2003 SATURN L300 OIL IN THE COOLANT

  • Tiny
  • Esarge
  • 2003 SATURN L300

Engine Cooling problem
2003 Saturn L300 6 cyl Front Wheel Drive Automatic 90000 miles

I took it in for an oil change and found oil in the cooling system. What could cause this?

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Friday, July 24th, 2009 AT 8:07 PM

8 Replies

  • Tiny
  • Buddycraigg
  • EXPERT
  • 2,322 POSTS

Possibly a blown head gasket.

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Sunday, July 26th, 2009 AT 7:25 PM
  • Tiny
  • Kdoglady
  • MEMBER

Not so fast! It may not be a cracked block or cylinder head or any of those other really nasty things.
I've got the same problem and have been reading about problems with the oil cooler sealant. (Google the TSB # below) They have no gasket; the sealant degrades and oil flows into the coolant. No coolant into the oil - the oil is under much more pressure.
There is a service bulletin out about it: TSB: #00-T-66
My car is at the dealer right now awaiting diagnosis and repairs.

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Friday, July 31st, 2009 AT 6:42 PM
  • Tiny
  • Buddycraigg
  • EXPERT
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Stupid water oil coolers.

They put them on diesel big rigs too. And they have tons of problems.

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Friday, July 31st, 2009 AT 6:53 PM
  • Tiny
  • Kdoglady
  • MEMBER

Very interesting. The guy at the dealership said he had only encountered oil mixed with coolant twice before, both were diesels. But he said he hadn't been at Saturn long.

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Saturday, August 1st, 2009 AT 10:59 AM
  • Tiny
  • Kdoglady
  • MEMBER

I have oil in my coolant too. The Saturn dealer called me a day or so ago to say the infamous oil cooler is the culprit. The good news was the cost: $1900, instead of $4000 or $5000.

The bad news is the cost: $1900.
I'm not inclined to pay for it since it had been a known problem for at least 2 years before my car was built. I can't afford it either, having retired early on a disability.

I contacted Saturn Customer Assistance and they are now investigating. They may tell me something by the end of the week. If I'm not happy, then let the negotiations begin!

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Wednesday, August 5th, 2009 AT 10:55 PM
  • Tiny
  • Buddycraigg
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Good luck fighting the machine

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Wednesday, August 5th, 2009 AT 11:00 PM
  • Tiny
  • Kdoglady
  • MEMBER

Well, "the machine" spoke and I lost. They claim it's not a defect, but due to age and mileage of the vehicle. I pointed out that it only has 60,000 miles on it. They say it doesn't matter. The TSB doesn't help either.
Now what? Any ideas would be appreciated very much.

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Friday, August 7th, 2009 AT 12:12 PM
  • Tiny
  • Buddycraigg
  • EXPERT
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If you suspect that it's the oil cooler, then take it off the car and test it.

If you have an air compressor that gets to around 100psi.
And if you are not married, then you can fill up the bath tub and use the compressed air to see if any bubble leak out.

You'll have to figure out your own way of capping off the lines.

If you cant do this, most radiator repair shops should be able to do it for about 45 bucks

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Friday, August 7th, 2009 AT 6:22 PM

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