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Old 09-10-2009, 07:55 AM   #1
lagodcm
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Default Bubbles in Coolant Overflow Tank?

Ive searched this site and everyones cars i read about with bubbles in the overflow tank also has symptoms of overheading, coolant overflowing on the ground ect. My car just has the bubbles. Runs awesome, At idle I hooked up the cobb ap and the coolant temp was normal. Temp will rise to around 203 fans kick on and temp returns to 189-195. I have a Mishimoto radiator w/ the Mishimoto cap, I think its a 19lb cap. The Radiator has been installed for about 6 months. Im Running a CSS FMIC with the small overflow tank. I was thinkin the coolant got low in the overflow and the hose sucked in some air Thanks for your time.
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Old 09-10-2009, 08:04 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lagodcm View Post
Ive searched this site and everyones cars i read about with bubbles in the overflow tank also has symptoms of overheading, coolant overflowing on the ground ect. My car just has the bubbles. Runs awesome, At idle I hooked up the cobb ap and the coolant temp was normal. Temp will rise to around 203 fans kick on and temp returns to 189-195. I have a Mishimoto radiator w/ the Mishimoto cap, I think its a 19lb cap. The Radiator has been installed for about 6 months. Im Running a CSS FMIC with the small overflow tank. I was thinkin the coolant got low in the overflow and the hose sucked in some air Thanks for your time.
To get the other peoples question out the way before they wake up.

You are talking about the overflow and not the expansion tank right?
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Old 09-10-2009, 08:31 AM   #3
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To get the other peoples question out the way before they wake up.

You are talking about the overflow and not the expansion tank right?
If its stock...The white tank in front by the radiator.
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Old 09-10-2009, 09:50 AM   #4
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I drove home from work....about 20 min drive. Had the heater on full blast drivin 70mph. Then i parked in my driveway and rev my engine to 2k for bout 5 to 10mins, heater on still. Temp went to 205 then fans come on and temp went down to 198. Im basically tryin to see if my car will overheat, NOPE. Then i got out and looked in the overflow....no more bubbles. After the car cools down to cold. Ill start her up and see if there are bubbles. Hopefully it was just an air pocket.
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Old 09-10-2009, 09:52 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by lagodcm View Post
I drove home from work....about 20 min drive. Had the heater on full blast drivin 70mph. Then i parked in my driveway and rev my engine to 2k for bout 5 to 10mins, heater on still. Temp went to 205 then fans come on and temp went down to 198. Im basically tryin to see if my car will overheat, NOPE. Then i got out and looked in the overflow....no more bubbles. After the car cools down to cold. Ill start her up and see if there are bubbles. Hopefully it was just an air pocket.
You could try burping the system properly and then pressurizing it with the help of a friend.
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Old 09-10-2009, 11:38 AM   #6
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possible just air in the lines.. if you keep getting tiny bubbles, like beer or champagn bubbles that KEEP occuring, it may be the head gasket allowing exhaust to leak through to the coolant runners.

T
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Old 09-10-2009, 11:49 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by lagodcm View Post
I drove home from work....about 20 min drive. Had the heater on full blast drivin 70mph. Then i parked in my driveway and rev my engine to 2k for bout 5 to 10mins, heater on still. Temp went to 205 then fans come on and temp went down to 198. Im basically tryin to see if my car will overheat, NOPE. Then i got out and looked in the overflow....no more bubbles. After the car cools down to cold. Ill start her up and see if there are bubbles. Hopefully it was just an air pocket.
Driving with the heater on full blast is actually helping to cool the car down, not contribute to its overheating. You see, by having the heat on, you are essentially opening up another "radiator" in your car and then using the heater fans to blow air across the heater coil and remove heat from the system (and put that heat in your car).

