Gas in engine coolant?

Tiny
DAVID THUNE
  • MEMBER
  • 1999 TOYOTA CAMRY
  • 2.2L
  • 4 CYL
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 340,000 MILES
Check oil/water several times a week.
Recently I noticed reservoir coolant was low with a funny discolored mixture on bottom. Took reservoir out and dumped contents. It had a very strong gas smell to it. Immediate thought was head gasket, but car doesn't smoke, has full power without a hesitation at all, nothing in oil (not milky) or transmission mission fluid and still maintains excellent gas MPG. Recently used Chevron fuel system cleaner in probably in a little over concentrated manner.
Any thoughts?
Sunday, January 29th, 2023 AT 9:58 PM

1 Reply

Tiny
BORIS K
  • MECHANIC
  • 765 POSTS
Hello,

A fuel smell in coolant is a good indicator of a blown cylinder head gasket, a warped head, or a combination. With the engine running, remove the radiator cap (but only when the car is cool!) and see if you observe any gas bubbling in the coolant.

Best to carry out a carbon monoxide test for the cooling system using a chemical block tester.

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/head-gasket-blown-test

A good video:
https://youtu.be/x2f5qEhaFdk

Cheers, Boris
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Monday, January 30th, 2023 AT 9:22 AM

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