Page 1 of 4 1234 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 70

Thread: Coolant Reservoir Leak

  1. #1
    Van Fan
    My Van(s):
    1987 Toyota Van
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Gulf Coast Texas
    Posts
    39
    Rep Power
    1

    Unhappy Coolant Overflow tank Leak

    I just discovered that my van has a leak in the bottom of the coolant overflow reservoir , there are wires coming out here so I'm assuming this is for a sensor . I've attached a picture of where the leak is coming from.

    Just got the van and can't recall that I've checked the reservoir until now, my vans been running at half way on the temp scale and a little over when idling once warmed up. Feel pretty dumb for not noticing this until now ... there's no coolant in the overflow tank but there is coolant uner the radiator cap.

    Just got a new OEM thermostat in the mail but I need to figure this out too it would seem!

    Thanks, this novice could sure use some help.

    update: I took off the overflow tank filled it with water and if i hold the gasket against the tank the leak stops, so im assuming I can glue this seal as a temporary fix... would this be a terrible idea? Im pretty sure there is an overflow tank in a local junkyard I can pull later this week... how big of an issue is it to not have coolant in the overflow tank?
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Last edited by Deesh; 04-22-2013 at 03:17 PM.

  2. #2
    Administrator llamavan's Avatar
    My Van(s):
    1985 5-sp cargo (Trustyvan) . . . . 1989 5-sp 4WD DLX (Skylervan)
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    near Eugene, Oregon
    Posts
    1,766
    Rep Power
    10

    Re: Coolant Overflow tank Leak

    Quote Originally Posted by Deesh View Post
    how big of an issue is it to not have coolant in the overflow tank?
    Big enough that I wouldn't do it except very short-term and short-distance, and only after having topped off the coolant at the filler neck. In other words, if your van is your only transportation to the LOCAL junkyard to find that replacement overflow tank, you can probably do that. If you are planning to just ignore things based on you or someone else getting away with it once or twice, it'll eventually bite you in the butt.

    As designed, the hot (expanded) coolant goes out into the overflow tank; as the engine cools and the coolant contracts, the previously-overflowed coolant gets sucked back in. Whether the overflow tank is empty, missing, or the hose to the overflow tank has a breech in it, the end result is that air gets sucked back in instead of coolant as the engine cools down. Too much air in the system and not only does the engine not cool well at all, but with the coolant below a certain level, the coolant won't circulate at all, the engine overheats, and ... ... well, let's just say that any stable repair to or replacement of the coolant overflow tank is VASTLY less expensive, and takes a lot less time.

    Gwen
    1985 5-speed window cargo van set up for llama haulin'; 345K ("Trustyvan")
    1989 4WD 5-speed DLX; 410K and an odd sense of humor ("Skylervan")

  3. #3
    Administrator timsrv's Avatar
    My Van(s):
    Lots of them
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    SW WA ST
    Posts
    5,832
    Rep Power
    10

    Re: Coolant Reservoir Leak

    A leak in this area is typically due to degradation of the rubber grommet that seals between the recovery bottle and the sensor. Over time it gets soft & starts falling apart. At some point in this process the leaks begin. Any repairs to this grommet are temporary at best. IMHO there is no long term solution except replacing the grommet with a new one or finding a used recovery bottle that hasn't gotten to this point yet. I wouldn't recommend trying to swap out a used grommet because it would likely fall apart during removal. Unfortunately this grommet by itself is NLA and has been for some time. So unless a substitute grommet can be found I'm thinking the best solution would be to find good used tank. Jperl at TVT was saying the early model cargo vans didn't have the sensors in the recovery tank. So finding one of those would be desirable.........except you wound't get a warning light if you ran low on coolant. Tim

    Edit: Although the grommet by itself is not available, the entire sensor with grommet still is (although over $100). Read on for more information
    Last edited by timsrv; 07-01-2014 at 01:27 AM. Reason: additional information

  4. #4
    Van Fan
    My Van(s):
    1987 Toyota Van
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Gulf Coast Texas
    Posts
    39
    Rep Power
    1

    Re: Coolant Reservoir Leak

    thanks for the advice, as a temporary fix im supergluing the grommet to the tank to stop the leak, I'm going to go grab a tank off a pick n pull van thats in my town (hopefully the tank hasnt been removed yet, pretty sure it was there last time I was picking from it) and then I can have my glued old tank as a back up if the leak begins with the new tank. hopefully trying to glue the grommet seal isn't a bad move, i figure since the sensor wasn't alerting me to an empty overflow tank I don't have much to lose, especially if I can stop the leak. Is that right, if I can keep an eye on the tanks levels by eye every so often?

  5. #5
    Van Fan
    My Van(s):
    1987 Toyota Van
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Gulf Coast Texas
    Posts
    39
    Rep Power
    1

    Re: Coolant Reservoir Leak

    pulled one from a picknpull van, felt that there were no wires coming from the bottom of it and upon removal saw the hole for the sensor was plugged with a wooden cork and superglue... looks like I'll be keeping an eye on my coolant levels! my super glued in broken sensor isn't leaking yet but for now I have two sensor less superglued tanks.... on to my replacing my tstat.

