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Mk Ii Mondeo (W Reg) Trickling Water Noise


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Hello, new poster here. Please help me if you can.

I have owned my beloved Mondeo for just over 3 years with largely no issues at all.

However in the past week I have noticed a faint noise that sounds just like trickling water, or water being poured into water, slowly, the noise is quite faint and I only really notice it when crawling in slow traffic or when pulling away slowly on quiet roads. Although not all of the time.

My Mondeo is a W reg petrol automatic. It has had a new radiator about a year ago and the coolant level is currently at 'MAX' like it always has been. I have not noticed the temp gauge rise at all.

I am quite concerned as to what the issue might be as after I took it to a garage yesterday he couldn't find any faults, but to be honest I don't know what he checked, he did tell me that as my Mondeo had the Zetec engine it would not be the head gasket, however he did not test this (or anything else except a visual look).

I will give what ever info I can if you need anything, please ask.

Please help if you can, I am concerned that things might get worse.

Thank you.

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Moving on about 5 or so days and I still hear the noise, although not constantly, far from it.

I have heard it both at stone cold engine pulling away as well as full operating temp engine pulling away, there seems to be no constant repetition and appears somewhat random.

Upon further listening the noise sounds a bit like water sloshing in a bowl... but this makes no sense to me why I hear it only occasionally.

The noise appears to be coming from behind the steering wheel area although i don't know this for sure, as i am basing it on what i hear when i am driving.

Any ideas please?

2 separate garages have both said the same thing 'until you lose water or it gets much worse we cant do anything'.

Which helps me not.

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Not a hundred percent sure if it is this but I have heard someone that had the same problem a sloshing water noise when driving a setting off and it turned out to be trapped water in the sills!

Think they took a bung out or drilled a hole into the sill and a couple of litres of water came out.

Sent from my iPhone using Ford OC

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Sometimes you hear this kind of noise from the Air Con. Not if you aren't using the air con, of course (so switch it off, and see if it goes away, if it is currently on).

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Thank you for the replies.

Yesterday before I went out I thought I would check the coolant level as I was told to do this, and I noticed the level had dropped about 1cm below the max (it was always on the max when I have checked it before).

Then as I pulled away I noticed the same water poured/trickling/sloshing into water noise... I then pulled over and checked the coolant level again, and it was now back to the max line...

No idea if this is coincidence or if this helps isolate any potential problem at all?

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Coolant level going up and down sounds like an airlock in the cooling system. Really you want someone with the same car/engine to tell you what experience they have of air locks (or, potentially, head gasket) and what is needed to shift them, and I can't help you there, I'm afraid.

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Start the car, remove the coolant filler cap, wait until engine is up to temp, squeeze the radiator hoses, observe expansion tank for '' burping '' to see if you have an air lock. There may also be a bleed nipple on the radiator.

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Not had a chance to test this yet, also not sure what hoses to squeeze sorry? (I am completely not mechanical)

Today using the car on a long journey, not far, but was stuck in traffic for a good while, I heard the fan come on, and just after that I heard the gurgling/trickling water sound again, whilst crawling in traffic... the two happened quite closely to each other... temperature gauge did not move above about 20-25% where it sits all of the time.

I will have to try a 3rd garage and hope someone will actually try to do something this time... as I am quite concerned and have no real idea how serious this might be.

I do not notice the water noise all that often, but when I do it is noticeable... hard to tell if it happens frequently as engine noise might be masking the sound, not sure.

I hear it most when...

A. Pulling away first thing in the morning (not always, every other day perhaps).

B. When crawling in heavy traffic and fan is on (again, not always but happened several times now).

Add in the slight dip in coolant level when I check it 'cold' and then its back to maximum a minute later when engine is running and is warming up.

Previously the coolant was always at 'max' when the engine was at cold or hot, I never noticed it fluctuate.

I never use the AC, I rarely use the heater... (trying to give as much info as possible)

New radiator fitted 14 months ago.

I have owned the car over 3 years.

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