Wife driving with no antifreeze

We recently had the water pump replaced on my wife’s truck. The dealership (it was still under warranty) forgot to refill the antifreeze after the repair. She has been driving the truck for 3 days now around 100 miles a day. The dealer says they will inspect the engine to ensure everything is ok. Is this sufficient or is there something else I should have them do?

I don’t know how the engine could escape damage. Since they have a vested interest in this inspection they’re going to do one should not blindly accept an everything is fine diagnosis.

There must have been some residual coolant in there but overheating can ruin piston rings either by seizing them in the ring lands, coking oil around them, or removing the ring temper (springiness so to speak).
Cylinder walls can also be ruined and this generally means an engine overhaul.

It may appear to run fine but could be an oil burner. A compression test should be a first step and both a dry and wet test should be run.
I would strongly suggest that if they say a compression test shows things are fine you should ask for a copy of the repair order where this is written down. A competent mechanic should always write this down; both the dry test readings and the followup wet test ones.

Post those results back here for discussion and we’ll see if it sounds legit or not.

Find out how much coolant was actually in there. Document the heck out of this incident for when problems show up later.

Get your own independent inspection done by a third party.

Was it filled with water only? If so a flush and fill will take care of the mistake.

Thanks for the info. She just had it towed to the dealership. Once I get some more information I will sure to post. Thanks for the help!

More Information Is Needed.

How was it discovered that the coolant was not refilled. Did the dealer call ? Please give the details. Did the truck overheat ? Did warning lights alert your wife and she immediately shut it down or kept driving ?

More information, please. What were the symptoms ? What was the truck doing ? Why after 3 days did she decide to have it towed ?


There’s more to this story. You can’t drive 100 miles without coolant.

If it still runs fine it probably is ok, ie there is no damage so no claim

There has to be more to this story. There is no possible way this truck could have survived three days of driving 100 miles a day with no coolant. It could have been a botched repair and the coolant leaked out over the three days. Did the truck overheat? How many times? What did she do when it overheated, drive on or shut it down immediately?

Note: Water is a form of coolant. Anti-freeze is also a form of coolant.

If the car had no coolant I can’t see how it drove that far let alone not result if damage, unless it was an air cooled engine.

A certain amount of confusion can result because of the loose use of the terms.

Did they forget to add water and or anti-freeze?

Did the gauge or idiot light ever indicate the truck was running too hot?