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#145 - 10/19/12 12:17 PM Coolant Return Hoses
Muniac Administrator Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 11/12/08
Posts: 247
Loc: Livingston, Texas
Took a look inside the engine compartment today as part of a routine pre-travel check. The bad news is I found another coolant leak. The good news is this won't be hard to repair and isn't expensive. The best news is I didn't spray coolant all over the engine compartment and come coasting to the side of the road.


Coolant return hose bundle. If one breaks, it's a mess and you'll come coasting to the side of the road.


Four runs exist shown here terminating in the expansion/filler tank.

A fellow Allure owner was kind enough to tip me off about these hoses, them chafing and the consequences of a gusher. I had been smelling anti-freeze for some months now and had been unable to find the leak. After learning about his hose failure, I decided to investigate. And sure enough one hose was leaking.

In my case, I caught this early. The return hose from the turbocharger seems to have a pinhole in it. I've ordered silicone replacement hose which should be here in a couple of days. I'll be replacing all these hoses. When I get the leaking one out, I'll inspect it closely to determine the cause of the leak. It almost looks like someone sabotaged it at the factory by sticking a pin in it. It's a strange leak in an unexpected place.


Silicate residue is a sure sign of a leak. You'll need to look closely to find small leaks.


Hose coming back from the turbocharger. This one is leaking.

I'd strongly suggest you check these hoses. And look very carefully at them as a small leak can be hard to spot. I had to pick up the hose bundle to see silicate residue. Easy to miss this sort of thing. My antifreeze has silicates in it so the residue helps find leaks. Your situation may be different. The idea is to avoid a gusher.

That's all I have right now. I'll post a follow-up when I complete the repair and know better why this hose failed. Per usual, I'll include my hose supplier information and a review of the product and service level. Stay tuned!

Complete slide show HERE. (11 frames w/captions)
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#150 - 10/24/12 01:53 PM Re: Coolant Return Hoses [Re: Muniac]
Muniac Administrator Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 11/12/08
Posts: 247
Loc: Livingston, Texas
OK, I'm back after replacing all my coolant return hoses. It's another unnecessary repair owing to what I deem as a poor choice of hose. CC used Gates fuel line hose which I don't think is a good choice. In my case the turbocharger hose started to leak and it did so in an unusual place. That being away from anything that would seem to cause a leak. A close inspection of the hose revealed check cracking in the rubber.


Gates fuel line hose showing check cracks. Do we understand rubber formulations??

My theory is this area of the hose was facing the turbocharger and exhaust manifold. Thus it received its share of radiated heat. That plus cooling system pressure and hot ethylene glycol broke down the rubber somehow. Or it simply is a bad batch of hose. Rubber made in China, perhaps. Who knows at this point.

If the hose lets go, you'll spray coolant all over the engine compartment and come coasting to the side of the road. This is one of those proactive repairs that saves HUGE amounts of aggravation. In my case, I was at the mystery drip stage going nuts trying to find the leak you could only smell.


Mr. Fix It completes another one. Not a difficult job on the Allure because you can get at everything.

I used 3/8" silicone heater hose which has a thicker wall and will withstand high temperatures. It took 19' of hose total for all four runs. You can get this hose from the supplier below:

Spokane House of Hose
5520 East Sprague Ave.
Spokane, WA 99212
(800) 541 - 6351

The part number is 80-038 and it's 3/8" silicone heater hose. Expect to pay $2/ft.

It took me about 1-1/2 hours to complete the job. On the Allure you can get at everything with reasonable ease. You'll need bigger SS band clamps and tie wraps. The silicone hose has a larger outside diameter. A local hardware store is your best source for clamps and ties.


It's a SS clamp but why is the screw rusted? Another cost savings measure.


Gates fuel line or quality silicon hose. You can decide now after the OEM stuff failed.

The biggest hassle is getting the old hose off the barb fittings. I used channel lock pliers to rock the hose loose. Once loose, slit it axially with a razor blade. From there you can pry open the slit with a blade screwdriver and remove the old hose. Plug the old hose then push the new one on quickly to avoid losing too much coolant. If you work fast and put some rags down you'll contain the mess and won't need to drain the cooling system. I lost about 2 cups of coolant in 4 connections. Not too bad for an amateur.

I suggest you inspect these hoses and take whatever steps you feel necessary to avoid a gusher. It's no fun to blow a hose when you're out on the public highways.

The Gates hose clearly failed. I've also heard of others having fuel line leaks. So the question remains up in the air as to why the rubber is cracking.

I have 11' of extra hose over in my For Sale section.

Complete slide show HERE. (11 frames w/captions)
_________________________
Evolve and simplify!
Scott Bridgman, Why not join and post your own comments??
scott@muniac.com (email me)
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#153 - 10/24/12 11:03 PM Re: Coolant Return Hoses [Re: Muniac]
Gil B Offline
stranger

Registered: 03/13/12
Posts: 4
Loc: Nevada, USA
Great info, thanks.
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'05 Country Coach Inspire DaVinci, Cat C-9, Air Force One, Blue OX Aventa LX
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