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Chrysler Repair/Leaking Coolant and Smoking


I have a 04 Chrystler Pacifica. I been having problems with it leaking coolant and smoking. I had it checked out on diagnostic machine at a couple places but no info about the problem.I had it looked at the radiator have no cracks. My temperature Gage isn't showing overheating but it's leaking coolant and it lightly smokes at first then after so long of driving it heavily smokes. Am try figure out why is my radiator getting wet when this happens? the leaking how's started on the opposite side under the car the passenger side. Why do my car have a sweet burning smell?  I mean could it be my radiator, i water pump or head gasket? Am confused n feed up with the run around.

Hi Peaches,
First, if by "checked out on diagnostic machine" you mean an analysis by a plug-in fault code reader then that may not be able to tell anything about the cooling system as that for the most part is not an electrically run system while the balance of the the engine/transmission are electrical. But you are loosing coolant so there has to be a leak somewhere. You probably have been replenishing the coolant enough so that the system is not overheating so no gauge problem yet.
You didn't say where you see the "smoking" to be coming from. It could be either coolant leaking somewhere in the engine compartment and then dripping on the exhaust pipes where it evaporates, or do you rather see it coming out the exhaust pipe in the rear of the car? The sweet smell is likely the anti-freeze mixed in the coolant when it gets very hot either on the surface of an exhaust pipe or when it gets into the exhaust internally (from a head gasket leak) and then passes thru the catalytic converter where it is vaporized and come out the tail pipe as white smoke with that odor of antifreeze.
The radiator can get wet when it looses coolant due to a leak, or from a leaky hose clamp, or leakage from the cap on the nearby coolant pressure container (where you add coolant). As to leakage on the passenger side there are hoses that carry coolant from the engine to the heater system so that could be another place where coolant can leak due to clamp or hose leak.
Your problem could be any of the above as well as the water pump (coolant leaking from the front of the engine) or a head gasket (white smoke coming out the tail pipe).
I would suggest that you go to a competent radiator shop and tell them all of this history and let them road test the vehicle and inspect for all of these possibilities. Then get the diagnosis and tell me what you have learned, what they recommend to do, and how much each of the problems will cost to repair. Clearly you need a shop which specializes in all aspects of the cooling system to get to the bottom of this,
Please read the PS (below) and respond to it.
Thanks for doing that,

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Roland Finston


Free fast answer to your repair question about a Chrysler/Dodge/Plymouth car, minivan, SUV, or truck. Problems with electronically controlled engines and transmissions as well as body wiring problems are my specialty. This free troubleshoot advice forum helps you diagnose faults, minimize repair costs or do-it-yourself.

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