Im losing coolant, and dont know how, or where its going.Help!
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5.0 and 5.7 Discussion, Im losing coolant, and dont know how, or where its going.Help! in Cadillac Engine Technical Discussion; I have a 93 Fleetwood. I had my coolant flushed and filled about 4 months ago when I bought the ...
  1. #1
    Gio1978 is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Im losing coolant, and dont know how, or where its going.Help!

    I have a 93 Fleetwood. I had my coolant flushed and filled about 4 months ago when I bought the car. About 2 months ago I got a LOW COOLANT warning light. I was very close to home and pulled in and shut her off. Once it was cool I checked it out. I had very little coolant in the Recovery tank. The radiator itself had coolant in it but it was a good 4 to 5 inches from being at the top.

    I refilled the coolant in the radiator and the recovery tank to the COLD Fill line. Just 2 weeks ago the same thing happened again. LOW COOLANT light. I get home and the same thing has happened. I refilled it again. Its been okay since.

    Here is the kicker though. I cant find a leak anywhere. Not in any hoses, not in any return line, not in the radiator. Nowhere. The car is parked most days. I drive it maybe every 3 days right now, for school. I cant find ONE drop of coolany in my driveway. Its driving me nuts here.

    Someone said my radiator cap could be bad, or I could have air in the system which is causing loss of coolant. I checked the oil out of paranoia and nothing there. Thankfully. I dont know what to do about it.

    Any help would be great!

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  3. #2
    Benzilla's Avatar
    Benzilla is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: Im losing coolant, and dont know how, or where its going.Help!

    I had the exact same thing happen with my '90 Brougham, never did find out what was going on, its fine now. if anybody could give us some answers it would be great.

  4. #3
    89fatb's Avatar
    89fatb is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Im losing coolant, and dont know how, or where its going.Help!

    the only way to know for sure you are actually losing coolant would be to pressure test the system, and also the cap. if its going any were you will be losing pressure on the guage. good chance if your radiator cap is OE it is junk . i read some where 80% of the cars on the road today have faulty caps that dont hold the correct amount of pressure.

  5. #4
    Gio1978 is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Im losing coolant, and dont know how, or where its going.Help!

    Im going to look into a new cap today. It cant hurt anything is my thoughts. I have nothing else to try really.

  6. #5
    N0DIH's Avatar
    N0DIH is offline Cadillac Owners Master
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    Re: Im losing coolant, and dont know how, or where its going.Help!

    My friend with a 96 Suburban K2500 454 had this also, low mileage to, only 67K miles had a leak very similar. Climb under car and look carefully at the weep hole UNDER the waterpump. Look for ANY coolant leakage at all, even if dry. That is likely the source. Just because it doesn't hit the ground or you don't see it wet doesn't mean it is an active leak, the heat of the engine temp will dry it up fairly fast.

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    Gio1978 is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Im losing coolant, and dont know how, or where its going.Help!

    Thanks for that tip. Ill get out there after work and check it out.

  8. #7
    89fatb's Avatar
    89fatb is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Im losing coolant, and dont know how, or where its going.Help!

    with a pressure tester hooked up u would notice the leak from the pump

  9. #8
    the3rdalien is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Im losing coolant, and dont know how, or where its going.Help!

    Quote Originally Posted by Gio1978
    Im going to look into a new cap today. It cant hurt anything is my thoughts. I have nothing else to try really.
    If the obvious doesn't show, then you may have a intake gasket leak that leaks inside the engine -instead of the outside-(I have had both) or a cracked head. I hope its your radiator cap.

  10. #9
    noahsdad's Avatar
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    Re: Im losing coolant, and dont know how, or where its going.Help!

    It's possible that you have a bubble in the system. If the coolant isn't filled properly (which happens sometimes if you have the coolant changed in a quick lube or at Joe's Garage), you could be short a considerable amount. When you refilled it, you may have just topped it enough to shut off the light, but once it settled it triggered your warning again.

    Try leaving the cap off, run the car until the thermostat opens, then have a helper increase the idle to 1000-1500 rpms (DO NOT TRY TO DO THIS ALONE!). When the coolant level drops in the rad, top it off and then reinstall the cap. Don't let the engine return to idle until the cap is tight. Cadillacs build pressure very fast and the coolant will be hot. Then fill your resevoir to the hot line.

  11. #10
    91TexasSeville's Avatar
    91TexasSeville is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: Im losing coolant, and dont know how, or where its going.Help!

    Quote Originally Posted by Gio1978
    I have a 93 Fleetwood. I had my coolant flushed and filled about 4 months ago when I bought the car. About 2 months ago I got a LOW COOLANT warning light. I was very close to home and pulled in and shut her off. Once it was cool I checked it out. I had very little coolant in the Recovery tank. The radiator itself had coolant in it but it was a good 4 to 5 inches from being at the top.

    I refilled the coolant in the radiator and the recovery tank to the COLD Fill line. Just 2 weeks ago the same thing happened again. LOW COOLANT light. I get home and the same thing has happened. I refilled it again. Its been okay since.

    Here is the kicker though. I cant find a leak anywhere. Not in any hoses, not in any return line, not in the radiator. Nowhere. The car is parked most days. I drive it maybe every 3 days right now, for school. I cant find ONE drop of coolany in my driveway. Its driving me nuts here.

    Someone said my radiator cap could be bad, or I could have air in the system which is causing loss of coolant. I checked the oil out of paranoia and nothing there. Thankfully. I dont know what to do about it.

    Any help would be great!
    I had this same thing happen with my 4.9L Eldorado.
    I drove it from Florida to Texas without a single problem checking the coolant tank every so often. Never overheated. The next week I heard a gurgle when I shut the engine off after a short trip. Just for giggles, I checked the reservoir. It was empty. No signs of a leak. I added two containers of Bars Leaks gold to the radiator and filled the system with 50/50 green coolant. I kept an eye on the reservoir and kept it full for the next month adding only a small amount. My son used the car for a week and told me it was fine, never ran hot cause he had the coolant display turned on all the time. I checked the reservoir again and it was empty. I put two more containers of Bars Leak gold into the radiator and refilled the system. Keep in mind that there was never any obvious signs of a leak on the engine or on the ground.

    What I did find one day was a line of coolant along the passenger side of the engine at the mounting plate for the water pump. I had been checking the pump for leaks but never the back plate gasket. The Bars Leaks did arrest the minor leak until the water pump failed. Then it was time to do the whole job.

  12. #11
    mcarbone98sts is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Im losing coolant, and dont know how, or where its going.Help!

    Not sure if you got this fixed yet. But I have a 98 STS that was having the same problem. What it turned out to be was the bottom of the reservior has a hose coming off it. On that flange from the reserve, there is a metal sleeve insert to keep the plastic from bending. Well, it doesn't work. Mine bent just enough when it was cold that it would lose just a bit of antifreeze every few days up to a week. I could never find a puddle because once the pressure relieved on the split in the reserve sleeve, it would seal itself back up. To find out if this is your problem, it should be easy to check. Follow the hose from your T split over by the waterpump/thermostat area. It should go underneath your reservior to a flange. Put your finger on the back of the flange and move ver so slightly. Do this with the motor hot. This way when you puul your finger back up, if you see a drop or two of antifreeze, than thats your problem. Oh yeah, the dealer wanted over 400.00 to troubleshoot the problem, I fixed it myself for 88.00. Its 2 bolts and a few hoses. Difficulty factor of 1. Good luck...hope this helps.

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