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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hey guys,

So I had my car on idle for maybe 30 minutes before I started noticing what I thought was smoke coming out from under the hood. Upon inspection I realized that my coolant overflow tank has a thin crack on the top and because the coolant was bubbling it was shooting the liquid up (coming out almost like a lawn sprinkler) and since it's cold it was turning to steam. I immediately drove home, which took about 30 minutes. When I got home and checked and there was barely any coolant left in the tank. I also drove it for several miles (about 3) later that night, I really know I shouldn't have but I absolutely had to. I just had a few questions:

1.) By driving it home when the amount of coolant in the tank was getting low, and later that night when it was very low, did I do permanent damage to my engine?
2.) Is this the part? I know there's an aftermarket one for $5 cheaper, but I expected the price difference between aftermarket and genuine to be larger, so I'm just double checking.
3.) Should I replace the cap as well? Because of pressure and not exactly fitting on the new part? This was the only one I could find, but it has mixed reviews.
4.) I checked Volvo's manual and it says that it take's genuine Volvo 50/50 Antifreeze/Water mix. Where can I find this? I imagine only certain types of antifreeze work with my car?

Thanks so much!
 

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apav,

If the coolant was just low in the overflow you did not do any harm to your engine. I replaced mine last year, and I recommend you replace the cap as well as the little hoses. All together it is pretty cheap, and it makes sense to do it all one time, then come back later the replace a hose or something. Yeah, that looks like the part. You just have to find the hoses and the cap.
 

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You should be OK if there was still any coolant in the tank. Don't press your luck though.
Some people have had luck with aftermarket tanks, some have not. The one in your link looks good. Price is right also.
Personally I'd reuse your cap & call it good. You don't need to mess with poor fit. Quite rare for the factory one to fail.

Coolant is a dealer item. $15ish from the discounters but then you have shipping... Volvo actually uses one of the more basic coolants. This has been covered in detail before in other threads. The bottom line is this. Use Volvo if it's readily available. If you must go with an alternative, Walmart Peak or Prestone will work. Try to avoid mixing types. Flush your system out well with fresh water, drain & refill with coolant of your choice. There is a radiator drain & also a block drain just above the oil cooler.

Tank
Flush Will show location of radiator drain. Not sure why it doesn't mention the block drain though. Makes life much easier.
 

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I've used an aftermarket tank, and it was just fine. The aftermarket cap did not seal right, but also didn't leak.
 

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Don't mean to hijack the thread but I'm also interested in the op's 4th question.

I went through the whole cracked expansion tank issue (mine was a leak in the lower rad hose though), and in doing so I had to top up my coolant a number of times in which I just used whatever antifreeze I had in the garage... Should this be a concern and should I have my coolant flushed and replaced with this said Volvo 50/50 coolant??

Thanks
 

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The short answer is yes.
Pentosin NF is an equivalent but depending on the outlet may be more expensive than OEM.
Zerex G-05 (HOAT) would be my next non OEM choice. Can be hard to find though.
The "works in every car" are generally Dex-Cool clones (OAT) & not really speced for Volvo.

Every type uses a different technology to reach the same goal. Protect engine components with long service life. By mixing you reduce the service life & some odd combinations can even cause sediment to form. If you are replacing coolant every year or 2 it's no big deal. Any cheapo coolant will do.
 

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Mine had generic green coolant in it when I bought it. So rather than mixing stuff I just use regular 50/50 pre mixed green stuff. So far not an issue.
 
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