Coolant leak on 1991 Mustang GT? - Ford Mustang Forum
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post #1 of 60 (permalink) Old 04-01-2011 Thread Starter
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Coolant leak on 1991 Mustang GT?

Hey all, I just bought my car this past December and I am just now getting it out of storage, it's a 91 GT with 80k miles, auto, and minor bolt ons, since December I've went to my storage unit once a week to start the car and run it around the lot quick, well now that i have it at the house and have been driving it I've noticed I'm going through a hella lot of coolant. The funny thing is I never had to bother with it til now even running it once a week, but last night for example, i filled it up to the cold fill line before i left the house with my pickup and when i came home it was still at the cold line, but then when i took the car to town and back my light was on already and it was low? So today I played with it a bit just in the driveway, I don't wanna say it's headgasket, because my oil looks normal, heat works fine, car doesnt smoke anymore than it should, tailpipes are dripping a bit but it's 34 degrees here today, i have yet to compression test it, but just wanted to say after filling it to the cold line again today and letting it run for about a half hour it stayed right between the hot and cold line and never went down til the car cooled all the way down again. Also I left the radiator cap off to see if it would bubble, it didnt actually bubble up, but once the temp for to 130 i put the cap back on because the coolant was about to go over? Maybe this isn't enough info for anyone to help me yet, but this is the first Ford I've had so I'm not familiar with common 5.0 problems or anything? Any help appreciated!

Thanks, Rob
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post #2 of 60 (permalink) Old 04-01-2011
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Do you notice a sweet smell around the car when it's running. Antifreezze will smell something like maple syrup when it burns. did you check for leaks around the engine and at the firewall. I had my heater hoses leaking at the firewall. not a huge leak but noticed a/f on the ground.good luck!

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post #3 of 60 (permalink) Old 04-01-2011 Thread Starter
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No it smells normal, also it doesn't seem to be leaking at all. I guess I knew it was more of a burning than a leaking thing though to start with, I just don't think it's headgasket? What are signs of an intake gasket burning coolant?
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post #4 of 60 (permalink) Old 04-02-2011
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Well you will smell it. Also run the car and then park it over a piece of cardboard and if you see a wet spot then you got something to go on. I see it's pretty cold there, might it be a freeze plug issue?

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post #5 of 60 (permalink) Old 04-02-2011 Thread Starter
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I did the cardboard thing last night actually, and nothing? I don't smell anything either, it's like you honest to God wouldn't be able to tell anythings wrong unless you saw the light come on and checked the tank?
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post #6 of 60 (permalink) Old 04-02-2011 Thread Starter
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Today I went to rent the pressure tester from advanced, my cooling system is holding pressure right at 16 just fine, i had it on for about 10-15 minutes, when I went to test the radiator cap though, it IS NOT releasing pressure, unless I pump the hell out of it and it gets to about 25psi, so I'll return the tester and pick up a new cap, does that seem legit to anyone?
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post #7 of 60 (permalink) Old 04-03-2011 Thread Starter
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Alright, I'm still losing coolant somehow, but here's what I've done;

-New radiator cap
-Pressure tested at 16 psi and it holds pressure for 10+ minutes
-UV dyed and blacklight searched my motor/cooling system and no neon colors or spots (besides the overflow being lit up from the dye)

I am at a total loss now :?:
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post #8 of 60 (permalink) Old 04-04-2011
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check the front bottom of the water pump,there is a drain hole.

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post #9 of 60 (permalink) Old 04-04-2011
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I have the exact same problem. Same year and model. Same symptoms. The only thing I noticed with mine is that when I revved it high I got a spray of water out the turn downs. I suspect a blown gasket on the head or intake, or a cracked head.

I'm on deployment in Africa right now but when I got home
I was planning on tearing it down and inspecting. Thats a few months away yet. Please post your findings!
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post #10 of 60 (permalink) Old 04-04-2011 Thread Starter
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I can check the water pump, but if I haven't seen any puddles on the floor and my black light didnt see anything is it worth checking? Same with the freeze plugs suggestion?
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Starting to think it might be going thru the heads or intake.....since the pressure test didn't push anything out

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post #12 of 60 (permalink) Old 04-04-2011 Thread Starter
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Nothing was coming out of that water pump hole I just checked, and I tried checking the freeze plugs but could only see one lol, but if it was those it would just be dumping a lot of coolant out right? I do have water coming out of my exhuast, but like I said is that because i have 4 cats on this car and its 41 degrees out? :s

Also, like I said this really didn't become an issure until I got the car out of storage? But even then I still ran it around once a week.
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post #13 of 60 (permalink) Old 04-04-2011 Thread Starter
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I did think perhaps the pressure tested I rented was somewhat bad because on my radiator cap it wouldnt vent until 25 psi, and when i got a new cap it also wouldn't vent til 25 psi, and it's a 16 lb cap? Unless thats just how water and air pressure work? Because even if my cooling system held pressure, at any psi, it still DID hold it?
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You may want to do a cylinder leakdown test next to help pinpoint your leak.

you will need one of these to do it.
OTC Tools 5609 - OTC Cylinder Leakage Tester Kits - Overview - SummitRacing.com

Good luck

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post #15 of 60 (permalink) Old 04-04-2011 Thread Starter
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Would doing a compression test give me the same general info as a leakdown test? Or are they completely seperate things?
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