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  #1  
Old 01-01-2006, 11:16 AM
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355 Coolant leak

hi all,,

have coolant leak from RHS on 1997 F355,

have removed RHS rear wheel and wheel arch liner,, have access to radiator,,, but cannot sea where leak is coming from,,

it looks to me as though the radiator is in two parts, front of radiator water and rear is oil, then fan at very back,,,

can anyone tell me how to remove it to check for leaks, and is there any other way of looking at top and bottom hose without removing,

have tightened the top jubilee clips but I dont think these are the problem,,

the radiator seems to have five bolts holding it on,,,, removed the top two , on either side but bottom two are'nt keen to come off,, so its still sitting there,,,

any photos of it removed would be a great help

cheers
scott...
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  #2  
Old 01-01-2006, 12:18 PM
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You should go get a pressure tester. You will need to hook it up to the coolant fill tank. It shouldn't cost more that $40. What it does is pressurize the system (as if you couldn't figure that out) and gives you a reading of the amount of pressure in the system. The other good thing is that you can look for fuild or listen for the leak while the system is pressurized.

Look of signs of water stains. You should see them along the top or bottom of the plastic tanks on the radiator. Also look along the cooling fins for signs of a busted/leaking cooling tube. My guess is that the seal around the tank has gone out, or you have a cracked tank, if it is the tank.

If you want to remove the radiator it isn't that hard. Since the 355 and 348 are very similar it should be just about the same proceedure. Here is how to do it on a 348.

Disconnect the electrical connections going to the fans and sensors.

Drain the radiator. Using a big standard (flat) screw driver undo the plastic plug on the bottom right corner of the radiator. Becareful not to strip it, and save the fluid.

Disconnect the radiators hoses attached to the top of the radiator.

There is a clamp/bracket at the very top of the radiator that holds down the radiator. Undo the two nuts that hold the bracket to the frame of the car, and remove it.

Now you should be able to lift the radiator out of the retaining holes. Be careful no to damage the foam trim around the radiator when you remove it.

Now on a 348 the radiator is stacked on top of the oil cooler, so I don't know if it is the same for a 355? In the case that it is you will want to disconnect the radiator from the cooler before you remove it. Or get the cooler out of the way before you work on the radiator.

It should take you an hour or two to get it out. Depending on if you need to get the oil cooler out of the way or not.

Happy wrenching.

Last edited by ernie; 01-01-2006 at 12:20 PM.
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  #3  
Old 01-01-2006, 02:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ernie
You should go get a pressure tester. You will need to hook it up to the coolant fill tank. It shouldn't cost more that $40. What it does is pressurize the system (as if you couldn't figure that out) and gives you a reading of the amount of pressure in the system. The other good thing is that you can look for fuild or listen for the leak while the system is pressurized.

Look of signs of water stains. You should see them along the top or bottom of the plastic tanks on the radiator. Also look along the cooling fins for signs of a busted/leaking cooling tube. My guess is that the seal around the tank has gone out, or you have a cracked tank, if it is the tank.

If you want to remove the radiator it isn't that hard. Since the 355 and 348 are very similar it should be just about the same proceedure. Here is how to do it on a 348.

Disconnect the electrical connections going to the fans and sensors.

Drain the radiator. Using a big standard (flat) screw driver undo the plastic plug on the bottom right corner of the radiator. Becareful not to strip it, and save the fluid.

Disconnect the radiators hoses attached to the top of the radiator.

There is a clamp/bracket at the very top of the radiator that holds down the radiator. Undo the two nuts that hold the bracket to the frame of the car, and remove it.

Now you should be able to lift the radiator out of the retaining holes. Be careful no to damage the foam trim around the radiator when you remove it.

Now on a 348 the radiator is stacked on top of the oil cooler, so I don't know if it is the same for a 355? In the case that it is you will want to disconnect the radiator from the cooler before you remove it. Or get the cooler out of the way before you work on the radiator.

It should take you an hour or two to get it out. Depending on if you need to get the oil cooler out of the way or not.

Happy wrenching.

thanks

but I think the 348 must be different,, cost the water rad is behind the oil rad on the 355,, so you cant really see it at all,,,, just the top hose, not even the bottom one,,,

cheers
scott..
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  #4  
Old 01-01-2006, 02:40 PM
BH1 BH1 is offline
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I just went through this last week. My passenger side radiator would leak after the car got hot. I checked all of the clamps but could still see a trickle from the top of the radiator. I ordered a new radiator ($700) and went to work. The whole thing took about 2 hours. You have to remove the oil cooler which will leak very little oil, drain the radiator from the bottom, disconnect the fan wire and gently pull it all apart. The radiators are seperated by two strips of foam that are glued onto the water radiator, be careful not to tear them. Also, the new radiator requires that you remove some nuts and such on the old one for reuse. The hardest part is getting the hoses unstuck. All I can say is to go slowly and be patient. The radiator top and bottom are made of plastic so use caution with prying tools.....

Last edited by BH1; 01-01-2006 at 02:41 PM.
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  #5  
Old 01-01-2006, 02:47 PM
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Great advice and tech tips from the Brotherhood!

But...

Before you go to all of that trouble, keep in mind that 348's and 355's have a coolant drain hose that is *supposed* to drip a little coolant just behind the passenger door after a hot run.

So look underneath your car, find that passenger-side small black rubber coolant drain hose, and verify that's not your "leak" before you go to a large amount of radiator removal trouble.

If that doesn't identify your problem, then you might ask some of the more experienced Fchatters their opinion on any of the Stop Leak coolant products. Who knows, perhaps some brands are OK for use in F-cars (then again, perhaps such products are just made to get F-Owners flaming mad at such suggestions on chat boards).

