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Q: Leak

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Over the past two weeks, on two separate occasions I pulled into the driveway after driving about 30 minutes home from work and there was smoking coming out from the hood. It was a sweet smell which tells me it was probably something to do with the coolant in the radiator. After being parked all night, I noticed the next morning that something was leaking from underneath and it appeared to be the color of the coolant. I tried looking underneath for where exactly the leak could be coming from and it was hard to tell but there was a silver part behind the fan belt that was wet and my best guess was that maybe it was the water pump?? Not real sure. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

My car has 164000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hi, thanks for writing in. The water pump is driven by the serpentine belt so if you are seeing coolant coming from there it is likely that the water pump has failed. In order to verify this diagnosis, I would recommend having a cooling system pressure test performed by a qualified professional. This test will pressurize the cooling system without the engine running to determine where the leak is coming from without the noise of the engine and the air from the cooling fan. Once the leak source has been verified, the repair procedure will be more clear.

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