The Top DSM Community on the Web

For 1990-1999 Mitsubishi Eclipse, Eagle Talon, Plymouth Laser, and Galant VR-4 Owners. Log in to remove most ads.

  • Join the Community!

    DSMtuners is a massive archive of DSM information - but more importantly, it's a COMMUNITY! Join in and participate with other DSMers, and invite all of your DSM friends to make this place their home. Chat with others, create a build thread, post questions and answers. Get involved! Logging in will also remove many of the advertisements, along with this notice. ;) It will also allow you to view images in threads.

Please Support JNZ Tuning
Please Support Morrison Fabrication

2G Anti-Freeze Leak coming from random tiny hole behind pulley, please help!

J Fresh

Proven Member
42
5
Feb 23, 2017
Vista, California
Hey DSM Fam, thanks for any and all insight to helping me fix my anti-freeze leak!

Vehicle history: 1997 Spyder GS-T, bought with 46k miles in 2014, now has 104k miles, basically OE except for CAI and CBE.... Did the timing belt myself 3 years ago around 67k miles just cause original belt was 16 years old LOL . Ive had 0 issues for 7 years of ownership until last month....

What happened: I was driving to work normally when I noticed my temp gauge was maxed out but there was no CEL or anything funny about the engine as it was running normally. I drove cautiously about 10 more miles with the heat on high and parked at work closely listening for any funny sounds or weird engine responses but all seemed fine except my temp gauge was maxed out on "H". When I got out, I noticed that anti-freeze was leaking from the timing belt area, quite quickly. I had the car towed to my house where upon further inspection, anti-freeze appears to be leaking from one tiny area, 2 very small (1/8" or so) circular holes (see photos), that's located behind/under the P/S pump and one of the serpentine belt pulleys...

What I did:
Changed the oil and checked to see if it was discolored or weird in anyway and it did NOT appear to have anti-freeze mixed in.

I figured my thermostat may have gone bad since Ive never had any cooling issues. I swapped it out and ran water through the system to see if I could locate the leak. When i put bottled water in the system, it would immediately leak with the engine off.

I added an assortment of BAR's Radiator & Head Gasket Stop Leak products to the cooling system and heat cycled it a few times now. The car does NOT leak at idle (or when its turn off) anymore however I have not driven it yet. Sometimes when I hold the throttle to mid RPM's, after a minute or 2, anti-freeze will start to leak from this one area still (see photos)... I cleaned up the 2 small holes in the photos for clarity but this IS where the leak is coming from. When it leaks, it oozes out from one or both of the tiny holes like a slow dripping water faucet, down the timing belt cover, on the oil pump and all that jazz :(

The top 3 photos are of the tiny hole looking into the engine bay and the bottom 2 photos are of the 2nd tiny hole from the drivers side, just above the timing belt cover that cannot be seen from looking down into the engine bay






The Engine itself starts, idles, revs and runs fine, its just the coolant leak that's obviously preventing me from driving it

Thank all of you for any help you can provide in getting my 97' GS-T back on the road!


You must be logged in to view this image or video.


You must be logged in to view this image or video.


You must be logged in to view this image or video.


You must be logged in to view this image or video.


You must be logged in to view this image or video.
 
Last edited:

Tyeler18

Proven Member
2,445
184
Dec 16, 2008
Casa Grande, Arizona
That hole is the weep hole and is the indication that the waterpump has worn beyond it's service life and needs changed.
 
Solution

pauleyman

DSM Wiseman
7,796
2,490
Nov 19, 2011
oklahoma city, Oklahoma
May I ask why you continued to drive with the temp maxed out? Very bad idea.
I would not have added all that stop leak stuff but what's done is done. Change the water pump. Thermostat is a good idea too. If it runs well consider yourself lucky.
 

J Fresh

Proven Member
42
5
Feb 23, 2017
Vista, California
May I ask why you continued to drive with the temp maxed out? Very bad idea.
I would not have added all that stop leak stuff but what's done is done. Change the water pump. Thermostat is a good idea too. If it runs well consider yourself lucky.
I was honestly running late to work and wasn't too far away, i didn't think about it to be honest really since I didn't notice any CELs or anything, i was stuck on the 5HWY during rush hour as well

Damn, so the general concessions is 100% water pump failure? Man that sucks, i swapped everything out from parts from Autozone: all pulleys, timing belt, WP, cam shaft seals etc less than 4 years/40k miles ago).... that's sad... any recommendations of RELIABLE WP brand since the one I got from AZ seems to have shit the bed?

