Transmission Leaking at Cooler Line - Page 8 - Chevy TrailBlazer, TrailBlazer SS and GMC Envoy Forum



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Go Back   Chevy TrailBlazer, TrailBlazer SS and GMC Envoy Forum > 2002 - 2009 TrailBlazer/Envoy Tech > 02-09 Vortec 4.2L I-6 Engine and Drivetrain > Transmission Mods

Transmission Mods Performance Transmission Modifications

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  #71  
Old 05-24-2016, 09:48 PM
witttom witttom is offline
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2002 Chevy TrailBlazer LS
Silverstone Metallic 4.2L I6 2WD
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Southwest Ohio
Posts: 1
My apologies for reviving an old thread....

I have recently acquired an 02TB on the cheap due to a variety of problems, of which I'm hoping to sort through myself. I'm hoping this project will replace my aging Jeep Grand Cherokee as my daily driver/beater/tow vehicle.

I have sorted through several of my issues and have come to this common problem with the corroded transmission fluid lines. One of my lines has a pinhole near the engine, right where a plastic clip was holding both lines. The pinhole is big enough, that it loses ATF rapidly when running (not really roadworthy at the moment). Investing the doe ($XXX) to fix it 'right' is not an option for me, and I sure as heck don't want to pull the tranny.

I tried to temporarily rig it with a "DIY compression clamp" (the 50 fix?) using a split piece of heavy-duty gas line and two screw clamps, but have failed miserably. I'm gonna have to resort to cutting away the damaged area(s) and replacing a section of line. IF I'm going to replace a section, then I would really like to cut away a whole corroded section about 2-foot long and replace it with a rubber line or something flexible.

Can someone point me in the right direction for the type of compression fittings that would be most appropriate with a flexible line, or would the screw-type hose clamps be good enough (I'm having a hard time putting my trust in those)?
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  #72  
Old 10-31-2016, 01:33 PM
romdos romdos is offline
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2002 Chevy TrailBlazer LS
Emerald Jewel Metallic 4.2L I6 4X4
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: dayton
Posts: 22
Using hose is ok...

I'm having the same problem too. Thank goodness for these forums!
If you read back through the thread, some guys have replaced the section with rubber hose and hose clamps. You just have to make sure it is shielded from the heat of the exhaust pipes and make sure you get the right kind of hose for transmission fluid. It looks like the guys who have done it, haven't had any problem with it. I know it's several months later, but if you haven't done it yet, good luck!
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  #73  
Old 06-04-2018, 10:02 PM
Krissrock Krissrock is offline
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2004 Chevy TrailBlazer LT
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Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Philadelphia PA
Posts: 42
looks like i'm next at bat for this!!
I'm glad I found this cause I was chasing tail messing around with the Front diff and changing the seals there...But once I put in new gear oil (which was clear) and was leaking was still brown looking, I knew it was the tranny instead...
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  #74  
Old 08-26-2018, 06:35 PM
bingnune bingnune is offline
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2003 Chevy TrailBlazer LT EXT
Dark Gray Metallic 4.2L I6 4X4
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Posts: 5
Transmission Leaking at Cooler Line

This is the great thing about these forums... We have got such a great resource of information from over the years and so many people with wisdom and expertise, way beyond my own! There's a huge benefit of learning from other people's trial and error processes. So, hat's off to all of you that have given all of us your insights and experiences to make us more informed DIYers!

**THIS MAY NOT BE ONE OF THOSE MESSAGES**

I have a '03 TB XLT LT with the 4.2l engine. I did quite a bit of messing around with these trans oil cooler lines. I figured that I didn't have anything to lose by trying some "backwoods" fixes with things from around the house or garage, products that someone may think would work. I wanted to try a few things to see if I could find a way that was different, yet effective. I figured this could be a learning experience for me so I wanted to give a few things a shot. I also took photos and video of them, in case they did work.

I had already bought the transmission hose, fittings, and hose clamps because I planned on cutting the line and removing the connector to fix it with the hose anyway. The only problem I had with that stuff was that it was picked out by the salesman and he gave me everything in 5/16". That is absolutely wrong! I just wish I would have read this thread before I went to the store to get it. I would have known 3/8" is correct but I didn't, so I had to go back and trade it all out.

Just to give you an idea of what I have tried, here's my story...

