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3 question: Where is this antifreeze leaking from, glowing connection, etc. #741122
October 01st 2018 10:13 am
October 01st 2018 10:13 am
Joined: Aug 2013
Posts: 167
Hillsborough, NJ
Puzzele Offline OP
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Puzzele  Offline OP
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Posts: 167
Hillsborough, NJ
Time for another installment of “Puzzele’s Dumb Questions.” This time I have 3 questions about my 1974 ford van, e-100, v8, 302. Power steering. No power brakes. This van does NOT have air conditioning. Here they are in the order of importance. I will intentionally be OVERLY detailed to try and help. Some of the information probably isn’t necessary, but I figure more info is better than less:

1. ANTIFREEZE LEAK – BUT FROM WHERE? I drove the van for about 1 hour. Then it sat for a few hours, then I drove it back for another 1 hour. When I pulled up on my driveway and had the van running, I notice it was dripping antifreeze. It was dripping towards the front of the van, passenger side, in front of the wheel. I’m attaching some pictures. I would say it was dripping every 10 seconds or so but it wasn’t a constant flow.

I tried to figure out where the leak is coming from but cannot see where. I also removed the front panel (where the passenger sits) but it’s definitely not leaking from there).
The following day, after the van sat for a day, I checked the radiator fluid. It was down about 2 inches. (I also checked the brake fluid since I thought perhaps it was brake fluid that was leaking but the brake fluid is totally full. I don’t think it is transmission fluid but I’m a schmuck so perhaps that is possible). I also then ran the van for about 10 minutes on the driveway and drove it around the block a few times. The van seemed to be warmed up but it didn’t start leaking antifreeze yet so I just shut the van off. Hence, it apparently isn’t a major leak, but at the same time, I would like to get it fixed before it gets worse.

I’m attaching some photos below.

Does anybody have any idea where it can be leaking from, or what I can do to repair it? Please do NOT speak in auto mechanic language as I’m lucky if I can even add oil let alone make automotive repairs. So if you can make it as simple as possible, I’d certainly appreciate it and photos are highly recommended since I’m a novice.

2. When I took the doghouse off to see if I could spot the above antifreeze leak, I notice that a wired connection gets VERY hot.. like it is glowing hot… almost looked like it was on fire. I’m not even sure what this thing is attached to. Is that the alternator or what? Anyway… is it normal for this thing to get soooooooooooo HOT… like literally GLOWING HOT… After the van warmed up, the glowing seemed to cool down and it looked normal again.. See photos below.

3. The clips that hold the gas pedal to the metal bar are broken. I’ve been using a garbage bag twist tie to make sure it doesn’t fall off. Um, I’m not an auto mechanic (OBVIOUSLY), but does anybody have a better way to do this? I can’t find the clips anywhere, and I suspect my garbage bag twist tie is gonna break sooner or later. PS: Laugh all you want, but it works! :P See photos below.


[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

Last edited by Puzzele; October 01st 2018 10:49 am.
Re: 3 question: Where is this antifreeze leaking from, glowing connection, etc. [Re: Puzzele] #741123
October 01st 2018 10:41 am
October 01st 2018 10:41 am
Joined: Jun 2010
Posts: 991
USA
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nikothenomad Offline
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Looks like the place you are seeing antifreeze leak from is the same place our AC unit drips from during times of high condensation.

First question... did you put a paper towel on that wet spot and make sure it is green and not just clear which would be water from the ac unit (which is normal).

If your answer is yes it is green in that spot then I would say heater core (which is also located in that big black ac box). Typically when heater core starts leaking you also get a wet passenger side carpet.


Nicole
1988 Dodge B250 5.9l 360 Ram CamperVan / 727 Tranny / Rochester Quadrajet Carb
www.nikothenomad.blogspot.com
Re: 3 question: Where is this antifreeze leaking from, glowing connection, etc. [Re: Puzzele] #741124
October 01st 2018 10:46 am
October 01st 2018 10:46 am
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USA
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nikothenomad Offline
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Possible those two running behind the dash are the heater core lines. I wouldn't say red glowing is good for any wire. Is that your alternator that wire is on? Looks to be possibly and alt wire.


Nicole
1988 Dodge B250 5.9l 360 Ram CamperVan / 727 Tranny / Rochester Quadrajet Carb
www.nikothenomad.blogspot.com
Re: 3 question: Where is this antifreeze leaking from, glowing connection, etc. [Re: Puzzele] #741125
October 01st 2018 10:48 am
October 01st 2018 10:48 am
Joined: Aug 2013
Posts: 167
Hillsborough, NJ
Puzzele Offline OP
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Puzzele  Offline OP
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Hillsborough, NJ
My bad... I should have said it above:

This van does NOT have air conditioning.

Also.. the passenger side carpet is NOT wet... I took the panel off just to double check but there is ZERO moisture or leakage there... I only mention it to try and troubleshoot.

Re: 3 question: Where is this antifreeze leaking from, glowing connection, etc. [Re: Puzzele] #741146
October 01st 2018 8:25 pm
October 01st 2018 8:25 pm
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nikothenomad Offline
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You may not have AC but do you have heat? If that's all you have the heater core may be located in a different location and might not leak to passenger floor as others do.

Those two lines behind the dash definitely look like heater core lines. That would still be my first guess considering the amount you are losing and the location you indicated of the leak.

Last edited by nikothenomad; October 01st 2018 8:47 pm.

