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So I am contemplating taking my Cruze in for program N140417 because my cruze is low on coolant and I am not finding where it is coming from. It is about an inch below full, unfortunately I don't know exactly where it was when I test drove it, because even though I checked oil and everything, that was the one thing I forgot to look at. I have driven 1800 miles since I got it a little over a month ago. On the test drive I paid attention and smelled for coolant as is advised on here in many places and it never came up on my test drive. Unfortunately, about 2 hours into my trip home from buying it, it did have a faint smell. Since then it intermittently smells like coolant. Sometimes I only notice it inside, sometimes only outside, and sometimes I smell it in both places, it is never super strong though, just enough to be noticeable. My question is if I take it in, what is the most expensive thing I can expect to encounter. It is a 12' with 51k miles on it now so it still has powertrain warranty yet, but I know that doesn't cover the vast majority of the cooling system. I am uncertain as to if it would be better for me to buy some dex-cool and put it in myself and see what changes, or if I should just take it in and let them do what they do. I have always owned everything outright and without warranty and have done everything myself, so I am not sure what my best option is on this one.
 

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Welcome to the forum-

I'd get some dexcool and fill it up to just under the weld seam where the tank is welded together.

The next thing I would do is read the threads on the o-ring fix. Which I believe is covered in the seven pages of this tread.

The aftermarket o-ring fix lasts about a year with really cold weather, then a new o-ring is required. There's clearly something going on with the 2012's not sealing between the radiator cap and the coolant tank.

I changed the coolant o-ring again last week and used a little glycerin on the ring, made it screw down much smoother.

Be careful, don't force anything, and make sure you order both o-rings suggested by Blue Angel. I ordered the BUNA ones before the Viton one was discovered, and I don't want to order again.

With the engine hot in a garage out of the wind open the hood and sniff around. The thermostat water pump is on the passenger side. The coolant tank, and the water outlet hose, right to the left of the battery is on the drivers side.

If you can see dried coolant you may have a leak.

The water pump is covered under a special warranty for 10 years 120,000 miles I think..

The water outlet is also covered under powertrain I believe.

But if it's not visually obvious you may find a shop won't give it time to actually fix it, and you'll have a bill for nothing..

Good Luck
 

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Water pump is 10 years/ 150,000 miles.
 

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Hey 03glgold,

I?s sorry to hear that you?re experiencing concerns with your Cruze. Please know that your dealership would be in the best position to assist with this vehicle concern as they have the technical skills and expertise needed to properly diagnose your vehicle. If you would like assistance getting in contact with a dealership in your area, feel free to send us a private message and we would be glad to help.

Cecil J.
Chevrolet Customer Care
 

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Thanks to those that replied. I am thinking I will probably fill it myself and see if I can figure out whether it is the water pump area or the tank. I would guess the tank since there is no visible evidence. While I know where plenty of gm dealerships are, and the one in hays seems to be decent, I have trouble trusting a dealership to keep from trying to make it as expensive of a visit as possible.
 

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Thanks to those that replied. I am thinking I will probably fill it myself and see if I can figure out whether it is the water pump area or the tank. I would guess the tank since there is no visible evidence. While I know where plenty of gm dealerships are, and the one in hays seems to be decent, I have trouble trusting a dealership to keep from trying to make it as expensive of a visit as possible.
Purchase a small bottle of the GM florescent coolant dye. It will help you find the leak. These bottles are about $10.
 

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Hi guys,

Great thread here.
Lots of information.
I think I’m going through the same thing.

About a month or so ago, I noticed that the fan was coming on a little more than normal, but my engine temp was staying consistent.
Then I lost my heat. Called my local mechanic and he suggested that I was low on coolant.
Sure enough, I open up the hood and the reservoir was pretty much empty.
Got some coolant and topped it up. Worked like a charm.

I checked it again today and it was low again…not as low as before, but pretty close.
I only have about 78K km on it.
I also recently had it in to my mechanic for it’s inspection and asked him to inspect the water pump and engine compartment for coolant leaks to which he reported that he saw none.

