How to Troubleshoot the Coolant Pipe in a PorschePosted on February 9, 2019 | By wpcars
There are very few things that are more important to the life of your vehicle’s engine than its cooling system. Similar to the oil system, the engine’s cooling system keeps things running smoothly and at the optimum temperature for efficiency and performance.
Seeing as how the cooling system is so important, it is essential that you keep it in perfect working order, as there isn’t much room for error if issues do arise. To accommodate that, most cars on the road today are equipped with a gauge that tells you if your engine is running at the optimum temperature or not.
Coolant System Failure and Coolant Pipes
An engine’s cooling system is comprised of many different parts but the main three are the radiator, the water pump, and the coolant pipes or hoses. A failure out any of these three parts can come on very suddenly, but usually, there is going to be some type of warning, such as a small leak.
Of the three, the coolant pipes are usually the first to go. These pipes can be somewhat difficult to troubleshoot but are seen to fail prematurely in some models simply due to the design of the entire system. Often times the coolant pipes have small sections made of hard plastic that are bonded together with an adhesive. Since the coolant pipes are exposed to extreme heat everytime the car is running, the cycle of rapid heating and then cooling can weaken the adhesive, as well as the plastic itself. Going through such extreme temperature change every time the vehicle is running can cause the pipes to become brittle and make them prone to failure.
Coolant Pipe Leak
If your coolant levels become low, you may have a leaky coolant pipe. If you suspect a leak in the coolant pipe, it should be taken care of immediately to avoid overheating. When your vehicle overheats, it can lead to serious engine damage or even complete engine failure. Other signs of a failing coolant pipe are puddles of coolant underneath the car, coolant leaking inside the engine bay, or possibly a failed starter due to coolant leaking onto it.
Inspecting a Possible Coolant Leak
One easy way to detect a leaking coolant pipe is to visually inspect the pipes themselves. You may have to remove a plastic cover here or there, but a good visual inspection, if you’re lucky, could be all it takes to find the leaky pipe.
In some Porsche models, the coolant pipes are routed underneath the intake manifold in the V of the engine. This location is less than ideal, as it does not allow for much airflow, nor does it allow for a visual inspection of the pipes. If the coolant pipes in your car are in fact located under the intake manifold, the intake itself may have to be removed in order to inspect and/or replace them. If this is the case, it is a job better left to a professional.
Before any visual inspection is to be done, make sure that your engine is completely cool before touching anything under the hood. If the engine is still warm, you could easily be injured. You should never attempt to remove a coolant cap from a radiator until you are 100% certain the engine is cool. If you attempt to remove a radiator cap before the engine is cool, the pressure within the system could send hot coolant gushing out of the radiator causing severe burns and potential blindness.
What to Do if You Have a Coolant Pipe Leak
If you even suspect your vehicle has a coolant pipe leak, but are unsure how to check it or just do not have the time to check it yourself, it is best to consult an expert on the matter. If you live in or around Dallas, University Park, Highland Park, Irving, and Coppell, TX then Louden Motor Car Services, Inc. may have the answers you are seeking.
When issues with your vehicle arise, it is tempting to put them off until it is absolutely necessary to get it fixed. However, if you suspect that your coolant pipe is leaking, it is best to play it safe to avoid any serious damage to your engine due to overheating or flooding. Consult a professional in your area before attempting to check the leak, unless you have extensive previous automotive mechanic experience.
* Porsche 911 GT3 image credit goes to: shaunl.