Nissan Murano Forum banner

1 - 20 of 26 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I think my radiator needs replacing. Been trying to find the leak, its always a quart or less low but learning it leaking at the top so leaks when full but not after the level drops.
I am looking on line and seeing several for $70..Also watched a youtube video and looks fairly simple.

Has anybody switched theirs and bought one online?
 

·
Registered
2003 Nissan Murano SE AWD
Joined
·
333 Posts
I did mine after road debris struck it and cracked the tank. Maybe my mostly non-talking video can help...

I got mine at Autozine and it was around $90. In my video I said next time I'd remove it from the bottom, but I don't think that would be easier unless using a lift to get the front end higher in the air than most ramps and jacks can achieve. I had to bend-flex the top-passenger-side of the fan housing to remove it (in order to clear the silver A/C line), and it wasn't that hard or extreme. Everything sounds loud when an HD camera is sitting on top of the action.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
I did mine after road debris struck it and cracked the tank. Maybe my mostly non-talking video can help...

I got mine at Autozine and it was around $90. In my video I said next time I'd remove it from the bottom, but I don't think that would be easier unless using a lift to get the front end higher in the air than most ramps and jacks can achieve. I had to bend-flex the top-passenger-side of the fan housing to remove it (in order to clear the silver A/C line), and it wasn't that hard or extreme. Everything sounds loud when an HD camera is sitting on top of the action.
Thanks, i did see a few on amazon for $80...I bought one and swapped the one in my 97 Civic. Took me an hour but it didn't have a tranny cooler
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
I did mine after road debris struck it and cracked the tank. Maybe my mostly non-talking video can help...

I got mine at Autozine and it was around $90. In my video I said next time I'd remove it from the bottom, but I don't think that would be easier unless using a lift to get the front end higher in the air than most ramps and jacks can achieve. I had to bend-flex the top-passenger-side of the fan housing to remove it (in order to clear the silver A/C line), and it wasn't that hard or extreme. Everything sounds loud when an HD camera is sitting on top of the action.
Good video, you convinced me to swap it myself.
First a shop will probably charge me $250 for the part. Then another $250 labor plus "shop fees" and other junk.

Thanks!!
 

·
Registered
2003 Nissan Murano SE AWD
Joined
·
333 Posts
I'm assuming the 1st Gen MOs are designed the same way in most areas, so it shouldn't be hard. A did a few things while doing the radiator job...it took a solid hour. The two tranny cooling lines are easy to slip off, just have something handy to either clamp-off the hose to prevent from losing CVT fluid, or do what I did and use a bolt and stuff it in the hose. I don't like clamping-off (pinching) original hoses...they're already soft from age and heat, and I don't want to weaken them further. I don't think I even bothered to jack up the car. There's not much that needs to be done underneath. The lower hose disconnection and the two tranny lines, after first removing the rock guard that I forgot to show in my video.

Definitely the job would be easier if you remove the battery and battery tray. Removing the battery w/tray takes about 15-20 minutes, and the same reinstalling. I got the radiator removed in eight minutes and the new one back into place in six minutes, so that was better than dealing with the battery w/tray. However, if you're not comfortable with bend-flexing the fan housing, you might want to remove the battery w/tray to make things a little easier, especially if you don't have patience to deal with the logistics of having to make small moves with the fan housing and keep reassessing where everything is and what needs to happen next. The biggest mistake I made during installing it was, I had the angle too great on the driver's side, and a fan strut/guard was bumping the underside of the battery tray. By changing the angle of the fan housing, I was able to slide that fan strut/guard into place easier.

BTW, when I said I would drop it out the bottom, I was referrring to the radiator and fan housing as one unit. There's seems to be room to do it, and you wouldn't have to remove the battery w/tray or push back that fuse box, etc. However, since it only took eight minutes to remove and six mintues to install, the time-savings is really minimal. Plus, as I said, I think I'd need the car up higher in the front in order to comfortably drop down the radiator.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
world is changing Walmart and home depot both sell radiators. Got it from Walmart for $70 with shipping.
Before anybody says " euhhh you bought a radiator from WalMart" It's probably the exact same one sold at most auto parts stores for more
 

