2003 Buick Regal, broke line near coolant air bleed valve

Reply

  #1  
Old 12-16-13, 06:36 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: USA
Posts: 2
2003 Buick Regal, broke line near coolant air bleed valve

I should preface by saying that I am very bad with cars. Last night I checked th antifireeze level on my wife's 2003 Buick Regal myself for the first time (220K miles largely highway, runs great, transmission 1 year old). The coolant reserve tank seemed to be empty, so I was going to add coolant to the radiator first per the owner's manual before adding it to the reserve tank. The instructions stated to open the coolant air bleed valve prior to adding the coolant.

I had a difficult time reaching the valve even with my smallest socket wrench due to obstructions. When trying to unplug something to move it, the other end of the "line" snapped off. I think I remember the line being about 6 inches long and plastic. I noticed that many of the lines / hoses in the area seemed to be very stiff (maybe miles and cold temperatute?). I included a couple pictures below.

I have three questions if anyone can please assist me:
1. What did I break?
2. Can I start the car / drive the engine, or do I need to have it towed somewhere?
3. Any earthly idea how large of a repair this is?

Thank you!!!
 
Attached Images   
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 12-16-13, 09:17 AM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 44,034
Welcome to the forums!

I'm not sure what a coolant bleed valve is. Some radiator caps have a lever that releases pressure but generally if the engine is cool, all you need to do is remove the cap. There isn't any pressure on the cooling system until the water heats up.

The top pics looks like it might be part of your fuel system. The bottom pic looks like a vacuum line. I suspect you should be able to drive it to a shop ok so they can check it out for you. I'm not familiar with your car/engine but some of the others might be so stay tuned
 
  #3  
Old 12-16-13, 10:49 AM
PJmax's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Northern NJ - USA
Posts: 45,593
That looks like a vacuum line connection to the fuel pressure regulator.

That looks like some type of splice in a shrink tube wrap. Normally you could purchase a small fitting that would combine rubber hoses but those are hard plastic lines and as you found out... very brittle.

I'm not sure what they have for fixing that line.
 
  #4  
Old 12-16-13, 07:08 PM
ukrbyk's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: USA/ Pacific NW
Posts: 3,301
Will you consider cutting into rubber Y-connector, where line broke off, to expose that broken line, and splicing tube back onto it, like marksr said? All it is is vacuum line, but that vacuum needs to be fed from where it is now. I say, with careful utility knife blade work, it may succeed. All you really need is a larger rubber hose that will snug fit over both lines.
 
  #5  
Old 12-17-13, 06:31 AM
ukrbyk's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: USA/ Pacific NW
Posts: 3,301
You got me thinking. Is there any way, you can grab broken piece with say needle nose pliers, and pull it out? Maybe spray some lubricant, like Liquid Wrench there first, to loosen it all up? Then, simply insert long line into the hole?
I am also curious - where is the bleeder valve?
Will the entire rubber piece slide off whatever it is sitting on, aluminum in appearance block? Should make it much easier to work with then.
 
  #6  
Old 12-18-13, 07:50 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: USA
Posts: 2
Thank you all for your responses. I would have responded sooner, but I was out of town with work until late last night.

Based on initial feedback that car was safe to drive, we took it in to have it looked at. We are being charged $267.10 for the repair ($34.06 vacuum line, $38.something for shop supplies, $190 labor--apparently 1 hour to replace the line and 1 hour to perform diagnositcs and figure out why we are leaking coolant).

I'll know next time to immediately post to these forums for advice...with a baby and one car, we needed to act quickly and took it in a bit too soon I think. I would have liiked to have tried ukrbyk's suggestions first instead of paying $267.

We were quoted a laundry list of repairs for a car that, despite 220K miles, was driving great previously (head gasket, water pump, both CV axles, tie rod, serpemtine belt, $3K total in addition to $267). At this point we're just getting the car out of there with the damage done for the vacuum line.

Thank you again for the feedback. This will be the first place I come next time to see if it is a repair that I can attempt.
 
  #7  
Old 12-18-13, 08:13 AM
ukrbyk's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: USA/ Pacific NW
Posts: 3,301
Well, here's this:

How To Find & Fix Coolant Leaks

and this:

Diagnosing car engine overheating and antifreeze leaks - Troubleshooting car radiator coolant loss and high temperature leaks

and this:

Amazon.com: UView B483906 Radiator Coolant Dye 6 - 1 oz. Bottle: Automotive

Of course, according to plumber law, coolant issues happened right around winter time and has to be addressed asap, leaving you with no choice but giving money you could have used for your child to a person that has know how on repairs.
Keep in mind, those folks are not gods or have eight arms and five brains. They are same humans as you are. But they dedicated a little bit of time to learn how to work with their hands and read repair manuals. As a result, you do not save money and they have fair right to charge you.
Sorry for the rant. This is, after all, DIY forum.
I'd have rather cut my finger off, than paid someone to put a little bit of contrast dye into radiator, run engine hot, and then shine black light under the hood to spot where leak is coming from. At total expense of like 30 bucks for dye and light.
 
  #8  
Old 12-18-13, 12:40 PM
CasualJoe's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 9,357
We were quoted a laundry list of repairs for a car that, despite 220K miles, was driving great previously (head gasket, water pump, both CV axles, tie rod, serpemtine belt, $3K total in addition to $267).
Is that a dealer quote or is it from an independent garage? It never hurts to get a 2nd opinion/quote.
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes