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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, so on my 2004 PT Cruiser I’m noticing very small amounts of coolant by the belt, which is getting into the belt and making it nice and squeaky. I’m aware I may have to replace the belt now, but I want to fix the small coolant leak before that for obvious reasons. In the picture attached I noticed this thing has a drop of what seems to be coolant on it at all times, I’ve checked for multiple days. I think it may be leaking from there. Can anyone give any advice and if it is this part what is it called, and how can I replace it? Thank you!
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Any time you have a coolant leak, it's a good idea to buy/borrow/rent a cooling system pressure tester. Pump it up on a cold engine and you should get a drip that you can more easily trace back to the source.
 

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I just had the same issue with the air bleeder on my PT. Even after tightening it would leak just enough to drip on the belt and lose some coolant. I solved it by opening and closing it a few times. Whatever was jammed in there must have been moved and now it is no longer leaking.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I just had the same issue with the air bleeder on my PT. Even after tightening it would leak just enough to drip on the belt and lose some coolant. I solved it by opening and closing it a few times. Whatever was jammed in there must have been moved and now it is no longer leaking.
Ok, not to sound stupid but when you took it off did you just use a wrench? I hope it’s something simple like that
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Any time you have a coolant leak, it's a good idea to buy/borrow/rent a cooling system pressure tester. Pump it up on a cold engine and you should get a drip that you can more easily trace back to the source.
Ok I’m going to try to tighten the bleeder as the below comments say first after work, if that doesn’t work I’ll try the pressure test, only thing I’m worried about is making the problem worse by giving it a lot of pressure.
 

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Ok I’m going to try to tighten the bleeder as the below comments say first after work, if that doesn’t work I’ll try the pressure test, only thing I’m worried about is making the problem worse by giving it a lot of pressure.
The pressure tester should only be used to pump it to the same pressure as the radiator cap holds.
 

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The radiator cap housing has been known to leak. Regardless, you may need to remove the intake plenum to fully inspect.
 

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Ok, not to sound stupid but when you took it off did you just use a wrench? I hope it’s something simple like that
Yes, just use a wrench. It can be a little tough to get in there, but it is possible. Also, I didn't take it all of the way out, I simply loosened it about half a turn and then retightened it. That did the trick for me.
 

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The thermostat housing itself is also very prone to weeping. It has what I assume is a stainless steel gasket with rubber seal around the water outlet to seal, and being aluminum, likes to pit and leak a very small amount. I have replaced them two times each on the two '02 PT Cruisers I have in the family. I always saw a little bit of a streak of white running down the block and around the housing itself when this happens.

The last time I repaired one, I sanded the housing flat on 600grit sandpaper to make sure it was flat, then smeared a very, very thin coat of #2 hardening Permatex on the steel portion of the gasket to insulate it against the aluminum side of the gasket to prevent or slow the corrosion of steel and aluminum and it has been better than the other times I replaced it, more than four years without showing any weeping like before.
 
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Five PTs and six engines later... I agree with dana44 about the thermostat housing doing the same thing with some of that coolant making its way to the block air bleeder for your drip. . Make certain you are seeing no coolant on either bolt for the thermo housing - the back one is a prime culprit. If not, the bleeder can be moved in and out with a socket - easier with the plenum moved. Just be careful with the plenum's gasket rings.

Definitely not a difficult job. Good Luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Yes, just use a wrench. It can be a little tough to get in there, but it is possible. Also, I didn't take it all of the way out, I simply loosened it about half a turn and then retightened it. That did the trick for me.
So Im finally getting to do this today, just a quick question, what size wrench did you use?
 

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They should take a 10 mm socket.
 

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Ok so I tried tightening it and loosening partway and tightening but it’s still leaking. What part would I need to replace that has the bleeder on it, so I can stop the leak?
As a last ditch attempt, try removing it completely and reinstalling it. It will be a mess, but maybe it will flush out any debris. As far as a replacement, I could not find a replacement bleeder valve. The only solution I could find is the entire piece, and that was difficult to find. I never ordered it, but I think it was on Ebay. If anybody knows the spec for that bleeder valve, please post it here in case anybody needs it. Thanks.
 

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I don't know the size of the threads on the bleeder valve, but it seems like a bleeder valve for SOME type of wheel cylinder or caliper would fit. The only issue is figuring out the thread pitch. I have a thread pitch gauge in my tool box, but no longer own a PT Cruiser to check. I'd remove it and take it to NAPA or some other parts store to see if they could match it up. Maybe put a little teflon tape on it when installing it.
 
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