Car disabled. What is best way to diagnose coolant system problem, i.e.leak? Does the dashboard have to be removed?

Asked by May 08, 2012 at 06:15 PM about the 2004 Audi A4 1.8T Quattro

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

Check coolant light came on while driving, beeped,then said all OK.  Highway driving, exited onto busy road, came on again, beeped, stopped....then flashed, beeped and pshhhhhhhhh....steamed the cabin,  & fluid ran out onto the driver side floor.  

3 Answers

From your description i am assuming that coolant is leaking inside the vehcile and not under the hood and stem is being pulled in through the ventilation system. If coolant is leaking inside the heater core is accessed from under the dash on the left (drivers) side. It is however a rather complicated repair. If you do not have a lot of experience in these types of repairs it maybe something to have a professional take care of.

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Thank you. Is it possible to bypass the heating core w/o doing any harm to the engine. The car is at a shop, but they are unable to pressurize the system to determine where/what the leak is and the quote is between $1360 to enter thru the dash to $2680 under the hood( I think that is if they still cannot make determination). Sound about right? Unfortunately I am without any transportation, rental is getting really expensive.

Yes the heater core can be bypassed. The two heater hose can be connected together at the firewall. It will be important to note which hose went where so they can be properly hooked back when the car is repaired.

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