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Oil in the coolant

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by 59Apachegail, Mar 15, 2012.

  1. 59Apachegail
    Joined: Apr 30, 2011
    Posts: 527

    59Apachegail
    Member
    from New York

    Hello All,

    I have oil in my coolant and its black like coffee :eek:. I suspect that the previous owner may have used oil instead of coolant... I hope. I think that because the oil in my engine is gold like honey and I haven't changed it yet. I'd like to drain it and refill with fresh coolant but I'm afraid that if there is a problem I might make it worse. Does anyone have a suggestion? If I do have a problem with my gasket is there anyting I can use to band-aid it for now?
    I don't use her much just take her out for an hour or so on weekends. I have it a year and have less that 100 miles on her.

    Thank you
     
  2. william.ali.kay
    Joined: Nov 20, 2009
    Posts: 824

    william.ali.kay
    Member
    from Milwaukee

    Head gasket. Or cracked block, or warped head.
    No band-aid.
     
  3. landseaandair
    Joined: Feb 23, 2009
    Posts: 3,735

    landseaandair
    Member
    from phoenix

    I'd drain it and fill with straight water at least once to flush it out before putting fresh coolant in it. If the oil isn't contaminated you should be good.
     
  4. landseaandair
    Joined: Feb 23, 2009
    Posts: 3,735

    landseaandair
    Member
    from phoenix

    Does it run rough or blow steam out the tailpipe?
     
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  5. BISHOP
    Joined: Jul 16, 2006
    Posts: 2,556

    BISHOP
    Member

    It wont taste like coffee.

    I had an off topic Caddy that had oil in the coolant. I drained the coolant, filled with fresh water and dish soap. Let her run for a while with the radiator cap off, then flushed it again with straight water, then put in new coolant. Never saw the oil again.
    Put around 40k miles on that car. Bitches loved that car.
     
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2012
  6. 59Apachegail
    Joined: Apr 30, 2011
    Posts: 527

    59Apachegail
    Member
    from New York

    She runs really smooth but smokes a little when I first start up, no steam. Holds coolant level and oil level. I will try to flush it out and see what happens. Hope its a fluke :)
    Thanks all!
     
  7. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 26,303

    squirrel
    Member

    It's worth trying to clean it out and see what happens.

    And if it does have a problem with the engine, you can probably nurse it along for several years, at the rate you drive it.
     
  8. Skirv
    Joined: Jul 5, 2006
    Posts: 1,185

    Skirv
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    It could be just some leak sealant that was added to the coolant system at some point. Oil mixed with coolant/water isn't usually black. It looks more like beige slimy goo.
     
  9. greg32
    Joined: Jun 21, 2007
    Posts: 880

    greg32
    Member
    from lemont,IL

    Yep, Barrs leak or something like it. Drain it, flush the sysytem and refill. I would use straight water the first time. If its sealant, it may leak after the flush. Easier to deal with straight water vs antifreeze. If no leaks after some time, drain and fill with 50/50 water and antifreeze.
     
  10. coolbreeze1340
    Joined: Aug 18, 2009
    Posts: 1,197

    coolbreeze1340
    Member
    from Indiana

    What the last two guys said.
     
  11. deuce354
    Joined: Feb 9, 2005
    Posts: 293

    deuce354
    Member

    Does your car have automatic transmission?, I have seen many times that the radiator goes bad and lets the transmission fluid go into the coolant.
     
  12. That's what I first thought. Whatever it is, it would have to be a lot of contamination to make the coolant go to that frothy "milk shake gone bad" consistency. This doesn't sound that bad, go with a flush 'n fill as others suggest.

    Bob
     
  13. bobwop
    Joined: Jan 13, 2008
    Posts: 5,451

    bobwop
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I see you are in New York.

    Using water is a good recommendation, but beware of freezing.

    or is summer here to stay?
     
  14. 48 Chubby
    Joined: Apr 29, 2008
    Posts: 1,016

    48 Chubby
    Member Emeritus

    Often black coolant is a result of the black rubber hoses deteriorating. Time to flush and refill, but check every rubber line in the system before adding antifreeze. Rubber that has started to slough it's carbon components will feel soft, all most mushy. Oil in coolant will look more like an elephant snot milk shake gone bad.
     
  15. drptop70ss
    Joined: May 31, 2010
    Posts: 848

    drptop70ss
    Member
    from NY

    coolant could of been topped off with a dirty funnel that had some left over oil in it..not that I have ever done that!
     
  16. olskoolspeed
    Joined: Mar 2, 2009
    Posts: 430

    olskoolspeed
    Member
    from Ohio

    My guess is Bar's Leaks (or similar) as mentioned earlier.
     
  17. This is what I was just going to say.

    This is also why I never run tranny lines through my radiator. It's like a double wammy! The tranny cooler in the radiator goes bad and take out a perfectly good tranny. I always run an external tranny cooler ONLY.

    The BarsLeak idea also make sence. It's like pouring molasses or Kayro syrup into your radiator.
     
  18. 59Apachegail
    Joined: Apr 30, 2011
    Posts: 527

    59Apachegail
    Member
    from New York

    Hello All,
    She is a stick thankfully :)
    She lives in a heated garage makes the new car jealous!
    Yeah feels more like Florida here...
    The lines to radiator and heater are extremely soft. I just replaced all the electrical wiring and the rubber hoses to the gas tank because it was dry rotted from sitting in the desert.

