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Discussion Starter #1
Hi Guys,

Just over a month into my GT ownership and I love the car. I've had a few problems with it and taken it back to the garage I bought it from for fixing, which they've done.

The main problem was that it was using coolant, my first thought was HG as it was coupled with steam out of the back, however a pressure and head test showed that it wasn't and the problem was eventually tracked down to a broken thermostat housing. This was replaced and all has been well for about 400 miles but I've noticed that its sipping its coolant again, seems to be overheating (by the smell, temp gauge reads normal, fans come on very early) and the heating in the cabin comes out cool unless on 27+ degrees. I still get steam out of the back, but this goes when engine is up to temp. Reading on the forum i'm thinking that it could be a failing waterpump, but i'm unsure of what the tell tale signs are so can anyone confirm this? Its a strange one as the car is '08 with 21,500 on the clock so seems early for the pump to be going.

Any help or pointers gratefully received.

Ben
 

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... seems to be overheating (by the smell, temp gauge reads normal, fans come on very early) and the heating in the cabin comes out cool unless on 27+ degrees...

Clarify, please. :)
 

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What sort of condition is the radiator in?

If it is knackered, it could cause coolant loss and overheating.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Hi Ronald

Sorry for being a little vague. The engine comes up to temperature quite quickly and the cooling fan comes on quickly too after about 10 mins of driving on average. The temerature gauge reads a steady 90 for the entire journey. When I stop and put my head under the bonnet the engine smells hot, too hot (cant think how to describe the smell other than hot engine smell) I've checked the coolant and it does smell burnt, however the temp gauge never reads more than 90. Added to this i've now noticed that the heating system isn't as hot as it was and will only come out warm if I set it above 27 degrees, anything below that it comes out cool. I'm still waiting for the car to cool down completely before I check coolant level today but it does seem lower than yesterday. Theres no other sign of it overheating other than the smell, and cooling fan coming on and staying on (although im not sure which other signs to look out for other than the temp gauge) and no visible sign of leaks other than the steam from the exhaust that I would put down to condensation in the exhaust as it goes off once enging is up to temp.

Thanks for replying - any help will be greatly appreciated so as I can point the garage in the right direction as its warranty repairs so I've found I practically have to tell them what it is to get it done.

Ben
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Simon - thanks for replying.

I guess it looks ok but I cant see too much of it due to the cooling fan being behind it and the grille being in front.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Another question off the back of this - would it definitely show on the temp gauge if it was overheating? This is my first alfa so i'm not sure if the heat and smell is just an alfa thing, but to me it does smell hot but the gauge says no
 

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Symon - just looked again at the rad - all looks fine from what I can see - no corrosion fins intact etc
 

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If rad is fine then you could do with getting it checked over. The waterpump on the 1.9 is advised at 4 years 50k by indi's and myself so if yours has done more than this then you should be getting it changed:( Steam coming from the back of the engine points to two things (left hand side then possibly WP venting as its knackered) (right hand side (gearbox end) points to the stat and heater hoses as they are down that side. perhaps they haven't been tightened after they changed the stat. HG is extremely uncommon on the JTD. Most do many many miles before letting go. Mine is on 170k with original HG :D You're in merseyside. Go see Gus (forum name ALFATUNER on here :)) or send him a PM

http://www.alfatunemotorsport.co.uk/
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
Joss - Thanks for replying
Just realised I didn't specify - its a 2.0 JTS, 21,800 miles on an '08. Steam I meant from the exhaust. Thats why I thought HG originally, but the mechanic did the head test with the blue fluid and it was fine although he did have to do it on the expansion tank as theres no rad cap apparently (?). I've just had it idling there and listening to it I can hear a faint grind on the waterpump (left hand side of the engine?) that on hearing it I recognised that I can hear it whilst sitting in the drivers seat. I've got it booked in for Tuesday with suspected waterpump issues. I can't seem to shift the feeling that it may be HG related, what with the thermostat going and now maybe the pump, the steam from the exhaust that does smell a little sweet :( but there is no cream in the oil cap and no change in the temperature gauge :confused:

Was considering going to see Gus but as the car is still under warranty I want to get as much done as I can to find the issue while I don't have to pay for it. Thought I was onto a winner with the low miles and age when I bought it in Dec, I love the car just want it to stop worrying about it and enjoy it

Ben
 

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One thing to try that won't cost the earth is replacing the expansion tank cap.

If your one isn't holding the right pressure it will cause all sorts of odd problems.
 

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TS/JTS pumps can fail .. one way is to over-tension the cambelt ... make sure who you use fits an NEW cambelt and uses cam locks to time it properly ...

if you see them with a bottle of tippex, drive off VERY VERY quickly!! ;)


Is the "steam" first thing in the morning? That's normal. Just the condensation that builds up in the exhaust system overnight condensing ...
 

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Its be very surprised if the fan comes on at all with normal driving, especially in the winter in England. It'll take some time with the car stationary. The fact that its coming on perhaps suggests to me a water pump problem, maybe the impeller has come off the shaft?
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks for the reply Gazza

I'll ask them to do the belt too but as its a warranty fix i'm not sure whether they will unless its classed as essential :rolleyes:

The steam is every time I start the car, gets worse coming up to temp then disappears when at temp. The only worrying thing is it does smell sweet, but as I said before no cream in the cap, no colour change on the head test and steady reading on the pressure test. I've asked them to check the HG again when I take it in on Tuesday, but as theyre paying for it I dont know if they're going through it with as fine a toothcomb they would if I was paying for it if you know what I mean.
 

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Thanks for the reply Rockhopper

Really? I didnt know if this was an alfa thing so thats another thing I can tell them, thanks. It does idle lumpy when first started too as well as a faint grinding/whirring noise that gets louder and quieter in waves when running so I was thinking maybe it was the pump bearing, straining the engine via the belt and not pushing the water through properly? Whatever it is in the pump I reckon a new pump is in order, hopefully it may sort the "steam" issue too.

Only had it a month so just want all to be well so I can start enjoying it properly, taking it to France in Aug too so could do with piece of mind before then :)
 

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Don't let them refit the old cam belt ... it MUST be replaced!!! Belt isn't that expensive on its own ..
 

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Thanks for the reply Rockhopper

Really? I didnt know if this was an alfa thing so thats another thing I can tell them, thanks. It does idle lumpy when first started too as well as a faint grinding/whirring noise that gets louder and quieter in waves when running so I was thinking maybe it was the pump bearing, straining the engine via the belt and not pushing the water through properly? Whatever it is in the pump I reckon a new pump is in order, hopefully it may sort the "steam" issue too.

Only had it a month so just want all to be well so I can start enjoying it properly, taking it to France in Aug too so could do with piece of mind before then :)
steam issue .....normal in cold conditions .... consume 1 gallon of petrol generates 1 gallon of water ...in the summer we dont see it but winter we do for obvious reasons :thumbs:
 
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