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radiator hairline fracture!

5046 Views 16 Replies 13 Participants Last post by  eyeball96
radiator hairline fracture! (UPDATE)

I have a 96 LE, Its, never overheated, the dealer says I have a crack in the top of the radiator, its on the front, you can see a small amount of stain coming from it, (not much) its about 3" long, the dealer wants 450 for a new radiator, They say it can't be repaired, is this true?, appears to be made of plastic, seems like a good epoxy would work as small as it is. Please help if you can, I sure don't want to wait till it does overheat! Thanks in advance:confused:UPDATE: Thanks for the tips, I'm lucky enought to have a NAPA warehouse here, they have a Plastic Tank and Radiator repair kit, you mix two epoxys togather, and apply a fiberglass webbing in between coats of epoxy, this is suppose to be permanent. it was easy to apply, cost about 14 and change I'll let you all know how it does. Its mfgd by Balkamp inc. NAPA stock # is 765-1544
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what motor do you have i4 or v6?
i had the same problem before with my car.....
the crack for me was about the same size as your one :p:
i dont think it is permanently repairable.....if you do a search i think there are some temporary things you can do to fix it ;)

id keep a close eye on the coolant level, because when my one was cold the coolant would be like gushing out, but as it warmed up the crack would seal and the leaking would stop :eek:
if you do decide to replace it, dont go to Toyota to get it fixed, it is a rip off (like everybody knows), just go to a trusted mechanic and im pretty sure they can get you a better price on it :thumbup:

like i paid AU$300.00 for my one, but if i went to Toyota, that would have been like AU$1000+ :disappoin :lol:

good luck :)
2wickedtoyz said:
what motor do you have i4 or v6?
I have a I4 with 103,000
I had the exact same problem as you on my 94 I4 LE just goto autozone or someother autoparts store and by the radiator from there i paid like $140 US and it has a lifetime warranty.

Yeah, I have one too:( John pointed it out to me while we were doing the timing belt and water pump. I'm going to JB Weld it:lol:
the engine doesnt really matter..ur radiator is cracked

if u have some basic tools u can do the replace urself..if u have a junkyard near by u can pick up a radiator for cheap

this is all taken from chilton's
judging from the instructions u'll need 2 jack stands to get under the car easier
a drain pan
various sockets
the replacement radiator be it new or used new radiator might go about 100-150
and new fluid - transmission and coolant

maybe about 2 hours depending on if u've done work on ur car before..otherwise its a really good opportunity to learn on the weekend..its basically a disconnect remove replace and reconnect

1. just drain the radiator
2. disconnect the coolant hose, remove the neg battery terminal
3. for the 2vz-fe remove the ignition coil/ignition assembly
for the 5s-fe remove the cruise control cover - just a piece of plastic
4. take out the a/c and cooling fan connectors (1 more connection for the 5s-fe)
5. disconnect the upper and lower hoses from the radiator
6. take out the fans - engine cooling fan first than a/c fan - u'll have to take off the shrouds as well

now if u have an automatic there are 2 connections at the base of the radiator...these go to the transmission..fluid will leak so have something to plug them to prevent further leakage

7. hold the radiator while u losten the two radiator support bolts
8. take out the radiator - replace

everything is reverse order so go back up the list to reinstall
refill with new fluid.

remember to check the transmission fluid since there was leakage while removing the two hoses at the bottom
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I'm not positive abouts yours, but with most rads you can replace the top of it. You don't have to drain or anything. Just take the top off and place a new one on. Any rad shop could do it in 15-30 mins flat.
Toyota plastic top rads are notorious for not properly resealing if you just replace the tank. Best to find a cheap replacement close to home. UAP, Pep Girls etc all have them.
i had a crack in mine, i JB welded it but it didn't like the temperature changes, -40 outside to operating temperatures

so the patch came loose within a couple months, after that i used some rad stop leak for a while and it stopped it, while i was saving up for a new rad...

i'm sure that in virginia a patch could work pretty good for a while, just drain the rad, rough up the area around the crack with sandpaper, clean it up with alcohol and then put some jb weld or fiberglass on it, should hold for a while, especially in a more temperate climate
i have one on my radiator right now.
Man...i dont know why toyota uses these "dinky" plastic radiators. You could patch it up as a temporary fix but it wont last long. JB weld doesnt really work well either. I did that combo with the radiator stop leaks too. If I were you I'd save up and buy a radiator with metal worries.
Buy a nice new Griffin aluminum'll love it for life.

Money well spent, no doubt. :thumbup:
Where do you get a griffin aluminum rad?, How much will it beat my wallet?
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