If/when I replace the O-Ring and it still loses coolant, where will I be looking next for the leak?

Does anyone have a Canadian source for the O-Rings?

Thanks!
 

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Thanks for this guide. The Viton o-ring seems to have cured the occasional coolant smell I was getting as the engine approached operating temperature with the tank filled to full. Probably just a worn out part in my case.
 

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Blue Angel is in Canada, and used the supplier that he listed to deliver. It's a really small package for a few rings, I don't believe he had any extra fees.
 

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Does your new cap click when you put it back on or does it still go on without a click? I like to know if you need a new coolant tank or just a cap to get the click. I would like the click so I know the thing is on there all the way.
I've go the 2014 diesel and yes my cap clicks.
 

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Good thread. I think I might try the o-ring update. I did my oil change today and I noticed that the coolant seemed low. It was about half full (or half empty). I took a photo of my engine bay the morning after I purchased the car new, and it was at the full mark at that time. So it has gone down about half in two years. I took it over to the dealership and the service writer said it looked a little low, but he thought it was OK because he doesn't see any leaks, and the car was hot at the time, and it fluctuates. He asked if I had the coolant recall done. They did it about a year ago. I also don't see any leaks or stains, and there is no coolant smell anywhere, anytime. I checked the coolant cap, and there was some white crud on the o-ring, which I cleaned off. And the o-ring does look a little flat. The cap does click when it is tight. I am going to fill it myself in the morning and see how long it takes to drop down again.
 

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I topped off the tank this morning. I could clearly see where small amounts of coolant have dripped out of the fill cap and run down the front of the tank and dripped onto the brake parts below the tank. The surface inside is very smooth, so it must be the o-ring. I cleaned it all off and I will watch it for a while. Probably need to try the o-ring update.
 

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I got my o-rings from the O-Ring Store. I ordered two of each of the 4x23 buna-n, the 4.5x23 buna-n and the 4x23 viton. The old o-ring was completely flat on both the inside and outside. It almost looked like a square o-ring instead of a round o-ring. I decided to put the 4x23 buna-n on again. With the old o-ring the cap was completely effortless to remove. With the new o-ring it was tight. I will check it again in a few thousand miles to see how it is doing.
 

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Great post with lots of detail. Caps and tanks can be cause of venting and loss however there may be high temperature causing venting and loss.
My experience with a 2011, 2012 and now 2015 Cruze ECO coolant loss. The dealers replaced water pump, added vent to tank, sealed cowl, replaced tank, replaced cap, and even replaced heater core and still could not fix loss and odor. I noticed all these cars get over 240 deg at times and vent due to pressure. I changed my cooling profile in the ECT program and NO MORE COOLANT LOSS !! Temperature does not get above 228 deg now however I have seen 232deg after turning car off.
Below is from my post:
[h=2]Coolant odor and loss issue. Problem found.[/h]
I had a 2012 Cruze ECO and now a 2015 ECO. This is a great car and with 42 mpg is very efficient. I had the coolant problem with both cars and have worked with dealers and GM about 3 years and still have the problem. Many customers having the same issues that cannot be resolved in 2011 through 2015 model years.

The sealed coolant system can only lose coolant two ways. 1. By a leak and none have ever been found on my cars and 2. By high temperature allowing gasses to escape out the overflow which appears to be happening. The bulletins and recalls mostly deal with the odor symptom like routing the overflow to the ground and not the root cause of overheating. Obviously they know the tank is venting coolant and by overheating.

It's difficult for customers to know the car is getting a little hot. In fact you have to monitor the OBD11 data to see it overheats because the gauge only goes up to about midway at 190 deg F and even if temperature goes over 240 deg F the gauge does not move further. I have noticed high temperature above 240 deg F in some circumstances that allows boiling, odor and coolant loss. This can happen in the winter and summer both and loss is 4-8 ounces at every oil change.

