Do you lose antifreeze coolant? - Toyota Nation Forum : Toyota Car and Truck Forums
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#1 Old 10-03-2008, 06:39 PM
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Gen6 Do you lose antifreeze coolant?

Both my 2004 and 2009 have 4 cyl engines. They both lose some coolant over time. I noticed the loss when they're brand-new. They did a pressurized leak test on the 2004 4 years ago and found no leak. I haven't asked them to test the 09. The 09 lost about 1/2 - 3/4 inch in the overflow reservoir in its first 2000 miles. No external leaks can be found with my frequent visual checks with a good light source and mirror, with engine hot and cold. I checked all hose connections, temp sensor to engine connection, thermostat housing, engine block drain cock, radiator drain cock. Every time I changed oil, I got under the car and checked for all fluid leaks. No coolant was ever seen. I also have a Nissan and Subaru. They also lost some coolant overtime without external leak. The 1990 Nissan loses the least among the 4 cars. Subaru is about the same as Camry. When the 96 Subaru was brand-new, dealer did the leak test and found nothing but put in stop-leak without telling me. Well, it's been 12 years and 120,000 miles and no major issues. I've been using Subaru brand stop leak in recent years each time I replace coolant. It does seem to minimize coolant loss without causing cooling issue. I know some will say fix the problem, don't use stop-leak. But no problem can be found by the dealers for both my 04 Camry and Subaru.

How do your cars behave in this coolant matter? It's hard to believe new cars have head gasket issue. I don't think mine have HG-related issue. But where did the coolant go? Evaporation should not cause that much (3/4 inch in 2000 miles) loss. I already knew what the dealer will tell me - no leaks found. I'd like to hear from you about your experience.
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#2 Old 10-03-2008, 07:47 PM
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check the water pump, i've had mine leak twice on my 05 4 cyl. the first time, toyota replaced it immediately without doing a pressure test. the second time, they pressure tested it and "found no leak". it was in fact leaking but it was a very very slow leak. i could see pink residue under the water pump, which accumulated after a while. i went back a week later and told them there was coolant on my garage floor (albeit a very small puddle) and they replaced the water pump again.

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#3 Old 10-03-2008, 10:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vasy View Post
Evaporation should not cause that much (3/4 inch in 2000 miles) loss. I already knew what the dealer will tell me - no leaks found. I'd like to hear from you about your experience.
Why not? If it's hot enough evaporation should take place for sure.

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#4 Old 10-04-2008, 07:50 AM
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My original thought was to ask you guys how much coolant loss you've experienced with your Camry over 2000 miles/2-3 months, or any known period of time. I still would like to hear that. I'll check my water pump today but no fluid of any kind was ever found on my garage floor for my 09 Camry since my purchase in June.

A related thought about coolant loss due to evaporation. Some European car makers put a pressurized cap on their cars' overflow reservoir. For one thing, this should eliminate or at least greatly reduce the amount of coolant loss due to evaporation. Our cars' reservoir is vented to the outside, allowing vapor or liquid to escape. In a totally closed system, there is no or very little route for anything to get out of the cooling system. Do you guys think this is the only reason for putting the pressurized cap on the reservoir?
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#5 Old 10-04-2008, 08:06 AM
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Yes, but those European cars likely have only the one pressure cap, and the overflow tank is the same as the expansion tank. For your original question, after the level falls the half inch in 2k miles, does it continue to drop over time? It will harm nothing to let it continue to drop, and then you can point out to the dealer that you are losing coolant. On the other hand, you didn't say how full the tank was, and it being an expansion/ov erflow tank, if it is full, some fluid will be lost when the engine gets hot, to the point that it will no longer come out when hot. The fluid will find its level.

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#6 Old 10-04-2008, 08:41 AM
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Yes, but those European cars likely have only the one pressure cap, and the overflow tank is the same as the expansion tank. For your original question, after the level falls the half inch in 2k miles, does it continue to drop over time? It will harm nothing to let it continue to drop, and then you can point out to the dealer that you are losing coolant. On the other hand, you didn't say how full the tank was, and it being an expansion/ov erflow tank, if it is full, some fluid will be lost when the engine gets hot, to the point that it will no longer come out when hot. The fluid will find its level.
When I purchased the car new a few months ago, coolant level with car sitting overnight was 1 inch below the full mark on the white plastic tank. So it never got to the point as to cause coolant to be expelled (pushed) out of the tank when engine is hot. I now only have 2000 miles on this car so still keep watching on it. On my other car (2004), I did what you suggested to the dealer 3 yeas ago. Their pressure tester was able to hold the pressure so they wouldn't know how to fix the problem. They added fresh coolant for me but they put in the wrong kind. My car came with Super Long Life (pink) and they put in regular long life (red). I caught it as soon as getting home and I removed the red stuff from the white tank. They're compatible but I'd rather not mixing them. Doing so reduces the service life of the super long life kind to 5 years - according Toyota's own publication.

I just went to the garage to check water pump. Even with a mirror, it's hard to see the entire under side of the pump. As far as I can tell, no pink residue was there.
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#7 Old 10-04-2008, 12:58 PM
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I think I would watch it and not add any at all You are talking about a few ounces in 2k miles which just isn't much at all. It could be that the seals have taken a little time to seat in and seal. In any event, you just want to have some coolant in the tank so that the radiator doesn't suck back some air when it cools. If the level goes to near empty you have a complaint with the dealer and some visible proof that things aren't right. In losing say 4 ounces in 2k miles, it isn't very likely that you would find much if any residue from a leak.

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#8 Old 10-04-2008, 02:17 PM
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If you are filling to the hot level when the engine is cold you will loose some. If you fill to the cool level and let it expand to the hot level when engine running hot then I think loss should be minimal. I haven't checked my new to me 05 yet for this. But on my other cars usually loss has been very minimal to none.
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#9 Old 10-04-2008, 06:07 PM
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I would have to agree. I have an 07 LE, and @ 40000km, i have not lost too much coolant, the most i lost was probably half a cup (250ml), but that was due to the return hose not being connected properly...:p
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#10 Old 10-04-2008, 06:08 PM
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Yeah I lose it occasionally, but I always find it like under the pillows or behind the couch...damn dogs always make me lose my damn coolant

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#11 Old 10-04-2008, 06:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gorky_Park View Post
Yeah I lose it occasionally, but I always find it like under the pillows or behind the couch...damn dogs always make me lose my damn coolant
Interesting...i thought we were talking about car coolant!
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#12 Old 10-30-2009, 09:41 PM
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07 Water Pump Replaced

07 Camry, 30k miles, and I noticed that my water pump was leaking. I just had it changed, no problems, but I've noticed that others have had problems with their 2AZFE engine water pumps.

My dealer says that they having to replace a lot more than normal. They say it may be due to the new pink Super Long Life Coolant, which I have read before. I also read it was something about the molecules being very small vs. the red coolant and getting past the seals

The coolant does not drip out onto the ground, but turns to a solid and this damages the seal. No evidence of leaks on the ground in the garage, but there was pink crystals on the ground and also and you could see signs of the serpentine belt throwing the coolant up onto the inside of the hood. Lots of pink solids right under the water pump. Of course, the coolant overflow tank level had dropped a lot.

Anyway, this was covered under warranty, but I sure hope that this doesn't happen again after the warranty is up! My old cars with 100+ thousand miles still had their original water pumps when I sold them!


Keep an eye on yours, especially right before your 5 year, 60,000 warranty is up.
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#13 Old 10-31-2009, 09:35 AM
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there should be no fluid loss. something wrong somewhere, water pump or leaking hose most likely.

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