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  • [Corsa C 2000-2006] Corsa C 2005 Coolant Loss

    Just looking for any possible advice on this issue I'm having.

    Bought my Corsa just over a month ago privately and have noticed it is losing coolant. Took it to the garage and they couldn't find a leak at all so replaced the tank cap thinking it must be that. A 20 mile drive later and after the engine had cooled down, I checked it the next day and half the coolant was gone again.

    It had a new head gasket, water pump, timing chain and thermostat last December (I have the receipts) and the mechanic says he can tell they've recently been fitted so he doesn't think they could be the issue but again, I took it back and the mechanic still can't find a leak.

    Also, the driver's side footwell is damp from a water leak somewhere however, that seems to be caused by rainwater as it doesn't smell of coolant.

    Basically, it's losing coolant and we can't find out where and only when the engine goes cold. Anyone else ever experienced this?

    Thanks for any help you can give.

  • #2
    Hello,

    I've also had this issue after the HG was replaced on my Corsa. In the end it was the HG service that had not been well done and the coolant was mixing with the oil.
    Check the oil cap and oil sticK to see if a sort of mayonaise or chocolate color foam is apearing on those. If that is the case then the coolant is mixing with the oil. Whoever made the HG replacement has to redo it properly. Good luck mate!

    Comment


    • #3
      - - - Updated - - -

      Originally posted by RuiMarcelino View Post
      Hello,

      I've also had this issue after the HG was replaced on my Corsa. In the end it was the HG service that had not been well done and the coolant was mixing with the oil.
      Check the oil cap and oil sticK to see if a sort of mayonaise or chocolate color foam is apearing on those. If that is the case then the coolant is mixing with the oil. Whoever made the HG replacement has to redo it properly. Good luck mate!
      Thanks for the reply.

      The stick seems fine, however, there is mayonnaise on the cap. The mechanic put it down to condensation though but I've been thinking that could be the issue too.

      Problem is, the replacement HG was done while the previous owner owned the car. Would I still have a leg to stand on with the company that did it or do I have to pay to have it done again?

      Comment


      • #4
        Mayonnaise in the oil cap is a sure sign of coolant mixing with the oil.
        I had to learn it the hard way. It doesn't show on the stick because it's imerged deeper in the oil.
        I don't think you have a chance to reclaim with the company that made the replacement simply because you didn't pay for it.
        You can maybe negociate with the person who sold you the car. He or she sold it because he or she knew there was a problem.
        In the end I guess you will have to pay for the new HG. But this time try to have a guarantee of a service well done or your money back.

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        • #5
          What do you mean by 'half the coolant was gone again'? Literally half the contents of the cooling system, or do you mean the level was half way down the clear header tank bottle? This is the normal fill level. Is it possible you are over filling the system ,ie brimming it to the filler cap? If you do this the excess coolant will probably quite rightly be vented out.

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          • #6
            Bugman is right, too! The coolant tank shows clearly the correct level (it says "maximum", i think). You shouldn't fill it all the way up!

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            • #7
              You can get a bit of mayonaisse from condensation but if there is a lot, combined with unexplained coolant loss it does point to HG

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              • #8
                Mayo on the oil cap is very common on these engines - usually due to condensation but it can also be caused by HG problems. How to tell the difference! Basically, check you are filling the coolant to the mark on the bottle - if in doubt no more than half way so you know you're not overfilling. Make sure the coolant has a good antifreeze concentration so it is coloured (usually red on that engine).

                From a cold start put a clear container under the tailpipe and let the engine idle. You will see clear water dripping from the exhaust after a while - that is usual - it is water vapour from exhaust gases condensing in the cold exhaust. If only clear water drips out that is fine. But if water the colour of the coolant starts to drip out then coolant is leaking into the combustion chambers and exiting via the exhaust. A clear sign of HG failure.

                If the HG has failed then it's worth trying to take it back to where the repairs were done, but they may claim that their warranty is with the previous owner and isn't transferable.

