Where from coolant odour in Xsara cab?
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Thread: Where from coolant odour in Xsara cab?

  1. #1
    Fellow Frogger!
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    Default Where from coolant odour in Xsara cab?

    Got occasional coolant pong inside the cab of the Xsara. Haven't given it much of a look as yet, but nothing seems wet. So is there any common Xsara problem in this area worthy of consideration.
    Looking for something to point me to where I should be looking without a major strip.

    Crawling around under the dash is quite out of the question, for a while at any rate, so I may have to instruct son or daughter in the repair if leak gets worse, and I don't want the the interior demolished.
    So where is the leak coming from?.

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  2. #2
    Administrator GreenBlood's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shanadoo View Post
    Got occasional coolant pong inside the cab of the Xsara. Haven't given it much of a look as yet, but nothing seems wet. So is there any common Xsara problem in this area worthy of consideration.
    Looking for something to point me to where I should be looking without a major strip.

    Crawling around under the dash is quite out of the question, for a while at any rate, so I may have to instruct son or daughter in the repair if leak gets worse, and I don't want the the interior demolished.
    So where is the leak coming from?.
    Sounds like heater matrix - dash out job

    You could try something like Bars Leaks if it's not too far gone, or bypass the heater. Did you get any warranty

    Cheers
    Chris
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  3. #3
    UFO
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    I agree with Greenblood - sounds like heater core. As you're in Brisbane I would suggest that for now you use an appropriate sized heater hose in the engine bay and make a loop back connection on the block from where the heater feed and return pipes attach. This will therefore isolate the heater core from the situation and remove the heater flow feed into the cabin.
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    Might also be the joints where the incoming coolant pipes meet the heater unit. Same temp fix - Bar's Leaks.
    Where from coolant odour in Xsara cab?-heater.jpg
    Last edited by seasink; 13th January 2017 at 05:08 PM.

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    1000+ Posts jo proffi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by seasink View Post
    Might also be the joints where the incoming coolant pipes meet the heater unit. Same temp fix - Bar's Leaks.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    The temp fix may just outlive the rest of the car.

  6. #6
    1000+ Posts Bruce H's Avatar
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    How often / when do you get it?
    My VTR had a coolant pong on every cold start-up from new until I traded it 9 years later. It would immediately go, however, not hang around.
    Bruce H

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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by GreenBlood View Post
    Sounds like heater matrix - dash out job

    You could try something like Bars Leaks if it's not too far gone, or bypass the heater. Did you get any warranty

    Cheers
    Chris

    Damn warranty ran out 15mins ago. Just my luck.
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  8. #8
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    Thanks guys, looked under the heater unit, the carpet and firewall for wetness, but not in the pollen filter, which used to get wet with coolant and smell in my C5. Engine uses no water although the smell would be pretty much there all the time I think, but varies in strength. Trouble for me is getting down to inspection level, that's why the questions. Diagnosed emphysema just before Christmas and heart attack just after new year [god damn friggin' diesel most my life] so it looks like Bars will be the way to go, although I prefer Irontite.
    So a job for youngest Son, I'll let him pick up the sealant on the way. Hell what are father's for 'eh.

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    Quote Originally Posted by shanadoo View Post
    Thanks guys, looked under the heater unit, the carpet and firewall for wetness, but not in the pollen filter, which used to get wet with coolant and smell in my C5. Engine uses no water although the smell would be pretty much there all the time I think, but varies in strength. Trouble for me is getting down to inspection level, that's why the questions. Diagnosed emphysema just before Christmas and heart attack just after new year [god damn friggin' diesel most my life] so it looks like Bars will be the way to go, although I prefer Irontite.
    So a job for youngest Son, I'll let him pick up the sealant on the way. Hell what are father's for 'eh.
    That's crap news Tony, I hope you are looking after yourself and staying cool as best you can at the moment - if I had known I might have extended the warranty by 5 minutes (probably not ).

    I'm not touching cars in this weather, but for you I would make an exception - sing out if you need a hand

    Cheers
    Chris
    74 D(very Special) >>Rejuvenation Thread<<
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    "Déesse" Roland Barthes, 'Mythologies', 1957

    The Déesse has all the characteristics of one of those objects fallen from another universe that fed the mania for novelty in the eighteenth century and a similar mania expressed by modern science fiction: the Déesse is first and foremost the new Nautilus.

