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Old 03-09-2014, 08:04 PM   #1
I awesome
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Default Problem with car, need help! :(

Hello everyone! This is my first post, though I've been lurking as an unregistered user for a long while and finally got the guts to ask for help, lol.

So my 99 Saturn sl1 started to use coolant and oil really fast and the temp goes over half way mark if we stay idled for to long.

It has about 207k miles on it, but the engine and trans was swapped with a 2002 model that had 137k on it about 10k miles ago

It also makes a weird noise when I accelerate sometimes. It sounds like pouring water from one bottle to another. Oh yeah, there is some oil that looks like it's leaking out of the two left and right caps of the top of the engine.

Do you guys got any idea what could be wrong?

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Old 03-09-2014, 08:54 PM   #2
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Default Re: Problem with car, need help! :(

What does the coolant look like?

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Old 03-09-2014, 09:09 PM   #3
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Default Re: Problem with car, need help! :(

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Originally Posted by I awesome View Post
It also makes a weird noise when I accelerate sometimes. It sounds like pouring water from one bottle to another.
Clogged heater core.

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Old 03-09-2014, 11:01 PM   #4
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Default Re: Problem with car, need help! :(

As for leaks, the only way to find out is to clean things up and get them dry, and find out where it leaks. It's way easier than guessing, and points you to any problem spots. As for the caps on the top of the engine... a little more information would be helpful. I suspect that you might be talking about the bolts for the cam cover, but I'm not sure.

The cars are also known for burning oil, so check it frequently. There is a good chance that much of what you are losing is going through the engine. Externally, it really doesn't take much oil at all to make a mess. Even a minor leak over time will make the engine look bad.

As for the cooling, it's normal for the temp to rise when not moving or moving very slowly for extended periods of time. Until the fan kicks on, the only cooling is the movement of the car. The fan won't turn on until you are past the 1/2 way mark, and in some cars not until almost at the 3/4 mark. If your car has AC you can trigger the fan by turning on the AC as well, but it only works above ambient temps in the 40+ range.

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Old 03-10-2014, 02:05 AM   #5
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Default Re: Problem with car, need help! :(

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Originally Posted by Signmaster View Post
If your car has AC you can trigger the fan by turning on the AC as well, but it only works above ambient temps in the 40+ range.
I prefer doing this, even though my car has NEVER overheated. I'm just anal about my temp gauge getting too high. I usually will turn on my AC if I know I'll be idling for a while.

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Old 03-10-2014, 02:10 AM   #6
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Default Re: Problem with car, need help! :(

You can even install a manual fan switch using nothing more than a couple pieces of wire and a switch. The wires run from the fan relay to the switch, then to a ground. Costs less than $10, and is completely harmless to the car and is completely reversible. I did it to my car in under 10 minutes in an AutoZone parking lot.

It isn't necessary, but it's an option.

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Old 03-10-2014, 03:29 AM   #7
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Default Re: Problem with car, need help! :(

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Originally Posted by sallydriver View Post
You can even install a manual fan switch using nothing more than a couple pieces of wire and a switch. The wires run from the fan relay to the switch, then to a ground. Costs less than $10, and is completely harmless to the car and is completely reversible. I did it to my car in under 10 minutes in an AutoZone parking lot.

It isn't necessary, but it's an option.
Was thinking about doing that "but then I got high". Jk

Actually, I got lazy.

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Old 03-10-2014, 09:56 AM   #8
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Default Re: Problem with car, need help! :(

Thanks for the replies!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ninetynineSC2 View Post
What does the coolant look like?
A green color.

Quote:
Originally Posted by eb121209 View Post
Clogged heater core.
The heater works fine though. Do you know how I would go about getting this fixed?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Signmaster View Post
As for leaks, the only way to find out is to clean things up and get them dry, and find out where it leaks. It's way easier than guessing, and points you to any problem spots. As for the caps on the top of the engine... a little more information would be helpful. I suspect that you might be talking about the bolts for the cam cover, but I'm not sure.

