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The temp in my '04 CTT has been climbing from normal when sitting. I couldn't find any leaks, but there was a bit of steam coming from the front of the engine. I couldn't see any leaks so at first, but then I finally found a dribble of coolant in the front of the engine, so I changed the water pump.

After I replaced the pump, I brought the car up to temp and I still have steam coming out somewhere. Without a mirror, I couldn't really see much. It looks like it might be coming from the center of the radiator. The water pump is dry.

It doesn't look like there's anything that carries water near there except for the radiator and the water pump. The steam is thickest around the middle of the radiator.

I guess I need to get a telescoping mirror to see, but is there anything else it could be besides the radiator?

Also, do I have to take the whole front end off to get to the radiator?

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Get a coolant system pressure tester. You will also need the proper adapter to fit the car's coolant cap. I recommend the Astros Pneumatic Coolant Tester kit, which you can find on Amazon for $240. It has adapters for just about everything, and not only includes a pressure tester, but an air-lift type vacuum evacuate/filler as well.


With the engine cool, remove the coolant cap and replace with the proper adapter. Then connect the gauge/pressure pump. Pump the system up to 15lbs, then look for your leak. While obviously you have a pretty good leak, a proper cooling system should hold that 15lbs for quite a while. If the leak is still not visible, Snap-on sells UV dye designed for a cooling system. Put the prescribed amount of that in the coolant, then examine with a UV flashlight, (making sure you are wearing your yellow goggles so you don't harm your eyes).

Sometimes the coolant needs to be warm for a leak to show up, but it's much safer to test a system cool if possible.

Edited by RacerX5
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So I kind of took RacerX5's advice and pressure tested the system, but since i don't have any tools on Sunday, I just ran the engine up to temp.

I'm not sure, but it looks like I might have been a bit paranoid about my water pump change and the steam MIGHT have been spilled coolant. I'm going to drive the car to work tomorrow and that should be a good test.

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