I came across a 19-year-old guy looking for side jobs so he could take care of his growing family, so I had him helping me around the yard. As we worked, he told me he knew all about fixing cars. He offered to help me get my truck back on the road and also work on my motorcycle that had been stored in the garage for a year. We only had to charge the battery on the truck, make sure I didn't miss any connections and get it running smoothly again.

After going through everything, he missed a pinhole leak from a cooler line inside the engine bay near the right wheel well. (For access, I removed the air filter and washer fluid reservoir. I try not to climb under the truck if I can help it... This is actually very easy to get to if your leak is at the connection and you are going to just fix that area.) My leaky line is the lower line closest to the wheel well and it leaked at the connection (the connector that can't be replaced any longer.) He tells me it's probably just antifreeze running off from the line. He dries it off and decides that he is going to use Teflon tape to wrap around it to stop any leak that might be there.

But he has no idea how to get the Teflon tape roll to go around this tight spot. He didn't want to admit he didn't know what he was doing so he ends up with these strings, almost thread-like strands of Teflon, wrapped around the line and the connector. I saw what he been doing and told him that there is no way he could possibly have sealed off the leak. He tells me that he is going to go over that with electrical tape to seal it, telling me that it isn't a high-pressure line - and it's just antifreeze. He starts to tape over that. I told him that I don't know that much about engines, but I don't think his idea is going to work. After he maneuvered the roll of tape around the tight spot with much the same results as the Teflon tape, we started up the truck. It blew right through his attempted fix. Failure - #1 Ok, we know not to do that again. He got paid for his time so far that day and a few more hours he was going to come back to work with me, but I never saw him again... Failure #1b

I took that mess off, (and let me tell you, he got some of that Teflon in as tight as a thong on spring break) working hard to get it cleaned out. I wanted to try silicone tape, which I had used to make some plumbing repairs successfully. I started wrapping the line and had good "adhesion" on the (corroded) lines, but the underside of the connector was not visible from my vantage point. I wrapped both cooler lines, just in case the other connection decides to fail sometime in the future. When I wrapped it I didn't get the bottom of the connector as well as I thought, obviously, because it leaked when I started it up again. NOTE: I don't think it was because of the material, though. I don't think I got the connection covered (like maybe I was pulling too hard and tore it on the ridges of the connector, leaving a hole or two.) Failure - #2

Here's where I started getting a little more adventurous! I took off that silicone tape and tried to use some Flex Glue around the connector and then covered it again with the silicone tape: That glue is thick and is supposed to be effective in automotive applications. After I put the glue all over the place, working it into the crevices and up from the line onto the connector, I wrapped it and made sure I did the best I could to cover the bottom of the connector a little more carefully this time. After that, I used the Flex Seal clear spray to try to seal anything I might have missed with the tape. I used cardboard to block any overspray. I figured that if the guy on TV could spray a screen door, replace the bottom of a bass boat with it, and make it float on the water, it could seal up any possible areas I may have missed between the glue and the silicone tape!

I didn't have a chance to let everything cure for the 24 hours it called for in the directions. I had to get the truck inspected, licensed and then pick up my kids from the airport with all of their luggage. I had about two hours between when I finished working on it <all night> and when I had to leave for my inspection appointment. The truck failed the inspection and took forever, so I wouldn't have been able to make it to the license office anyway. When I got home later, it was leaking again. I checked the line and it had either blown out through the Flex Glue, the silicone tape and the Flex Seal, or the guys inspecting it didn't like my creativity. I mean, who doesn't like to use macaroni noodles in some way when you already have glue out anyway?! Just kidding...

I actually think the mechanics (during the inspection) scraped away at the bottom of the line because they didn't like the way it looked. They told me that someone had really screwed around with it and 'it was a mess.' It had a tear through the layer of spray and the tape, and I couldn't figure out how it blew out with the way it looked. So, this could have been a possible fix, but I may never know! Failure? - Undetermined

Fast forward about a month and a half. I'm back out working on the cooler line, but this time I'm not messing around with it! It's time to get serious. I used a mini pipe cutter (about $5-$7 at a big box hardware store or a little more at an auto parts store) to cut the line on both sides of the connection. Yes, it was a tight fit and I had to use a hacksaw to finish off the cut. I took out that bad section and verified that the 5/16" parts weren't going to fit. Nope, no way I was going to be able to use any of it. I don't want it to fail again by using the wrong parts, so off I went back to the store!

