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Discussion Starter #1
Months ago I had written on this forum about my Outback and the various problems I had regarding the car overheating.

Here's a copied excerpt: Originally Posted by PossibleOutbacker
Great. Check engine light on..AGAIN.

Took my car to Autozone and they did the diagnostics test which produced the same cylinder 3 misfiring issue which I thought was fixed last week when the mechanic replaced the spark plugs, wires and valve cover gasket set. I hope this isn't a head gasket problem.

[Great. Check engine light on..AGAIN.

Took my car to Autozone and they did the diagnostics test which produced the same cylinder 3 misfiring issue which I thought was fixed last week when the mechanic replaced the spark plugs, wires and valve cover gasket set. I hope this isn't a head gasket problem.
Now I come home tonight and even though the check engine light wasn't on as soon as I pulled into the driveway, smoke bellowed out from my hood. My radiator overheated! I tell ya, what could happen next? I refilled the coolant and letting it sit overnight but I will have to drive it to work tomorrow.]

Well...long story short I ended up using Bar's Leaks Head Gasket Repair fluid for the radiator and it seemed to work for the last couple months.

Well yesterday the car overheated and blew the reservoir cap clean off. No where to be found. My dad and I fashioned a new cap from a plastic bottle and used a metal band to hold it on tight. He then punctured a small hole in the top just in case it would do it again.


Well, sure enough, I'm driving to a Superbowl party and I'm running the heat inside the car and wouldn't ya know the next thing I feel is cold air blowing from the vents! I look at the temperature gauge and it's all the way at the top. ****. I pull over, pop the hood and take a look. The cap is still on the overflow tank but there are slight drops of coolant all over the engine and a few puddles under the car. I noticed that the overflow tank was full of coolant too.

I let the car cool down for 15 minutes and then checked the overflow tank again and now it was empty of coolant? I then drove home with the heat off and the temp needle was holding steady in the middle. My question is what would cause this? Is the vehicle thermostat broken? Is this only happening when I run the heater?


Thanks for any help. Any advice would help before I take this into the shop.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
I replaced the thermostat, ring and radiator cap and so far so good as far as the overheating problem. Replaced O-ring clamps on the coolant hose underneath the car, but there is still a tiny amount of coolant coming from somewhere. Could this be the head gasket? Anyone?
 

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One, never use a "leak repair" in your coolant system. It sludges everything; engine, heater core, radiator, kills thermostats and water pumps.

You would have to clean the engine and run the car and look for the source of the leak. Otherwise, you would have to use a pressure tester for the coolant system. One that allows you to pressurize the system to 16-18 lbs.
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
One, never use a "leak repair" in your coolant system. It sludges everything; engine, heater core, radiator, kills thermostats and water pumps.

You would have to clean the engine and run the car and look for the source of the leak. Otherwise, you would have to use a pressure tester for the coolant system. One that allows you to pressurize the system to 16-18 lbs.
Taking it in tomorrow to a friend's mechanic shop. Talked to the owner on the phone and he says it's air trapped in the system. He's also going to run a diagnostic and check if the head gasket is indeed cracked.

I'm not sure what to do now.

I'm wondering if I should just trade the car in on a new one and skip any repair work on this car? I mean...maybe I could get the air in the system problem taken care of, but maybe I should get rid of it before it's too costly?

I don't see the sense in plunking down anywhere from $1500-$1800 to fix it when I could put that kind of money towards a newer car, right?

Crossing my fingers!
 
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