Is your car’s coolant level lower than usual? It could be a leak. Maybe you even notice antifreeze leaking from the front of your engine or detect the solution’s sweet smell when you turn your engine off. If your antifreeze keeps running out, there’s no need to panic. BlueDevil Products has all the information you need to find the source of the leak and get it fixed before it causes further damage to your vehicle. If you’re ready to stop losing your car’s coolant and seal those leaks today, check out BlueDevil Pour-N-Go Head Gasket Sealer, the industry’s most-trusted solution for sealing tough-to-find leaks wherever they pop up.
What to Do if Your Antifreeze Keeps Running Out
Hopefully, your car coolant is going where it should be: through your engine! The purpose of your engine’s cooling system is to, well, keep your engine cool. So, hopefully your coolant is taking its job seriously. If your car coolant is headed somewhere else, then you’ve got a problem. Cooling system problems usually show up as either an overheating engine, or a leaking engine either in the form of puddles under your car or steam pour out from under your hood. Learn more about how to solve one of the modern automobile’s most common ailments below!
What Can Cause an Antifreeze Leak?
Antifreeze leaks can be caused by a variety of things but the two most common factors are age and dirty coolant. Dirt or oil in your coolant can accelerate wear in your system, leading to leaks in your water pumps, at gaskets, or at o-rings. Flushing your cooling system is the best way to stop this type of leak.
The years are also rough on cooling system components, causing plastic to get brittle and hoses to get swollen, which are the most common causes of antifreeze leaks. In this case, there is no way to prevent a leak. It is, however, still important to watch for signs of damage to any cooling system component.
How to Tell if You Have a Leak
Obviously, the most obvious sign of a leak is a puddle of coolant under your car or antifreeze leaking from the front of your engine. However, there are a few more subtle ways that you can detect an antifreeze leak. If you’re antifreeze keeps running out quickly, you’ve almost definitely got a leak. This is much different than the slight decrease in coolant levels that you’ll notice at regular oil-change intervals.
Sometimes a leak may not be visible. Even if you have depleted coolant levels with no sign of leakage, you could still have an internal leak that isn’t detectable from the outside of your engine. Detecting a faint, sweet smell of antifreeze with no signs of a leak is also indicative of an internal leak.
Identifying the Source of the Leak
When identifying the different routes of coolant in your car, start by locating the radiator. It will be just in front of your engine, with an electric fan attached to it. The radiator will have two large hoses, each about 2 inches in diameter, attached to the sides or top and bottom. One hose usually leads to the thermostat while the other will lead to the water pump.
The other path your car coolant takes is through the heater core, which is best found starting at the firewall (the wall closest to the passenger compartment at the back of the engine). Your heater core is a small radiator inside the cabin of your vehicle in the ventilation system. They usually are on the passenger side of the engine compartment. These hoses will be smaller than the others (one to one-and-a-half inches in diameter). One will run to the radiator. The other will run to the engine block or cylinder head.
Once you’ve located all these components and hoses, start your vehicle’s engine and allow it to warm up watching all of these components for signs of a leak like steam or drips. If you discover your leak is coming from the end of one of the hoses in your engine it may be time to replace the hose. If it is swollen and appears too big for the end connection, has cracks, rips or tears it is time to replace that hose.
Regularly Check Your Equipment
Checking under your hood for cracks in the cooling system’s components on a regular basis plays an important part in keeping your car in working order. If you don’t want your antifreeze to keep running out or your car to end up on the side of the highway with smoke ballooning into the sky, take a look under the hood. Check the radiator for cracks in the tank or damage to the fins. Next check the hoses, as mentioned above, for cracks or connection issues. Lastly, you’ll want to check the freeze plugs for leaks. The plugs will be on either side of the engine block and are metal disks from 1.5 to 2.5 inches in diameter. There will be between 2 and 4 freeze plugs, usually in a row on each side of the engine block.
The only thing you really can’t physically check is the heater core. But, if the heater core is leaking, you may notice liquid on the floor of the passenger and driver floor pan or the smell of antifreeze when you turn the blower on.
How to Fix an Antifreeze Leak in One Easy Step
If your hoses seem like they’re in good shape, that’s a good sign. That means that there’s an easy way to stop your antifreeze from running out. BlueDevil Pour N’ Go is non-particulate sealer that reacts to the temperature differential created at the leak point, sealing leaks as it filters through your system. Simply pour the solution in with your coolant, and let it work its magic. Your leaks will be sealed within two regular driving days!
You can also pick up any of our great BlueDevil products at your partnering local auto parts stores like:
- Advance Auto Parts
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- Pep Boys
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- Bumper to Bumper Auto Parts Specialists
- S&E Quick Lube Distributor
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- Consumer Auto Parts
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