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I have a MY 1999 996 C4 that I had to have towed because of a coolant leak. I saw smoke coming form the engine area so I pulled over, saw the leak and thought it best to get a tow. I initially thought it may be a hose leaking, but found that when I squeezed a hose, it looked like coolant was leaking from the lowermost flywheel (where the serpentine belt goes). Is this possible or could it be leaking from somewhere that I cannot see?

About 1000 miles ago I had a new clutch, IMS and RMS bearings installed. Could any of these repairs be related to the coolant leak? I want to try to fix this myself before having the car towed for repairs if possible.

Thanks in advance for your help!

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I checked the coolant tank and hoses and they seem fine. The leak appears to be coming from around the area of the water pump. So, I removed the air cleaning assembly and serpentine belt to try to get a better look. I tried turning the water pump flywheel and it started to turn, then seemed to rub against the engine like it was out of center. Now it will not move at all. Should I replace the pump to fix the problem?


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Thanks. I ordered a new pump and gasket from Sunset Imports. Also, I remembered there's an article in the Aug. 2012 #202 issue of Excellence magazine. Interesting read...

I'll update when I get the part and start repairs.

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I have removed the old water pump and installed the new one. I added 1 gal of Porsche coolant followed by 1 gal of distilled water. I thought it would take more than that, but the filler is full (even after pulling up the purge valve on top of the coolant reservoir.

The rear of the car is about 2" higher than the front as I saw recommended online. I went to start the car and everything went haywire. What I mean is the interior lights and dash lights blinked off and on repeatedly and didn't allow me to start. Does anyone know what this means and how I can solve the issue? Could it be that my battery is too low to start or is the car giving me a warning that something is wrong?


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  • Admin

Likely a battery issue unless you removed wires and did not re-connect them in the engine compartment.

Best open the bleed valve once you get the engine running as you will need to top up the coolant as the air is bled out.

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Yes, it was the battery. The old one tested dead, so I purchased a new one and the car started like a charm. Thanks for your reply Loren.

How long do I need to open the bleed valve? I let the car run for about 5 minutes with the valve open and the heater on high defrost. Turned off the engine, let it cool and topped off with more coolant/water mix. Should I drive around with the valve open for a bit or has what I have done enough?

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Thanks for all of the help. I was able to install a new water pump and refill with new coolant thanks to the help on this forum! I got the parts from Sunset Porsche--I still can't figure out why their prices are so great.

The job was fairly easy except for these areas:

-it's fairly difficult to remove one of the bolts on the right side of the pump. I used a combination of different lengths of 10mm sockets and my fingers and it eventually came out.

-the pump is impossible to remove unless the one large coolant line beneath it is temporarily disconnected and the smaller line leading to the pump is dropped (there are 3, 10mm bolts holding its long length in place. Just follow the line down from the end and you will see them).

I have been mainly a regular maintenance, oil-changing type DIY mechanic and since doing this I feel much more confident in my ability to tackle more challenging service tasks. Thanks renntech!

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  • 3 weeks later...

Okay, so I think I may have run into a bit of a snafu. I checked the coolant level the other day and it was fine, but the coolant itself looked rather dark, so I took some of it out to get a better look at it in a clear bottle. Next to virgin coolant, the stuff I took out of my coolant resovior is somewhat browner. It's not as bright pink, more of a muted pink color.

Is this something I should be concerned about? The temp seems fine when I drive (doesn't go past the right edge of the 0 on the guage). I'm wondering if oil has somehow found its way into the coolant or if its just old stuff that didn't drain out when I drained to replace the water pump.

Any advice is much appreciated!

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Take a turkey baster and pull out the contents of your surge tank into some sort of glass container; if it is cloudy and looks a lot like hot chocolate, or multiple layers, you have an intermix condition. Regardless of the color, coolant without oil in it will be clear...........

Edited by JFP in PA
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Did you examine the color and clarity of the coolant that you drained out of the cooling system?

If it looked like what you are seeing now, you should probably drain the entire cooling system to get all fresh coolant in there.

How much mileage and how many years since the last "lifetime" coolant change?

Regards, Maurice.

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If it is any consolation, I recently changed my water pump. Prior to replacement, I had the green colored mix anti-freeze in the expansion tank. The new Porsche anti-freeze is pink, and that is what I refilled the system with. Result - Pink+Green=light brown color. I'm not worried about the way it looks. Temperature stays at 180 and everything else is fine. One day I'll flush the whole system and replace with the new pink colored coolant. But for now, daily driving and love this car!

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Thanks for all of the responses. I really appreciate the help. The coolant I removed is more orange, not as dark as I initially thought. However, it's not the bright pink that the factory fresh stuff is and that's what worries me. To me, the color is consistent with adding a bit of contrasting color, green, to the pink. Just as DBJoe996 suggests. It looks clear and I do not see and drops of oil in it. I've attached a picture for further consideration.


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If there are no drops of oil floating in it, you are okay. The coolant in the bottle in the photo looks clear and not murky, so that looks good too.

Take a few ounces of the coolant you drained out and mix it in a bottle with a few ounces of the fresh coolant you added to your reservoir and see it you get the same resulting color as what is now in your cooling system. That should put the issue to rest.

Regards, Maurice.

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Unfortunately I already took the old fluid I dumped to the recycling. My local Porsche dealer is having a free inspection event this weekend so I will have them take a look. I'm sure they'll find something. :)


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