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Refilling coolant after pipe change. Leak? - Engine/Ancilliaries - The Lotus Forums Jump to content
Glyn Harper

Refilling coolant after pipe change. Leak?

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Hey all.

I’ve had a water pipe issue at the front for a while. Basically, the right hand side bottom hose that goes into the rad has been at an awkward angle and stretched to connect to the radiator, due to the alloy pipe it goes into seeming to be too close to the radiator. Don’t know why.

Anyway, took the streched pipe off today, shortened the alloy pipe a bit and fitted a silicone hose that fits really well with new stainless high torque jubilee clips.

It took a good while for all the water to drain out, I assume because the stat was closed when I did the job.. not wanting to burn myself of course with hot water!

The car was due a coolant change anyway, so I let it roll away down the drive. This was blue coolant.

I changed the hose, and refilled with red coolant/water mix at about 40% volume.

I filled the header tank to the brim and left the cap off, assuming it would take a little while to seep past the stat. I also bled the radiator a little (some air did come out, but I’ll do it again when hot when I next run the car) and some water followed the air out. I topped up the header tank again.

A couple of hours later, the water level had gone down again so I topped it up again.

Then tonight when I checked, it had gone down again! Not much each time to be fair, I only had to add a bit more coolant each time, but I checked under he car and there are a few small puddles of water. But the small puddles are blue which is the colour of the old coolant, not the red of the new stuff.

I’m hoping that when I originally drained the system, as the water was going everywhere around the front, and also some was lost when I bled the rad, it’s hopefully just this finding it’s way out of the nooks and crannies it’s been hiding in while it sits in the garage.

To back that theory up, does anyone know how long it can take for the coolant to make its way past the thermostat and totally fill the system? Is it possible that 6 or 7 hours later it’s still seeping past?

I’ll run the engine tomorrow for a bit an try and remove any air locks, but I’m paranoid I’ve moved something at the front and caused a leak.

The area around the actual pipe I changed is bone dry though!

Sorry this is long winded, but had to try and explain. :)

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First off, you maybe want to check it's OK to put red coolant in the Esprit, I thought blue was the recommended stuff.

As for bleeding the system, the radiator bleed plug is your only option, and removing the air is possible by running the engine up to temperature. Once the thermostat opens, coolant will then circulate, along with any trapped air. Once the thermostat opens, shut the engine down a few minutes later, and let it cool.

Open the bleed plug again, and check the header tank level, refilling as necessary. It may take a few cycles like that, it certainly did when my cooling system was completely empty.

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Ok, cheers. My radiator isn’t the standard one so I don’t have a drain plug, but I do have an air bleed valve at the top.

You’ve got me worried about the coolant now! I’ll go and check what it is.

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Needs to be blue coolant. It’s a silica issue thing or such like

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The coolant I have is Mannol AF12+ which it says is ethylene glycol H302/H373

It's meant for modern engines which are all aluminium I thought. Or is it going to upset the liners?

Really don't want to have to drain it and flush it again. :(

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Panic over.. I've drained the new red stuff and flushed it with loads of fresh water. I'll go out now and buy some blue stuff.

This is why you guys are ace! So glad I asked. :)

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Usually blue has a silicat based inhibiter and red/ Orange is OAT Organic Acid Based inhibiter not a good idea to mix them 

The blue usually needs changing every 2 years and Red/Orange every 4 years 

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