SaturnFans.com
what's new (beta) - classifieds - forums - photos


Go Back   SaturnFans.com Forums > Models > Saturn S-Series > S-Series General
Register FAQ Members List Groups Calendar Chat Room Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 12-23-2012, 06:13 AM   #1
dah97765
Member
dah97765 will become famous soon enoughdah97765 will become famous soon enough
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 95

1999 SL
Default Overheating / inconsistent heat

Hi friends!

Lately I've been having an issue with my little SL (1999). I am definitely leaking coolant somewhere, and I feel like it has gotten much worse in the last couple of weeks.

Symptoms include:
- leaking coolant...somewhere
- low coolant light flashes fairly consistently, while temp gauge is usually at 1/4
- heat only really works after a refill of coolant
- during idle times, my temp gauge will go from about a hair past 1/4, up to a hair past 1/2, and the engine will rev a bit usually.

Relevant Background:
- I replaced the water pump in ... 2007/8
- Thermostat was replaced (not by me) 2 years ago, I believe.
- About a year ago, I replaced the entire exhaust system (From the flex pipe back) due to a failed catalytic converter. I think this was caused by the car running rich, but I haven't confirmed that.

Obviously priority 1 is to locate the coolant leak. I'll be under the car tomorrow to replace my front brake pads / rotors anyway ... and maybe my outer tie rod if I get the time. I've never traced a leak of any kind before...

Thoughts?

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to dah97765's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help dah97765 reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
dah97765 is offline   Reply With Quote
SaturnFans.com Sponsored Links
Old 12-23-2012, 09:39 AM   #2
alordofchaos
Super Member
alordofchaos is a splendid one to beholdalordofchaos is a splendid one to beholdalordofchaos is a splendid one to beholdalordofchaos is a splendid one to beholdalordofchaos is a splendid one to beholdalordofchaos is a splendid one to beholdalordofchaos is a splendid one to behold
 
alordofchaos's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Central MI
Posts: 11,153
 

1998 SL2
1997 SL2
Default Re: Overheating / inconsistent heat

Usual suspects are the black plastic radiator end tank (driver's side, on the side facing the battery), the water pump, and the reservoir cap (if it fails to hold pressure, steam escapes)

The radiator leak, you can usually see (flashlight is helpful, usually it is a vertical split).

If you can park it somewhere overnight after the engine is hot, that will tell you which side it is on, though fluids have a habit of getting blown around and dripping a few feet away from the actual leak spot

...
I'm not worthy to grovel in the shadow of Signmaster's wisdom

11/2016 red 2002 5 spd SC2 124k DD
7/2010 Craigslist white 1997 SC2 project
12/2008 eBay silver 1998 SL2 5 spd 102k, now 201k+ miles

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to alordofchaos's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help alordofchaos reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
alordofchaos is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-23-2012, 10:24 AM   #3
brags
Advanced Member
brags will become famous soon enoughbrags will become famous soon enough
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Canada,ont
Posts: 957

1996 SL1
Default Re: Overheating / inconsistent heat

dah97765
ok... if its not Leaking externally meaning (off a hose, water pump,
radiater, or resevoire tank,) it must be Leaking internally. heres what i would do.. as far as diagnosing Your Problem. check the engine oil what coloure do You see on the dipstick.? is it a milky sort of whitesh milkshake coloure.? check the coolant

resevoire what coloure is in there.? and the other test to do ( is run the engine
at operating temperature and look for any signs of streaming bubbles forming inside
the coolant resevoire.? ) and Lastly pull the spark plugs are there any
signs of coolant on the tips of the electrodes.?

...
" Any man that doesen"t share his knowledge in cars is wrong to do !"

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to brags's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help brags reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
brags is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-23-2012, 10:56 AM   #4
trouttrooper
Member
trouttrooper has a spectacular aura abouttrouttrooper has a spectacular aura abouttrouttrooper has a spectacular aura about
 
trouttrooper's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Nampa, ID
Posts: 116

1997 SL2
Default Re: Overheating / inconsistent heat

heater not working right simply means there's not enough coolant running through the heater core.

Like already mentioned. Top off the coolant, drive around until it's been running at operating temp for a bit. Park the car, leave it running and get out to see if there's any leaks. If you don't see anything, then turn the car off and look again. Sometime the extra pressure of turning off a hot engine will force coolant out a leak where it won't as much when the water pump is running.

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to trouttrooper's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help trouttrooper reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
trouttrooper is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-23-2012, 11:18 AM   #5
Madness10
Advanced Member
Madness10 will become famous soon enough
 
Madness10's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Fontana,Calif
Posts: 954
 

2001 SC2
Default Re: Overheating / inconsistent heat

Look at the radiator where the top trans cooler line is. My moms cracked right there and had to replace it yesterday.

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to Madness10's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help Madness10 reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
Madness10 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2012, 03:26 PM   #6
dah97765
Member
dah97765 will become famous soon enoughdah97765 will become famous soon enough
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 95

1999 SL
Default Re: Overheating / inconsistent heat

okay, thanks for advice. I'll be able to check it out this weekend and I'll post back with any feedback

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to dah97765's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help dah97765 reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
dah97765 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-16-2013, 06:54 AM   #7
dah97765
Member
dah97765 will become famous soon enoughdah97765 will become famous soon enough
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 95

1999 SL
Default Re: Overheating / inconsistent heat

Quote:
Originally Posted by Madness10 View Post
Look at the radiator where the top trans cooler line is. My moms cracked right there and had to replace it yesterday.
Thanks for the advice everyone. I know this is not 'this weekend' like I said in my last post, but hopefully this will help someone doing this in the future still

The leak was just under the top trans cooler line. Following the advice from a few of you - parking the car hot, I placed a big sheet of cardboard under the car overnight to see where the leak was, and it worked great.

This weekend I replaced the radiator (and thermostat), and so far so good.

I did have a little trouble removing the old radiator though - the lower transcooler line was slightly bent, and turned / bent more when I tried to get that nut off of the radiator side. In a pinch, I cut the hose and put a hose barb (image 1 below) and some hose clamps over it, to make a new line to the radiator, and got a hose barb with threads (see image 2 below) to connect to the transcooler port on the radiator.

My question to you is: Is this sufficient? I know its a pressurized system... is a rig like this going to be OK? Or should I just order the damn part and attach that? I was hesitant because it looks like those little clips that keep it on the transmission side would break if I tried to remove them.

Also, I am assuming that it is transmission fluid coming out of that line? but it appears to be much much darker than the refill fluid... It obviously leaked a bit when I cut it.



REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to dah97765's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help dah97765 reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
dah97765 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply



Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
1995 SL1 no heat, overheating issue please help mikemamoss S-Series Tech 13 11-28-2011 01:35 PM
Overheating In All This Heat Panabear S-Series Tech 23 08-10-2008 11:41 PM
SL1 Overheating and Not Providing Heat saltfishnguy S-Series Tech 5 11-24-2005 10:30 PM
C&D inconsistent? saturn_69 Ion General 14 08-15-2005 02:26 PM
Inconsistent idle, MPG down a bit jm0397 S-Series General 7 11-25-2003 03:39 PM


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 03:00 AM.

Advanced Forum Search | Advanced Photo Search


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
SaturnFans.com. The Saturn Enthusiasts Site.