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  #1  
Old 01-21-2004, 08:51 AM
flixbiz's Avatar
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Coolant overflows the overflow reservoir

What causes the coolant to overflow my overflow reservoir after idling for an extended period and after a drive? My 560SL always has a coolant puddle under the area where the overflow tube releases coolant.

When the car is cool, the coolant level is at the midway point in the reservoir. When the level is less than that the coolant light comes on when the car corners.
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  #2  
Old 01-21-2004, 09:56 AM
LarryBible
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Either there is air trapped in the system causing it to overheat, or there is a blown head gasket or block/head crack that is allowing pressure into the cooling system.

Are there bubbles in the reservoir?

Good luck,
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  #3  
Old 01-21-2004, 11:49 AM
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It could also be that the overflow tank cap has gone bad or has debris in the gasket area. Try a new cap first. Also check all hose connections. You may have a loose hose or a cracked hose. Also check the fluid level sensor. It may have developed a leak and needs a new gasket where it installs in the tank.
If its non of these then I'm afraid that Larry is right.
If you think its a blown head gasket or a cracked block a local shop can do a die test on the overflow tank fluid and see if hydrocarbons ( exhaust gasses) are in the antifreeze. If so then you do have engine problems.
Check the tank fixtures first. I had this happen to my tank. It was a loose hose.

Dave
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  #4  
Old 01-21-2004, 12:27 PM
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Almost certainly a bad cap unless you also have an overheating problem idling.

Replace the cap -- I had a coolant loss problem in the TE after highway running bad enough to cause the low coolant light to come on. New cap fixed it.

Also verify that the visco clutch is working, and that the aux fan comes on, although you should also be running rather warm to get coolant loss out of a good cap.

If a new cap doesn't fix it, look for a leaking hose or cracked tank.

Peter
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  #5  
Old 01-21-2004, 02:05 PM
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Be it a cap leak or some other sort of leak issue, if your system isn't holding pressure sufficiently, you WILL notice the effect at the temp gauge.

If it is happening at idle or after shutting the engine off, I would point the fault to the reservoir cap...


...also make sure the cap is on SECURELY!!! I only had mine on 1/2 turn and dealt with the exact same issue for about a week before I realized the cap wasn't screwed on tight!
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  #6  
Old 01-22-2004, 09:19 AM
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[QUOTE]Originally posted by psfred
[B]Almost certainly a bad cap unless you also have an overheating problem idling.
Also verify that the visco clutch is working, and that the aux fan comes on, although you should also be running rather warm to get coolant loss out of a good cap.

Hi Psfred,
I have a 260E, 1988 euro, I have the feeling that mine is engaging at higher temperature than it should.
Do you know how to check the visco clutch
Thanks in advance
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  #7  
Old 01-22-2004, 11:20 AM
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The recommendations above are excellent, start simple and move to the bigger items. Radiator cap is cheap and can make a huge difference.

Something I wanted to add.....check your thermostat to insure it's working properly. If not it may be reading normal temps at the interior gauge when in reality your car may be overheating. Overheating can also be caused by a blocked radiator and or wrong coolant ratios or wrong coolant altogether.

Good luck.
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  #8  
Old 01-22-2004, 01:33 PM
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Cheap and cheerful visco clutch checks:

First, sound. Should roar when first started as the fan is dragging, sound will vanish in a few seconds as the fluid pumps out.

Second: on startup, you shoudn't be able to hold the fan stationary with some folded newspaper or a flyswatter. DO NOT HOLD THE FAN BY HAND! If you can easily prevent it rotating, the clutch is bad (no fluid in it).

Third: when engine gets up to 90C or so, the fan should engage, producing considerable air movement and noise. May be a turbinelike whine or just the sound of rushing air, but will be noticalble. If the engine is shut off at this temp, the fan MUST stop within one revolution when the the engine stops -- takes two people to check. If it spins more than that, it's bad, replace (or refill) the visco clutch.

Peter
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Old 01-22-2004, 01:33 PM
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