Also, RicambiAmerica.com sells an improved radiator cap. If your leak is from your cap area, then try the improved cap.


Heh, heh...My general rule is to try the free stuff first, the easy stuff second, and the full frontal assault on the problem, if required, third.

Last edited by No Doubt; 01-01-2006 at 02:53 PM.
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  #6  
Old 01-01-2006, 07:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by No Doubt
Great advice and tech tips from the Brotherhood!

But...

Before you go to all of that trouble, keep in mind that 348's and 355's have a coolant drain hose that is *supposed* to drip a little coolant just behind the passenger door after a hot run.

So look underneath your car, find that passenger-side small black rubber coolant drain hose, and verify that's not your "leak" before you go to a large amount of radiator removal trouble.

If that doesn't identify your problem, then you might ask some of the more experienced Fchatters their opinion on any of the Stop Leak coolant products. Who knows, perhaps some brands are OK for use in F-cars (then again, perhaps such products are just made to get F-Owners flaming mad at such suggestions on chat boards).

Also, RicambiAmerica.com sells an improved radiator cap. If your leak is from your cap area, then try the improved cap.


Heh, heh...My general rule is to try the free stuff first, the easy stuff second, and the full frontal assault on the problem, if required, third.
most auto radiator systems have an overflow which can drop fluid if the system has been overfilled...once the system has heated up the excess is pressured out .... assume the passenger side is RHS for you,,, as USA lh drive for uk this would mean RHS,,,,,,,??? will need to cheque manual about checking the level on the coolant tank as there is nothing obvious in the enginer bay ?

thanks for the advice all

scottie....
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  #7  
Old 01-01-2006, 08:46 PM
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Hey Scott

Are you in the UK? Well if that is the case then you should be fine just removing the radiator. Were you describing where it waslooking at the front or back of the car? Looking at the back of the car, is it on the left side or the right side? If it is on the left there shouldn't be an oil cooler there. It may be different than the 348, but I'm guessing it isn't on that side. On the 348's, looking from the rear, the oil cooler is on the right hand side. I don't see why Ferrari would swap sides with the oil cooler?

Last, please fill out your profile.
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  #8  
Old 01-02-2006, 04:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ernie
Hey Scott

Are you in the UK? Well if that is the case then you should be fine just removing the radiator. Were you describing where it waslooking at the front or back of the car? Looking at the back of the car, is it on the left side or the right side? If it is on the left there shouldn't be an oil cooler there. It may be different than the 348, but I'm guessing it isn't on that side. On the 348's, looking from the rear, the oil cooler is on the right hand side. I don't see why Ferrari would swap sides with the oil cooler?

Last, please fill out your profile.

uk car,,

looking from rear,, leak and oil cooler are both on the rhs,,,,,,,

cheers
scott..
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Old 01-02-2006, 08:28 AM
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Scott youve got to remove the oil cooler first,i always clean drain and repaint them(customer dont see it but it makes a better job and keeps the uk weather off)then with the oil cooler off theres your rad,always replace the two joining hoses at the top of the rads,four in total two each side,the n/s rad requires air con rad removal and of course de gas of the system,have fun

Dale.
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  #10  
Old 01-02-2006, 11:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dale
Scott youve got to remove the oil cooler first,i always clean drain and repaint them(customer dont see it but it makes a better job and keeps the uk weather off)then with the oil cooler off theres your rad,always replace the two joining hoses at the top of the rads,four in total two each side,the n/s rad requires air con rad removal and of course de gas of the system,have fun

Dale.
is it possible to move the oil cooler out the way to view the radiator,(without disconnecting the oil pipes),,as dont want to have to drain oil from car, just to find its a slack hose thats causing the water droplets !,,

to remove the oil cooler,,,, do I just remove the four bolts,, one in each corner,, or is there something else,, as the bottom left bolt (of the four) just seems to be turning..

thanks
scott..

ps, if I do have to remove the oil pipes,, is it best to drain oil from the engine first ?
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  #11  
Old 01-02-2006, 03:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lauris
is it possible to move the oil cooler out the way to view the radiator,(without disconnecting the oil pipes),,as dont want to have to drain oil from car, just to find its a slack hose thats causing the water droplets !,,

to remove the oil cooler,,,, do I just remove the four bolts,, one in each corner,, or is there something else,, as the bottom left bolt (of the four) just seems to be turning..

thanks
scott..

ps, if I do have to remove the oil pipes,, is it best to drain oil from the engine first ?
Dont drain the engine oil tank theres no need to,you will have to remove the oil cooler cus you wont get to the radiator,you'll just get the cooler contents drain out about 3/4 of a litre,i doubt it will be the hose you'll find the rads corroded and leaking,if a oil cooler to rad bolt is just turning its a set nut that pushes into the plastic rads on each corner so the bolts corroded at rear and causing the nut to turn in the rad,remembre check engine oil hot and runing after completing job and check coolant next day cold.
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  #12  
Old 01-02-2006, 03:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ernie
Hey Scott

Are you in the UK? Well if that is the case then you should be fine just removing the radiator. Were you describing where it waslooking at the front or back of the car? Looking at the back of the car, is it on the left side or the right side? If it is on the left there shouldn't be an oil cooler there. It may be different than the 348, but I'm guessing it isn't on that side. On the 348's, looking from the rear, the oil cooler is on the right hand side. I don't see why Ferrari would swap sides with the oil cooler?

Last, please fill out your profile.
ernie he has to remove the oil cooler its just to tight in there,the air con rads the otherside that has to come off to to do that side.
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  #13  
Old 01-02-2006, 06:39 PM
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thanks guys

going to try on wed,,, will let you know how I get on

many thanks
scott..
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