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AutoMD ... 2/16/2014

2005 Pontiac Grand Prix GT 6 Cyl 3.8L


i'm losing water and coolant and have no heat

110,000 miles, i have added water and coolant three times in the past 2 weeks, there is no heat until i add water and coolant and then it is luke warm. temp gauge runs hot until coolant is added. Added water/coolant less than a week ago and again today, is there a leak in the radiator?

1 Answer


Jimm 2/16/2014

Loss of coolant because of a coolant leak is probably the most common cause of engine overheating. Possible leak points include hoses, the radiator, heater core, water pump, thermostat housing, head gasket, freeze plugs, automatic transmission oil cooler, cylinder head(s) and block.

Make a careful visual inspection of the entire cooling system, and then PRESSURE TEST the cooling system and radiator cap. A pressure test will reveal internal leaks such as seepage past the head gasket as well as cracks in the head or block. A good system should hold 12 to 15 psi for 15 minutes or more with no loss in pressure. If it leaks pressure, there is an internal coolant leak (most likely a bad head gasket but possibly also a cracked cylinder or engine block).

It is important to pressure test the radiator cap, too, because a weak cap (or one with too low a pressure rating.

If no leaks - either internal or external, then there are a few possibilities for the overheating. Clogged or dirty radiator passages, faulty thermostat, clogged radiator hoses, clogged heater hoses, clogged heater core, radiator cooling fans not working.


CVO 2/16/2014

Large chain auto parts stores such as Autozone, O'Reilly or PepBoys etc...have a free loan tool program. Check with them for the radiator pressure tester for free of charge.

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