No heat thick rust colored antifreeze - Nissan Forum
GA16DE 1.6L Engine Engine Discussion: 91-99 Sentra, 95-98 200SX, 91-93 NX1600

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post #1 of 6 Old Jan 21st, 2008, 06:11 PM Thread Starter
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No heat thick rust colored antifreeze

Flushed engine over the summer due to a thick rust colored antifreeze clogging up the entire colloing system. It had ran fine after the flush on just water. I did not add any antifreeze. Well months later to the present date.. I had to add antifreeze to the system due to the winter temps and now the horrible thick rusty colored fluid is back. I have no heat and a few days previous the engine had overheated. We added more coolant and water and now it doesnt overheat, it just has no heat what-so-ever! I am puzzled! i think i smelled coolant on the spark plugs when we changed out the plugs,distributor, and wires out. So I am absolutley clueless. What in the world could be causing this viscous fluid problem and no heat. (96 sentra GXE 1.6)

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post #2 of 6 Old Jan 21st, 2008, 10:46 PM
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If you smelled coolant on the plugs, I'd suspect a blown head gasket. Do a leak down test on the engine and cooling system.
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post #3 of 6 Old Jan 22nd, 2008, 02:32 AM
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Do you have white smoke coming out from the exhaust?If so it is almost positive you have a bad head gasket.
Sounds to me it is the engine oil leaking into the coolant making it look rusty.
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post #4 of 6 Old Jan 22nd, 2008, 09:54 AM
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The thick rust color could be from somebody adding a stop leak to the cooling system.
The obvious possible leak sources are radiator, heater core, water pump and Cylinder head.
Check your Oil for coolant or white foam.
If you lost so much coolant the engine overheated and you cant see fluid on the floor or in the passenger foot well I would be very concerned that this is the head gasket.
Good Luck...

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post #5 of 6 Old Jan 22nd, 2008, 01:40 PM Thread Starter
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Got it! (I think):)

The antifreeze I used over the summer was this off brand universal mix. The kind that states you can mix with any color (orange stuff). Well the same thick fluid appeared when I added that crap back then. So I flushed with just water and the car was fine. That was back in the summer, ok so now.....Last week I added the same damn crap and low and behold the nasty thick crap was back causing the same issue, so Last night I purchased the plain old green antifreeze and some prestone radiator flush, and cleaned the hell out of the cooling system, hooked the garden hose up, propped the front end up and let that baby run for an hour or so. I added the regular old antifreeze and mixed it with water, burped the air out and then...... Viola!!! I have heat back and the coolant looks fine and it elimanated the horrible temp needle fluxuations. I do suspect some residual rust due to only running water over the summer. There is no smoke coming from exaust, no leaks around engine systems and no leaks on the interior. I am convinced it was that orange antifreeze coagulating and preventing the coolant from circulating freeley throughout the system. I do not belive that there will not be a chain reaction of mechanical faluires here in the next few weeks, such as the heater core, however it has not happened yet and let's hope it doesnt BTW (I have never added a stop leak additive to the system). The car has 170k miles on it and throughout those long miles, the mechanical problems have been pretty uneventful, just the basics. I guess it is that time for the car to start showng its age a bit.
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post #6 of 6 Old Jan 23rd, 2008, 01:32 AM
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I actually had the same problem (rusted color coolant and no heat) on my 200sx. It ended up the thermostat was in the wrong position and in turn got jammed open over a quarter of an inch. I replaced the thermostat and flushed the system, heat works great, car stays at a steady engine temp and color is still good.

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