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Coolant explosion

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Uh oh.

'99 Boxster with 160K was leaking a bit of coolant for a bit, then after a trip to the grocery store, steam started shooting out from coolant reservoir in trunk, and coolant starting pouring out of underside, by passenger side R wheel.


It was like a teapot. . .


. . .but that's not tea.

I'm going to guess this is not a fix I can do myself.

Anybody want to guess what it is, so I can tell the guys at the shop?

What should I expect to pay?

Shop is 20 mins from here, with significant highway driving. Can I dump distilled H2O to limp my car down there, or do I need a tow?

Thanks as always, friends.


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Yes, distilled water works. However, are you sure you can make it to the shop before too much coolant leaks out? You don't want to risk overheating your motor.

My guess, based on the info you provided, is the coolant reservoir is cracked. Do you have coolant under the carpet in the trunk?


Edited by bar10dah
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Can't there be a crack where the coolant reservoir meets the motor? Old motor mounts allowing too much movement?

For some reason, other forums this week are full of stories about how guys have cooked their engines by driving after they got warnings of coolant problems. Aluminum engines can get damaged really quickly by air bubbles in the cooling system allowing hot spots to lurk just where cooling is needed. Been there, cost me an Alfa engine. I only tried to drive the same distance. And the Boxster fix is $4 to $40k.

Have you inspected the area around the water pump?

So unless you have been able to locate the cause, fix the problem and then fill the cooling system and pressure test it and pull all the air out with a vacume pump, I'd swallow the expense and get my local flatbed to get you to the best mechanic you can find.

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