Join Date: May 2004
Location: Morganville, NJ
Thanked 17 Times in 14 Posts
sorry so long
The valve you see leaking is the heater control valve. That would be an odd one to leak. I don't think I ever recall seeing one leak on any model Honda.
The gauge will NOT register unless it's severely overheated. BUT, that means there has to be coolant to conduct heat to the sensor. When the coolant gets low, there's no direct conductive path, the whole head has to do a metal to metal transfer of heat to that sensor. Plus, the gauges are "damped" as to not show intermittent temperature changes. Temps of 140-220 will show in the normal range. Temps of 225-240 will make it go to around 3/4 hot, and 240 and over the gauge will peg. The damping is a delay built into the gauge system. It will have to stay at a particular temp for a while before gauge movement takes place.
12 to 16 ounces is a moderate amount to lose. The 4 cylinders only hold 1.25 to 1.5 gallons total. Any loss will cause air pockets.
Psy, why do you change out the coolant in that car so often? It's totally unneeded, especially since Honda went with ELC type 1 a few years ago. Now with Type 2 I routinely see cars with well over 100k on original coolant with perfectly clean insides.
With the older Honda coolant, there was a need to change it as the protective layer built up by the coolant chemistry would break down and leave white residue that needed to be drained out of the system periodically. I have not ever seen this happen on a newer one that was topped off with Honda coolant.
If they've been contaminated with the wrong coolant, then all bets are off when it comes to what will happen in there. Some I've seen are just a mess. They end up plugging rads and heater cores routinely as the incompatible coolant creates an interesting jelly and white sludge in the system.
A note on Honda's coolant and mixing with oil, it would take a great LARGE amount to cause any type of jelling in the oil. With the additive mixture in this coolant don't expect to see "milkshake" in the oil. It will do similar to what Dexcool does (different chemistry, but similar additives) it creates a thick black grease, as the water evaporates out of the oil/coolant mix, and the coolant's additives make very thick black grease like deposits, especially when cold. You shouldn't use dex in Honda cars as the chemistry attacks certain plastics and rubbers and turns them to jelly and crust at the same time.
With GM's dex, it's pretty easy to tell by eye, the oil takes on a very obvious orange tint at first. I've seen MANY GM intake gasket failure and head gasket failure that will only cause the deposits I mention, and occasionally steam to come off the oil when doing a change when the engine is hot. It took several gallons of that coolant to mix with the oil and the corresponding rise in oil level to make it even start to milk up.
Another note, we're not the only ones (Honda owners) who see very gradual decrease in coolant levels. I see this all the time on Toyotas that are using their pink SLLC or LLC. None ever show a smell or obvious leakage.
Sapphire blue '04 V6 6 speed w/ full HFP, comptech ss, momo shadow, TL-S 27.2h/20 bars, intake spacer, retro chrome MH1 HIR2 highs, hella DE fogs, EBC Ultimax, subwoofer/amp, infinity rears, HD Radio, aux adapter, navi conversion.
Vermilion 1999 SVT F150 Lightning, Sylvania/Visteon Xenarc HID headlamps, '01 L turn/marker lamps, PIAA fogs, '01 up Bilstein shocks, all Pioneer speakers, Clarion subwoofer. All Redline fluids.
Silverstone 2003 Honda S2000, bone stock