·
Registered
2003 Nissan Murano SE AWD
Joined
·
333 Posts
I think my radiator needs replacing. Been trying to find the leak, its always a quart or less low but learning it leaking at the top so leaks when full but not after the level drops.
I wonder if your coolant reservoir (a.k.a. overflow/expansion tank) line is leaking at the bottom (beneath the tank) and coolant is dripping down the pass-side fender well and you're not seeing it. Maybe when you're topping off the the radiator and the coolant heats up it's spilling over into that overfow tank and leaking out. Once the radiator has found its own level based on normal operating temperature, you see it as low and fill it up again because and the same thing happens all over again. Are you seeing coolant in that overflow tank? If not, maybe pour some water in there and see what happens. Perhaps the bottom of the tank is cracked or the hose is leaking. Also possible the hose is split somewhere from the radiator neck down to the tank, and it only leaks when the coolant is hot and under pressure and expanding outward. I think you'd see some coolant, though. Be sure to check for fluid drips rearward of the oil filter/cooler area. As it's been mentioned here before, you could be spewing coolant out the exhaust and never notice it unless you were really looking for it. Losing a quart over how many days or miles of driving?
 

·
Registered
2003 Nissan Murano SE AWD
Joined
·
333 Posts
world is changing Walmart and home depot both sell radiators. Got it from Walmart for $70 with shipping.
Before anybody says " euhhh you bought a radiator from WalMart" It's probably the exact same one sold at most auto parts stores for more
I don't think anyone here is a snob, and Walmart has a good, no-hassle return policy, and their pricing is nice...so... Why not? I never even gave them a thought as a source for a radiator.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
78 Posts
I replaced the radiator on my 2006 Murano last year. Only thing to add was that my alternator died a few months later and it's almost the same work to replace both at the same time so if you haven't changed your alternator yet it may be worth doing it at the same time and keeping the old one as a backup.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
I wonder if your coolant reservoir (a.k.a. overflow/expansion tank) line is leaking at the bottom (beneath the tank) and coolant is dripping down the pass-side fender well and you're not seeing it. Maybe when you're topping off the the radiator and the coolant heats up it's spilling over into that overfow tank and leaking out. Once the radiator has found its own level based on normal operating temperature, you see it as low and fill it up again because and the same thing happens all over again. Are you seeing coolant in that overflow tank? If not, maybe pour some water in there and see what happens. Perhaps the bottom of the tank is cracked or the hose is leaking. Also possible the hose is split somewhere from the radiator neck down to the tank, and it only leaks when the coolant is hot and under pressure and expanding outward. I think you'd see some coolant, though. Be sure to check for fluid drips rearward of the oil filter/cooler area. As it's been mentioned here before, you could be spewing coolant out the exhaust and never notice it unless you were really looking for it. Losing a quart over how many days or miles of driving?
I filled it up and noticed steam..Water was on top of the plastic cover but looks like it's leaking around the top seam. Which make explain why I really never see anywater.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
78 Posts
On mine it was a tiny crack in the plastic top that only leaked under pressure. I initially used one of those plastic weld kits which looked promising but once the plastic gets to that age it's just a matter of time before it starts leaking elsewhere and with new replacement radiators being cheap it's worth taking that route along with new main hoses.

For the radiator I used STAYCO CU2578
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
It looked wet around the seem but I couldn't tell for sure. I did notice it holds a quart after a week or after a month. Like it drops to a certain level and stops
 

·
Registered
2003 Nissan Murano SE AWD
Joined
·
333 Posts
I filled it up and noticed steam..Water was on top of the plastic cover but looks like it's leaking around the top seam. Which make explain why I really never see any water.
markayash, I'm not quite sure what you mean. Are you saying the cap or area around the overflow tank was wet and you saw steam from there? Or are you talking about a seam somewhere else on the radiator that was wet and steamy? Coolant will always produce expansion when the engine and everything get hotter. As everything cools, some of the coolant should get drawn back into the radiator unless you have a leak somewhere.

How do you really know your cooling system is low? You can't visually check that looking into the radiator cap neck. I think your system might be fine, but that you're adding coolant a lot and it's constantly refilling the reservoir and actually over-filling it to the point it erupts via cap venting. If your temp gauge reads normal, you're getting heat, you're not smelling coolant, and you're not seeing any visible signs of coolant on the ground or on anything, I think you might want to hold off adding coolant for a few days and just monitor things. To check the coolant level, first thing in the morning, when everything's cold, use a turkey baster or a simple siphon pump and transfer the coolant from the overflow tank to the radiator, recap it, drive around, and do the same thing next morning. If there's no leak (or no significant leak - and provided you're not using too much water) the coolant transferred over to the radiator should bring it close to the top (inside the radiator). It's a very simple test. I keep a turkey baster in the spare tire area for many reasons. Only $1 at Walmart. :)

I would highly recommend getting an old cellphone and placing the CVTz50 app on it and monitoring everything from there. You'll get more accurate readings than you will from the car's gauges. BTW, are you diluting concentrated coolant, or are you using the 50/50 premix? If you use plain water, it will evaporate in the system and vent...too much water isn't good for the system.
 

