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Guest Message by DevFuse

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Coolant Change

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5 replies to this topic

#1 sam45


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Posted 31 August 2003 - 01:18 PM

I am planning to change the coolant on my 96 Legacy Wagon 2.2.
As per the user manual, all that's needed to drain the coolant is to open the drain plug at the bottom and also the air vent on top of the radiator. It does not say anything about the engine block drain plugs. However, the Haynes procedure includes this as one of the steps to drain the coolant from the engine. It looks like you need a special tool to open these plugs. I am hesitant to touch these plugs (in case of future leaks etc.)
Can we get a decent job done without opening the engine drain plugs?
Any help is greatly appreciated.

#2 theotherskip


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Posted 31 August 2003 - 05:00 PM

in order to remove the block drain plugs, you need a (17mm, i believe) allen wrench. when i went to sears, they didn't have either a 17mm allen wrench or 17mm allen on a socket. so i chose not to remove them. when i later pulled the engine, after throughly draining the coolant by the radiator, less than 1 quart (probably more along the lines of 1/4-1/2 a quart) was left in the block.

basically, it isn't worth removing the plugs, you can change enough of the coolant by draining the radiator.

#3 Commuter


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Posted 31 August 2003 - 05:35 PM

Just use the dilution principle. Keep flushing with water until it comes out clear. Probably take about 3 times to achieve that.

I don't know the capacity of your system (should be in your manual), but you will want to put in the correct amount of pure antifreeze first. Eg, if your system takes 6L, put in 3L of anti-freeze for a 50/50 mix. Then top up the rest with water. You will find that you won't get 3L of water in, since some water will have been left in the block from the flushing.

Personally, I wouldn't mess with block plugs either.

Further recomendation - use distilled water.

And dispose of the old stuff properly please. Just a lick or 2 by a cat or dog of a puddle on the ground can kill them. Contaminates ground water too (just like motor oil).


#4 DerFahrer


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Posted 31 August 2003 - 07:14 PM

My method is to drain the radiator, leave the plug out, stick a garden hose in the top of the radiator, and then turn the engine on.

Keep the hose in there, and wait until the engine warms up and the T-stat opens. Then give it some gas so the water pump will circulate the water from the hose through at a good speed. You should have the whole system flushed in about 20 minutes (clear water comes out the drain plug...)

Now DON'T do this if your coolant has been neglected (i.e. brown-looking). I did that with a friend's Jeep. A few days later, he was leaking coolant by the quart. We had washed out all the crap that was clogging the MANY leaks the radiator already had!:banghead:

In that case, just bite the bullet and get a new radiator:boohoo:

#5 applegump


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Posted 01 September 2003 - 04:56 AM

One more tip: Don't use radiator cleaner,like I did, it caused my water pump gasket to leak. Wasnt too bad though cause it needed replacing anyway....

#6 sam45


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Posted 01 September 2003 - 11:55 AM

Thanks everyone. The job is done. It took a while for the coolant to get in, but, I think the right amount got in.
Again, I appreciate all of your help!

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