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leaks


BillNY's Avatar
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01-29-02, 06:45 AM   #1  
BillNY
leaks

I drive a 1988 Chev Van 4.3 V-6,automatic with 148000 mi. It runs beautifully but leaks a little trans. fluid and coolent. The coolent actually gets onto the floormat on the passenger side.
Also, when parked on even a slight downslope it is difficult to
back up for the first few minutes, After that it's OK. Are these repairs that one could do oneself. If I go to a garage I suspect that altogether I could be looking at $1200 or more. Money is a real issue. Should I just live with it (I wipe up underneath most times I park), try to do the work myself, pay to have it done or look for another vehicle?

Thank you.

 
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01-29-02, 06:51 AM   #2  
Joe_F
Your coolant leak is a bad heater core. That you should be able to handle yourself. Get a repair manual from the auto parts store or library to guide you.

The transmission issue: Find the cause of the leak and correct it. Low fluid will cause trouble. However, the early 700R4 overdrives before 1989 were problematic and had weak pumps.

At this mileage, your transmission is probably in need of a rebuild.

If the rest of the truck is in nice shape, a rebuilt transmission is worth the expense. Get a GM/Goodwrench rebuilt part as it includes all the updated parts and fixes.

 
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01-29-02, 10:20 AM   #3  
xiii13
How much trans fluid is leaking. Get under the van and find out where it is leaking from. If your lucky it might be just the pan gasket. When was the last time you had the trans fluid replaced?

 
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01-29-02, 11:48 AM   #4  
BillNY
Thanks for your response and to Joe also. I really can't say just how much it leaks. It took maybe two months to go through a quart of trans. fluid. I don't use the van much, about once a week, around 50 mi. It leaks from the pan gasket and a little from the rear seal I believe. A mechanic (at a Chevy dealership) told me that with my high milage (148000) it might be a mistake to change the fluid. Is there any truth to that. If not I would certainly go ahead and change the fluid and get a new pan gasket.

 
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01-29-02, 12:39 PM   #5  
Joe_F
He's right in a way.

New fluid can wipe out a tranny that's in bad shape. It depends on the condition of the fluid. If it's burned, dirty or discolored, leave it and drive it till it stops shifting. Then decide what you want to do.

I changed the fluid on my 84 Olds 88. Was clean but hadn't been done in 60k miles.

Worked out fine.

 
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02-15-02, 04:01 PM   #6  
BillNY
leaks

Joe or anyone,

I'd like to ask a follow-up question. It's been a while so I'll repeat the relavant info. !988 Chevy van, V6, 4.3 litre 148000 mi.
I checked the manual on heater core repair and there seems to be quite a bit to it, like about 10 steps before you even get to the heater core itself, removing the instrument panel and lowering the steering column among them I see where the case is under the dash board on the passenger side. Is it possible to just remove the case and do the repair from there? If not I don't think
I don't think I'll bother. I'll just check the level, add coolant
as necessary and wipe up the floormat on the passenger side.

Thank you.

 
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02-15-02, 09:49 PM   #7  
Joe_F
Most GM rear drive cars have the core on the engine side.

As I recall most trucks have it in between, so yes, the dash likely has to come apart a bit.

Hit your repair manual and see what it says.

 
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02-16-02, 09:01 AM   #8  
I recommend you spend a day and replace the heater core. YOu might find that the heater core fails entirely at some point and the tow will cost more than a replacement. Not to mention you may find yourself stranded somewhere. Follow the service manual. It's not generally hard, it's just alot of steps.......As far as the tranny......I wonder if it's the introduction of new fluid or the release of the old that causes the problem as you could always drain the old to replace the gasket and rear seal and then put the old back in with a little new to top it off.

 
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02-17-02, 06:55 AM   #9  
BillNY
leaks

Thank you Stephen and Joe,

You're right. At some point I may either have to tackle to heater
core job myself or get the job done.

Thanks for your interest.

Bill

 
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