  6. #6
    Administrator timsrv's Avatar
    My Van(s):
    Lots of them
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    SW WA ST
    Posts
    5,832
    Rep Power
    10

    Re: Coolant Reservoir Leak

    Quote Originally Posted by Deesh View Post
    ...........the hole for the sensor was plugged with a wooden cork and superglue............
    Lol, that's creative I guess necessity truly is the mother of invention . Tim

  7. #7
    Van Fan
    My Van(s):
    1987 Toyota Van
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Gulf Coast Texas
    Posts
    39
    Rep Power
    1

    Re: Coolant Reservoir Leak

    being realy new to all this, i'm having trouble locating the drain plugs for my coolant. has anyone made a little walkthrough on this? I know it should be simple enough but I'm not seeing the plugs as shown on the diagram I have, I'll keep rooting around but I dont want to cause problems while trying to fix the already exsiting ones. Thanks!

  8. #8
    Administrator timsrv's Avatar
    My Van(s):
    Lots of them
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    SW WA ST
    Posts
    5,832
    Rep Power
    10

    Re: Coolant Reservoir Leak

    There's a petcock on the passenger side bottom of the radiator & a block drain on the driver's side front of the engine (see pics below). The radiator drain is easy enough, but the block drain is a PITA (even worse on a 4wd). It can be done though. I semi-regularly take this drain out on both 2wds & 4wd vans (yes, with the engine installed). Having a specific length socket & extension is critical. I usually grab a good selection of extensions & have a deep socket & a regular one when I do it........then the 1st couple of minutes is determining what combination will work. It's a 14mm head. One of these days I'll document the specific socket/extension combo so I don't always have to re-invent the wheel. I should also mention to use a 6 point socket as the plug is brass & easy to mess up. Try to keep your drive angle straight while removing & installing. Tim




  9. #9
    Van Fan
    My Van(s):
    1987 Toyota Van
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Gulf Coast Texas
    Posts
    39
    Rep Power
    1

    Re: Coolant Reservoir Leak

    read about how the early cargo models were lacking a sensor, and since my sensor didn't work anyway I found a permanent leak free (i hope) solution that I am comfortable with.

    The corked one I discovered was leeching coolant through the wood, and leaking very slowly (held coolant about the low line but was noticeably getting lower).

    Name:  IMG_5701.jpg
Views: 1714
Size:  93.7 KB

    My solution, which I will report back on later, was to remove the sensor from my old tank with my letherman and get all remnants of the gasket out of there, leaving a clean open plastic hole. I roughed it up with a file and sand paper, and then cut out the bottom of a plastic 35mm film canister and applied it over the hole with JB weld Waterweld epoxy putty. Once that set I covered the entire repair with the epoxy putty and let it all set and harden, then sanded it a bit and swapped tanks. I just did the switch but the JB WaterWeld seems to be the perfect tool for this job, again I'll give yall a progress report in a few days/weeks to let you know how it holds.

    Name:  IMG_5700.jpg
Views: 2200
Size:  93.5 KB

  10. #10
    Van Obsessed
    My Van(s):
    88 4WD DLX 5spd
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    726
    Rep Power
    1

    Re: Coolant Reservoir Leak

    Deesh - Hope your solution works. JB can be a thing of wonder, the only downside I have found is it can be very brittle so it doesn't like vibration.

    I have found the best way to fix these sorts of thing is to get a donor material of the same type and thickness for use as filler.
    Cut a slightly bigger and trim it to size making it as close as possible.
    Now, utilizing your soldering gun, "stitch" the plug into place. I usually work in a zigzag manner all the way around the injury.
    The second pass is for filling gaps/cracks and thin areas with more plastic from the donor jug.
    Essentially you are plastic welding.

    BB

  11. #11
    Van Fan
    My Van(s):
    1987 Toyota Van
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Gulf Coast Texas
    Posts
    39
    Rep Power
    1

    Re: Coolant Reservoir Leak

    Ah good idea! Ill give that a try if this seems like it's going to fail or springs a leak!

  12. #12
    Van Obsessed
    My Van(s):
    1988 4WD LE auto dual range t-case (the mistress) 1988 4WD LE auto(the donut van)
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Tacoma, Wa
    Posts
    503
    Rep Power
    1

    Re: Coolant Reservoir Leak

    When flushing my coolant I thought I'd be efficient and remove the sensor to thoroughly clean the resevoir and of course the grommet crumbled. My solution was to use an expandable rubber freeze plug since it is designed for use with coolant and haven't had a problem in the six months since it was installed. I check my fluids at least every other fill up of the fuel tank so keeping an eye on the coolant level isn't really a big deal for me.