While I had the section with the connection in my hands, I could really check it out. I took the black plastic connection ring off after getting the REALLY DRIED Flex Glue out of all the spots I pushed had it into and found that the glue was filling any openings there were on the connection, except one. The only mistake I think I made was that I should have twisted off the connector, put glue around the line going into the connection, and then replaced the connector before applying it to everything like I did. Given the proper cure time and full coverage, this may have worked...

After taking all of the 5/16" stuff back, I was only able to get the 3/8" trans hose from the store. They didn't have the right size fittings in 3/8" so I am forced to use the hose clamps alone. It went from a $45 repair to a $4 repair (not including the pipe cutter or the silicone tape I already had for around the house, etc.) I have seen many people say that using clamps is a successful way to repair the line, so I'm pretty confident that it will resolve this issue finally. If not, I'll edit this post to tell you if it's no good.

Failure? - TBD

I'm on my way out there to work on it right now... Wish me luck!

Oh, before I go...a DISCLAIMER: I want to mention that these were only experiments and learning experiences for me. I do not suggest nor endorse using any of these experimental methods as a final repair for anyone on their vehicle. Like I said at the beginning, "I planned on cutting the line and removing the connector to fix it with the hose anyway." Don't try to hold me responsible for making bad decisions when repairing your vehicle.

Remember that you carry your most valuable cargo in your vehicles - your family - and they are far more important than cutting corners and putting them in danger by following unproven or experimental advice from the internet.
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  #75  
Old 08-26-2018, 06:58 PM
mddombrowski mddombrowski is offline
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2006 Chevy TrailBlazer LT EXT
Summit White 4.2L I6 4X4
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Charlotte, NC
Posts: 188
Well put.
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  #76  
Old 09-17-2018, 12:52 AM
BlackBravada BlackBravada is offline
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2002 Olds Bravada
Black 4.2L I6 AWD
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by bingnune View Post
This is the great thing about these forums... We have got such a great resource of information from over the years and so many people with wisdom and expertise, way beyond my own! There's a huge benefit of learning from other people's trial and error processes. So, hat's off to all of you that have given all of us your insights and experiences to make us more informed DIYers!

**THIS MAY NOT BE ONE OF THOSE MESSAGES**

I have a '03 TB XLT LT with the 4.2l engine. I did quite a bit of messing around with these trans oil cooler lines. I figured that I didn't have anything to lose by trying some "backwoods" fixes with things from around the house or garage, products that someone may think would work. I wanted to try a few things to see if I could find a way that was different, yet effective. I figured this could be a learning experience for me so I wanted to give a few things a shot. I also took photos and video of them, in case they did work.

I had already bought the transmission hose, fittings, and hose clamps because I planned on cutting the line and removing the connector to fix it with the hose anyway. The only problem I had with that stuff was that it was picked out by the salesman and he gave me everything in 5/16". That is absolutely wrong! I just wish I would have read this thread before I went to the store to get it. I would have known 3/8" is correct but I didn't, so I had to go back and trade it all out.

Just to give you an idea of what I have tried, here's my story...

I came across a 19-year-old guy looking for side jobs so he could take care of his growing family, so I had him helping me around the yard. As we worked, he told me he knew all about fixing cars. He offered to help me get my truck back on the road and also work on my motorcycle that had been stored in the garage for a year. We only had to charge the battery on the truck, make sure I didn't miss any connections and get it running smoothly again.

After going through everything, he missed a pinhole leak from a cooler line inside the engine bay near the right wheel well. (For access, I removed the air filter and washer fluid reservoir. I try not to climb under the truck if I can help it... This is actually very easy to get to if your leak is at the connection and you are going to just fix that area.) My leaky line is the lower line closest to the wheel well and it leaked at the connection (the connector that can't be replaced any longer.) He tells me it's probably just antifreeze running off from the line. He dries it off and decides that he is going to use Teflon tape to wrap around it to stop any leak that might be there.

But he has no idea how to get the Teflon tape roll to go around this tight spot. He didn't want to admit he didn't know what he was doing so he ends up with these strings, almost thread-like strands of Teflon, wrapped around the line and the connector. I saw what he been doing and told him that there is no way he could possibly have sealed off the leak. He tells me that he is going to go over that with electrical tape to seal it, telling me that it isn't a high-pressure line - and it's just antifreeze. He starts to tape over that. I told him that I don't know that much about engines, but I don't think his idea is going to work. After he maneuvered the roll of tape around the tight spot with much the same results as the Teflon tape, we started up the truck. It blew right through his attempted fix. Failure - #1 Ok, we know not to do that again. He got paid for his time so far that day and a few more hours he was going to come back to work with me, but I never saw him again... Failure #1b

