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Stuck with a 3rd Gen
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I’m dealing with a coolant leak at the timing cover. I lose about 2 to 3 oz overnight and over the day, judging by the puddle under the van. What is weird is that when I pop up the hood in the morning, ready to top off, neither the overflow tank, nor the rad (after removing its cap) shows significant drop!? As a matter of fact, the rad is brimful of coolant!? The overflow tank does show a tiny drop in level, but definitely not in agreement with the amount of coolant lost in the day and over the night!

What’s going on?

My cooling system clogged?

I did put about 3 tubes of Bar’s Stop Leak for Rad in powder form in the rad (after removing the cap) and in the overflow tank to stop a rusted and leaking freeze plug in the main rear (mating with the tranny).

The freeze plug is no longer leaking, but the leaks popped up in other places: the top rad hose first, and then the timing cover.

The Stop Leak powder caused those leaks?

At this point, van is not overheating yet. Temp needle stays in the middle. When driving unimpededly on the freeway, needle is even slightly below the needle, as is the usual case.

I don’t want the van to run with INSUFFICIENT coolant!
 

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Stuck with a 3rd Gen
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583 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
I checked the coolant level in the overflow tank this morning. It showed a little drop, and the amount was roughly in agreement with the coolant lost. This has solved a mystery and worry for me.
 

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Stuck with a 3rd Gen
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583 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·

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I had a similar situation (except I had no visible leaks on the ground). It turned out to be a small coolant leak from the lower intake manifold. Mine was on trans side and would heat up and burn off as it ran pass the exhaust. It drove me crazy!

Yours could very well be leaking on the opposite side, then running down the edge of timing cover.

Check out this YouTube, Eric explains things very well and pinpoints the location, but you may have to visualize it on the opposite side.

 

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3rd gen > all others
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3,533 Posts
Lower intake manifold on this generation van with this engine wasn't susceptible to leaking like it was in the 4th gen for some reason. The timing cover leaking is much more common. Since it leaks when cold, almost certainly the timing cover leaking. Lower intake manifold leaks when hot, and you can smell the burning antifreeze.
 
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Stuck with a 3rd Gen
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583 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I will watch that video you linked when I have a chance, LouO! And Dan, indeed, it leaks when it's cold, especially, overnight! Saw a sizable puddle under the van this morning and yesterday. Had to fill up at the reservoir tank accordingly.
 
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