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Super Mechanic
Super Mechanic, Master technician
Category: Chevy
Satisfied Customers: 17220
Experience:  29 yrs. exp., ASE master, cert. in G.M. electrical, a/c, susspension, brakes, electronic steering
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I have coolant puddles when I park my car, but not spraying

Customer Question

I have coolant puddles when I park my car, but not spraying or over the engine when I drive. However, I have been driving in town and only highway speeds for a few miles if at all for the past week. Prior, only small puddles. Passenger side, behind the wheel. Small wetness below the water pump but inconclusive
JA: Has the vehicle ever overheated? And when was it last serviced?
Customer: No, no change in temps. Last serviced 3 months ago. Has slight oil leak and engine was cleaned to determine where it was leaking. Hoping to with this oil change. Has 176,000 miles. Well-maintained so that helps.
JA: What is the model/year of your Chevy?
Customer: 2006 LT. 3.9L
JA: Are you fixing your vehicle yourself? What have you tried so far?
Customer: I may fix it myself. I use a Chevy dealer for other repairs since there aren't many other options in my town.
JA: Anything else you want the mechanic to know before I connect you?
Customer: The oil sensor was replaced earlier this year, second time in 70K miles. First time it was leaking. Second time because of malfunction. That is it.
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Chevy
Expert:  Super Mechanic replied 10 months ago.

Hello and welcome. My name is ***** ***** you for visiting the site, I am reviewing your question and will reply shortly, thanks.

Expert:  Super Mechanic replied 10 months ago.

That could be the water pump, (leaking when not running). Have you had a pressure test done to it? There was a factory service bulletin on a leak 'near' the water pump though.

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Not yet. I can request one with my oil change since I cannot do it at my home. I have had trouble with the car since the work done last spring - that is when the sensor went out and the oil leak started. This is new and likely due. The coolant was only down slightly since being checked. To give you an idea, in the reservoir tank, about 1/4 inch over the 3 months. However, the majority of it recently. The largest puddles are between the tank and the pump.I thought about putting white paper under the pump when it is parked for awhile it it is not running to see if the paper gets coolant or if it is oil.
Expert:  Super Mechanic replied 10 months ago.

I see, thanks. Normally if it coolant it will rinse right off with a garden hose and oil tends to stain the driveway with a residue.

Also, the water pumps on them are sometimes tricky. They will leak behind the pulley and you really can't actually see the spot that is leaking, (without taking the pulley off).

I am pretty sure that Autozone and them will do a pressure test on the cooling system free of charge, (I remember seeing them do that one time when I was there)

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Perhaps I needed to clarify. I wanted to see if it was possible to have a larger leak to the rear when it was parked and also a leak below the the water pump and crankshaft pulleys - almost directly center below the crankshaft pulley. There are no spray markings, appears to be dripping. In addition, there does not appear to be anything else on the engine. It is still clean except road dirt. That is the complexing and frustrating part. And no changes in temperature. I have been watching it and letting the car idle when parked and even leaving it in gear and idle to see if I can get it to move and nothing. No pulley sounds. Occasionally when turning the power steering will squeak on sharp turns from a stop.
Expert:  Super Mechanic replied 10 months ago.

Oh, I see. Like the water pump has a small amount, (like residue) that probably is not an actual leak but when parked there is a dripping from, (further back) somewhere else?

That would most likely be what the factory service bulletin is about, thanks

Expert:  Super Mechanic replied 10 months ago.

Let me just say that any money that you paid, or if you have a subscription, that money stays in your account until the answers are rated, (positive) regardless of how fast or how long it may take to get finished. You can FOLLOW UP AT ANYTIME, even after rating. Thanks.