2013 3.0 TDI - Probable EGR Valve coolant leak - Club Touareg Forums
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post #1 of 30 Old 02-11-2018 Thread Starter
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2013 3.0 TDI - Probable EGR Valve coolant leak

I had to add one quart of coolant to the reservoir this weekend. I was backing up out of garage, low coolant warning came on the display, and yes, sure enough, the reservoir was low. Just about at the minimum marked level. I could clearly see the sensor electrodes.

This was the SECOND time since late December 2017. I also had the identical same thing happen. First engine start of the day, backing out of garage, and light came on. The first time it happened on a late December Saturday morning, I drove to VW dealership and bought $27 gallon of coolant. Added almost exactly a quart then too.

I looked for a leak under the Touareg, but nothing. No wet stains whatsoever. I had NEVER had an issue in almost 5 years, so I thought MAYBE evaporation?? Although with the 10K dealer performed service intervals, I always expected that they would catch and fill coolant if needed. Now that this is the SECOND 1 quart fill in a exactly 6 weeks, I am bothered. Last 10K was in November, and I was into the service area in early December for the emissions compliant repair. They did change out one glow plug, no reason given, during the emissions repair.

Reading thread make sme think it's an EGR unit elaking coolant into the exhaust. I see no oil contamination in the reservoir, so it's not likely to be a head gasket.

I HAVE NOTICED in the last few weeks on cold mornings during acceleration that I see a large white cloud on occasion. I usually never noticed anything before. I was chalking it up to the cold mornings and water vapor but now I think it's a bit of coolant blowing out the exhaust.

I'll be calling the dealership tomorrow, to take it in for diagnostics. Extended platinum warranty in force, $100 deductible, thank goodness.

QUESTIONS:

1) Would a coolant system pressure test reveal a leaking EGR valve?
2) Any other possible areas where loosing 1 quart over 6 weeks could go unnoticed, water pump, etc, anywhere? As I said before, NO visible leaks on the garage floor so I think it's heading out the tailpipe.
3) IF it is the EGR valve, could this also cause other possible problems "down the line". DPF filter blockage/failure, Catalytic Converter poisoning, turbocharger failure??? I would be pissed if this caused some damage not diagnosed now, and later out of warranty "became" an issue.
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post #2 of 30 Old 02-11-2018
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Touaregs don't use coolant.

The symptoms you describe do point to the EGR and quite a few owners have reported that their EGRs have failed.

VW Touareg models are as follows:
Generation 1: T1 is model 7LA & facelift T2 is model 7L6
Generation 2: T3 is model 7P5 & facelift T4 is model 7P6
Generation 3: T5 is model CR7 [Not available in "VW Atlas" North America!]
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post #3 of 30 Old 02-11-2018
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I had a coolant issue a couple months ago on my '14, and ended up noticing it collecting at the bottom of the engine bay after a thorough look. I'd figured you'd see a leak underneath, but the coolant is pumping while the engine is running, so unless you're running while parked for a bit it's all going to be dropping out on the road (or vaporizing). If you're seeing white cloud that is probably an indicator of coolant leak in the EGR. Coolant system pressure test should reveal the problem. Water pump could be a leak source too. My dealership replaced the water pump first, then pressure test afterwards revealed incorrectly seated / reused seals all the way down to the EGRs thanks to incompetent replacement of the HPFP by a different VW dealership that predated my ownership. Good luck.
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post #4 of 30 Old 02-11-2018 Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by noobytoogy View Post
Touaregs don't use coolant.

The symptoms you describe do point to the EGR and quite a few owners have reported that their EGRs have failed.

I'm fairly sure the EGR is the culprit, as it does bear similarities to other threads on coolant leaks.

Coolant is also synonymous with anti-freeze. I guess it depends on the climate, do you need anti-freeze, or coolant? Fortunately for Touareg owners, it's both.



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post #5 of 30 Old 02-12-2018
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Coolant = anti-freeze for me!

