank. Also - it doesn't have the customary G12 pink color.

    Once you clean it up this weekend, I'd take it out for a short drive in some stop 'n go traffic to heat things up and then stop and take a look under the hood for leaks. Good luck.

    Very odd.

    Richard
    when g12 dries it turns more white.
    that's why my cylinder 5 ignition wire looks like it sat in a snowstorm.
    Quote Originally Posted by Last Toy View Post
    It could be where the outer radiator frame mounts with the coolant fins. I have seen leaks at the seal where they meet. Under heat\pressure it can start to spray your engine bay...
    clean it all out, and then go to your local parts store and pick up a dye kit. use it and drive for maybe 20 miles, it should immediately start leaking if it's that big, then you should be able to pin-point the origin.
    that's exactly what any shop would do.

  9. #8
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    Oil cooler.

  10. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sharky View Post
    Oil cooler.
    will it really spew like this?
    what on it ruptures?

  11. #10
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    I thought it was coming from behind one of the fans. The fan is spraying the coolant all over the place. Guess I need to research oil cooler.

    I just looked and there is fluid sitting on the drivers side of the bottom engine shield. I might need to drop the car off soon. Coolant level is ok though.
    Last edited by droop17; 07-07-2008 at 05:46 AM.

  12. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by sipes216 View Post
    when g12 dries it turns more white.
    that's why my cylinder 5 ignition wire looks like it sat in a snowstorm.
    When spark plug wires arc so bad for so long they turn white and also very brittle where the arcing was occuring.

  13. #12
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    Ok so I did some more investigating today and I think I have narrowed down where the leak is coming from. It seems to be coming from the area of the pic below. I think this is where the coolant temp sensor plugs into also (maybe that's the leak?). There are no holes in the hoses but it looks like it's leaking from where the two hoses connect to that joining piece. The damn fan is spraying coolant all over the place! I'm hoping it is the coolant temp sensor and I can just change it out myself and be done with it.

    Last edited by droop17; 07-09-2008 at 05:51 PM.

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    if i were you, i would really take sharky's advice as a very huge possibility. he's been proven time after time to really know his stuff.
    i seem to recall he was a vw tech too, at one point or another. that said, he's seen a lot of the bad.

    so if you haven't looked there, then do so.

    if you already have, then just ignore this village idiot.

  15. #14
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    Actually, this is one I am likely to be wrong on, unless there is oil in the coolant reservior. Look in there.

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    Did you ever consider the water pump may be starting to leak ?

  17. #16
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    I took the car to my local indy mechanic today and he says it's the radiator. He says there is a pin size hole shooting out coolant and the fan is spraying it around the front of the engine but it's only leaking under pressure. He suggested I use the coolant seal tablets if I want to avoid replacing the radiator right now. He's not a VW/Audi guy but he mentioned not having to take off the front bumper to do the work unlike the timing belt. He's an American muscle car guy which is super cool in my book. Quote was $530 and the part won't be in until some time next week at the earliest.

    I searched and a lot of people say not to use tablets or the liquid due to other areas possibly getting plugged such as the heater core. I am definitely replacing the radiator but has anybody had experience with the seal tablets? I'm more curious than anything. Waterfest is this Saturday so I want the leak gone before then even though I won't be opening my hood to show off anything.

    Sharky, Sipes and any others who respond whether right or wrong, the help and knowledge is much appreciated.
    Last edited by droop17; 07-11-2008 at 09:36 PM.

  18. #17
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    I cant tell you about the tablets. But what I will tell you is going to sound like the biggest line of Bullshit you've ever heard. Thats what I thought too when my 80 year old grandfather told me this.

    First off, I had a Full size ford Bronco,(not a passat by a mile LOL)...well it was lifted and seen alot of woods, and abuse. I was young not much money, and my radiator had a leak, not a pin hole, probably closer to the thickness of a Q-tip stick.
    My grandfather tells me put a couple table spoons of black pepper in it, and I will be all set. Im like WTF black pepper....He must think Im trying to grill a steak or something......So I said screw it it cant hurt right.

    Son of a bitch, it worked I guess the pepper clumps together and tries to escape and blocks up the hole.....I couldnt believe it the old man was right. It worked so good I didnt touch it for about 2 months. Then I flipped the truck over and scrapped it.

    Im not telling you to dump pepper in your passat, just sharing a story I could relate yours with. Man gotta love the old timers, I bet If I asked him what I should do about a mis-fire on cylinder 3 He would probably have me stuff a sausage in the spark plug hole.....

  19. #18
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    if you do not have pepper you can crack an egg and pour it into your radiator.
    start up the car and let it run till warm.
    this will work and for emergency only.

  20. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by redsoxvw View Post
    Im not telling you to dump pepper in your passat, just sharing a story I could relate yours with. Man gotta love the old timers, I bet If I asked him what I should do about a mis-fire on cylinder 3 He would probably have me stuff a sausage in the spark plug hole.....
    LOL...great story! I did read about the pepper and egg methods but figured the tabs would do the job. I went ahead and used the tabs. I put two tabs in the coolant resevoir and ran the car for a good 45 mins of driving and idling. After every trip since then I've checked and the leak is gone and there is no more spraying of coolant. Now it's time to clean everything up.

    I know this is only a temporary fix and I guess I'm taking a chance that others wouldn't but so far so good. I was thinking of getting chipped but not sure how great an idea it is at this point. Radiator first, chip second. Thanks guys.

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    Quote Originally Posted by corradog60stage4 View Post
    if you do not have pepper you can crack an egg and pour it into your radiator.
    start up the car and let it run till warm.
    this will work and for emergency only.
    watch mythbusters?
    (this plugs up a lot of stuff, re: emergency only)

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