As the subject line says, I have a 2000 Jetta GL - apparently with a coolant leak. It's not a bad one, I've had the coolant level low alert come on twice and both times I put some purified water in (about 1 pint) and it didn't come back for about a month and a half. The problem, of coarse, is that is does come back.
What I'm looking for is an educated guess on what I can expect a mechanic's bill to look like for finding and fixing something like this. Are we talking $200 or closer to $2000? I don't have a garage, let alone the tools or the knowledge to really deal with this myself.
Thanks in Advance for Your Input!
In rec.autos.makers.vw.watercooled, Mister.Lull wrote:
Look for it while the engine is hot. If you don't see the leak, get some proper antifreeze-- pre-mixed or mix your own. Top it up once per month. Keep some in the trunk.
If you see the leak, then the fix would probably be much easier. If it is a hose, then cheaper. If it is a radiator, then still I don't think it should approach your pessimistic estimate.
get a pressure test done ASAP. most likely its the early sign of a head gasket failure
Yikes... a headgasket failure is very, very, very unlikely! I haven't replaced one in several years and it was because the owner drove the car "overheating" for many miles. Cause was a leaking waterpump.
finding the leak IS the guessy part of estimating repair costs worst case - cracked block least - loose hose clamp and a range of faults in between like tom said - top off coolant and investigate
you didn't say how many miles on the car, but most leaks have been coolant hoses, waterpump, coolant outlets on the cylinder head. And even a radiator. You may get a clue where the leak is by looking very closely for "pink" colored stains which is signs of dried up coolant. Any dealer should give you and estimate for around $50 +/- a few $$$.
I have a 2001 Jetta that was leaking coolant pretty badly (had to check it every time I drove the car) and just found out the seal connecting the reservoir to the radiator was broken. It was $55 for the pressurized check to see where the leak was coming from and an additional $300 to fix it. Seems like a lot for a small problem but I had to do it. Be sure you use a 50/50 mixture of G12 coolant & water.
~ Ms. K