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Fixed my car, but she has another problem, not sure what it is

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Apr 24, 2013, 7:19 PM

Post #1 of 2 (1069 views)
Fixed my car, but she has another problem, not sure what it is Sign In

Okay so here's the deal. 4 months ago in January my car broke down, this is what happened, I was putting water into my coolant tank (i have a 1996 buick regal), I was putting water into it because it was a waste putting antifreeze into it, when it just leaked out after about an hour of driving somewhere. well then it started to get freezing cold outside and i knew i needed to check my tank and make sure the water did not freeze before I started it, but I forgot to check it one night and I tried to get it to start 3 times, it started up everytime but then of course because the water in the coolant tank was frozen the car started to make really funny noises and kind of jerking, gergling, and finally the third time I started it like an idiot, the belt popped off (it did not break) and it started smoking. so 4 months later in april (now) I finally found someone to put the belt back on for me, and also recharge my battery since the car had been sitting so long. I took if for a test run, keep in mind I do need oil, it is not empty of oil just very low but its an older car so I have to put oil in it every once in a while. I went a mile down the road and back to see how it drove and on the way back she started to overheat which i never had a problem with if I kept water in it (yes, i know water is a bad solution but i couldnt afford to get find out what was leaking out, probably a hose or the radiator, a bit) so anyways it started over heating slightly on the way back and then the belt started squeaking like it was going to come off again and then when i pulled into the driveway and was trying to park my car, it started to smoke, i can't remember what color of smoke but im pretty sure it was just lite color so probably white smoke I guess but I was hoping that when I messed my car up from starting it while the tank was frozen that it just threw the belt off and stopped anything else from happening but I think something else is messed up, i just cant figure out what it could be and i cant afford to take it to a shop right now. My car also tends to shut off on me while im driving, it only happens like once a month but then it starts right back up with no problem. If anybody could have any idea of what could possibly be causing the belt to slip and the car to smoke and shut off please help me figure this out :0)!!! Thank you for reading!

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nickwarner profile image

Apr 25, 2013, 1:55 PM

Post #2 of 2 (994 views)
Re: Fixed my car, but she has another problem, not sure what it is Sign In

You have done a lot of damage by using just water and by running low on oil. When water is in the coolant passages of the engine, it is surrounded by metal. When it freezes it will expand. This will rupture and crack metal. Even 100 ton boulders will crack from water freezing with nowhere to go. Now there are frost plugs that will help reduce the damage, but it can still happen.

I think you need to get this towed to a competent tech and get it diagnosed to see if it is even worth trying to repair now. Do not continue to drive it.

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