    (Umberto Eco [Ed], The History of Beauty, Rizzoli, NY, 2004)

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by GreenBlood View Post
    That's crap news Tony, I hope you are looking after yourself and staying cool as best you can at the moment - if I had known I might have extended the warranty by 5 minutes (probably not ).

    I'm not touching cars in this weather, but for you I would make an exception - sing out if you need a hand

    Cheers
    Chris
    Many Thanks Chris, I'm not working on it either, replies to my post convinced me bars or bypass will do. But prefer not to bypass. Meanwhile thousands of Queeslanders get heart stints inserted every year so I 'aint alone. Quite common evidently. They reckon I'll be on the treadmill and back driving by the end of the month. So may be able to fix the thing myself. We shall see.
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  11. #11
    Fellow Frogger! dimistyle's Avatar
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    Tony sorry to hear your heart condition stuffed you your Xmas...I think it's best you take it easy over this summer it dam hot for sure. Being on the mend does not mean you can't take it easy. Sounds like you have enough family to do the hard yards on sorting this minor issue. I prefer the Irontite as well saved me many a time with holes in radiators

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  12. #12
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    Thanks Dimi, yes heat a problem.

    Posted inquiry hoping there was a common little fault which would save me looking and having to do major work. Answers were quick, thanks guys, but really not what I wanted to hear. Don't know what I expected, leaks is leaks right. Now my magic wand remains lost forever under the hood of a C5, but if this great little Xsara's hic-up can be abated with a bottle of goop I shall be well pleased.

    First encountered Irontite as a must after overhaul to seal the liners in the Rootes TS3 diesels. Now that's long ago.
    Found Bars good for major leaks in the field.

  13. #13
    IWS
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    Are the "leaks cure in a bottle" compounds compatible with coolant?

    I recall once, early 80's, using Bars Leaks in a R10. Not long after that I was berated by the radiator repair shop who told me that the mix of Bars and anti-freeze (this was in Canberra) was toxic and had blocked the radiator - requiring a new core :-(

    I've always avoided Bars-type products since then - on the basis of that advice. Thoughts on this?

    (And BTW - had the leaky heater core/smelly cabin on a Xantia. As others have said - dash-out job :-( Cracked the windscreen in the process, so that replaced too. If the "cure-in-a-bottle" can work - without bad side effects - I'd be going with that!)


    Ian.
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  14. #14
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    The pellet leak fixers clag up leaks. Too much can clag up more than that. I haven't heard of antifreeze reactions, though discolouration occurs. Glycol antifreeze is toxic.

  15. #15
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    I recall once, early 80's, using Bars Leaks in a R10. Not long after that I was berated by the radiator repair shop who told me that the mix of Bars and anti-freeze (this was in Canberra) was toxic and had blocked the radiator - requiring a new core :-(




    Exactly the same experience with an R10 here [in my case SH rad acquired luckily]

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by seasink View Post
    The pellet leak fixers clag up leaks. Too much can clag up more than that. I haven't heard of antifreeze reactions, though discolouration occurs. Glycol antifreeze is toxic.
    I always drain the coolant and flush the system if possible and then I only use half the pellets in the bottle with plain water. Works good. Of course stuck miles out you do what you can.
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  17. #17
    Fellow Frogger! dimistyle's Avatar
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    Yes had the radiator which held little to no coolant in 99 Subaru had a 3 hr drive to Queenstown to the nearest Repco to buy pellets as we still had to drive to Auckland and interisland ferry was booked so no time to sort out locally. The Suburu dealer replaced the broken fan that went through the radiator and of course replaced the radiator itself.

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    Last edited by dimistyle; 4th February 2017 at 12:35 AM.

  18. #18
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    So finally got a bottle of goop compatible with both red and green coolant. Played the old heart attack card and conned the daughter into lifting the bonnet and pouring it in. That gave me a short respite from all her damn mowing & gardening, driving me nuts it is, all that tidying and trimming. But it looks nice. Wish to god she could get a job. But at least she keeps me in a steady supply of home baked cakes. Very nice too they are.
    So hopefully the Xsara coolant smell will now be fixed and I can enjoy some clean air-con'dt again.

    Cheers Tony.
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  19. #19
    UFO
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    You have an unemployed child living at home and doing all those jobs around the house and garden?

    Stop ya whining!
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    Do you need a second opinion on the cakes?
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  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by UFO View Post
    You have an unemployed child living at home and doing all those jobs around the house and garden?

    Stop ya whining!

    Cheeze leave me something for goodness sake. And she "aint no child.
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