If you wanted to try to get the car to overheat, you should have the AC on full blast. Not only does the compressor load the engine more, the condenser, which sits by the radiator will give off mor heat and heat up the radiator which reduces it's ability to cool the engine coolant.
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Old 09-10-2009, 04:38 PM   #8
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possible just air in the lines.. if you keep getting tiny bubbles, like beer or champagn bubbles that KEEP occuring, it may be the head gasket allowing exhaust to leak through to the coolant runners.

T
The bubbles were dime size....
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Old 09-10-2009, 04:40 PM   #9
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Driving with the heater on full blast is actually helping to cool the car down, not contribute to its overheating. You see, by having the heat on, you are essentially opening up another "radiator" in your car and then using the heater fans to blow air across the heater coil and remove heat from the system (and put that heat in your car).

If you wanted to try to get the car to overheat, you should have the AC on full blast. Not only does the compressor load the engine more, the condenser, which sits by the radiator will give off mor heat and heat up the radiator which reduces it's ability to cool the engine coolant.
Thanks ill try that. So with the heater on like that helps to purge the system of air pockets?
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Old 09-10-2009, 06:02 PM   #10
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Thanks ill try that. So with the heater on like that helps to purge the system of air pockets?
If you are trying to burp the system after a swap or something, yes it does help to turn the heater on and run the coolant through the heater coil.

However, if there is no air in the system (properly burped), running the heater simply gives your car another place to disipate engine heat... like a second radiator if you will. This help cool your engine faster or more efficiantly.
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Old 09-10-2009, 09:12 PM   #11
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So with these bubbles being dime size and not tiny bubbles this sounds like just trapped air?
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Old 09-11-2009, 10:00 AM   #12
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really depends on how often its happening... if you keep going back and ALWAYS have these bubbles... then maybe not. if you finish removeing them and they do not come back... then all is well.

T
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Old 09-11-2009, 11:34 AM   #13
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Bubbles in the coolant is often a sign of a failing head gasket. I believe you can buy little strips that test for exhaust in the coolant, that will tell you for sure.
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Old 12-25-2009, 01:40 PM   #14
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Bubbles in the coolant is often a sign of a failing head gasket. I believe you can buy little strips that test for exhaust in the coolant, that will tell you for sure.
^^ is this true? where can i get those strips?
i think i saw some bubbles in my stock white tank by the radiator.
my a/c also stopped blowing cold recently. related?
my coolant temp gauge in my dash has never rose above the the lower middle line though.
i dont believe my tank has ever overflowed? but the black tubes that come off from the radiator do have white residue on them.
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Old 06-04-2010, 03:43 AM   #15
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bump from teh dead .... google is responsible for this

ok so my bubbles keep on coming back (for 30+ days i checked it daily) .... small ones like frothe/champagne bubbles

http://img576.imageshack.us/img576/4...ysise11852.jpg

according to my uoa it "shouldnt" be the hg, and i just replaced the t stat today ... still have bubbles .... what do you guys think?
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Old 06-04-2010, 10:30 AM   #16
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bump from teh dead .... google is responsible for this

ok so my bubbles keep on coming back (for 30+ days i checked it daily) .... small ones like frothe/champagne bubbles

http://img576.imageshack.us/img576/4...ysise11852.jpg

according to my uoa it "shouldnt" be the hg, and i just replaced the t stat today ... still have bubbles .... what do you guys think?
Failing HG doesn't necessarily mean coolant in the oil or vice versa. You have coolant, oil, and combustion gases all passing through the HG. Depending on where the HG fails, any two (or all three) could be mixing. In your case, it could just be coolant and combustion, while the oil is still kept separate.
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Old 06-04-2010, 02:15 PM   #17
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so hg is still a possibility huh?
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Old 06-04-2010, 03:44 PM   #18
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so hg is still a possibility huh?
It ran like a champ until i sold it. I never found a problem.
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Old 04-13-2011, 01:45 PM   #19
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Just found this thread from a google search. There is incorrect information here, when you turn on your heater it will not help purge the system. The heater core is ALWAYS connected and ALWAYS has coolant running through it, there is no electronically controlled valve on it. What you are doing when you turn the heater on is allowing fan generated air to pass through the heater core and into the vents, thus drawing heat away from the heater core.
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Old 05-21-2014, 07:29 AM   #20
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Experiencing same issue. Anyone might have found a reason?

