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Coolant Leak and Alternator


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Just when I thought I solved all my coolant leaks I have another. This one is very hard to tell where it is coming from as the actual drip is coming out of my alternator??? It also seems to only happen when I pull up the small hill into my driveway, I drove the car all day yesterday with no signs of dripping or leaking but once parked in the garage it started to drip a small amount of coolant.

I know it could be at worse case a blow head gasket or possibly a cracked block, but what else can I check first?? Could it be a failed water pump gasket? Does the Lotus V8 have freeze plugs that might be leaking? Any other thoughts or suggestions on where to look without pulling the engine?


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Hi Dave,

I would check if you have a small drip from one of the main radiator hoses on the thermostat housing. A leak from here will pool and can drip down over/through the alternator.


Mike S

1996 Esprit V8, 1998 Esprit V8 GT, 1999 Esprit S350 #002 (Esprit GT1 replica project), 1996 Esprit V8 GT1 (chassis 114-001), 1992 Lotus Omega (927E), 1999 Esprit V8SE, 1999 Esprit S350 #032, 1995 Esprit S4s, 1999 Esprit V8 GT (ex-5th Gear project), 1999 Esprit V8SE ('02 rear)

1999 S350 #002 Esprit GT1 replica

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  • 3 weeks later...

The soft aluminium connector pipes bady corode underneath the rubber hoses where they are connected. The corosion expands and starts to lift the rubber hose away from the aluminium tube and water starts to weep from the joint - even when the jubilee clip is tight!. I suggest you remove the rubber hoses from the aluminium tubes and get the tubes out and thoroughly clean the ends with wire brush and emery cloth. You may find the aluminium is so badly pitted that you either need to fill the pits and smooth down (use Belzona molecular metal) or buy replacement aluminium tubes. The neck of the thermostat housing also corodes in the same way and needs checking.

I hope that helps.

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