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Corsa overheating and coolant loss


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LilRy12
New User

Apr 8, 2021, 2:26 AM

Post #1 of 5 (407 views)
Corsa overheating and coolant loss Sign In

My 2009 Corsa club is having a little bit of trouble these days. My dad did a mini service on my car recently, changing oil and filters etc. There was a bit of cream on the oil cap and he just warned that sometimes it can be signs of big issues.
6 days later as I’m driving along, my temperature light starts flashing. I don’t have a temperature gauge which everyone thinks is ridiculous.
Opening the bonnet, all of the coolant has boiled and come out of the pressure release valve on the water tank.
RAC tapped up the leak, filled it up and followed me home with no further issues. He seemed to be certain it was head gasket, however there is absolutely no sign of oil/water mixing.
I have taken the car to a mechanic who is also sure it’s not head gasket and thinks it’s the thermostat. He has taken it out and told me to drive it about for the weekend so we can be sure, and he will fit a new one next week.
The only problem is, the pressure release valve is still tapped off and I feel that if the problem wasn’t the thermostat, this being plugged up will surely help to mask other issues?
I feel like it could possibly also a faulty release valve or possibly water pump issues, but I have 0 knowledge on cars. Would it be worth me test driving the car without the leak tapped off? I live in a quiet area so risk myself being stranded if it overheats again.


Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Hammer Time profile image

Apr 8, 2021, 3:52 AM

Post #2 of 5 (388 views)
Re: Corsa overheating and coolant loss Sign In

We don't have that car here in the US so we don't have anything specific.

Pressure relief valve? The only thing that regulates pressure is the radiator cap.

I'm not really behind either of those theories. My guess is that there is a small leak somewhere and it lost coolant over time. You confirmed that there was no issue after refilling the coolant. The first thing you need to do is pressure test the cooling system thoroughly to locate the leak.

That is not to say that this problem didn't lead to a blown head gasket in addition due to the severe overheating. If you shut it down quickly of the light came on, you may have avoided that. You do not have to see oil/coolant mix. The coolant can leak right into the combustion chamber and out the exhaust as steam.



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We offer help in answering questions, clarifying things or giving advice but we are not a substitute for an on-site inspection by a professional.



LilRy12
New User

Apr 8, 2021, 4:03 AM

Post #3 of 5 (382 views)
Re: Corsa overheating and coolant loss Sign In

Yeah there’s a pressure release valve in the water tank, looks like a little spout, and it releases pressure build up. There was no leak other than through that. All of the coolant came out of that spout as if there was far too much pressure in the system.
I managed to stop very quickly, within 10/15 seconds I would say. The mechanic seems certain that the head gasket is fine, there has been no steam or smoke from the engine or exhaust.
I am just unsure whether or not to remove the temp fix that the recovery team did in order to make sure the problem is fixed.


Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Hammer Time profile image

Apr 8, 2021, 4:17 AM

Post #4 of 5 (376 views)
Re: Corsa overheating and coolant loss Sign In

As I said, this is not a car we have here but every car sold here has a recovery system. They have a cap that releases excess pressure into a tank and draws it back in as it cools. I can't picture this car not having some version of that.



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

We offer help in answering questions, clarifying things or giving advice but we are not a substitute for an on-site inspection by a professional.



Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Apr 8, 2021, 4:30 AM

Post #5 of 5 (373 views)
Re: Corsa overheating and coolant loss Sign In

I also don't know this car however it's a 2009 something. Quote ">RAC tapped up the leak<" Where?


That was probably the (one) pressure relief - a pressure radiator cap. The other some spout for something I do think there are some "tapes" made for emergencies (the RAC) would have.
Milky stuff at oil cap isn't good some engines (anything with liquid cooling) could get condensation in with oil with temp changes, humid air. That's been over for decades so suggests a problem not solved does lead to any gasket or part the separates oil and coolant.
Clean that stuff off, pressure check system and check oil again. If anything found keep going there's a problem lurking still I'm not guessing but it isn't fixed or known just yet,


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