  13. #13
    Van Enthusiast
    My Van(s):
    '87 4x4 auto LE '87 4x4 auto DX '88 4x4 5 speed
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    MN/CA US summer/winter
    Posts
    118
    Rep Power
    1

    Re: Coolant Reservoir Leak

    Quote Originally Posted by originalkwyjibo View Post
    When flushing my coolant I thought I'd be efficient and remove the sensor to thoroughly clean the resevoir and of course the grommet crumbled. My solution was to use an expandable rubber freeze plug since it is designed for use with coolant and haven't had a problem in the six months since it was installed. I check my fluids at least every other fill up of the fuel tank so keeping an eye on the coolant level isn't really a big deal for me.
    I think you hit on a pretty secure solution with the expanding plug. Thanks for the tip!

  14. #14
    Van Fan
    My Van(s):
    1985 Toyota Van
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    46
    Rep Power
    1

    Re: Coolant Reservoir Leak

    I am a new 85 TV owner. I bought it knowing there was a leak in the coolant reservoir. It is currently in the shop and they are looking to put a generic tank in it that they know won't leak, but unfortunately has no sensor in it. I am getting the original tank back along with the sensor. I am hoping to MacGyver something up that will work well so that hopefully the original tank and sensor can be used again as intended. I have not actually seen the pieces yet because it's still at the shop, but I was told that when removing and checking out the sensor, the gromit was literally disintegrating. I am guessing that when I get it, it will either have nothing left of a gromit to see, or will be so broken down, it will be hard to tell where to even start looking to replace it. I know that these parts are NLA, but I was wondering if someone had some kind of picture of the gromit that comes between the sensor and coolant reservoir? I know it is hard for me to explain this without seeing anything and being so new to this, but it sounds like something that can be fixed if rigged up properly with something close enough to the original part. I'm guessing the gromit is some sort of black rubber material? Maybe some kind of other part can be manipulated in some way to make a workable gromit for this part? I will definitely follow up this post with some more info and maybe pictures once I get the part back in my hand and can really look closely at it. I will also eventually make a post with an overview of the van since I am a new owner and it is in remarkable condition. Thanks for all who run and contribute to this forum. I have already read many pages on the ins and outs of this van, and I'm sure I have plenty left to read as well. Any advice on my coolant reservoir leak would be much appreciated. I know this post hasn't been talked about for a while, but it seems like a growing common problem with TV owners, and I'd like to find a way that works really well to fix this problem once and for all.

  15. #15
    Administrator timsrv's Avatar
    My Van(s):
    Lots of them
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    SW WA ST
    Posts
    5,832
    Rep Power
    10

    Re: Coolant Reservoir Leak

    The sensor & seal (grommet) together are still available from Toyota. Toyota won't separate and they are a bit spendy (will cost around $100). Considering these last for approx 30 years, that's like $3 bucks a year.......right? Anyhow, it's Toyota part number 85335-73010. Tim



    PS: For future reference, don't ever mess with the grommet on a tank that isn't leaking. After a few years in service these get fragile. If left alone they will usually seal for a long time. Once they get messed with they fall apart.

  16. #16
    Van Fan
    My Van(s):
    1985 Toyota Van
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    46
    Rep Power
    1

    Re: Coolant Reservoir Leak

    Thanks Tim! By the way, I was looking around this website and found the collision catalog, looked through and found the part number for the coolant reservoir tank. I googled the part number and found this website that seems to sell the tank with the level sensor. Does this look right to you? If so, it looks cheaper to buy the whole tank with the sensor, but I thought I read on this thread that you couldn't find this tank anywhere, so maybe this is too good to be true.
    http://quickparter.com/oem-parts/1647071020.html

  17. #17
    Administrator timsrv's Avatar
    My Van(s):
    Lots of them
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    SW WA ST
    Posts
    5,832
    Rep Power
    10

    Re: Coolant Reservoir Leak

    I think you'll just get the tank without the sensor or grommet. I don't know for sure, but confident enough not to try (unless I wanted a new tank). If you get one please let us know what you end up with. Tim

  18. #18
    Van Fan
    My Van(s):
    1985 Toyota Van
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    46
    Rep Power
    1

    Re: Coolant Reservoir Leak

    Ahh, nevermind about the tank. It was too good to be true. All the links showing availability in the US are all powered by the same parts finder, and I called them up and even though it says you can buy them on the website, they are no longer available. Well I think getting just the sensor and grommit is the way to go for now. Thanks for your help!

  19. #19
    Van Fan
    My Van(s):
    1987 Toyota Van
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Gulf Coast Texas
    Posts
    39
    Rep Power
    1

    Re: Coolant Reservoir Leak

    A little update, I pulled the sensor out of my tank and cut out the bottom of a plastic film canister to patch the hole. After sanding everything down really well I JB welded the plastic film canister patch to the tank and then did a combination of regular jb weld and jb water weld on both sides of the patch. This hasn't leaked since August so it seems to be a pretty decent fix for the time being.

  20. #20
    Van Fan
    My Van(s):
    1985 Toyota Van
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    46
    Rep Power
    1

    Re: Coolant Reservoir Leak

    Hey Deesh, Just curious, why are you choosing to jimmy-rig the hole back together instead of just buying a new sensor and grommit? I definitely like the idea and creativity of making something work when you don't have access to the right part, but now that we know it's available, why not go that way?

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •