Q: Will a very small crack in my intake manifold cause major damage if I wait about 3 months to fix it?

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I see a small crack in my intake manifold. I noticed the crack when trying to investigate a burning smell i was smelling. I saw a small crack in the rear of the intake manifold where a small amount of antifreeze was seeping out slowly. I do not have the money now, and need to know if I can wait about 3 months to replace the intake, but I don't want to further the damage.

My car has 166000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

The intake has coolant cross over tubes that directs coolant from one cylinder head to the other. If you have a crack in the intake manifold and it is leaking coolant then when the engine is running and cooling system gets hot and pressurized it will leak coolant at a faster rate causing the engine to overheat and possibility of engine damage may occur.

It is not recommended to drive the vehicle with the coolant leaking. The coolant may get into the alternator causing it to short out. The coolant will also get into wire connectors and cause loss of electrical connection with possible drive symptoms like stalling or no starts.

When you’re able to, I highly suggest having the coolant leak diagnosed by a certified technician, such as one from YourMechanic. So that the right repairs can be made.

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