I took that mess off, (and let me tell you, he got some of that Teflon in as tight as a thong on spring break) working hard to get it cleaned out. I wanted to try silicone tape, which I had used to make some plumbing repairs successfully. I started wrapping the line and had good "adhesion" on the (corroded) lines, but the underside of the connector was not visible from my vantage point. I wrapped both cooler lines, just in case the other connection decides to fail sometime in the future. When I wrapped it I didn't get the bottom of the connector as well as I thought, obviously, because it leaked when I started it up again. NOTE: I don't think it was because of the material, though. I don't think I got the connection covered (like maybe I was pulling too hard and tore it on the ridges of the connector, leaving a hole or two.) Failure - #2

Here's where I started getting a little more adventurous! I took off that silicone tape and tried to use some Flex Glue around the connector and then covered it again with the silicone tape: That glue is thick and is supposed to be effective in automotive applications. After I put the glue all over the place, working it into the crevices and up from the line onto the connector, I wrapped it and made sure I did the best I could to cover the bottom of the connector a little more carefully this time. After that, I used the Flex Seal clear spray to try to seal anything I might have missed with the tape. I used cardboard to block any overspray. I figured that if the guy on TV could spray a screen door, replace the bottom of a bass boat with it, and make it float on the water, it could seal up any possible areas I may have missed between the glue and the silicone tape!

I didn't have a chance to let everything cure for the 24 hours it called for in the directions. I had to get the truck inspected, licensed and then pick up my kids from the airport with all of their luggage. I had about two hours between when I finished working on it <all night> and when I had to leave for my inspection appointment. The truck failed the inspection and took forever, so I wouldn't have been able to make it to the license office anyway. When I got home later, it was leaking again. I checked the line and it had either blown out through the Flex Glue, the silicone tape and the Flex Seal, or the guys inspecting it didn't like my creativity. I mean, who doesn't like to use macaroni noodles in some way when you already have glue out anyway?! Just kidding...

I actually think the mechanics (during the inspection) scraped away at the bottom of the line because they didn't like the way it looked. They told me that someone had really screwed around with it and 'it was a mess.' It had a tear through the layer of spray and the tape, and I couldn't figure out how it blew out with the way it looked. So, this could have been a possible fix, but I may never know! Failure? - Undetermined

Fast forward about a month and a half. I'm back out working on the cooler line, but this time I'm not messing around with it! It's time to get serious. I used a mini pipe cutter (about $5-$7 at a big box hardware store or a little more at an auto parts store) to cut the line on both sides of the connection. Yes, it was a tight fit and I had to use a hacksaw to finish off the cut. I took out that bad section and verified that the 5/16" parts weren't going to fit. Nope, no way I was going to be able to use any of it. I don't want it to fail again by using the wrong parts, so off I went back to the store!

While I had the section with the connection in my hands, I could really check it out. I took the black plastic connection ring off after getting the REALLY DRIED Flex Glue out of all the spots I pushed had it into and found that the glue was filling any openings there were on the connection, except one. The only mistake I think I made was that I should have twisted off the connector, put glue around the line going into the connection, and then replaced the connector before applying it to everything like I did. Given the proper cure time and full coverage, this may have worked...

After taking all of the 5/16" stuff back, I was only able to get the 3/8" trans hose from the store. They didn't have the right size fittings in 3/8" so I am forced to use the hose clamps alone. It went from a $45 repair to a $4 repair (not including the pipe cutter or the silicone tape I already had for around the house, etc.) I have seen many people say that using clamps is a successful way to repair the line, so I'm pretty confident that it will resolve this issue finally. If not, I'll edit this post to tell you if it's no good.

Failure? - TBD

I'm on my way out there to work on it right now... Wish me luck!

Oh, before I go...a DISCLAIMER: I want to mention that these were only experiments and learning experiences for me. I do not suggest nor endorse using any of these experimental methods as a final repair for anyone on their vehicle. Like I said at the beginning, "I planned on cutting the line and removing the connector to fix it with the hose anyway." Don't try to hold me responsible for making bad decisions when repairing your vehicle.

Remember that you carry your most valuable cargo in your vehicles - your family - and they are far more important than cutting corners and putting them in danger by following unproven or experimental advice from the internet.
Hi! Just wondering how the fix is going? I have the exact same problem with my 02 Bravada.. I gotta repair..
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