That hole is the weep hole and is the indication that the waterpump has worn beyond it's service life and needs changed.
are there 2 weep holes? I forgot to add 2 photos when i initially posted this earlier

& the car does not overheat when idling for 30 minutes. coolant fans come on and off. heat gauge stays at 50% normal levels. fluid comes from the weep holes but wouldn't the car overheat while idling for long periods of time if WP was not working
 

TK's9d2TSi

Supporting Member
6,250
3,246
Sep 11, 2017
Cincinnati, Ohio
I’ve have the same issue on a few brand new water pumps (gates). I was told by a Gates rep that a small amount of leak from the weep hole is “normal”. In my case, I did not flush the system well after I got the block back from the machine shop so it had some shavings in the coolant passages. I flushed it a several times and it hasn’t leaked.

This is what I’d do if I was in your shoes. Remove the thermostat and fill it water with the current wp. Run the engine for a few minutes and drain the radiator. I’d do this a several times. Also back flush the heater core. Once you think it’s flushed completely, remove the water pump. Then use garden hose to flush out the opens on the block. Reinstall everything.

 

J Fresh

Proven Member
42
5
Feb 23, 2017
Vista, California
I’ve have the same issue on a few brand new water pumps (gates). I was told by a Gates rep that a small amount of leak from the weep hole is “normal”. In my case, I did not flush the system well after I got the block back from the machine shop so it had some shavings in the coolant passages. I flushed it a several times and it hasn’t leaked.

This is what I’d do if I was in your shoes. Remove the thermostat and fill it water with the current wp. Run the engine for a few minutes and drain the radiator. I’d do this a several times. Also back flush the heater core. Once you think it’s flushed completely, remove the water pump. Then use garden hose to flush out the opens on the block. Reinstall everything.

Thanks for the reply and tips!

Q: if my water pump has stopped working, wouldn't the coolant not recirculate when the coolant fans turn on? I ask this because when Ive turned on the car and waited for it to get to temp, the top radiator hose is cold but gets hot once the fans come on which would indicate that the WP is circulating the coolant, no?

the car does not overheat while running at idle for 30 mins.

is it possible that the WP is on its way out and 'sometimes' works and sometimes doesn't? or do they just stop working period..?
 
Last edited:

TK's9d2TSi

Supporting Member
6,250
3,246
Sep 11, 2017
Cincinnati, Ohio
Thanks for the reply and tips!

Q: if my water pump has stopped working, wouldn't the coolant not recirculate when the coolant fans turn on? I ask this because when Ive turned on the car and waited for it to get to temp, the top radiator hose is cold but gets hot once the fans come on which would indicate that the WP is circulating the coolant, no?
Only thing that circulates coolant is your water pump. The fans job is pull heat from the radiator.

I don’t think that your water is bad, as in not being able to push coolant. The seal for the shaft has been compromised.

Aisin is great replacement next to oe.
 
Last edited:

Tyeler18

Proven Member
2,445
184
Dec 16, 2008
Casa Grande, Arizona
I was honestly running late to work and wasn't too far away, i didn't think about it to be honest really since I didn't notice any CELs or anything, i was stuck on the 5HWY during rush hour as well

Damn, so the general concessions is 100% water pump failure? Man that sucks, i swapped everything out from parts from Autozone: all pulleys, timing belt, WP, cam shaft seals etc less than 4 years/40k miles ago).... that's sad... any recommendations of RELIABLE WP brand since the one I got from AZ seems to have shit the bed?


are there 2 weep holes? I forgot to add 2 photos when i initially posted this earlier

& the car does not overheat when idling for 30 minutes. coolant fans come on and off. heat gauge stays at 50% normal levels. fluid comes from the weep holes but wouldn't the car overheat while idling for long periods of time if WP was not working
As mentioned the weep hole doesn't mean the waterpump has quit functioning. It means it has worn past it's service life which could be an internal seal failure or the shaft has wallowed enough to allow the fins to contact the housing and wore into the weep hole channel, or both.

