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Thread: Water Leak back of engine drivers side, drips on exhaust??

  1. #1
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    Water Leak back of engine drivers side, drips on exhaust??

    1997 Chevy Silverado 1500, 5.7 liter, Automatic, 4X4, Z-71

    I have a water leak on the drivers side rear of engine, I can see it coming down the back of the engine, it drips on the exhaust. I can't see exactly where it comes from.

    I did notice a small leak in the last few weaks. The leak is now bigger.

    What can it be that is leaking at the back of the engine, the manifold or something?

    I have never overheated the truck or had any kind of over heating problems in the past.

    I was thinking of using BAR's Stop leak.

    Any suggestions would be great.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
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    Welcome to the site.
    You wont find many fans of any stop leak products around here. Stop leak does not know the difference between a leak, or a small water passage that if plugged could reduce the ability to cool.
    Radiator, and heater core passages can be fairly small, and if they get plugged up with tis stuff, you could create an even larger problem.

    As far as the leak is concerned, be sure that it is not a heater hose, or one of those pesky quick release connections.
    Since you mention the leak on the driver side, it might be something else.
    You should inspect the intake and be sure that the water is not running from another place to the rear of the engine, and it only looks like the leak is back there.
    In a worst case situation, there is a freeze plug on the back of the head, and if this has reached the end of its life, it as well as others will have to be replaced.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Oldmech's Avatar
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    Theres a freeze plug in the back of the head? hehe, usually a leak like this is from the water passage the gasket at the corner of the intake is pooched. If you know a mechanic borrow one of his mirrors. it will be an extendable handle with a mirror on the end so you can see the back of the head where it meets up with the intake.
    75K is right, look at the water outlet on the pas side too just to make sure it hasnt corroded and is maybe squirting over to the other side making it look like it is leaking over there.
    tip... The engines that use the quick connect (not disconnect) for the heater hose, at the pass side rear of the engine can be a real bear.. I have grabbed onto more then one of those thinking it was going to squeeze and unclip... and had the entire fitting come away in my hand, leaving part of it stuck in the intake...
    When this happens... I redrill the intake, retap it, and then screw on a normal heater hose nipple. You can then do away entirely with the quick connect and put a good old dependable hose clamp on it.

  4. #4
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    It was late, and had been a long day...... I thought we were in the Ford forum. Even though I read Chevy, and answered or replied for a chevy, I kept thinking ford.
    Freeze plug on a head for a sbc....... what was I thinking?????

  5. #5
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    I know you said the engine had not over heated recently, but I'm wondering if you've checked your oil recently for the presence of coolant? It will make the oil "milky" looking. If you've got something like this, you may have a serious problem with the head gasket leaking...in which case you would probably have really low engine pressure.

    If you've eliminated these possiblities, its more than likely just a minor hose or manifold leak. Check for splitting of any hoses near the water necks. Also, what Oldmech said about using a mirror is a swell idea. You may try running the engine for a few minutes to warm up, then check with the mirror.

  6. #6
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    It most likely is a bad intake gasket, Your generation of Chevy truck is notoriously famous for that problem. My friends and I have changed 6 alltogether than I know ofBarsleak will wind up causing more damage than helping. If you can fix it yourself, go for it, if you can't, have it done. It's a reasonably simple job if you know what you're doing

  7. #7
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    I flushed the radiator and put new coolant in a couple of days ago. I never had a water leak until I changed the Coolant!!!!

    I also changed the oil, it looked good, I didn't see any water or milky type solution in it.

    I guess flushing the cooling system caused it to fail?

    I just dropped it off at the dealer to get a quote. They said $750-800 for the manifold and $650-700 for the water pump, if they are the problem.

    I'm waiting now for the results. $50.00 to diagnose the problem.

    Thanks

  8. #8
    Senior Member Oldmech's Avatar
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    good grief... where do you live? I'll do it for 100 bucks plus the gaskets in about two hours... those are "wicked" easy to do if you have the tools... not sure why they want to replace the manifold or the water pump if neither of them are bad... as already stated, these trucks are known for popping the corner gaskets. they build up corrosion in that area, especially around the bolts. if one of the corner bolts breaks off, weld a nut on the top of the broken off portion, the heat from welding it frees up the corrosion and 99% of the time they screw right out. the corrosion does pit the aluminum manifold, but a set of good fel pro gaskets and a thin skim of silicone and you will most likely never have that issue again.

  9. #9
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    took me 3 hours due to noone having the removal tool for the fan/clutch. very easy job to do, but may want to look into purchasing the small coolant hoses as they are a pain to access once everything is back together. they do not cost much more and is good insurance is never done before.

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