Engine Coolant Low Light coming on w/ plenty of coolant - Team Camaro Tech
Troubleshooting Diagnosing problems done here.

 
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old Jul 4th, 02, 05:01 AM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
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Hello. I'm new at this, and female, so be kind please. I know this is a man's world. I have a 95 z28, which I love dearly. At about 85,000 miles the Engine coolant low light came on, but there was plenty of coolant. I had the radiator flushed etc. hoping that would correct the problem, but it didn't. As soon as I drive a fews miles the low engine coolant light comes on. I had this check at a second shop and they didn't know how to fix it either. The car doesn't overheat, the light just comes on. I have not gone to the dealer because of a bad experience with my convertible top. I have lost confidence in them, but that's another story. Thanks for any help you can give me.

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HurricaneFran
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old Jul 4th, 02, 07:14 AM
DjD
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Welcome Fran,

I'll ask about the user name another time... I have a '96 and the owners manual (p2-82) has a short bit on that warning light. If the light comes on when you first turn the key on it should be working ok. The book says after you fill the rad it may still come on and you have to turn the ing sw to off then start the car to reset it.

Let's go forward from there as you said it doesn't come on right away. I think your system may be building up excessive pressure and filling the overflow tank when warmed up. This lowers the coolant level in the rad and triggers the light. When things cool down the coolent is returned back to the rad from the overflow tank and all looks normal.

This could be as simple as a bad rad cap and as complicated as a cracked head or blown head gasket. Have the cap and rad pressure tested. Have a compression and leak down test done after that if the rad and cap check out ok. If you drive with the AC on all the time it may mask an overheating problem because the cooling fans run all the time. Drive around without the AC and watch the gauge...

Let us know what you find,

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...Dennis
"The '69, the '96 & the club"
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old Jul 4th, 02, 07:46 AM Thread Starter
 
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Thanks Dennis. I will do what you suggested and keep you posted. p.s. North Carolina had a great hurricane a few years ago, "Fran" plus I'm a Hurricanes Hockey fan.
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old Jul 4th, 02, 08:48 AM
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Dennis,
i don't think that the water level in the radiator goes down as the overflow fills up- that just doesn't compute to me.there is a purge tank, actually, on those cars. it is a pressurized part of the system, unlike older cars with the unpressurized overflow tank. the coolant expands, but i don't think it leaves pockets of air in the cooling system- that would be bad, i think. maybe all the air hasn't been bled out of the system- i have heard those newer Z's are a pain to get all the air out of sometimes.
could the sensor maybe be bad, and cause the light to go on when the coolant gets hot? i really don't think they cost all that much, and it should be easy to replace.

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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old Jul 4th, 02, 02:43 PM
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I had a similiar problem on another car I had..The low coolant light would on occasion come on and stay on(even if the level was correct)..The problem was a faulty coolant level switch..Replaced under warranty..was told it is a common problem at the time..Good luck

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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old Jul 4th, 02, 11:11 PM Thread Starter
 
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Thank you so much everyone. This is a great website. I'm so glad I found it.

[This message has been edited by HurricaneFran (edited 07-05-2002).]

[This message has been edited by HurricaneFran (edited 07-05-2002).]
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 02, 01:57 AM
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I work on a lot of 94'& 95' "B" bodies with LT1 motors and the low coolant sensor is mounted in the overflow tank. I've seen this sensor go bad often, but in this case you have to replace the overflow tank because the sensor is sealed in the tank.
Sounds like this sensor is mounted in the radiator and probably the culprit.
If it really bothers you Fran, it can just be unplugged and that will turn the light off. It is actually a redundant feature if you have a temperature gauge much like a "low oil level light" with a pressure gauge and I've changed a bunch of these sensors also.
Sorry to hear about your "dealership experience", sounds like you need to find a new one to take your car to.
Good Luck & Welcome

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Drew

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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 02, 02:44 AM
 
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Fran, we see quite a few of these at my dealership, the sensor element gets a film of
crud on it and it will not read correctly. you need to pull the low coolant level sensor(mounted abot 6 inches down on pass side of rad tank) and spray with some brake clean on
the little brass rod inside the sensor element, this sould take care of your problem. Please don't be bitter towards dealers, we're human also.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 02, 01:10 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
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Thank you so much for your help. I love this website. Don't worry, I haven't totally given up on the dealership. I love my Camaros too much.
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