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Old 05-21-2004, 07:35 AM   #1
gm7
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2009 VUE Red Line
Default Block drain (coolant) question....

Recently, I replaced the Dexcool in my '01 SC2 as part of PM.
Doing so, I drained the radiator and the block and emptied the expansion tank. I now have a very slight leak from the block drain after replacing the bolt...a quarter size (small) puddle shows up under the car after driving it for a while after the system builds pressure. For those that have removed the block drain, it is a 10mm head, one inch long bolt that is located under the thermostat. Removing took quite a bit of torque...was surprised in fact...had to lean on the rachet...presume it was torqued tight to prevent leakage or coming loose due to vibration.
I likely did not retorque it that tight as it threads into aluminum.
Question is...anybody else know about this?...once the seal is broken for this drain...any leakage issues? Is it an advised practice to put something around the washer like an RTV when retorquing it?...or perhaps replacing the sealing washer? I don't want to go to higher torque if unnecessary...I tightened it up pretty good...but apparently some Dexcool, a small amount is leaking by the threads and head of the bolt when under pressure.
Thanks for any advice,
George
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Old 05-21-2004, 09:30 AM   #2
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Last time I did an S coolant change, I seem to recall a metal washer on the drain bolt. If no one can give you a better answer, I'll check the FSM when I get home.
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Old 05-21-2004, 10:04 AM   #3
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Thank you BigBird. Yes there is a large flat washer on the coolant drain plug under the t-stat. Mine is weeping, and wonder if I should coat the threads or underside of the washer and reinstall the bolt. Just don't want to add needless high torque if there is a more proper solution.
Thanks for checking the FSM..if they have a torque spec for that bolt that would help as well,
George
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Old 05-21-2004, 10:10 AM   #4
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Get another drain bolt?
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Old 05-21-2004, 10:58 AM   #5
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nothing wrong with the bolt...thread and head are perfect....just leaks...lol.
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Old 05-21-2004, 11:26 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by gm7
nothing wrong with the bolt...thread and head are perfect....just leaks...lol.
Is the washer crushed? Is there a nick on the machined part of the block where the washer seats? I know the torque on the drain bolt is not excessive; it's steel on aluminum so you don't want to overtorque. I would suggest trying a thin nylon or composite washer against the block, then the metal washer, then the bolt. Don't torque over 10 ft.lbs to start.
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Old 05-21-2004, 11:34 AM   #7
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will need to pull it off and look at it under a glass to see. To the naked eye it looked perfect...may reverse the washer as it may have take on some concavity due to torquing. I am very focused on torques...would say I did not exceed 10 ft-lbs going back on...break away torque however was perhaps 3X's that or very high for this small bolt.
Thanks,
George
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Old 05-21-2004, 02:44 PM   #8
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Loc-Tite PST (Pipe Sealer w/ Teflon) is the technician's friend on these type joints.

http://www.loctite.com/int_henkel/lo...d=114&layout=3
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Old 05-22-2004, 12:00 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by gm7
if they have a torque spec for that bolt that would help as well, George
I just checked the FSM for the drain bolt torque. Were we wrong! 26 ft lbs. That's more than the spark plug torque!
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Old 05-22-2004, 02:33 AM   #10
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Thanks Bigbird and Bill Murray. So happens I have some Loctite PST on hand so will give it a try and BB I too am suprised about the torque of the coolant plug...I need to tighten mine a bit. 26 ft-lbs seems correct based upon breakaway torque which I felt excessive for this size fastener into aluminum but perhaps it needs that level of torque to adequately seal with 15 psi of system pressure. Hope this helps others with their coolant replacement.
Thanks a lot guys,
George
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Old 05-22-2004, 10:23 AM   #11
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[quote]Fm George[/b]
seems correct based upon breakaway torque which I felt excessive for this size fastener into aluminum but perhaps it needs that level of torque to adequately seal with 15 psi of system pressure.

Whow.....very good piece of analysis.
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Old 05-22-2004, 09:30 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally posted by Bill Murray
Loc-Tite PST (Pipe Sealer w/ Teflon) is the technician's friend on these type joints.

http://www.loctite.com/int_henkel/lo...d=114&layout=3
Good ole Telfon Tape pipe thread sealer (available in plumbing supply section of any hardware store) can be used as well and is easy to deal with.
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