Alfa Romeo Forum banner

1 - 14 of 14 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
This is my first post so I would like to say hello to the forum.

I'm sorry to begin writing here with a problem. I've searched the forum but didn't find what I was looking for.

The car is a 147 GTA. Bought it recently 2nd hand. Problem is when climate control is on, randomly the air smells like burnt coolant. Occasionally, it will throw some smoke through the vents too (that smoke smells different though, similar as if you open the coolant bottle and sniff inside). Indeed, coolant level decreases very slowly. I've checked the expansion bottle and the oil stick and there are no signs of water/oil. I've checked the floor and there are no stains of coolant but I think there must be a coolant leak somewhere.

I've read somewhere (not specifically for AO or 147) that smoke through the vents could mean that the heating radiator is leaking. Haven't found coolant in the interior though.

If I were to check for the radiator, does this need to remove the entire dash? Can it be done from the engine comparment? Or removing the glove box?

Any other ideas about the smell and/or smoke?

Thank you very much in advance for your help.

Regards.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
42,287 Posts
Hi! and welcome to AO.:):Sounds like the heater matrix is leaking.:(: Haven't a clue how to gain access to it though. Workshop manual perhaps?:):
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Then, this confirms worst fears...

How many service hours does this need? Like 8-10?

I suppose this can't be done in my garage by myself, or is it?

Is there any sort of DIY or service manual where I could see the steps involved?

Thank you.
 

·
Identity Confirmed, Authorised Trader
Joined
·
634 Posts
Then, this confirms worst fears...

How many service hours does this need? Like 8-10?

I suppose this can't be done in my garage by myself, or is it?

Is there any sort of DIY or service manual where I could see the steps involved?

Thank you.
Hi more than 8-10 hours. I would allow 2-3 days to be on the safe side. You will need the front seats out and the centre console to get the dash out, air con system gas recovering etc.
I would get it done professionally I won't try and mislead you they are a big complex job.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
138 Posts
Hi and welcome! :)

I had the same problem. With my bella it was a rocket cover gasket leak into the mainfold and burning itself out through the vents. I have changed the gasket and all is fine... 1hr job and cost around £15 for the gasket.

Also I have a small leak (picture attached) from the nut on just on the front of the engine. You can find it when you take of the cat cover off. I have unscrewed, cleared and put some silicone and hve screwed back. NO MORE PROBLEMS.... worth to check before you visit your local garages...

Enjoy and wish you luck
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Thank you, I will check that for sure. In the case of the v6 checking rocker gaskets could be harder though, but worth checking anyway. Could that be the cause for the vapor through the vents? Where does the exterior air get soaked from? Surely I didn't made myself clear, but the smell without smoke gets in the interior when climate control is on, while the smoke came even with the climate control off.

BTW, found this related posts, although these are on 166. Do you think that could be done with a 147 too?

"I've just finished stripping completely a 166, and to get the heater box out you need to remove the dash, and the full metal framework mounted on the bulkhead, because the heater box is held to the framework by two bolts which cannot be accessed until the framework is removed......

but once I'd got it out, I realised that it should be possible to remove the matrix from under the bonnet.....however you need to remove, I think...the aircon rad housing / fan housing to give you access to the little phillips screws holding the cover over the matrix in...then the matrix just slides out....."


(post #4 http://www.alfaowner.com/Forum/alfa-164-and-166/167437-166-heater-matrix-solution.html)



"I then had to remove the aircon box containing the pollen filter and condensor on the right had side that remained.
The bolt fittings are pretty obvious but it is very tight to get out. I ended up removing the false firewall after unclipping all electrical cables etc so may have given myself extra work.
All the electrical cable connectors that you need to disconnect are handed so they can only go back one way.
Once the aircon box is removed, there is a cover behind for the heater matrix to the left of the heater hoses on the bulkhead - held on by 5 small screws. Once this is removed you can then see the heater matrix itself which just pulls out after disconnecting the heater hoses."

(post #8 http://www.alfaowner.com/Forum/alfa-164-and-166/107826-alfa-166-heater-matrix.html#post1662622)


Thank you again.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
766 Posts
This is my first post so I would like to say hello to the forum.

I'm sorry to begin writing here with a problem. I've searched the forum but didn't find what I was looking for.

The car is a 147 GTA. Bought it recently 2nd hand. Problem is when climate control is on, randomly the air smells like burnt coolant. Occasionally, it will throw some smoke through the vents too (that smoke smells different though, similar as if you open the coolant bottle and sniff inside). Indeed, coolant level decreases very slowly. I've checked the expansion bottle and the oil stick and there are no signs of water/oil. I've checked the floor and there are no stains of coolant but I think there must be a coolant leak somewhere.

I've read somewhere (not specifically for AO or 147) that smoke through the vents could mean that the heating radiator is leaking. Haven't found coolant in the interior though.

If I were to check for the radiator, does this need to remove the entire dash? Can it be done from the engine comparment? Or removing the glove box?

Any other ideas about the smell and/or smoke?

Thank you very much in advance for your help.

Regards.

