Coolant Leak - Jeep Commander Forums: Jeep Commander Forum
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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-20-2015, 02:02 PM Thread Starter
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Coolant Leak

I have a coolat leak (I thought was a power steering leak). Every morning theres a trail of fluid on the ground. I checked the radiator and its full. The coolant reservoir level was low (empty one day). I added coolant. Anyone know whats going on? Thanks
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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-20-2015, 02:05 PM Thread Starter
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I check the radiator every morning and its full. here are some more pix
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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-20-2015, 06:40 PM
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A very common leak point on commanders is the two t-connections at the firewall on the passenger side where the heater lines pass through to the heater core. The connections get weak and will frequently leak there. I would check there and also the water pump. Sometimes it is difficult to determine the exact leak point as the leaking coolant can migrate all around as it drips. What may look like a leak from a water pump may not always be from the pump shaft or weep hole in the pump.

I replaced my heater hoses with Goodyear replacement hoses with tees swaged in place with metal crimp connections rather than the OEM plastic clamp type that loosen with time. When these connections leak the dripping coolant tends to follow the hoses down and under the vehicle.

Last edited by bdalameda; 12-20-2015 at 06:48 PM.
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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-21-2015, 07:42 AM
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Brass, Copper, Bronze and Solder is NOT protected by OAT anti-freeze and will corrode. So if your connector were made from or use those metals it is even more critical you use the Recommended HOAT type anti-freeze. Most of the aftermarket anti-freeze being sold on store shelves, that does NOT identify what type of anti-freeze it is, and even worse implies its some sort of universal anti-freeze, is actually OAT anti-freeze. Zerex G-05 is the aftermarket equivalent of Chrysler's/Ford's/Mercede's HOAT. Its died Ford's Amber, but all three used the exact same anti-freeze when they used HOAT, just died different colors.


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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-21-2015, 07:52 AM
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The photos do NOT follow the wet areas upwards toward their source.

As the fluid leaks it will drain downward because of gravity and spread out collecting at the lowest points where it will drip off.

So the way to find the source of the leak is to follow the wet area up to the highest point, and that would be the source of the leak.

Or, you can start from the top and work your way down, the highest point you find a wet area beginning is likely the source of the leak.

Photos of the lowest points where the coolant is dripping off are just about worthless.

You don't have enough photos of the upper area where the leaks could be beginning. As well, photos of the Water Heater Core hoses and their "T"'s would be helpful as well.

Only one photo, does seem to show the wet area goes up to the water the pump, but there are NOT enough photos to confirm that. Regardless with that guidance, you should be able to inspect the engine yourself and find the leak as well as any of us doing it with photos.


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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-21-2015, 07:00 PM
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I had a coolant leak on my Commander once upon a time.....turned out to be nothing more than a bad radiator cap.....sounds simple enough but it was not easy to trace at all - because you don't see it dripping down from the radiator cap because a slow leak/drip rapidly evaporates due to the heat of the radiator. You only see it where it accumulates, at the bottom of the engine and on the ground.

I initially thought the same thing as the original poster....that the small puddles I was finding was power steering fluid (still used to the old green anti-freeze not the new orangey stuff)....but it turned out to be coolant dripping all the way down from the flipping radiator cap. I pulled my hair out with that one for about 3 weeks......


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Last edited by Big Blue; 01-27-2016 at 03:22 PM.
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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-21-2015, 07:23 PM
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I just had to replace my water pump today. I noticed it dripping on a trail ride over the weekend. Mine was dripping center of the engine on the plastic shield. Once I got it off the weep hole was obviously leaking, but also my thermostat housing was leaking. New water pump, thermostat and seals fixed it. Took about an hour to replace, but took another hour to get the stupid air pocket out of the system.
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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-22-2015, 10:46 AM Thread Starter
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ive checked around the radiator cap and heater hoses and cant find a leak anywhere except at the bottom of engine (water pump?).
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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-22-2015, 01:04 PM
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You may need to put it up on a rack to see clearly and I would do a cooling system pressure test. This can show you where the coolant is leaking from. You can pickup a pretty decent pressure tester at Harbor Freight if you want to do the test yourself. I have one and it works well.

Did you fill the coolant and let it idle until warm and look to see if you can see where it drips? It is interesting that in the photo of the heater hose tee it looks like there is a spray pattern of some kind behind the tee the looks like something was spraying out of the tee connection. Many leaks do not show up until the coolant is warm and the system has pressure in it.

Last edited by bdalameda; 12-22-2015 at 01:07 PM.
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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-22-2015, 02:34 PM
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You are probably not going to be able to see it from the top. Get a flashlight and get underneath and look up at where the bottom radiator hose attaches to the waterpump. Once I did that it was pretty obvious that my waterpump was leaking. But you cant tell at all from the top.
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