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Scott, Master Mechanic
Category: Australia Car
Satisfied Customers: 251
Experience:  30 yrs experience with Aussie, Japanese & British cars
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Toyota: radiator reservoir bottle filling with water on our

Customer Question

radiator reservoir bottle filling with water on our 80series cruiser Diesel
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Australia Car
Expert:  Scott replied 2 years ago.
Hi there,
Firstly can I ask has the head been removed & or replaced? not quite clear there.
If the engine is pumping water out through a good radiator cap into the overflow bottle, & on checking (cold engine only)the radiator contents one finds it very low after a recent fill, most likely its pumping combustion gases into the cooling system, ie a blown head gasket or cracked head. This is usually accompanied with overheating.
It may simply be a bad radiator cap return valve if the engine is running fine otherwise. That will prevent suction back into radiator on engine cool-down..
Let me know if you need further help here..
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Th e head was removed and the one who reconditioned it said it was pressure tested and resurfaced. Replaced new radiator cap.before lunch today warmed motor Allowed it to cool .Have just checked reservoir bottle....Is still full Removed radiator cap and there was pressure as I removed cap
Expert:  Scott replied 2 years ago.
Hi again,
Clarifying the cooling system check here, & I'm assuming the vehicle isn't overheating in any way..
With engine cold, remove radiator cap & top up radiator to full if necessary. Also, adjust coolant level in overflow bottle so its on the low mark (if it has one, if not simply half fill it - definitely not completely full). Start & run engine until at operating temp (may take up to 10 minutes). At that point there should be a rise in coolant level in the bottle. Do not remove cap with hot engine.
Allow to sit overnight. It can take several hours for the system to cool completely & recover coolant. Remove cap & the radiator should be completely full, & the bottle level returned to low or half - wherever you had filled it to originally.
If the radiator has lost coolant, & the bottle remains above the original level, check that you have precisely the right cap, ie one with a recovery valve..
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Hello Scott ,Have done that procedure many times
Expert:  Scott replied 2 years ago.
Hi again,
Ok - So can I safely assume that the coolant level is low in the radiator, & the bottle is full after cool-down?
Just trying to differentiate between an internal issue causing pressurisation of the cooling system, & internal loss of coolant, or a radiator recovery issue.
If there's an internal issue, the engine will - use water; run hot; may blow water or 'froth' out of recovery bottle overflow & or fill the bottle & not recover to radiator. It may also fail a pressure test & a Teekay (combustion gases in coolant) test, but not necessarily.
If it's a recovery issue, you simply wont have recovery - water level in radiator will stabilise at a certain point, as will recovery bottle, checked cold. If the wrong cap is fitted, or if there's a break in the coolant return line or radiator fitting, or if the line is blocked, or the bottle has deposits blocking the tube outlet, you will have the same non-recovery issue.
We need to eliminate the recovery issue before investigating for internal issues..
Cheers Again