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Leaking Radiator

Discussion in 'Minivans · Pacifica' started by chuckt, Jan 7, 2017.

  1. chuckt

    chuckt Member

    It's 10F outside and the radiator on my 98 G Caravan decided it's time to leak. I spotted the leak when walking out of the local grocery store and confirmed my suspicion (that the puddle was mine) on my driveway. After crawling under the van with a flashlight and rag, I confirmed that the drain plug is the culprit. The plastic plug looks like a spigot with a blade-style handle to torgue and a small pipe at the bottom. I could see the coolant in the pipe.
    So, I took a small wrench (adjustable; making it fit the blade) and gave it a small tug to see if it was loose. It felt tight. Rather than apply more force and possible breaking the part worsening matters, I left well enough alone until I could educate myself on the design. It seems to look like it would be a screw style fitting (male) going into the female end which carries the small pipe and some style of taper would create the seal.
    I searched on the internet but cannot find a good picture of the part. Maybe a trip to the local parts store may help.
    If we would have better weather, I would take the chance and just go for it but standing out on this frigid weather and getting into trouble is not what I want to bargain for.
    Do you fellas have any thoughts on this situation? It looks like an easy fix otherwise (except for the draining of the radiator).
  2. chuckt

    chuckt Member

    Just after posting this, I got the bright idea of checking AutoZone. From the looks of the part, I am so glad that I did not try to apply any more torque; all I would have accomplishes was to break off the tang or even worsen matters by maybe cracking the female part. It looks like the coolant must be by-passing the inboard area of the cam (thread).
  3. 2012srtchallenger

    2012srtchallenger Member Supporter

    may be able to find replacement part at napa,sometimes its best to relplace radiator for trouble free operation
  4. ImperialCrown

    ImperialCrown Moderator Level III Supporter

    Google 'Mopar 4644269' for parts sources and images. There is the 2 wing-tips on the nose of the draincock where it fits into the radiator. Sometimes it takes some fiddling to get these in and out.
    There is an o-ring that usually fails and leaks. It is a standard size o-ring. A smear of silicone grease will prevent the o-ring from tearing when installing the draincock.
    Yes, tightening doesn't help as the o-ring is already seated after about a half-turn into the radiator.
    An example with an image:
    Radiator Drain Plug | Genuine Mopar | 4644269 : Genuine Factory OEM Parts & Accessories |
  5. chuckt

    chuckt Member

    I hunted around in te basement and garage and found some rubber hose that I used for the fuel and vacuum at one point or other. I plan to seal one end of a piece )if I am lucky enough to have the correct inside diameter) and stick the other end on the spigot. It will serve two functions; if it fills with anti-freeze, I know for sure that the plug is the culprit and if it is the plug, then I will have solved the problem (for now) by sealing the spigot. That does mean I would need to get a clamp around the hose to secure it but that is no problem if I am correct.
  6. Jon Rollack

    Jon Rollack Member Level III Supporter

  7. shanonia

    shanonia Member

    Imperial Crown's experiences matches mine. A broken rubber o-ring on the white nylon plug was the culprit. A light smear of sil-glide on the replacement helped it go in and seat without any future problem. (This was on my 1999 Voyager.)
    ImperialCrown likes this.