Leaking antifreeze

Tiny
MHAFWEET
  • MEMBER
  • 1990 TOYOTA COROLLA
  • 4 CYL
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 165,000 MILES
My car ran out of antifreeze. I don't know when. We put pre-diluted antifreeze back in the car, but now it won't start.

I have known that my car was slowly leaking antifreeze. When I had my oil changed 6 weeks ago, the technician mentioned that the radiator cap was old/somehow responsible for the leak, so the cap was replaced.

Over the last week, my car has been increasingly difficult to start. I thought it was just because my car doesn't like cold weather. (I live in Utah. Average temp right now varies between 0 and 20 degrees) I would give it a little extra gas and second or third try the engine would catch and start up.

The exhaust pipe was giving out a significant amount of exhaust. I thought the increased vapor was due to the cold weather as well (cold = condensation).

My brother went to start the car in the morning a few days ago and it wouldn't start. It just clicked. The lights had NOT been left on. We tried jumping the battery, which was replaced under a year ago, and it would not work, even while connected to the other car.

We then discovered that the radiator was totally out of antifreeze. There was a little left in the overflow tank, but the radiator itself looked totally dry.

We tried starting the car again immediately after pouring pre-diluted antifreeze in. It did not start. It will click once and then does not do anything. We let the car sit for over an hour and tried again. Still no go.

What is the next step? What is the most likely problem? What part of the car is most likely to have been damaged by running out of antifreeze? How can I check for damage?

Other background info. Although the care body is old, the engine is new. The engine was put in the car new about 4 years ago and has less than 60,000 miles on it. The fuel filter was changed a year ago and should be good for another 80,000 miles. Spark plugs are also new. Oil was just changed and they topped off my antifreeze at that time. The car sat for two weeks over Christmas break while I was out of town. It worked fine when I got back. It's just over this last week that it's been giving me trouble.
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Monday, January 10th, 2011 AT 8:32 AM

14 Replies

Tiny
DOCFIXIT
  • EXPERT
Hello,

It sounds like the head gasket failed but to be sure pull the spark plugs out and crank the engine cover. If coolant comes out the head gasket is blown.

This guide can help

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/car-is-leaking-coolant

Please let us know what you find.
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Monday, January 10th, 2011 AT 6:05 PM
Tiny
HLACEFIELD
  • MEMBER
I had this same problem, it was the head gasket FYI
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Wednesday, October 3rd, 2018 AT 7:07 PM
Tiny
BAMBOO
  • MEMBER
  • 1995 TOYOTA COROLLA
  • 1.8L
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 209,000 MILES
Radiator losing water, checked everyday (Not overheat). Decided take to mechanic - I bought new radiator gave it to them. I stop at Mechanic Shop. To pick up the Car. Surprise when I start the Engine gave no power-not able to pump up gas. Never experience this. Bought new car 1995 now 2014.
Mechanic Charge up the battery then start/running. I start again. Just about back out and go forward suddenly gave out no power nor able pump up gas.
What going on? Third time try. Finally Left the Shop drive only 1/2 mile gave out no power. Sometime start then died. Mechanice came they drive. Tooken back to the shop
They have no clue. Still in the Shop Third Day now!
Any advice?
Mechanic check Spark plug one is wet other three is dry, Check Fuel filter? This far while they're working?
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Thursday, October 4th, 2018 AT 11:08 AM (Merged)
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
First, I need to understand what you are saying. Are you losing all electrical power to the vehicle or only to the fuel pump? Are you sure the pump is losing power.
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Thursday, October 4th, 2018 AT 11:08 AM (Merged)
Tiny
MALLEGNI
  • MEMBER
  • 1995 TOYOTA COROLLATOYOTA COROLLA
I have a 1992 Toyota Corolla with 130,000 miles on it. I just noticed a small coolant leak coming from under driver's side of radiator. It is a slow drip and I have added more coolant twice in the past two days. The car is not overheating, but I'm afraid it might start to if coolant runs too low. I have an estimate on cost of parts, but what is a typical charge to replace a radiator. If it isn't the radiator, are there any other parts that I should check?
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Thursday, October 4th, 2018 AT 11:08 AM (Merged)
Tiny
LOSONE
  • MEMBER
It is an easy job but you should replace both upper and lower hoses and the thermostat. Labor about $100.00 see the attached for radiator prices. You do have a choice between plastic and metal.
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Thursday, October 4th, 2018 AT 11:08 AM (Merged)
Tiny
SWALLOW216
  • MEMBER
  • 1994 TOYOTA COROLLA
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 194,828 MILES
My car coolant is leaking. I do some online research. There are so many reasons which will cause coolant leaks, but they all are easy to DIY. But since my car is old, it may have several problems which cause my coolant leak. I want to know if I brought my car to the car repair shop, can they really find out what is wrong with my cooling system or they just change something is obvious?