Welcome to the forum.

I too had a simular issue as to you. Yours being a 6 pot petrol, mine being a 5 pot diesel.

I had exhaust fumes coming into the cabin via the climate control and I was getting headaches, so had to drive with window open. To identify this, I drove engine a few miles till hot and when I knew exhaust get in to the cabin. Stopped car, let engine idle and sprayed very soapy water on exhaust gasket area's. After a few minutes I was getting a lot of bubble from the exhaust manifold flange to my EGR heat exchanger. Once purchased correct gasket, renewed the gasket and now I have no more fumes entering the cabin.

Generally as your engine is a big one and mine is tightly packed into the engine bay. Exhaust only has one direction to go and thats to the fresh air inlet, where as smaller engine cars the exhaust can go to other areas.

I would suggest doing the soapy water test first while engine is at idle, to see if you have exhaust leaking, prior to ripping out anything on a whim.

Good Luck:thumbs:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Thank you NorthernLad, but I don't think they are exhaust fumes. I'm almost sure the smoke is water vapor (looks like it, but smells so bad you can't tell for sure). Rest of the time when AC is on the smells seems to be burned coolant.

I'll give it a try anyway if we don't find any coolant leaks in the engine compartment before removing the dash.

Thank you again.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Hi.

Only wanted to say that I finally made the job myself and finally, yesterday the car was running again. It's been more than one month of weekends and some afternoons in the garage battling with the car, but I finally made it. I have no doubt that a mechanic would have needed a third or even a quarter of the time I've spent, but all in all, I'm happy right now. I wouldn't go through this again though, even if I couldn't afford the repair and had to leave the car in the garage for a while. There have been very frustrating moments, being the replacement of the radiator itself the worst part. It is in a very, very inaccessible place.

I took the opportunity to replace the coolant and the expansion bottle too, and do some cleaning in places where you normally won't reach like this... :lol:




If you come across this problem... I'd say take the advice I didn't take from JJBMotors... But if you don't and use the 147 manual (eLearn) don't do the whole process described there... There's no need for removing the air con box (attached to the dash pilar), just do the job underneath the aircon box. I sawed the rad tubes from the interior, as the original hose clamps where impossible to reach either from the motor compartment nor under the car (the headers are in the way). I then used "mikalor" hose clamps with the new radiator, they where difficult to reach from the upside but they where finally fitted.

Thank you again for your comments.

Regards.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,335 Posts
wow well done,
But i can see your thinking,

1..Pay dealer 3 days labour + parts = Mega money
Or
2.. Take your time and do it yourself = no where near as much money and pride in a good job done
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Hi and welcome! :)

I had the same problem. With my bella it was a rocket cover gasket leak into the mainfold and burning itself out through the vents. I have changed the gasket and all is fine... 1hr job and cost around £15 for the gasket.

Also I have a small leak (picture attached) from the nut on just on the front of the engine. You can find it when you take of the cat cover off. I have unscrewed, cleared and put some silicone and hve screwed back. NO MORE PROBLEMS.... worth to check before you visit your local garages...

Enjoy and wish you luck
Hi I have removed cam gasket cover to check on the manifold but seems like there are no leakage. :confused: i'm still having the similar burning smells when hitting high rpm..
 

·
Identity Confirmed, Authorised Trader
Joined
·
634 Posts
Hi.

Only wanted to say that I finally made the job myself and finally, yesterday the car was running again. It's been more than one month of weekends and some afternoons in the garage battling with the car, but I finally made it. I have no doubt that a mechanic would have needed a third or even a quarter of the time I've spent, but all in all, I'm happy right now. I wouldn't go through this again though, even if I couldn't afford the repair and had to leave the car in the garage for a while. There have been very frustrating moments, being the replacement of the radiator itself the worst part. It is in a very, very inaccessible place.

I took the opportunity to replace the coolant and the expansion bottle too, and do some cleaning in places where you normally won't reach like this... :lol:




If you come across this problem... I'd say take the advice I didn't take from JJBMotors... But if you don't and use the 147 manual (eLearn) don't do the whole process described there... There's no need for removing the air con box (attached to the dash pilar), just do the job underneath the aircon box. I sawed the rad tubes from the interior, as the original hose clamps where impossible to reach either from the motor compartment nor under the car (the headers are in the way). I then used "mikalor" hose clamps with the new radiator, they where difficult to reach from the upside but they where finally fitted.

Thank you again for your comments.

Regards.
Glad you got it sorted. Well done.:thumbs:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Thank you!

It's been a month and around 3.000 kms since then and I'm very happy to say the car is running great.

Only issue being the replaced hose clamps doesn't seem to keep enough pressure and I've had some coolant leakage (like 200cc, nothing important) on the thermostat where the two interior rad hoses connect. I'll try to replace them with harder pressure ones (thank god they are easily reachable).

BTW, that gave me wings and the next weekend I did the spark plugs myself too :lol:
Scary! :eek:
Did those 3.000 kms with them on too, so it looks like I didn't screw up...

Regards.
 
1 - 14 of 14 Posts
Top