·
Registered
2003 Nissan Murano SE AWD
Joined
·
333 Posts
I replaced the radiator on my 2006 Murano last year. Only thing to add was that my alternator died a few months later and it's almost the same work to replace both at the same time so if you haven't changed your alternator yet it may be worth doing it at the same time and keeping the old one as a backup.
Good point. It's no fun having to drain coolant and take everything apart again. Problem is, I've had new alternator's fail, and had old ones last forever. I'm still on my warranty replacement alternator from 2008 or 2009. In fact, I just pressure-washed it to degunk it.

In the end, it's a crap shoot, but definitely something else to at least consider while you've got certain areas exposed. Always a good practice to plan out what you're doing, and think about other things you can tackle at the same time, to make life easier and keep your car more problem-free.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
It's on top somewhere. It was wet around the middle front but seems like more steam than physical water. Looks like to me its leaking at the seam where the top crimps/solders on
I am an old-school mechanic and smell that burnt antifreeze all the time, have since I got it from my sister a couple of months back.
I am adding water to the radiator and usually a quart.

My thought is the water leaks straight into the fan and evaporates when going down the road so I never see it. I checked the hose good and it didn't seem to be dry.
 

·
Registered
2003 Nissan Murano SE AWD
Joined
·
333 Posts
I speak from experience... Trying to save money was I was younger, I put too much water in my cooling system and it started blowing hoses. Water produces too much steam. Since you're smelling coolant, maybe check the area to the left of the tranny fill tube and below the upper radiator hose. As I've mentioned here before, I had some fine-spray venting from a U-shaped hose that connects metal lines around the engine. It was spraying down while driving and never revealed itself until the pinhole turned into a slice and everything came bursting out. Refer to attachment for the hose I'm talking about.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
I speak from experience... Trying to save money was I was younger, I put too much water in my cooling system and it started blowing hoses. Water produces too much steam. Since you're smelling coolant, maybe check the area to the left of the tranny fill tube and below the upper radiator hose. As I've mentioned here before, I had some fine-spray venting from a U-shaped hose that connects metal lines around the engine. It was spraying down while driving and never revealed itself until the pinhole turned into a slice and everything came bursting out. Refer to attachment for the hose I'm talking about.
I will check it, thanks!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
I will check it, thanks!
Silly question, was watching your video again. Can you pull out and reinstall the radiator if you just remove the fan and push it toward the engine? or it there not enough room.
I don’t see any leaks around the hoses and will swap it next week when I get back home.
 

·
Registered
2003 Nissan Murano SE AWD
Joined
·
333 Posts
Silly question, was watching your video again. Can you pull out and reinstall the radiator if you just remove the fan and push it toward the engine? or it there not enough room.
I don’t see any leaks around the hoses and will swap it next week when I get back home.
Interesting question. It never really occurred to me to try wrestling the radiator back into place between the A/C condenser and fan housing. Just seems like a good way to scratch the new radiator or damage the A/C condenser, or even dent or compromise a flowtube. Seems to me you're dealing with the same spacing, and now trying to get the lower radiator hose connector and cooling line connecters past the fan housing while lifting it out. Maybe give it a try and let us know how it worked out. I know I couldn't see how to remove the radiator and fan assembly as one unit. Just wasn't enough room without taking off something else.

EDIT: But, if I were going to try that, I'd first remove the old tranny hose fittings, since I think those will be your biggest problem. Although most support components are easier to install before the primary part is installed, I don't think you're causing more work or headaches by dropping in the new radiator without the new tranny hose fittings in place and then attaching them after everything above is reinstalled. Since you don't need the old radiator, it's a good test subject to see how easily (if at all) it can be pulled up and out. You'll be able to decide during removal if it's possible or at least "new part friendly" to do the new installation that way, and can make any necessary adjustments. Just be careful not to smash into the A/C condenser and create another job for yourself. :)
 
1 - 20 of 26 Posts
Top