VW Touareg models are as follows:
Generation 1: T1 is model 7LA & facelift T2 is model 7L6
Generation 2: T3 is model 7P5 & facelift T4 is model 7P6
Generation 3: T5 is model CR7 [Not available in "VW Atlas" North America!]
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post #6 of 30 Old 02-13-2018 Thread Starter
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Visited the dealer yesterday. They performed a pressure test on the coolant system. I paid for the diagnostic.

No leaks found visually, or in the engine dirt shield. And the pressure test was pronounce OK. No leak found. At best, the only other thing they could do it to leave the pressure testing rig on the Touareg overnight to see if it leaks over a longer period. But because it would require a loaner, they can't do that unless VW were to approve. (I have no other means of transportation, and I work and live too far from the dealership for their shuttle).

Well....Ok then...I made a magic marker scribe line on the reservoir when the coolant is HOT, full operating temperature reached. I'll keep an eye on it over the next few weeks.

With my tow season coming up, I am very wary of having a catastrophic failure of the EGR or anything downstream of the EGR because of a leak.
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post #7 of 30 Old 02-18-2018
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Look into used oil analysis. I know it is extremely sensitive for finding things like blown head gaskets due to the elements only found in coolant making their way into the oil. Not sure whether coolant making it into EGR flow then the combustion chamber for burning would be enough.. that'd be a question for bobistheoilguy forums or blackstone/polaris themselves.

It'd just cost you a fill of oil and the ~$40 for UOA testing.
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post #8 of 30 Old 02-18-2018
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pdxhaze View Post
I'd figured you'd see a leak underneath, but the coolant is pumping while the engine is running, so unless you're running while parked for a bit it's all going to be dropping out on the road (or vaporizing).
Kinda. The system is pressurized as long as the engine is hot, so even after it is shut down there is some incentive for a leaking system to still leak, at least until the engine is cool. The question is only whether the leak is external or internal.. ie easy(ier) to spot, or not.
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post #9 of 30 Old 04-07-2018 Thread Starter
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Well here it is, almost 8 weeks later since the second time I topped off the coolant reservoir. And, yes, I have noticed I am getting the very sporadic intermittent white cloud of exhaust, and it's almost always while under heavy throttle (3000 RPM) and let of the accelerator the RPM drops and I get a momentary white cloud. I can almost make it appear on demand, regardless of engine temperature.

I am down about one quarter inch in the coolant reservoir. Not a single indication of coolant on the garage floor, or where I park at work, same spot each day for 4 years. So I really am convinced it's getting out the exhaust through the EGR. No oil contamination whatsoever in the reservoir, so it's not a head gasket leak.

I really don't know how to talk to the VW service manager and force a repair on this. I don't want to wait until a catastrophic failure, which might leave me stranded far from home during towing this upcoming year.

I've been to the dealership once about it, and since the Touareg passed a pressure test, they determine it's OK. I can't reason through this. If it's got a coolant teak, it ain't magic, it's going somewhere, which means there's a defect/leak, which means something is wrong. Seriously bothered by their response last time i was there. I'm heading there again this morning to arrange another service visit for the same reason. I am going to pay another $50 for diagnostic. And they may again refute any problem but at least if it does fail in the near future, I can demand they use the diagnostic fees as the $100 deductible for the warranty.
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post #10 of 30 Old 04-10-2018 Thread Starter
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Dealership just called me. Service "adviser" now says they found the leak. Water pump..Only $550 plus labor... She apparently ignored that I have an extended platinum warranty.

Water pump.....???????

I asked where is the white cloud smoke screen coming from? Confused the service adviser..

I asked if there is coolant trapped in the plastic engine guard under the vehicle. Silence...

I stated that I will go there and they can SHOW ME the coolant leaking from the water pump and I will believe it.

Service adviser then tells me she will call me back after asking the techs about the white cloud indications....

Obviously they believe I am ignorant and will spend money on whatever they say it is.

Wow.. This "service" department. Can't they look at the EGR internally and just look for gummy residue? After all of my diagnostics and explanations describing the exact indications of coolant loss, no stains found on floor, the white cloud of smoke intermittently during driving but only when accelerating or letting of the throttle, and it is the water pump?

Is there a path from the pump to the exhaust???
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