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2011 Accord mystery coolant leak

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  • #581060
    John BeaudinJohn Beaudin
    Participant

      My 2011 Honda Accord with 31k miles on it is definitely losing coolant somewhere. Several months ago I noticed that the overflow reservoir was low, about halfway between the full and add lines. More recently, it was completely empty and the radiator itself was a little low as well so this is not exactly minor and definitely not my imagination. I’m virtually certain it’s an internal leak. I brought it to a reputable dealer a few days ago and they did a pressure test. They said it held 100% for over an hour. They did a compression test after that and said it also checked out. They also couldn’t find evidence of any external leaks anywhere, so they have no more to offer. I’ll probably take it to another dealer soon, since I want to get it taken care of while it’s still under warranty, but I was wondering if anyone had any ideas as to where else to look. Assuming at the next dealership the pressure test and cylinder tests are normal, what other tests can be done to find the leak?

    Viewing 6 replies - 1 through 6 (of 6 total)
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    • #581071
      WayneWayne
      Participant

        Checking the transmission coolant(for radiator leak into transmission cooler line), an exhaust gas check/combustion leak test, and leak-down test is about all I got if they can all verify pressure, and compression.

        I’d still suspect leak rather than gasket/engine with a possibly barely 3yr old accord with 30k on it though. Where it me I’d clean bay, dye, and be going over it with fine tooth comb.

        #581073
        John BeaudinJohn Beaudin
        Participant

          The bay is already pretty clean as it is, so that should help. I’ll probably look into the dye as well. A small leak like that wouldn’t surprise me, as one of my power steering hoses had a leak in it too. Thanks for your help!

          #581075
          WayneWayne
          Participant

            I’d especially check the overflow and hose from it to the radiator(and the nipple on the radiator). If it’s leaking there it wouldn’t affect a pressure test.

            #581099
            Lorrin BarthLorrin Barth
            Participant

              The radiator cap controls how the coolant system works and where the fluid goes. I’ve seen them leak and cause a slow loss of coolant. At 30K a radiator cap is dying of old age. I suggest it is time for a new one, preferably one from Honda since the aftermarket caps are often of lessor quality.

              #581280
              EricTheCarGuy 1EricTheCarGuy
              Keymaster

                It’s normal. Half of your coolant is water (sometimes more than that) and water when heated evaporates. It’s common to have to top off the overflow on occasion. I usually do it every oil change and it’s always low.

                If it was pressure tested and no leaks were found it’s very unlikely you have an internal leak causing the problem.

                Keep us posted if that’s not the case.

                #601637
                John BeaudinJohn Beaudin
                Participant

                  Ok, status update (sorry for the lateness, I thought I was set up to get emails when others replied, but apparently not, so I missed the last couple). Just checked again, and all seems well- the coolant level is exactly where I left it when I last topped it off, shortly before bringing it to the dealer! Thanks everyone!

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