2004 audi a4 1.8 cabriolet overheated so I put coolant in it. The guage never showed that it was getting hot.
Now when I start the car i can smell
the coolant and if I leave it running it
starts to overheat. The hoses look
good. Not once has the guage
showed hot but the coolant light has
come on before
Sounds like a blown head gasket if you can smell a sweet smell threw the exhaust.
No coolant leak on the ground overnight? If so, your water pump could be shot. Otherwise, as posted above it could be head gasket, but then you should have tan cloudy oil on the oil fill cap and lots of smoke out the rear exhaust.
The time I smell it is when it's overheating and I've got the hood open. Oil looks good. I did lose coolant the first time it overheated but I have ran it much at all since.
Ok, then make sure the fans are working. And the coolant system should be checked/purge from any air pockets. Also it wouldn't hurt to change out the thermostat.
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