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Old 01-08-2014, 12:00 AM   #1
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Radiator

A week before Christmas I was driving home in my 2008 JK and I noticed some smoking coming from under the hood, this was during that first real cold snap we had here in Golden. When I got home I found a small leak out of the corner of the radiator on the driver's side.

The next day I took it in to a shop near my work to get it pressure tested and they said the radiator gasket was leaking. They also went on to give me a $1200 quote to replace the radiator (I know there are younger kids on this forum so I will refrain from repeating my conversation with the shop about that price). I have checked it again since and the hoses and clamps are fine. It's definitely coming from the body of the radiator.

My issue is that it is such a small, small leak. I filled the reservoir with antifreeze two days before Christmas and as of now it is 3/4 full. Some days it leaks, some days it doesn't. I am wondering if anyone else has had this issue and if so, what did you end up doing? I thought about just leaving it alone and keeping an eye on it but if my Jeep isn't running perfect it bothers the hell out of me.

I have a line on a new radiator and was going to pick it up tomorrow and install it this weekend. As a last ditch effort I wanted to post this here and see if maybe there was another option before taking apart my Jeep.

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Old 01-08-2014, 12:00 PM   #2
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Just go get some stop leak from advanced or oreilly.

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Old 01-09-2014, 12:53 PM   #3
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Just go get some stop leak from advanced or oreilly.
That was my first thought. Isn't that almost like a band aid and a temp repair? Id just hate to get stuck on the trails and have a catastrophic failure.
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Old 01-09-2014, 05:24 PM   #4
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It is a bandaid only and everyone I talk to about it with in industry says stay away at all costs it will gunk up and destroy components. I don't know everything and some people may have had great success. Just my personal experiance with others that used it and machanics that have dealt with it
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Old 01-09-2014, 05:31 PM   #5
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It is a bandaid only and everyone I talk to about it with in industry says stay away at all costs it will gunk up and destroy components. I don't know everything and some people may have had great success. Just my personal experiance with others that used it and machanics that have dealt with it
i completely agree do not use that stuff it it MAY work, but it also could clog the lines can cause you engine to seize from a huge build up of heat. I had a microscopic hole in my rad last winter i got the rad and all hoses online and had a shop install them for me granted mine is older so parts may be more for you but it ran me somewhere around $500
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Old 01-09-2014, 08:10 PM   #6
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I've alway had good luck with the stuff that looks like liquid copper. After a few run cycles it set up good for me. But. Honestly you guys are right the only correct and permanent fix is truly to replace it!
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Old 01-09-2014, 09:36 PM   #7
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Ok this may sound weird but it does work. My father in law told me once about putting a can of table pepper on your radiator. He has a dump truck and runs it year round. He keeps pepper in his radiator all the time. I was going through steamboat years ago at 5:00 am and had a head gasket start leaking into the combustion chamber. We stopped at a 7 11 to see if they had some stop leak. They had none. We bought some antifreeze and some pepper and put it in. Ran it for about a year with no problems at all. The leak was fixed. I eventually replaced the gasket and put pepper back in. The thing with pepper is it dosent settle to the bottom and will fill small holes. I even have it in my jeep now. Cheap insurance. So my advice is put pepper in your tool box.
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Old 01-09-2014, 11:18 PM   #8
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Ok this may sound weird but it does work. My father in law told me once about putting a can of table pepper on your radiator. He has a dump truck and runs it year round. He keeps pepper in his radiator all the time. I was going through steamboat years ago at 5:00 am and had a head gasket start leaking into the combustion chamber. We stopped at a 7 11 to see if they had some stop leak. They had none. We bought some antifreeze and some pepper and put it in. Ran it for about a year with no problems at all. The leak was fixed. I eventually replaced the gasket and put pepper back in. The thing with pepper is it dosent settle to the bottom and will fill small holes. I even have it in my jeep now. Cheap insurance. So my advice is put pepper in your tool box.
well at least its better than the old egg whites trick (dont try this!!) lol i dont think i would ever do this myself just because of the risk of a clog in one of the lines (if youve ever looked they are pretty damn small) but if it works for you then why not! it sounds like youve done this for a long time with no problems
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Old 01-09-2014, 11:20 PM   #9
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I've heard of the pepper fix. I've even heard of something as crazy as crack an egg into the radiator. I think that was myth busters? Pretty cool idea.
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Old 01-10-2014, 11:39 AM   #10
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Thanks for your help! I was hoping to maybe find out if my issue was a common Jeep problem. It's just so frustrating that I have to pay money for such a tiny, microscopic leak. However, little things have a tendency to explode and turn into big, complicated fiascos with me so prevention is the best maintenance. I got lucky I did find a JK radiator with 5k miles on it for $50.

I have heard about the pepper from several people and I'm going to keep some in my a Jeep now because of this thread.

Also, the egg isn't a farce. It works! Mythbusters did do an episode about it and I have a few friends who have tried it. However, I can't see it lasting a long time.
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Old 01-10-2014, 12:12 PM   #11
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Thanks for your help! I was hoping to maybe find out if my issue was a common Jeep problem. It's just so frustrating that I have to pay money for such a tiny, microscopic leak. However, little things have a tendency to explode and turn into big, complicated fiascos with me so prevention is the best maintenance. I got lucky I did find a JK radiator with 5k miles on it for $50.

I have heard about the pepper from several people and I'm going to keep some in my a Jeep now because of this thread.

Also, the egg isn't a farce. It works! Mythbusters did do an episode about it and I have a few friends who have tried it. However, I can't see it lasting a long time.
You are driving a 7 year old vehicle.
My suggestion is just go with an aftermarket radiator and put it in yourself.
While you are at it (again, from experience), put in a new water pump. They are cheap and, I am willing to bet that as soon as you put in a new radiator, you will blow the water pump gasket.
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Old 01-10-2014, 08:13 PM   #12
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You are driving a 7 year old vehicle. My suggestion is just go with an aftermarket radiator and put it in yourself. While you are at it (again, from experience), put in a new water pump. They are cheap and, I am willing to bet that as soon as you put in a new radiator, you will blow the water pump gasket.
A very valid point. Thanks!
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Old 01-12-2014, 09:19 PM   #13
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Ok this may sound weird but it does work. My father in law told me once about putting a can of table pepper on your radiator. He has a dump truck and runs it year round. He keeps pepper in his radiator all the time. I was going through steamboat years ago at 5:00 am and had a head gasket start leaking into the combustion chamber. We stopped at a 7 11 to see if they had some stop leak. They had none. We bought some antifreeze and some pepper and put it in. Ran it for about a year with no problems at all. The leak was fixed. I eventually replaced the gasket and put pepper back in. The thing with pepper is it dosent settle to the bottom and will fill small holes. I even have it in my jeep now. Cheap insurance. So my advice is put pepper in your tool box.
Gonna try this Doug. I'm getting a serious leak in my current POS radiator. Really don't want to spring for a new one right now and I can't decide if I want to go aluminum or not. So if I trash my engine you get to buy me a new one
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Old 01-12-2014, 10:14 PM   #14
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Deal if yours goes you can have mine. That motor has been running my lawn mower for 19 years and still starts on the first pull.
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Old 01-13-2014, 09:35 AM   #15
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Damn, but it's good to have friends...

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