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Looking for advice regarding a leaky radiator

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Hey folks,

 

I have a 1990 loyale that is naturally aspirated and I am losing some coolant when I drive it. I found a couple different wet spots on the radiator​ fins and one underneath a bolt on top of the radiator that squirts when I drive it. The engine does not overheat, but there is a small amount of whispy white smoke coming from the wet spot on top of the radiator when I come to a stop. It started doing this a few days ago after a long trip out of town.

 

The radiator fins are corroded and falling apart in some places. I'm young and not super mechanically adept yet, so I want to check and see if anybody has any advice before I get a new radiator​. If you know any other factors that could be causing this let me know I would really appreciate it.

 

Thanks guys

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Old radiator. Get a new one. ASAP. Before you run low on coolant and need to do the headgaskets also.

 

If you are not at high altitudes, and have to drive it, modify the radiator cap so the system does not pressurize. This will minimise coolant loss.

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Hey thanks Dave. I am at high altitude but i have been topping up the coolant when I have to drive. Will that help prevent head gasket problems until the new radiator is in?

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Good job trying to verify diagnosis.

 

Sounds like you got a good eye and it's the radiator. Good description too.

 

A leaking cap and hose can spray or drip causing the radiator to be wet. But sounds like you looked closely enough and would have seen that.

 

It depends how bad the leak is but yes as long as enough coolant is circulating and it doesn't overheat it's fine. If it does overheat don't drive it. Carry water in the car.

 

Order online from advance auto parts, if it's not quite a hundred dollars add some cheap windshield fluid or coolant to get it to $100. Then use discount code TRT41 online to get $40 off. $60 radiator. Subaru radiators are perfect for this because most are right around $100.

 

You can pick it up within 30 minutes.

 

I've done it from in the store on my phone and picked it up right there In an emergency before.

Edited by grossgary

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Short drives.  Check for air in the upper radiator  hose and the level in the recovery tank, before every drive.  It doesn't take much loss to cause trouble. 

Top off.  Don't open the radiator cap to check level unless the upper hose check indicates low coolant.  If you run with air in the radiator, and you see the temperature gauge go above normal - not even overheat - headgaskets are at risk.  I've experienced this more than once.  The damage may begin showing up in 6 hours, 6 days, 6 weeks, or 6 months.

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I just put this into my 1991 Loyale in the last month and it has been good so far. 

 

https://www.amazon.com/Spectra-Premium-CU935-Complete-Radiator/dp/B000C7VZTQ/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1490737489&sr=8-1&keywords=loyale+radiator

 

Amazon says it doesn't fit but it does. Only difference is the lower radiator hose. It is aluminum and plastic and has a one-year warranty. Besides pulling out the belts and fan blade, it's a pretty easy swap. Maybe a good time to replace other parts of the cooling system while you have it drained like hoses. 

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