I wouldn't consider much of anything from autozone as quality, not to say that there aren't good parts but I wouldn't go through duralast parts on vital engine pieces such as timing belt, tensioners or waterpump. I will say 40k and 4 years is fair life expectancy for non OE parts though. If you're not using a high quality coolant, I would start as that will extend cooling system parts life as well. For parts I've had zero issues with GMB, Gates, or Aisin, Aisin being the OE manufacturer for many japanese manfacturers (mitsubishi included at some point, although im not sure if they still are). I use Gates belts or OE mitsubishi belts for timing belts and OE mitsubishi only for tensioners.
 

J Fresh

Proven Member
42
5
Feb 23, 2017
Vista, California
As mentioned the weep hole doesn't mean the waterpump has quit functioning. It means it has worn past it's service life which could be an internal seal failure or the shaft has wallowed enough to allow the fins to contact the housing and wore into the weep hole channel, or both.

I wouldn't consider much of anything from autozone as quality, not to say that there aren't good parts but I wouldn't go through duralast parts on vital engine pieces such as timing belt, tensioners or waterpump. I will say 40k and 4 years is fair life expectancy for non OE parts though. If you're not using a high quality coolant, I would start as that will extend cooling system parts life as well. For parts I've had zero issues with GMB, Gates, or Aisin, Aisin being the OE manufacturer for many japanese manfacturers (mitsubishi included at some point, although im not sure if they still are). I use Gates belts or OE mitsubishi belts for timing belts and OE mitsubishi only for tensioners.
thank you so much for the clarification and insight. It is really appreciated as im just a DIY'er! I honestly thought I would get more life out of it, ooh well.... looking like ill be buying a new WP soon!
 

waltah

Proven Member
233
106
Mar 2, 2011
fairfield, Virginia
Odds and ends ...

Yes, when your car overheats, pull over as soon as you can safely do so and find out why. You may not get any further notice short of disaster.

The purpose of the weep holes is to tell you that the water pump shaft seal is leaking. This is important because one of two things will happen: (1) You will run low on water and the engine will overheat. Or (2) the bearing on the water pump will fail due to rust and the pump will self-destruct. This can be spectacular.

However it's not necessary to look at the water pump area every 1000 miles or anything like that. Once it starts weeping your coolant overflow bottle will get low and nearly all of our cars have a yellow light with a radiator-like icon that comes on when the overflow bottle is low and cannot replace the lost water. That yellow light means (1) add coolant NOW, and (2) look for leaks, including checking the weep hole area.

The yellow light is checked (turns on) when you turn on the ignition. Evidently there are some models that don't have this light but your owners manual and turning on the key should tell you.

In other words, 'weeping' shouldn't be your first clue that you've got a leak: It's a diagnostic for where is my leak. If you haven't seen that yellow light then 'Sum Ting Wong.' Find out why.

I thought all these cars had it but my '95 GST came with the wiring, the switch in the overflow bottle, and a place for the light in the cluster but a blank place (black) where the mask for the icon should have been. The car is not a young virgin so who knows what other turbo Eclipse that cluster came from but for sure it never had that light.

It does now, though ... and it works. ;-)

Note to self: Add 'water pump' to list of things to be done when timing belt gets changed next spring. And thanks to those who made water pump recommendations on this thread.
 
Last edited:

dwb

Proven Member
136
52
Sep 9, 2021
Broomfield, Colorado
Just a bit of info on the overheating issue and why it *might* be OK in this case - if you lost enough coolant to drop the level below your thermostat, you were most likely seeing artificially high temps on the gauge because your temp sensor is no longer reading coolant temp but rather the vapor/water neck temp. If you sustained those temps then it might be a different story.

Not too long ago I blew a heater hose on a short drive. The gauge almost immediately pegged but when I pulled over the engine was just warm to the touch.
 
Support Vendors who Support the DSM Community
Boosted Fabrication ECM Tuning ExtremePSI Fuel Injector Clinic Jacks Transmissions JNZ Tuning Kiggly Racing Morrison Fabrications MyMitsubishiStore.com RixRacing RockAuto RTM Racing STM Tuned VR Speed Factory

Latest posts

Build Thread Updates

Vendor Updates

Latest Classifieds

Top