Nicole
1988 Dodge B250 5.9l 360 Ram CamperVan / 727 Tranny / Rochester Quadrajet Carb
www.nikothenomad.blogspot.com
Re: 3 question: Where is this antifreeze leaking from, glowing connection, etc. [Re: nikothenomad] #741152
October 02nd 2018 9:24 am
October 02nd 2018 9:24 am
Joined: Aug 2013
Posts: 167
Hillsborough, NJ
Puzzele Offline OP
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Puzzele  Offline OP
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Hillsborough, NJ
Nikothenomad: YES! You are 100% right. It is the heater core back there.. I do have a heater. Thank you VERY VERY much for clarifying. I'm a total novice at this stuff (obviously) so sincerely appreciate yourinput.

I've been told to replace the heater core, I need to remove the battery, and then there will be 2 bolts hidden behind the battery, and then the front panel in the interior should come right off. And then I can replace the heater core. However, here is a question:

I NEVER use the heater. I only drive the van in the summer months and plan on having the van in Arizona eventually. So would you replace the heater core or would you just run the tubes back into the engine and completely eliminate the "heater core?" Now that I learned that fluid literally is traveling inside the interior of the van in tubes (which I admittedly never knew before), I'm reluctant to push my luck and start replacing parts that I don't anticipate using for fear of leaking/age. By the same token, I looked online and the heater core is only about $40 so not sure which way to go. Any recommendations?

I'm attaching 3 pictures below to illustrate. Let me know your thoughts... Thanks again VERY much for your help. smile


[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

Re: 3 question: Where is this antifreeze leaking from, glowing connection, etc. [Re: Puzzele] #741154
October 02nd 2018 10:14 am
October 02nd 2018 10:14 am
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nikothenomad Offline
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Well, I don't know your particular set up but I would not see a reason why you could not bypass the heater core. There are tons of videos about it. However, if the new core only costs you $40 and the stuff you need to patch in a bypass may cost you 15 - 20 but increase the number of potential leak points... I'd go with just throw a new core in there even if you don't use it.

If you do bypass the core keep in mind that you may need less coolant than normally recommended. Also, make sure that your system does not have a heater bypass valve somewhere in the line already as those can leak too when they break.

Good luck! Your core is A LOT easier to get to than ours is!!


Nicole
1988 Dodge B250 5.9l 360 Ram CamperVan / 727 Tranny / Rochester Quadrajet Carb
www.nikothenomad.blogspot.com
Re: 3 question: Where is this antifreeze leaking from, glowing connection, etc. [Re: Puzzele] #741254
October 04th 2018 10:41 am
October 04th 2018 10:41 am
Joined: Jul 2018
Posts: 12
Charlotte, NC
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I currently have the heater out and literally just put a coupler on the two lines. I can take a picture when I get home if you want. I was planning on either fixing the heater or getting one of the high output ones from summit one day, but for now I have no problems just bypassing.

Re: 3 question: Where is this antifreeze leaking from, glowing connection, etc. [Re: kookylukey] #741256
October 04th 2018 11:34 am
October 04th 2018 11:34 am
Joined: Aug 2013
Posts: 167
Hillsborough, NJ
Puzzele Offline OP
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Puzzele  Offline OP
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Posts: 167
Hillsborough, NJ
Originally Posted by kookylukey
I currently have the heater out and literally just put a coupler on the two lines. I can take a picture when I get home if you want. I was planning on either fixing the heater or getting one of the high output ones from summit one day, but for now I have no problems just bypassing.


Kookylukey: Yes.. if you could, PLEASE do take a picture of it... and if possible, please confirm my understanding is accurate about how to get to the heater core indicated in photo above (remove battery, there are 2 bolts behind battery, and then the front interior panel seen in the photo supposedly comes right off).

Also... do you know the EXACT "heater core" part I would replace it with? I looked on autozone and found 2 different ones that supposedly fit my 1974 ford van, e-100, v8, 302. However, I notice they look different from each other so I presume one of them wouldn't fit properly. Here is the link:
https://www.autozone.com/cooling-he...amp;isIgnoreVehicle=false&model=true

Lastly... what is your recommendation? Do I replace the heater core or just bypass the whole thing completely. The fact is, I will NEVER use the heater and hope to have the van in Arizona in a few years anyway. Hence, I have ZERO use for a heater. More importantly, now that I learned that the radiator fluid apparently runs through the INTERIOR of the van (something that I never realized previously), I'm tempted just to bypass it entirely as seen in the photo above for fear of future leaks inside the van. However, I'm always scared to "screw" with the cooling system... I previously blew up a corvette engine because of low radiator fluid so now I'm terrified to change anything with radiator fluid.

Hence, any input is sincerely appreciated... I *THINK* replacing the heater core should be pretty easy, right? And I *THINK* the replacement heater core is only about $45 on autozone link above, right?

Re: 3 question: Where is this antifreeze leaking from, glowing connection, etc. [Re: Puzzele] #741261
October 04th 2018 1:44 pm
October 04th 2018 1:44 pm
Joined: Feb 2010
Posts: 468
Danville, Illinois
KeVan Offline
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KeVan  Offline
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Posts: 468
Danville, Illinois
You can use the heater to help bring down the engine temperature in warm weather.

Case in point. While on my way to Silver City Idaho, which is up in the mountains, with family and a friend in an my '89 Chevy Suburban the temperature gauge started to climb and the check engine light came on. It was hot out and the A/C was going and we were about 3/4 of the way there. My friend said to switch from A/C to Heater, which I did and in a few minutes the temperature gauge started going back down. When we arrived to Silver City, the temp was back to normal and the check engine light had shut off. So having a heater when driving at high altitudes in warm weather could be a plus. I'm sure blasting the A/C didn't help the situation much though.

The red hot glowing you are seeing looks to be at the back of the alternator, and it should not glow red hot. It may be time for an alternator rebuild or replacement, but I'd have it checked out before doing so.

Good luck!


KeVan
'87 Ford Econoline 150
'07 Dodge Magnum SXT

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