Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: I have a coolant problem

asked by on

Usually every other week ill look at my fluids and stuff. Seems like every 2 months I uave to refill my car with coolant...There are no signs of leaks making spots under my car and the temp gauge on my dash shows that its not overheating. What could be the problem

My car has 88000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hey there. You have a small leak that accumulates over time to become apparent. If you have a plastic coolant reservoir, also known as an overflow tank, you’ll want to check that reservoir for cracks or leaks. A quick and easy way to find the small leak, which by the way could be simply be at the water pump housing weep hole, is to pressurize the cooling system to about 15 PSI (mechanics have portable systems to do this via the radiator cap), when the engine is stone cold of course, and then systematically trace all hoses and parts for signs of the leak.

Typically, this strategy will work excepting those cases where the leak only occurs on a hot engine when parts expand at differential rates, thus "opening up" the leak. In that case, it might be necessary to add a small amount of UV leak tracer dye to the coolant which will deposit itself at the leak exit and be picked up by a special light. It is a good idea to track this leak down and repair it so as to avoid future problems or complications. A certified professional from YourMechanic can come to your car’s location to pinpoint the source of the coolant problem so that this can be repaired.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: What causes black dust on the front wheels?

Hi there: First off, the black dust on your front wheels is brake dust, which is created as the brake pads are applied to the rotor and stop your Subaru. This creates heat and friction which causes them to actually...

Q: What does it mean if cylinder 2 and 6 are not firing and it is not the plug, plug wire, or coil because they have all been changed.

Hello. If the misfires are continuing to occur and the ignition parts are good then it may be a faulty fuel injector or an issue within the engine. I usually do a compression test first. By doing this I would...

Q: Slight white smoke coming from the engine

If there is underhood smoke, that can signify that something is leaking. Typically, that will be engine coolant or engine oil. Some leaks can be relatively easy to fix. If that is your circumstance, it will be advantageous to get...

Related articles

What Causes Hoses to Leak?
While the largest part of your engine is mechanical, hydraulics plays a significant role. You’ll find fluids at work in a number of different areas. Your car's fluids include: Engine oil Transmission...
Rules of the Road For Iowa Drivers
Driving on the roads requires knowledge of the rules, many of which are based on common sense and courtesy. However, even though you know the rules in...
How to Avoid Back Pain in a Car
If you have back problems, sitting in a car for an extended period of time can be excruciating. Even without back problems, you could experience discomfort and soreness from...