Ford Escape Coolant Leak

  • Year Repaired: March 2021 – Present
  • Symptoms: Coolant was leaking underneath the engine compartment
  • Cause: Leaking quick connect on the oil cooler coolant pipe. The rubber quick connect seal was shrinking in the winter causing frequent leaking.
  • Outcome: Removed the oil cooler pipe, fused the quick connect together with gorilla glue, and reinstalled.
  • Material Cost: $100 (for new part)
  • Time: 6 hours


The coolant leak was acting up every winter for maybe 4 years. Previously the coolant was leaking from the water pump (a common issue for 2013 Ford Escapes) so that was replaced. This time the leak was coming down slightly more on the driver’s side, about inline with the front wheels. At first it seemed to be coming down from the transmission, but that was just the coolant flowing. I was finally able to locate the issue.

The oil cooler coolant pipe (location shown by my finger) runs from the back and top of the engine compartment to the front and bottom of the engine compartment where it meets up with the oil filter compartment. After removing the pipe, it was apparent that the leak was coming from the quick connect in the middle of the pipe. A new replacement part leaves out this quick connect and makes the part one long pipe, hinting at this being a common issue. The quick connect has a rubber seal inside, and it was this that was probably shrinking in the cold causing a leak. I fused the two parts together with gorilla glue which is waterproof and heat resistant after curing.

After reattaching the coolant pipe and starting the engine it quickly overheated. Apparently working on coolant pipes puts air in the system that needs to be pushed back out if it isn’t vacuum sealed. Here is a video on how to do that if you didn’t vacuum seal it before working on it (like I didn’t).

This pushed the air out of the system and everything is running smoothly!

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