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Cooling Discuss all of the aspects of cooling that you can think of! Radiators, transmissions, electric fans, etc.

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Old 07-31-2011, 04:37 AM   #1
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Coolant "gurgling" after motor shut off

OK here is one for you. I took my Trans Am 350 TPI out yesterday, a hot day, did 1 hour 30 minutes at about 80 MPH, sat in the fire up lanes at the track, pulled a series of 14.6 @ 94 runs (thanks for asking) and then drove home, another 1:30 at 75-80 MPH.

I stopped off to pick my daughter up from my mother in laws and when I turned off the motor the coolant was making a rushing, gurgling, frothing noise.

I let the car stand 2 hours or so then drove home (about 8 miles) at about 40-50 MPH mostly.

Once again when I shut the motor off its gurgling and sounds to be bubbling but there is no bubbling in the header tank.

The coolant in the header tank is usually pretty clean but it is now real brown.

Some of the coolant appears to be forced past the filler cap on the header tank as there is brown staining there.

It runs quite hot on the gauge but not right to the top (190-200?)
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Old 07-31-2011, 05:39 AM   #2
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Re: Coolant "gurgling" after motor shut off

This happened to my car as well, turned out to be a bad radiator cap. - it wasn't holding pressure. Went to Autozone and shortly after resolved my issue.
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Old 07-31-2011, 09:36 AM   #3
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Re: Coolant "gurgling" after motor shut off

I agree, pick up a new radiator cap, take the oppertunity to flush the radiator and the issue should be solved.
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Old 08-01-2011, 07:54 AM   #4
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Re: Coolant "gurgling" after motor shut off

thanks, I'll let you know how I get on
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Old 08-04-2011, 07:26 PM   #5
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Re: Coolant "gurgling" after motor shut off

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Originally Posted by alistair View Post

The coolant in the header tank is usually pretty clean but it is now real brown.

That is generally a sign that combustion gasses are getting into the cooling system. Usually a head gasket seeping some. GM starting having that problem in the late 70's with the introduction of the "light cast" cylinder heads and worsened with the introduction of aluminum cylinder heads on motors.
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Old 08-05-2011, 05:30 AM   #6
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Re: Coolant "gurgling" after motor shut off

OK, the coolant appears clean in the header now...

I will see if I can test the head gaskets with a leakdown test or something.

the car smokes bad when started - it burns oil - so I think the valve stem seals are shot. I had been hoping to get the coin to replace the heads with some performance ones so if the head gasket is leaking this will cure that also!

Thanks for the tip.
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Old 08-05-2011, 05:35 AM   #7
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Re: Coolant "gurgling" after motor shut off

What color is the "smoke" at startup?

My camaro does a puff of bluish smoke at startup and it smells like burnt oil. Stupid valve seals. If the smoke is white and it does a hard start, it might be burning coolant slipping past the head gasket.
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Old 08-05-2011, 05:42 AM   #8
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Re: Coolant "gurgling" after motor shut off

bluey-white-grey smoke... Smells oily

I got this car off a long line of people who have beat it hard and I'm catching up on all their missed maintenance I think.

It only does it once its been sat for a few hours, so mornings and so forth.

It does often turn a few times before firing but I think thats because the plugs are fouled up a little, I need to change them. Have some, just the time has flown by...
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Old 08-05-2011, 11:05 AM   #9
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Re: Coolant "gurgling" after motor shut off

Mine was doing the exact same thing, down to the coolant reservoir having discolored brown fluid.
Turned out to be a failed water pump and radiator. The water pump had a small drip on the bottom through that hole which was landing on my harmonic balancer, so I never seen a leak from the ground. New radiator from pepboys 136~, and a cap @ $7. Think the water pump was like $40 for the "HD" one.
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Old 08-05-2011, 04:28 PM   #10
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Re: Coolant "gurgling" after motor shut off

I've not long ago replaced the water pump. I would hope I don't have another one failing. I will check the radiator out, make sure coolant is passing through it OK. The coolant level stays OK (allowing for the small amount which seems to be pushed out of the cap on the header tank)
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Old 08-05-2011, 04:47 PM   #11
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Re: Coolant "gurgling" after motor shut off

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I've not long ago replaced the water pump. I would hope I don't have another one failing. I will check the radiator out, make sure coolant is passing through it OK. The coolant level stays OK (allowing for the small amount which seems to be pushed out of the cap on the header tank)
Well the water pumps are easy to install, and tbh if you have your receipt for a new one, they almost always have limited lifetime warranties. There's not really a good way to check out your radiator unless you have a temp gun to check the difference of degrees on the incoming/outgoing sides.

My radiator looked great inside, but it was causing my car to overheat slowly (45min drive in city), and ultimately caused my water pump to fail.
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Old 08-06-2011, 09:26 PM   #12
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Re: Coolant "gurgling" after motor shut off

Try letting the car run while the fans are running,when the fans stop,shut the car off and see if it still happens.
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Old 08-07-2011, 12:37 AM   #13
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Re: Coolant "gurgling" after motor shut off

Its gurgling or boiling? I have a 2001 Blazer that "gurgled" for a while. When the summer temps hit triple digits it went from a gurgle to a boil. My temp gauge never went 10* over "normal" which wasnt bad for a manual fan + triple digit outside temp. I did the basic cooling matainance, thermostat, radiator cap, coolant flush. Now no more gurgle.
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Old 04-18-2012, 09:21 PM   #14
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Re: Coolant "gurgling" after motor shut off

i have just installed a newly put together. 350tpi, coolant seems to be mixing with my oil. i have changed the intake gaskets. and still coolant is getting in someplace. I have the gurgling noise and brown stains in the overflow tank. motor is hard to start. I also have coolant leaking behind the motor passenger side. could this be a leaking head or head bolts? motor sounds good doesnt over heat. it idles fine then after 5 mins. it idles upto 3k rpm. any ideas? thanks
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Old 04-18-2012, 09:21 PM
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