                You can get leaks that are impossible to find - small leaks can only open under pressure so they emit steam rather than water. As the engine cools the leak seals itself. In which case one dose of Radweld (or similar) can make a permanent fix. My brother's Combi had a leak we could never find and that was the only way to resolve the problem. Don't add more than one dose as it can clog the cooling system. Put a white tissue in the footwell to check the water there isn't coolant coloured as well.
                1972 Viva restoration thread - http://www.thecorsa.co.uk/projects-b....html#post1534

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Bugman View Post
                  What do you mean by 'half the coolant was gone again'? Literally half the contents of the cooling system, or do you mean the level was half way down the clear header tank bottle? This is the normal fill level. Is it possible you are over filling the system ,ie brimming it to the filler cap? If you do this the excess coolant will probably quite rightly be vented out.
                  It's half the contents. I only fill the tank to the maximum fill line Half the coolant I put in is gone, sometimes it is all gone. There's no pattern to it, only that it disappears once the car has been left overnight.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Taurus View Post
                    Mayo on the oil cap is very common on these engines - usually due to condensation but it can also be caused by HG problems. How to tell the difference! Basically, check you are filling the coolant to the mark on the bottle - if in doubt no more than half way so you know you're not overfilling. Make sure the coolant has a good antifreeze concentration so it is coloured (usually red on that engine).

                    From a cold start put a clear container under the tailpipe and let the engine idle. You will see clear water dripping from the exhaust after a while - that is usual - it is water vapour from exhaust gases condensing in the cold exhaust. If only clear water drips out that is fine. But if water the colour of the coolant starts to drip out then coolant is leaking into the combustion chambers and exiting via the exhaust. A clear sign of HG failure.

                    If the HG has failed then it's worth trying to take it back to where the repairs were done, but they may claim that their warranty is with the previous owner and isn't transferable.

                    You can get leaks that are impossible to find - small leaks can only open under pressure so they emit steam rather than water. As the engine cools the leak seals itself. In which case one dose of Radweld (or similar) can make a permanent fix. My brother's Combi had a leak we could never find and that was the only way to resolve the problem. Don't add more than one dose as it can clog the cooling system. Put a white tissue in the footwell to check the water there isn't coolant coloured as well.
                    The leak in the footwell seems to be another problem with water getting through as I had to clear quite an amount with a vac used for ponds

                    The car has been at the garage today and the mechanic cannot find any leaks and the coolant level hasn't dropped at all however, he is keeping it overnight as that is when the issues generally appear. Once it's left to cool, then the coolant disappears.

                    If I still get no joy tomorrow, I'll try your suggestion when I get the car back. If that is ok, then I'll give the radweld a shot.

                    Fingers crossed it gets sorted soon. I'll update tomorrow once I hear back. Thanks again everyone.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Ok, so he couldn't find a leak at all. The coolant level didn't drop with him at all despite him driving it a good 30 miles or so. It had dropped a little this morning when I checked but not as much as before. I topped it back up and have driven it today so will check it in the morning again too.

                      i tried the test suggested by Taurus. The water was indeed clear so now I (and the mechanic) are at a complete loss as what is causing the coolant to disappear. I think maybe I need to try Radweld next...

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        One possibility is that if it had the coolant drained recently and whoever topped it up got some air in there then they are a sod to get air out of. It is possible you be getting the last remains of air in the system purging which would cause the level to drop. Bit of a long shot as you'd expect it to either airlock or the air to have purged before now, but weird things happen. Just depends how much coolant you've had to add since you bought it. I think I'd monitor it a bit longer to confirm continuing coolant loss before adding Radweld.
                        1972 Viva restoration thread - http://www.thecorsa.co.uk/projects-b....html#post1534

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Thanks .Keep us informed how things go long term and whether you needed to use radweld.
                          Last edited by Bugman; 21-04-2016, 06:10 AM. Reason: crossed posts with Taurus.His was better

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                          • #14
                            The leak in the footwell you've mentioned.

                            are you sure that's not where your coolant is going?

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Taurus View Post
                              One possibility is that if it had the coolant drained recently and whoever topped it up got some air in there then they are a sod to get air out of. It is possible you be getting the last remains of air in the system purging which would cause the level to drop. Bit of a long shot as you'd expect it to either airlock or the air to have purged before now, but weird things happen. Just depends how much coolant you've had to add since you bought it. I think I'd monitor it a bit longer to confirm continuing coolant loss before adding Radweld.
                              Originally posted by Bugman View Post
                              Thanks .Keep us informed how things go long term and whether you needed to use radweld.
                              So, as of this moment, the coolant level has stopped dropping so I guess it must have been caused by air stuck in the system afterall. The mechanic who looked at it thought that too due to the work it has had done back in december and thought air must have got trapped inside. It seems only now it has gone mind despite doing over 2000 miles since the work was completed. Very odd, but will keep an eye on it just in case.

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