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  1. #1
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    Radiator coolant leak (driver side, upper radiator hose area)

    Hello everyone!

    It's been a while since I posted due to not owning a Saab for a couple of years. Recently I saw one for sale, and my Saab bug came back to bite me

    It's a 1999 9-5 base with manual transmission. The car is (mechanically) in great condition, and has full service history. However it recently started having coolant system problems. First it was the coolant bypass valve, and I fixed that without much trouble. But the now there's another leak in the radiator area, somewhere around upper coolant hose connector. I thought the problem was the old rubber hose, so I replaced it. However the leak is still there, and I think it's a tiny bit worse now. I took photos of the area, and even recorded a video because it's really hard to see all the angles, but I can't see any obvious cracks anywhere.

    Since the side of the radiator is plastic, I'm assuming if there's a crack there the whole radiator must be replaced. I included some photos for more information. If anyone has any experience with this, or any advice, it would be more than welcome!

    Cheers!

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  2. #2
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    Before you run off to buy a new radiator, get yourself a new hose clamp. These radiators usually leak at the end where the tank is crimped to the core, they will also crack and leak at the hose connector when the hose clamp is way over tightened. You are correct in assuming that these radiators get replaced when they leak, but this spring tension clamp can't be over torqued when new and they are not supposed to be re used.

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  3. #3
    Saab Fan
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    Thatís a great tip! Thank you! I was thinking about replacing the clamp with a different kind (e.g. a screw-on clamp) because original ones are a pain to get off. Do you have any recommendations on which clamp to buy or where to buy it?

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  4. #4
    Saab Owner Digger's Avatar
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    Spring clamps have their own special tool, great for fast installation during assembly, not so great for service later. Get a properly sized good quality screw type clamp from any auto parts store.

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  5. #5
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    Thanks for the advice! I really appreciate it. I'll buy one today and will update this thread once I replace it.

    Do you use some sort of lubrication when you put on a new hose? Something to prevent sticking and make removal easier down the road?

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  6. #6
    Saab Owner Digger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dsvorc41 View Post
    Thanks for the advice! I really appreciate it. I'll buy one today and will update this thread once I replace it.

    Do you use some sort of lubrication when you put on a new hose? Something to prevent sticking and make removal easier down the road?
    This is one of those things you do not want to lubricate for easy removal. Sticking is good and use a hose hook to break the seal for easy removal.

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  7. #7
    Bruno
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    that's exactly what i would say

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  8. #8
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    It looks like it's the radiator. I replaced the clamp, but the leak is the same as before, so it must be the plastic side of the radiator.

    I am going to replace the radiator and the lower radiator hose. I already replaced the upper one, so that's pretty new. Do you have any advice on other parts that should be replaced along with the radiator? For example, I found that lower hose should be changed with the radiator because it very difficult to access otherwise. Thanks again for all the tips! It really helped me pinpoint the culprit

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  9. #9
    Saab Owner Digger's Avatar
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    Might as well do the heater hoses too. New belts and hoses are cheap insurance against engine damage or an expensive tow and with those factory style spring clamps on the car, you could be running with 20 year old factory hose. Blow one of those on the road at rush hour and by the time you can get out of the traffic you're running hot enough to warp a head or toast the engine.

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  10. #10
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    Is this what you're referring to? https://www.eeuroparts.com/Parts/679...0aAqsiEALw_wcB

    Thanks!

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