Saab Link Forums banner
1 - 18 of 18 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
126 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The "coolant level low" came on last night, so I topped it off.
However, when I removed the cap, the system was under pressure!
I don't recall the system ever being like that before.

This morning (temp reading was -11C), the "coolant level low" warning came on again.
I had a look and it seemed to be right back to where it was ... and it appeared as though there was coolant on the ground.

So, I drove to work like this and just kept an eye on the temp gauge. No fluctuation happened at all and the heat in the car was fine.

When I came out from work today, I checked the level again ... it looked low, but the SID did not read it as low.
I opened the tank and again, the whole system was pressurized!
I drove almost all the way home before it came on ... and the heat in the car was fine ...
Except that it seemed to take longer to generate warm air even though the temp gauge was moving up ... otherwise, it was fine.
When I got home, I noticed the gurgling sound again ...
Now I realize that there must be air in the system ... but I'm also thinking that the stat is shot.

Can anyone confirm my diagnosis or tell me something different?
I'll pick up a stat this week and get it changed on Saturday along with my oil ...


=============================================================

That was yesterday ... this morning I came out to find more coolant on the ground (I think it is leaking from the coolant return to the reseviour - the only hose I haven't replaced yet - based on the fact that the frame is wet in that area).
I topped it up again - a little pressure in the system today vs. yesterday. The tank was almost dry! :shock:
I started the car and heard the gurgling sound right away - definately a stat problem (maybe something else, but the stat needs to be replaced).
I barely got out of the driveway and I got the low coolant warning again!
I drove it for about 7 minutes and stopped at a well lit gas station and popped the hood.
The coolant level was down as I expected it to be.
The temp gauge was in the middle - but the heat was slow to come.
I started back up again and kept going.
I noticed as I was in a stopped line of traffic that the temp of the air coming into the car was dropping ... again, consistant with a bad stat. As long as I was moving, I was toasty warm! :lol:

I'm going to make a call and see if I can get it looked at this afternoon.

Can anyone think of anything I may have missed?
 

·
HNNLIC
Joined
·
4,209 Posts
Thats definately a bad stat.

As far as the coolant going low... you've got quiet a bit of a leak. I had a few hoses go bad on me within a few weeks time, and of course the resevoir kept going low.. however not as quick as your speaking about.

I'd have the leak sourced, and the hose replaced. most likely they'll have to drain the coolant (depending on the hose), but it would be excellent timing to have that stat replaced as well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
352 Posts
head gasket not properly secured?

i had leaking coolant...not to the extent you seem to be experiencing but it was caused by the head gasket
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
126 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
saabvos said:
head gasket not properly secured?

i had leaking coolant...not to the extent you seem to be experiencing but it was caused by the head gasket
Now see, this is the answer I was hoping people would stay away from! :cry:

Having said that, I'm more and more comfortable that it is just the stat and maybe a bad hose ... I only seem to be loosing the coolant in the resevior ... and the evidence of leaking is way on that side of the engine bay, very far away from the block itself ...

I'll find out for sure tomorrow morning as I have an appointment for 7:30 am.
I just have to get home and back in tomorrow and I'll be good ...

Stay tuned ... and please, keep the ideas coming.
I want to have all based covered when I see them tomorrow.

btw, I have 2 jugs of Mercedes Benz coolant waiting for this job!
There have been many discussions on the benefits of their coolant over the regular Prestone-type green stuff ... :lol:
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
7,595 Posts
check all the hoses and connections that coolant can leak from and check your oil, make sure there is no coolant in it. I doubt it's the headgasket (your car is not old enough) but if it's ever been overheated by the pervious owner....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
745 Posts
I would check all of the heater line hoses....mine just went the other day....after noticing the same puddle your talking about, and seeing the same sid.

found the slow leak right at the hose connection off the block...cut it shorter for the quick fix...then had all heater hoses replaced....by the dealership...too lazy in this cold weather we're having...

A lot of us will probably start to experience this more as we begin to use our heaters more in the colder weather. Evident from it taking longer to heat the car when warmed up...

anyway...I doubt the head causing it..

good luck
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
126 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I replaced all of my hoses (except the return from the resevior) last year, so they should be good ...

