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Discussion Starter #1
I'm driving a '98 1.4 8V spi auto. Genuine 72K on clock.
Last 6 months or so, it's been using water.
Occasional mayo on oil filler cap, with short journeys.
No mayo in water - mayo on oil cap clears with longer drives.
Expansion tank fine - just getting emptier quicker.
Dipstick non-mayo.
Getting 40mpg motorway, 25mpg around town.
No overheating (although fan kicking in around 96 on guage, stops around 92).
1st indication was loud gurgling - including heater system.
Heaters all work fine, even when coolant low.
No obvious leaks under car. Got monoblocks on my drive!
Exhaust seems a bit steamy, especially when cold.
It's going through about a gallon of coolant a week but doesn't even overheat when it's low - I've even done 1000 mile with empty expansion tank and gurgly noises - engine stays cool enough.
There's a bit of white crusting around a hose on the top drivers side of the rad - probs no antifreeze left in the system, as it's had about 4 gallon of water in the last 3 months, so dunno if no AF would change colour of crust?
Had to top up oil once in a year (about a litre).
Any ideas?
 

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Some leaks can be hard to track down, especially if they open up only when hot and under pressure. The deposits you mention suggest there is a weep at that point at least.

Have you run it up to full temperature when stationary with a sheet of cardboard under the engine? That makes spotting leaks easier.

A gallon a week is a lot to be going through - so you'd expect to be able to spot that much leaking.

It's worth checking the water dripping from the exhaust - get some cheap antifreeze and top up using that, then run the engine from cold and collect the water that drips from the exhaust. It ought to be clear - if it's coolant coloured you've got an internal problem.

If no sign of where it's going try one dose of Radweld. A single dose can work wonders, but don't repeat it, that when it begins to clog things up.
 

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tauras what would you say is a single dose roughly? just follow the bottle or even less? do you just pour it straight in or mix with anti freeze?
 

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I usually chuck one bottle in the header tank. If that does the trick - hooray. If not then don't repeat.

One of our daughter's had a newish Golf (pile of crap tbh) with a huge split in the radiator. The Radweld sealed it instantly, and that was about 4 years ago and it's still not leaked since.
 

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Thats great thanks, just out of interest if mine is the head gasket, adding this stuff wont interfer with the repair will it?, i am thinking about just adding a dose tomorrow and seeing if it works.
 

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Well do the check above - refill the header tank with fresh antifreeze, then catch the drips from the tailpipe. If the antifreeze is bright red and the water from the tailpipe is clear then it's less likely the HG is the cause. In which case try the Radweld.

But if you get coolant dripping from the tailpipe that's a clear sign of an internal problem so no point adding the Radweld.

Of itself Radweld won't affect a HG repair. Other products (eg K seal) do.
 

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Thanks, I don't actually get much smoke from exhaust to be honest only when weather is in the - range,

I think I will give radweld a go
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for the info fellas! I'll top up with cheap AF when this rain/hail/snow eventually stops and check the liquid coming from the exhaust - I'll pop some cardboard under the pointy end, to check for leaks there too. (had an HG go on my scooby turbo a few years back - exhaust made a rather nice example of a firemans hose! Radiator had 'blown', the ally expansion tank exploded, the bores were gone and the head was twisted. Luckily the garage agreed to fix it under warranty (unluckily the warranty only covered a max of £1000 for any claim - had to hand over another £2500 for a jap import short-block WRX unit and their time!)
 

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you better check the bottle where it connects to hose. you will probably find its slightly fractured. and maybe head gasket is letting gas into water. good luck
 
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