Air is entering the overfill tank through the overflow tube from both the radiator and the radiator reservoir (above engine). Bubbles stop once i remove the overflow tube from the plastic tank. Coolant is not overflowing into the tank.

-The bubbles stop once the fan kicks in.
- Bubbles quite big and in random order, not pulsating with engine beat.
- Coolant is clear blue
- Both radiator and radiator reservoir is full
- Fan is working
- Thermostat working
- Temp is normal, in fact slightly lower than normal after changing to alum rad.
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Old 05-21-2014, 10:53 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pirotlord View Post
Just found this thread from a google search. There is incorrect information here, when you turn on your heater it will not help purge the system. The heater core is ALWAYS connected and ALWAYS has coolant running through it, there is no electronically controlled valve on it. What you are doing when you turn the heater on is allowing fan generated air to pass through the heater core and into the vents, thus drawing heat away from the heater core.
I think most people are aware of that. We just do that as part of the "purge process" to assure the coolant is all good here.
Purge the system by squeezing the hoses to release trapped air then drive around with heater on to make yourself feel better.
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Old 02-19-2015, 04:16 PM   #22
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I am getting the same thing and I also have a Mishimoto rad, my bubbles are about 4mm and I get one every 2 seconds. I don't think the Mishimoto rad cap was sealing properly but I put the stock Subaru cap on and I still get bubbles. I've been afraid to drive it.
No overheating
No discolored plugs
No exhaust smell in the coolant tank
No oil/coolant mixing
Good heat

I just replaced the Vf39 last week because of blown seals
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Old 03-16-2016, 11:17 AM   #23
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Hey all,

I have to bump this thread..

I have the symptoms of a blown head gasket, E.G. Bubbles in over flow tank

But the bubbles only occur after boosting hard for a couple of times.

I have tried flushing my coolant, changing to new radiator caps, 1.1 bar cap (with wings) top tank, 1.3 bar cap (round cap) on radiator itself, removing thermostat, but to no avail..

The thing is, this only happens after boosting hard. I was NOT overheating at all.

The coolant seems to be pushed from the TOP tank to the overflow tank, after the overflow tank overflows, I open up the TOP tank and its significantly low in coolant or empty.

My motor is a bone stock JDM EJ20 motor running a Twin Scroll VF turbo at 23psi

I also bought the UVIEW combustion test kit and have tested extensively, when idling when revving, but the test comes up negative..

I should also mention that this came about coincidentally after my recent build which included,

Turbo change (VF53 ball bearing)
Downpipe change
Timing belt / water pump change
IAG TGV deletes
Top feed rails with FIC injectors
intercooler change

Could any of these have affected and cause this problem?? Maybe its the turbo?? Could the water lines have been jammed up and cause lots of pressure in the TOP coolant tank, causing it to overflow to the overflow tank??

I have run out of ideas!!! Why wouldnt the test liquid just change to green??

Last edited by PrinceVegeta; 03-16-2016 at 11:27 AM.
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Old 03-16-2016, 01:42 PM   #24
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Perform a proper leak down test and let us know the results. That will tell you for sure.

https://mobiloil.com/en/article/car-...-leakdown-test

How many miles are on the car? How many miles at turbo swap? Also, who tuned it, and how long after build?

I bet it was the turbo swap on a car that has too many miles... subaru's don't like more boost unless it has a built bottom end. Part of that is because of new gaskets and seals :-P
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Old 03-16-2016, 05:43 PM   #25
No Go
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My car does the same thing and I'm quite sure the head gasket(s) has failed.

IE. runs fine at all times, but if boost it will push coolant into the overflow with bubbles. I've even tracked the car 100 miles...just have to empty the overflow after each 30 minute session...

190,000 mile original engine and 23 psi.
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