I looked at the cooling program and it shows a 194 deg mode and a 221 deg mode. The 221 deg mode algorithm does not respond until temperature gets hot in a couple torque modes. The 221 mode is different from the 194 mode and other cars I have looked at. I proposed a program change to prevent this overheat condition and the cause of the odor and fluid loss. Unfortunately I am still waiting on GM to fix the problem, they said if I make the change it will void my warranty.

Please let me know if you have coolant loss/odor and what your thoughts are. I have worked with Dealer, Manager, District Manager, GM Customer Care, Corporate Office and others and still trying to get this fixed and to help them identify the root cause so they can fix this problem for other customers.

This is ECT Program



Here is proposed Program
 

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Discussion Starter #76 (Edited)
Great info Singray! A couple questions:

1. Did you notice any change in how the car runs, particularly under boost in high ambient temps?
2. Did your check the ignition maps to see if there are any temperature related changes as a result of slightly lowering the coolant temperature?


The reason I ask is, I've noticed my car runs very well right up until about the point where the engine temp maxes out (a minute or two after the gauge gets into its happy place). After that, when it's warm out, I notice some slight inconsistency in power delivery, and only from time to time. The feeling is that the ignition advance is fluctuating, and I know there's lots of talk about "phantom knock" where the engine just seems to pull timing on a regular basis under load. Just wondering if dropping the peak coolant temps slightly has any effect on this?


If there's coolant boiling somewhere, particularly in the head, this could be a source of knock.


I also noticed there are two positions for the relief spring in the coolant cap, the lighter of the two being where it's set on our cars. I wonder if stepping up to the higher spring load in the cap would keep the coolant from boiling (if that's the issue)? I hesitate to simply try it out since I'm not sure what the higher setting is on the cap. Stock is 20 psi, if the higher setting is only 22-25 psi or thereabouts it's probably OK, but if it's higher than that I wouldn't want to subject the cooling system to those high pressures.


If you have another thread where this is being discussed, please direct me to it and we can continue there.

EDIT: Found it:
http://www.cruzetalk.com/forum/6-new-cruzetalk-start-here/164874-coolant-odor-loss-issue-problem-found.html
 

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I have been dealing with this venting issue for a while. First it emptied the tank to the point that it got an air pocket somewhere in the cooling system. At the time, I thought the surge tank ruptured. I Bought a Dorman tank to replace it on the side of the road. Bleeding air off was never quite successful (in part due to steep grade of driveway). However, I did get a good couple of weeks of running before being back in the same boat.
A $124 towing fee after the needle suddenly pegged on the highway at 75 MPH, shutting me down to extreme limp mode (idle) caused me to apply 'Old School' thinking to the problem, wasting $74.99 on a thermostat assembly. Four hour of labor later, on inconsistent grade, I managed to get the thermostat installed and the system bled of most of the air (I thought). That was a week ago.
Yesterday my son borrowed the car. Knowing (I thought) that there was still air in the system (how there could be, I didn't know), I had him check the coolant level before venturing out more than two miles. Obvious signs that he had been following my instructions popped up last night while on a curbed non-shoulder stretch of feeder road that had no driveways or side streets for a mile. Again, I ended up in schloe-mo. Once safely off the feeder road, I opened the hood to find the surge tank cap had been removed and not replaced. Again, hours of bleeding and short on fluid (or a place to get it at 3 AM), I had almost resigned to calling for a tow. 6 AM rolled around and Dexcool became available. I baby'd the thing home.
Today I discover this **** thread...been here forever...which could have saved me a lot of headache.

Question: The dorman tank is venting. Has it been determined if it uses the same size o-ring as the OEM tank?
 

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anyone experiencing coolant loss due to the water outlet housing leaking?
We've had reports of leaks at the water outlet. As far as I know they have all be actual cracks in the housing. Note there is a new design so you'll need to replace the hoses that connect there as well.
 

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I ordered the N70 o-ring (4.5mm) and it seems to have stopped the problem where coolant was boiling and vapor was escaping.
Tank appears to be holding pressure and I have not had to add coolant since. FYI, tank is a Dorman part.
 
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