Coolant reservoir bubbling? - Drive Accord Honda Forums | radio-pro.ru
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post #1 of 11 Old 09-01-2012, 08:10 AM Thread Starter
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Coolant reservoir bubbling?

I did a search but couldn't find anything like what I'm experiencing. My car overheated about 2 weeks ago, and I traced it to a sticking thermostat. I changed the thermostat, and flushed and refilled the system. I tried to burp all the air out that I could. The car has not overheated since then, but after checking it the next day I noticed the hose coming from the radiator into the reservoir was bubbling into the reservoir. Not boiling, just air bubbles going into it. Also the reservoir was a bit low. I topped it back off, and chalked it up to some air trapped in the system. I don't see any leaks anywhere else under the hood. Yesterday I looked at it again, and the reservoir was empty. I refilled it and I'm going to keep an eye on it today. I haven't seen any leaks, but I was thinking maybe a bad radiator cap or a small pinhole in the reservoir? Does anybody know what would cause the bubbling into the tank? Could a bad radiator cap do that?

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post #2 of 11 Old 09-01-2012, 08:28 AM
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When you topped the cooling system off did you check that the radiator was also full? If its not full, it will empty the reservoir tank as it gradually pushes that air out.
Bubbling in the reservoir is not normal. Worst case you may have a bad head gasket, but that usually creates overheating. A good repair shop can test the system for combustion gasses in the radiator to see if thats the problem.
I doubt the cap is your problem, but if its original it wouldnt hurt to replace it.
It would be helpful to know a little more about your vehicle - year, model.
Id agree with your plan to keep the system full and watch for leaks.


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post #3 of 11 Old 09-01-2012, 10:55 AM
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Some of the times, the radiator itself is leading under pressure and would require replacement.
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post #4 of 11 Old 09-04-2012, 11:27 AM Thread Starter
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It's a 94 accord 2.2 with an auto trans. The system has no visible leaks, the radiator is not new, but only a few years old. I really doubt its the head gasket as coolant looks fine and oil looks fine, no smoke, and no abnormal running conditions. I checked it again today and it only dropped a few inches in the reservoir. I'm thinking there were a few lingering air bubbles in the system, as the thermostat was changed and I just did the old school fill the radiator, start it, and add to it while squeezing the hoses bit. I'll keep checking on it often for a few more miles and post back.
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post #5 of 11 Old 09-10-2012, 02:33 PM
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Best way to release air in the system is to open the bleeder valve. It is located near the egr. When filling open the valve a little to release air trapped when you see a steady stream of coolant then you are good to go. Tighten the nut but not too tight.

Goodluck
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post #6 of 11 Old 09-10-2012, 02:58 PM Thread Starter
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Checked it again yesterday and the overflow was low again. Drove it all day today with ac off and checked to see if there was anything dripping underneath. Looks like the tank has a pinhole in it, as it was dripping every few seconds from that area. I guess I'll be taking it out and checking it this weekend.
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post #7 of 11 Old 10-16-2012, 09:35 AM Thread Starter
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I know this thread is old now but I had to revisit this problem. Took my reservoir out and it was fine.. it looks like my radiator has a small leak somewhere that's getting worse. I think the bubbling is from the air getting in from the crack and after letting the car sit for two days I noticed wetness on the drivers side of the radiator bottom. I'll be yanking it out today and probably replacing it if I'm right.
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post #8 of 11 Old 10-16-2012, 02:53 PM
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you could do a block leakdown test to rule out the headgasket possibility.

I had a HG fail on my F22A6 engine with 179k miles...what it would do is stumble upon start up because it was leaking into the combustion chamber between cylinders 2 and 3 when the engine was off.

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post #9 of 11 Old 10-17-2012, 08:48 AM Thread Starter
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I'm fearing that's my problem. I changed the radiator, and on my test drive coolant blew out of one of the throttle body 5/16" hoses that had cracked. I replaced that and refilled, it started fine and I drove it for a few miles. I let it sit about 20 minutes and when I went to start it it wouldn't run. I had to crank it for about 30 seconds while pumping the gas pedal to get it to fire up. It has had a stumble at startup for a while but nothing like this. My thinking is with the bad hose and radiator the air was escaping but now its building pressure and causing more problems. Coolant looked fine though, so did the oil, and the car doesn't smoke at all.
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post #10 of 11 Old 10-17-2012, 08:52 AM Thread Starter
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I can't invest the time and money in doing a head and gasket replacement as this is my only vehicle. So hopefully I can find some other cause. Otherwise I'll be looking for a replacement.
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post #11 of 11 Old 10-22-2012, 10:11 AM Thread Starter
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Yep, bad head gasket. Exhaust is leaking into the coolant passages, its still running fine but its pushing the coolant out of the reservoir. 900 for a head gasket replacement and head resurfacing.
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