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Old 05-28-2014, 10:14 AM   #1
Scooby Newbie
Member#: 231049
Join Date: Nov 2009
Default The Coolant Leak That Went Away....?

We have a 2002 OBW w/160k on it and original head gaskets. Last winter(and it was a brutal winter in NE Iowa) we were losing a fair amount of coolant(reservoir would be empty on a weekly basis) especially when my wife would do her daily 6 mile drive to work. When I'd drive it for like 2 hours straight on the highway, much less coolant was lost. I assumed it was because the engine was getting fully warmed up on the longer drives and maybe the expanding metal parts were sealing up the leak where as the short drives weren't accomplishing that. The local independent Subie mech inspected the exterior of the block and said we had an external head gasket leak, but we couldn't see much if any coolant on the ground after parking it. You could see the coolant drops back further on the steering unit etc., likely from the draft under the car at road speed blowing it rearward.

Now that the weather has warmed up, the coolant leak has all but vanished and we are guessing that the cold weather had something to do with the original leakage.

Is this common amongst all the other coolant leak issues this engine has?? The mech said we were lucky to get 160k out of our factory gaskets. Or is there another leak issue somewhere else? Since we're not using the heater any more, could the leak have been related to the heater core? Usually when that happens, you can smell the coolant inside the vehicle, and we didn't experience that odor. I checked the hoses thermostat radiator etc. and found no coolant leaking there. I also ran the pressure test at 14 psi and couldn't get it to drop more than a pound or two even over 24 hours.

Just trying to not spend a lot of money on a repair that may not be necessary. Thanks in Advance for any help you can offer......

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