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Old 05-20-2011, 03:30 AM   #1
tehSaturn
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2001 SW2
Default My brain isn't understanding where this is.

I'm looking to flush the coolant out of the Saturn, but for some reason I have no idea where this drain plug is on my car. I've read where it is ("lower right hand side of your radiator") but for the life of me I still can't figure out where it is.

Or how to open it, for that matter. How do I do that?

And I don't want to use Dex-Cool. Isn't there some yellow anti-freeze made by Peak that is better?

Ugh, someone please help. My brain hurts and I can't quite figure out where this stupid drain is.
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Old 05-20-2011, 06:12 AM   #2
fetchitfido
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Default Re: My brain isn't understanding where this is.

It's on the passenger side of the radiator, way at the bottom. It spins. Might spin & pull out of the radiator as well.

The problem's with dex-cool are from people misusing it and blaming it on the product. I wouldn't recommend buying 50/50 though, your paying 2/3'rds the price of 100% coolant for 50% water...that (for me at least) is free otherwise.
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Old 05-20-2011, 07:14 AM   #3
Guy in WNY
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Default Re: My brain isn't understanding where this is.

The block drain is a bolt right below the thermostat sort of right below the lower radiator hose connection. It has a fibre washer on it I think?
There are pretty clear directions for flushing out the cooling system and refilling it here. Just use the search or maybe it's in the Saturn Checklist thread?
What I found interesting is that the factory puts in ginger root (a Bars Leaks type of product) because of casting problems and head gasket leakage. Never knew that before.
So, be sure to put some back in after you flush it all out or you may get the unexpected surprise of coolant leaks in your near future.
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Old 05-20-2011, 07:36 AM   #4
Ramics
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Default Re: My brain isn't understanding where this is.

If you can get your car up on ramps and blocked off, slide underneath on the passenger side and look up at the bottom passenger corner of the radiator.


See it there. Twist to the left and get something to catch the coolant.

Don't forget to also utilize the drain plug directly under the thermostat housing. It's a metal plug. The coolant will pour straight down when you remove it. So be ready..
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Old 05-20-2011, 08:52 AM   #5
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Default Re: My brain isn't understanding where this is.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tehSaturn View Post
I'm looking to flush the coolant out of the Saturn, but for some reason I have no idea where this drain plug is on my car. I've read where it is ("lower right hand side of your radiator") but for the life of me I still can't figure out where it is.

Or how to open it, for that matter. How do I do that?

And I don't want to use Dex-Cool. Isn't there some yellow anti-freeze made by Peak that is better?

Ugh, someone please help. My brain hurts and I can't quite figure out where this stupid drain is.
The radiator drain is on the passenger side. The engine block is also on the passenger side, as already pointed out, it's right below where the lower radiator hose connects.

If you don't want to use Dex-cool, you first need to drain and fully flush the system of it before putting regular stuff in. Personally, I don't see the point. If you change your Dex-cool every 5 years or 100,000 miles as directed, it works just fine.
...
My Saturn history:
1993 SL2 100,406 miles ('94-'98)
1999 SC2 118,537 miles ('98-'12)
2005 VUE 25,705 miles ('05-'09)
2008 Astra 27,014 miles ('09-'12)
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Old 05-20-2011, 09:18 AM   #6
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Default Re: My brain isn't understanding where this is.

The easiest way to access the radiator drain is to remove the splash shield under the radiator. There's an access hole in the splash shield, but it's too small to be helpful.

You have an '01, right? The drain plug should have a square hole in the middle to fit a 1/4"-drive ratchet (the smallest ratchet in this set: http://www.harborfreight.com/merchan...ets-46742.html) Just insert the ratchet and twist 1/4 turn counterclockwise and you're good.

+1 on fetchitfido's and 99blacktop's comments abut Dex-Cool. It's fine if you change it every five years.
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Old 05-20-2011, 11:15 PM   #7
off-track
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Default Re: My brain isn't understanding where this is.

Sometimes pictures help? As has been said, remove the lower splash shield (just a few push-pins) for better access.

The drain-cock comes in two configurations. One has wings and the other has a hole in the center that a 1/4" ratchet fits perfectly. As you turn it counterclockwise it will back out towards the rear of the car. There is a pin on the plug that rides in a groove. ~ 1/4 turn is fully open and ~3/8 allows the plug to be removed completely. Push and turn clockwise to close.
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File Type: jpg Coolant drains.jpg (125.2 KB, 42 views)
File Type: jpg Coolant Draincock.jpg (53.8 KB, 29 views)
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