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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all,

I'm new and am curious if any of you have problems with engine coolant loss in the G3 Accent? I took to the dealer recently. Naturally, they found nothing wrong. I am worried that there's a serious problem at play, maybe even a blown/cracked head gasket, causing coolant to get burned up or into the engine? If so, how can I troubleshoot this? The dealer doesn't seem like they're going to do anything, and that all looks fine from their perspective.

For now I'm going to measure the coolant level periodically and keep a log of how much I'm putting in, and when, so I can have more data for the dealer if this continues to happen. I'm considering a coolant flush to see if the issue persist afterward. Any idea where I can find a DIY on doing this myself?

Thank you in advance!
 

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From what I've read, if coolant is being burned, there's usually a persistent white smoke from the exhaust. How often do you have to put coolant in? I may have a blown headgasket too.. who knows.. I have to put coolant in about every 6 months.
 

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QUOTE (bloodninja @ May 22 2010, 12:31 PM) index.php?act=findpost&pid=325297
From what I've read, if coolant is being burned, there's usually a persistent white smoke from the exhaust. How often do you have to put coolant in? I may have a blown headgasket too.. who knows.. I have to put coolant in about every 6 months.
I wouldn't worry about topping off every 6 months. Most likely the water pump leaking a little bit from the shaft what hot and it's burning off the engine so you can't see it. With my old VWs I'd worry if I needed to add coolant more often than once a month :grin:

blood did ask a crucial question, how often do you need to top off and how much do you put in? What did the dealer do? Did they perform a coolant system pressure test or just a visual inspection?
 

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Feel free to do a coolant flush, but it won't stop any leaks you may have.
 

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I would periodically check the coolant level when the engine is warmed up and idling. Should be anywhere between the high and low marks. If the level is consistent under these coditions over a period of time, I would say you really don't have a problem. Unless you have other signs of a head gasket or cracked head casting problem (the milky appearance of coolant in the oil, white or light grey smoke from the exhaust, etc), I seriously doubt internal coolant loss is the issue.
 

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A slow loss of coolant is normal. Coolant is typically anywhere from 40-60% water after all, and it'll evaporate eventually under lots of heat. Worry about coolant loss when you have white puffs of smoke coming from your exhaust/engine bay, when you start finding puddles under your car, or when your car starts overheating though you'd have to ignore the other signs to get to that point usually...

I do mostly highway driving and my coolant needs topping up a lot, but that's because I do about 130kmph on my commute for 20 minutes straight, twice a day minimum 5 days a week, so it gets quite hot in that bay.
 

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I've had to routinely top mine off every few months since the car was new.  65,000 miles later, it's hasn't become any worse (or better.)  I usually keep it right smack between F and L measured when cold and parked on a level surface.  It takes a few months, but sometimes would eventually creep down to the L line, which at that time I would top it back up to the halfway point.  I haven't added any coolant for several months now.
 

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My last car had some serious coolant issues (GM's 3400 engine), and I learned to check the oil often for signs of coolant entry. Basically, if you're losing coolant through a leak that you can't see, it's either going into the engine cylinder (giving big puffs of white smoke) or into the engine oil (turning it into what looks like a milkshake). Keep an eye on the tailpipe, and on the oil level and quality. I used to check the oil periodically with the dipstick and by opening the filler cap to check for any water infiltration.

Are you finding any spots on the driveway? There'll likely be some condensation off the A/C, but water and coolant are easy to tell apart when you touch it with your finger. Also, if you've got one, use a black light to look all around the engine. Some types of coolant will fluoresce under UV light, helping you find the leak. Some auto parts places even sell kits with an additive, a black light, and some CSI-looking glasses.

A compression test will tell you if you've got a cylinder leak. If you're adding lots of coolant frequently, you might want to think about a third party garage doing some troubleshooting. At worst, if they find anything, you'll have some concrete proof that the dealer's gotta take care of it under warranty.

Keeping a journal of what you're adding, and when, is a great idea.

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks for all the advice and info, guys. I'll reply when I apply some of my new-found knowledge to this perturbing issue!
 

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If anything was done to the engine, there could be air bubbles in the hoses just working their way out through the reservoir. If that's the case, your problem should end eventually. Just putting that out there.
 
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