I will have them check everything tomorrow morning.
That is the only reason I'm taking it into a dealer ... just in case I need additional parts!
It could also be the tank itself ... perhaps there is a crack in it that was made worse by the cold.

As for the head ... I've had the car for 18 months now and put over 50,000 miles on it ... and I've never had a situation where the car was even close to over heating ... so I'm going to assume that it is OK.

Thanks again for all of the feedback .. you've certainly help set my mind at ease! :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
126 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
It is the head gasket! :cry: :evil:

The dealer started with the coolant system ... pressure tested just fine! :D

Then they checked for exhaust gases in the cooling system ... there were some! :cry:

They told me that the exhaust gases are making their way into the cooling system by way of the head gasket ... when the pressure gets too much for the cooling system, the cap on the resevior bottle pops and the coolant is escaping that way.
Apperently, I was about 4L low on coolant! :shock:

Anyway ... not a great thing to have go wrong 9 days before Christmas! :cry: :cry:
$1200 - $1400 for the job! :evil:
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
7,595 Posts
yikes, that's about $60 worth of parts, $1200 labor... guess one of the cars previous owners was not as careful as you were with the car. think you might try doing it yourself? I would have a rather hard time paying $1200 for labor. If you are not into doing it yourself, I would take it someplace else. it's only about 6-8 hours of work, take it away from the dealer as fast as you can... an independent garage should be able to do it for $500-700

Bad luck!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
126 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Actually, the difference between dealer and Saab specialist is only about $200 ... $1200 - $1400 (after my SOCCI discount of course! :eek: ) ...

I'm going to talk to one of the local Saab shops tomorrow and see what he has to say ...

As for doing it myself ... I haven't the time, space, know how, or friends close by that can help ... :cry:

I'll be dropping it in someone's lap on Saturday or Monday depending on where I decide to take it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
126 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
The car is in at one of the local specialists for a head gasket.

The head should be back from the machine shop today.

I asked about changing the timing chain while he is in there and he responded with "I was already going to change it - it was stretched". :shock:

My car will be practically brand new when I get it back! :D
At least that is something to look forward to! 8)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
51 Posts
SaabScott said:
The car is in at one of the local specialists for a head gasket.

The head should be back from the machine shop today.

I asked about changing the timing chain while he is in there and he responded with "I was already going to change it - it was stretched". :shock:

My car will be practically brand new when I get it back! :D
At least that is something to look forward to! 8)
Of course the timing chain is stretched, I would be too if someone wound me around the crankshaft pulley and two nutty camshafts and then spun me for over 100,000 miles !

But, seriously, the wear limits must be known for these parts; exact measuring and checking the factory manual should be occurring.
Why be "replace happy" and possibly toss away good parts ???
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
745 Posts
shaving the head should increase your compression ratio a little...for more power. Will thus cause you to boost less for the same power levels.

I'd have the head ported, and gas-flowed while they're in there. Replace that head gasket with a copper one...reducing any future chance of blowing one.

Of course those are gonna cost a few more pennies...but a whole lot less now than going aftermarket if you plan to build up the car later.

just a thought...

regards
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
145 Posts
SaabScott said:
The "coolant level low" came on last night, so I topped it off.
However, when I removed the cap, the system was under pressure!
This keeps happening on my car, but the coolant level fluctuates. Sometimes after I turn the car off and check it, the level is high, and it's always been pressurized, so in this case it flows out when I open the cap. Sometimes it's normal but still pressurized.

It's only been actually low once or twice over the last 6 months despite the SID screaming away (probably a bad sensor). But the coolant's very very hot as well, and my car takes it's time heating up inside. The temp level stays in the middle while it runs.

Are the pressure and heat in the coolant tank normal? If not, what should I have the shop check (it's going in Tuesday anyway)? Thanks.

Edit: Accoridng to the article below it seems to be normal, says the temperature can be upwars of 220 degrees and the pressurization is normal. Sound right?

http://www.csaa.com/global/articledetail/0,1398,1004010302%7C2029,00.html
 
1 - 18 of 18 Posts
Top