The cars are also known for burning oil, so check it frequently. There is a good chance that much of what you are losing is going through the engine. Externally, it really doesn't take much oil at all to make a mess. Even a minor leak over time will make the engine look bad.

As for the cooling, it's normal for the temp to rise when not moving or moving very slowly for extended periods of time. Until the fan kicks on, the only cooling is the movement of the car. The fan won't turn on until you are past the 1/2 way mark, and in some cars not until almost at the 3/4 mark. If your car has AC you can trigger the fan by turning on the AC as well, but it only works above ambient temps in the 40+ range.
I cleaned it up and after driving it for a few hours, the top part where the bolts are got a lot of oil stained down it.
It also looks like someone tried to seal it with red stuff, but most of it is gone.

I never knew they burn oil , lol. Though I still feel like I'm going through coolant way to fast.

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Old 03-10-2014, 10:39 AM   #9
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Default Re: Problem with car, need help! :(

Quote:
Originally Posted by eb121209 View Post
I prefer doing this, even though my car has NEVER overheated. I'm just anal about my temp gauge getting too high. I usually will turn on my AC if I know I'll be idling for a while.
I rarely ever see this (temp gauge go above 1/2) happen. Maybe because I'm rarely in stop and go traffic and because it is often warm enough to need to run the AC. Another reason to run the AC is that it keeps the parts lubricated which helps keep a healthy AC unit. My original AC has never been serviced and still blows very cold.

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Old 03-10-2014, 10:41 AM   #10
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Default Re: Problem with car, need help! :(

Quote:
Originally Posted by I awesome View Post
It also looks like someone tried to seal it with red stuff, but most of it is gone.

I never knew they burn oil , lol. Though I still feel like I'm going through coolant way to fast.
ALL older cars burn oil, from wear. Get in the habit of checking to see how much yours does. Mine doesn't burn much, but I baby my car.

The coolant? Yeah, you shouldn't be losing much, if any - you have a leak.

...
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As of 09/30/17: 223,751 Miles - SOLD
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Old 03-10-2014, 11:03 AM   #11
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1995 SL1
Default Re: Problem with car, need help! :(

Quote:
Originally Posted by I awesome View Post
Thanks for the replies!



A green color.



The heater works fine though. Do you know how I would go about getting this fixed?




I cleaned it up and after driving it for a few hours, the top part where the bolts are got a lot of oil stained down it.
It also looks like someone tried to seal it with red stuff, but most of it is gone.

I never knew they burn oil , lol. Though I still feel like I'm going through coolant way to fast.



Can you tell us where the oil leak is based on this photo?


As for the coolant leak the most common areas are the radiator end tank (in the area under the top hose on the drivers side), the water pump (the most forward bottom pulley you can see on the passenger side), or the coolant reservoir where you add coolant. It's also possible for the heater core to fail and this will often smell inside the car, as well as leave wet spots in the carpet in the center console forward area.



Chances are if you can find the leaks someone hear can tell you how to fix them. Some are really easy, some are a bit harder, but none of the common problems are really hard jobs. There are often videos or "how to" write ups with photos to help you along.



If you top off the coolant and let it come up to temperature while looking for leaks chances are you can find the leak while the engine compartment is still fairly clean.

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Old 03-10-2014, 11:06 AM   #12
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Default Re: Problem with car, need help! :(

Sounds like you need to replace the valve cover gasket, that will help with some of the oil loss.
http://shop.advanceautoparts.com/p/f...1-r/10030279-P

Take off the coolant reservoir cap & start the engine. Excessive bubbling (in the reservoir) indicates a head gasket or head crack problem, if it looks like it's just moving/flowing then it's fine. Check for the typical radiator crack & leaking water pump while you're under the hood. If it's the water pump there is generally water marks on the hood liner above the serpentine belt area as well as water being flung at you if you stand in front.
This appears to show (going by the name, haven't watched it) where the radiator typically leaks: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SlqekpKOXJQ
It's on the driver side, below the hose to the head and above the automatic trans fluid port (stock manual trans radiator won't have the port but cracks in the same spot).

...
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