    Also last weekend was the first time I ran her for a long time.

    I hope its barrs or the hoses! :)

    Will flush her out and change hoses and let you guys know what happened.

    Thanks again!
     
  19. 59Apachegail
    Joined: Apr 30, 2011
    Posts: 527

    59Apachegail
    Member
    from New York

    Quick update, no black goo in anyplace other than the radiator. Still waiting on new hoses from lmc.
     
  20. porknbeaner
    Joined: Sep 12, 2003
    Posts: 25,737

    porknbeaner
    Member

    If it is running fine and not overheating a good drain and flush is in order.

    You could check for a blown gasket first. I would not fill with antifreeze after flushing, I would fill it with straight water and drive it and see if you have the same problem.
     
  21. 59Apachegail
    Joined: Apr 30, 2011
    Posts: 527

    59Apachegail
    Member
    from New York

    New hoses arrived and it took a while for me to get to it. I replaced hoses, drained old fluid ran with water for about two hours replaced with fresh pre mix and ran it again. No issues after I ran it with water. Looks like it was bar's sealer all along. There was a time when the engine was decked. After draining it twice there is still remnant of the brown goo. I don't know if it was put in before it was decked but its tough to get rid of :) Its running good now albeit a little hot not sure if that is something else or if it is supposed to run hot? The gauge shows normal but the body get hot as well.
     
  22. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 26,303

    squirrel
    Member

    Kinda hard to tell if what you call "hot" is ok or not. The gages back then read kind of high, if the sender has been replaced.

    Make sure the radiator cap is rated 7 lbs, not 13 or 16 or whatever. The old radiators with large tanks can't hold much pressure, they'll swell.
     
  23. 59Apachegail
    Joined: Apr 30, 2011
    Posts: 527

    59Apachegail
    Member
    from New York

    Thanks Squirrle!
    Thankfully the cap is 7 lb.

    When say hot I mean the cab gets hot like its been sitting in the sun all say.
    I probably should get a new sender its the original one.

    Do you know if those snap on the way out?
    I have had a lot of fun with that already, when I tired changing the dounuts.

    Thanks again!
     
  24. tommyd
    Joined: Dec 10, 2010
    Posts: 5,173

    tommyd
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from South Indy

    Thats right none of us EVER do that:D....So you've been to my garage I see?
     
  25. 59Apachegail
    Joined: Apr 30, 2011
    Posts: 527

    59Apachegail
    Member
    from New York

    Hello all,
    I changed my oil yesterday as a result of a fuel delivery system fix. Someone here recommended replacing the oil in case gas had gotten into it. So I drained the oil and found the same exact stuff in the oil filter I was finding in the radiator. It looks very thick like barrs but now I'm thinking it might be sludge. I used marvel as a replacement for leaded fuel and I have been reading that it loosens sludge. Is it possible the sludge is getting past the some gaskets? or am I just chasing ghosts?

    Thank you
     
  26. tommy
    Joined: Mar 3, 2001
    Posts: 14,735

    tommy
    Member

    Have the cooling system pressure tested. If it holds pressure you do not have a coolant leak. Period! If oil is in fact getting into the cooling system it will not hold pressure. A small leak will not hold pressure. Even a leaking thermostat gasket will allow the pressure to fall rather quickly.

    I don't know what you are seeing that is scaring you. Water in the oil turns it into a chocolate milkshake which does not look like black coffee.

    You say that the levels remain the same. I can't see where you have a problem?
     
  27. Engine man
    Joined: Jan 30, 2011
    Posts: 1,950

    Engine man
    Member
    from Wisconsin

    I think you just have sludge. You can change the filter again later. Straight water will get rusty looking as the cast iron will rust. If you aren't seeing any leaks or contamination, it's a good idea to put anti freeze in to prevent corrosion.
     
  28. 59Apachegail
    Joined: Apr 30, 2011
    Posts: 527

    59Apachegail
    Member
    from New York

    Thanks guys, my main worry is a rebuild :) I guess I feel confident to tackle pretty much everything else. It ain't broke so I'll just leave her alone. Hopefully she stays that way!
    Thanks again!
     
  29. Bad Banana
    Joined: Jun 20, 2008
    Posts: 535

    Bad Banana
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Michigan

    If you truly have "oil in the coolant" the only way that will occur will be if there is a leak path between an oil pressure galley and coolant. It will usually have some coolant in the oil as well. Reason is the oil pressure has to overcome the coolant pressure (7 psi in this case) in order to leak oil in to the pressurized cooling system. Once you shut the engine off you still have pressure in the cooling system but no oil pressure and it goes back the other way. I have only seen 2 engines that did this and both of them had swollen coolant rubber hoses that were oil soaked inside. Never did find the leak path had to replace both engines (and all the hoses). Nobody has said what engine we are talking about here?

    Automatic Trans cooler leaks are more common but the trans usually fails quite rapidly before it damages the hoses. Trans fluid will look like a strawberry milkshake with coolant/water in it. (obviously not the case here since this is a manual)
     

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