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Old 24-01-2010   #1
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Coolant system mystery problem - help!

I'm hoping one of you can give me a clue about what's happing with my Punto!

Couple of weeks ago I noticed it was running hot and checked the water - which was empty, no mystery there.

Filled it up, was fine for a couple of days then it was empty again. So I took it to the garage which tested the fan - working fine, head gasket - no problem and thermostat - working as it should. I was told that I should have bled the cooling system when I filled it as air locks can cause the system to dump its coolant.

So I filled it again, bled the radiator. Worked fine for two days then lost all its coolant.

Took it back to garage, they tested the water pump - all good and then flushed the radiator. This they said was in as bad condition as any they'd ever seen - full of sludge and it was a blockage in the radiator causing the problem. So I had them replace the radiator which cost a fair bit of cash and I was hoping that would be the end of it.

Two days later and guess what? No coolant, or at least it was right down below minimum. It's going back to the garage as I'm annoyed at having shelled out for a new radiator that wasn't the problem but I am at a loss for what else to check.

Any ideas? Much appreciated.

James
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Old 24-01-2010   #2
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Re: Coolant system mystery problem - help!

I had this problem! You got a noticeable leak anywhere? I'm presuming not!
Start the engine, look on the right hand side of the engine along the actual engine block and see if you can notice any rust colour or not, leave the engine running and keep looking all around it and towards the back, you could have coolant leaking from there and evapourating before you notice it! You may see water coming from it after 5 or so minutes, sounds like a definate leak!
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Old 24-01-2010   #3
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Re: Coolant system mystery problem - help!

A blocked or sludged up radiator will not do you any favours so replacing it made sense. I have had a head gasket leak to the outside (not a Fiat though). The cylinder seals were fine but the edge of the gasket was leaking down the back of the engine. I found it by accident when the steam steamed up my glasses.

Try some flushing chemical to clean out the system. Drain and flush to make sure its all removed. Any leaks that were blocked by sludge will soon show up.
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Old 24-01-2010   #4
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Re: Coolant system mystery problem - help!

Just noticed when the engine is running, there's actually water spraying out of the bit on the left, where theres a belt running behind a plastic guard.

Something tells me this isn't going to be good.
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Old 24-01-2010   #5
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Re: Coolant system mystery problem - help!

Spraying from a joint or a crack? Could just need re-sealing, depends entirely where it is! A pic of where it's spraying from will help. You could try rad-weld or other radiator fix, alot of people will disagree other will agree its ok to use. If it works and stops the leak without doing alot of work then should be fine! If you do use it and it stops the leak completely, you could re-flush the radiator (only the radiator, flushing the block could shift the fix) just to make sure you don't get any blockages in your radiator from the rad-weld
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Old 24-01-2010   #6
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Re: Coolant system mystery problem - help!

Water pump failure.

Has the cam belt been changed recently? If nearly due, get it and tensioner changed at same time.

Cheers

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