2002 Ram 1500 4.7 V 8 Has been running a little hot. First thing was to replace thermostat. Old one was fine tho, but then noticed hairline crack in expansion tank so I replaced it too. Refilled with coolant, got air out, or so we thought by running with cap off and squeeze upper radiator hose. Seemed to burp off air. But realized we never bled system at thermostat area. It was reading in middle of gauge and then slightly over middle line to right. So after running it with cap off and topping off with coolant 3 times took for test drive. Moved slightly over middle on gauge. We parked it and it was poring rain outside so I waited about 20 to 30 minutes to check coolant level. Well the level had dropped about an inch and a half in expansion tank. Coolant was all in the actual radiator! It never read hot on the gauge tho just the slight deviation to the right. What could this be? Could this all be a result of not bleeding at area where thermostat is and developed a steam pocket which resulted in pressure causing this? Could it be clogged? Or is this a blown radiator? Any tips are appreciated. I am single mom so money is very tight. So I hate to spend any more money than I already have. There where no signs of leaks in hoses or anywhere.
This could be that with all the bleeding you did you just didn't get all the air out.
If there is air in the system when it is hot and the engine cools down, the engine will suck what ever it needs from the expansion tank.
Just keep driving and checking the level in the expansion tank. As long as you don't overheat just keep driving. The level will eventually even out and you will not need to add anymore coolant to the expansion tank.
Always check the coolant level in the tank before you drive and after the engine cools down.
If you keep adding coolant and you don't have a visible leak then you would need to see if the engine is burning the coolant by way of a bad head gasket, intake manifold gasket or a crack somewhere in the engine.
The way it sounds it just had a little air still stuck in the system, just keep checking for the next couple of days and you should be ok.
If you need more help feel free to ask anytime.
OK that was what I was hoping. What worries me tho is that all that coolant was visible all over the radiator grill and in that little tube in front of the radiator . Sorry don't know what that is called. Is seeing coolant there normal?
Any coolant visible is not a good sign.
Hose down the area where the coolant is and let it dry. Then when it is clean, look for any leaks at a hose, clamp radiator or water pump.
The little hose you are talking about is the bypass hose. It could have a pin hole in it and could be spraying the engine compartment. When the truck is hot, if it is leaking you will see it.
Also make sure the coolant reservoir hose is not leaking and where it connects to on the radiator is not cracked or broken.
If you know someone with a coolant pressure checker it would make the job a lot easier.
For the hourly fee, your local Mechanic could test it for you and tell you if there is a leak at these spots.
Let us know how you make out.
Well a mechanic did look at it and said it was the radiator! So guess it will be parked for now.