Part two of hoping for some help

Our other car is a 96 Chrysler Sebring with 130,000 miles. It is losing radiator fluid, about a half gallon every 75 miles. It doesn’t overheat unless it gets too low, and the heat works very well. After any trip longer than a half hour, we can see oily smoke coming from the very front of the car (it smells oily, anyway)on the passenger side. Every now and then there will be a small puddle of oily fluid, very fine and clear. The puddle always seems to happen about the same area that we seem smoke after a long trip.

The other fluids all are fine, so it’s not some other leak.

There is some brownish looking residue at the bottom of the coolant chamber. I’m sure a flush would take care of the residue, but I have no idea what is going on otherwise. This is our only working car at this point and we don’t want to kill it, but we also don’t want to hand it over to a radiator mechanic without knowing what needs to be fixed.

thanks for any input.

You have a leak, it could be a bad hose, hose clamp, or crack in your radiator. How can we who can’t see it render an opinion before you take it to a radiator shop? If this is your only car get it fixed soon before it overheats and you damage your motor.

Besides leaking antifreeze is toxic to animals, who lick it because it is sweet. Stop putting in coolant and driving the car with a known leak, get it looked at, if you don’t like the estimate from one garage, take it to another.

Is this a 3.0 Mitsubishi? If so, there’s an O ring under the intake that tends to defy detection …since you can’t see it.

The engine is a 2.5 liter V-6, not sure of the manufacturer.

There’s no such animal that I’m aware of. In 4 bangers there was a 2.5 …but not in the 1996 model year. In 1996 it would be 3.0 Mitsubishi …3.3/3.5/3.8 from Chrysler.

ANY decent repair shop can pressure-test your cooling system and locate the leak. This is auto-repair 101…

That is very helpful. Thanks.
I have looked everywhere I can, but I cannot see the source of the leak. The weirdest thing is the the fluid that is leaking does not look like radiator fluid at all, more like brake fluid. As I said, no other fluids are being lost. It seems to me the radiator fluid is being distilled or something.
Based on your advise I will ask my regular mechanic (who I trust) to do a pressure test. I’ve brought car to him once for the same problem, and he just changed the pressure cap and thermostat, so I assume that either or both were defective, but it didn’t fix the problem.
thanks again.

Try replacing the coolant cap on the top radiator hose. My daughter has a 2002 Sebring that had the same problem. We replaced the coolant cap and the problem was solved. I don’t mean the reservoir cap. On these cars (for some reason unknown to most of humanity) there is a fitting on the upper radiator hose close to the engine. They are located on the passenger side on the 4 cylinder engines and on the driver side on the v6 engines. When these things leak you see very little coolant because most of it evaporates due to its close proximity to the hot engine. This is an inexpensive repair and the new cap can be purchased at any auto parts store. If this is not the solution look for a leak on the under side of the hose. Another possibility is a worn out water pump which is on the passenger side of both the 4 cylinder and v6 engines. If you have a 4 cylinder engine you should have the timing belt replaced when you have the water pump replaced if that is the problem. The v6 engines have a timing chain that does not require replacing unless the wear out. My family owns 3 Sebrings; a 96, an 02, and an 04.

Now that I’ve looked at the other replies and your responses I think the water pump is the culprit. Try looking under the passenger side of the car while the engine is running to see if you can find where the leak.

One thing that anti-freeze does not do is evaporate well. That stuff seems to last forever on the shop floor (I see you think engine heat speeds things up) but I have seen it sit it crevices and wells on engines forever.