Thanks.
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Thursday, October 4th, 2018 AT 11:08 AM (Merged)
Tiny
ZACKMAN
  • MEMBER
It depends on how competent or responsible the service tech is. Some will do just the obvious, and I have seen some that actually take the time to completely check the car thoroughly, before and after the repair are completed.

What I would suggest you do is that you diagnose where the leaks coming from. At least, when you get to the shop, they know that you know (somewhat) what the problem areas are.
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Thursday, October 4th, 2018 AT 11:08 AM (Merged)
Tiny
BOGIENBACAL
  • MEMBER
  • 1984 TOYOTA COROLLA
Engine Cooling problem
1984 Toyota Corolla 4 cyl Automatic

my 1985 toyota corolla is leaking coolant under the exhaust I just changed the radiator what can this be
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Thursday, October 4th, 2018 AT 11:08 AM (Merged)
Tiny
RASMATAZ
  • MEMBER
Look closely could be the freeze plug, head, intake manifold and heater hoses-
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Thursday, October 4th, 2018 AT 11:08 AM (Merged)
Tiny
CORROLLA1991
  • MEMBER
  • 1991 TOYOTA COROLLA
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 275,000 MILES
My car as described above, has a refurbuished engine from japan put in recently. It has been running ok.

Seeking possible answers and helpful tips / solutions.

Recently I have problem with my car overheating and leaking coolant. The coolant started to leak from bottom. I use PEAK brand premixed coolant..

I have inspected with the engine running and can see no visible leaks from the coolant container or from the raidtor front / back / bottom. There is no overflow from the cap of the radiator.

I have removed the cap and topped of the radiator with fresh coolant and kept the engine running. The coolant starts to heat high.( Boiling ).

These are my observations:

** I notice that when the engine is running in park park ( Neutral ) position there is no leaks of coolant from bottom and also when the engine is shut off.

** Whereas, The moment the engine is shut off, after test run on the road for about five miles @ 35 /40 miles speed, the coolant starts to leak / flow out from bottom of the engine in a steady flow and is orche in color ( orange ).

** There does not seem any holes or cuts in the hose.

What really worries me is whether any permanent damage has occured to the engine.? ( I hope not)

My question to you :

1. Is it water pump which broken or has some leak?
Does it need to be replaced. ( I have not checked it yet)

2. Hoses need tobe replaced? Radiator problem?

Please do help me to possibly identify faulty parts / situations that could be causing the above problems whcih I should take care immediately.

(I am in the meantime waiting for my long time honest / ethical mechanic garage owner to to return from his vacation).

Thanks in advance for your responses and help.

Regards

Worried Car Owner
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Thursday, October 4th, 2018 AT 11:08 AM (Merged)
Tiny
MMPRINCE4000
  • EXPERT
Start with a compression to rule out a head gasket. If head gasket (compression) is identified, the you will have to remove head.

If compression is OK, then perform a cooling system pressure test to isoate leak.

The fact that it overheats so quickly would indicate a waterpump or a cracked head.
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Thursday, October 4th, 2018 AT 11:08 AM (Merged)
Tiny
MRSRACING20
  • MEMBER
  • 1992 TOYOTA COROLLA
Engine Mechanical problem
1992 Toyota Corolla 4 cyl Front Wheel Drive Automatic

Two of the spark plugs has oil on them when you take them out of the motor. Heater stops working when stopped but warms up when you get back going. And it keeps loseing antifreeze. And the motor is missing. Help please. Thank You
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Thursday, October 4th, 2018 AT 11:08 AM (Merged)
Tiny
MMPRINCE4000
  • EXPERT
Oil in the spark plug holes are cause by leaking tube seals, you have to remove the valve cover and replace them.

You will have to find the coolant leak, first run a compression test on all cylinders, if low, then a possible head gasket, if OK, then it is leaking it.
Have a cooling system pressure test performed.

If the headgasket is leaking, that is the cause of the miss, it will have to be replaced and the head checked for any warpage.
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Thursday, October 4th, 2018 AT 11:08 AM (Merged)

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