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Hello all, and thanks so very much in advance for any help.

We recently purchased a 2012 200 Limited w/2.4L. It's our daughter's first car, so I don't want to see her stranded on the road somewhere and would like to make sure it's in tip-top condition. The car had 97k miles on it when we went to look at it. Very nice overall condition, but of course, the heater core was plugged up, so the owner's brought it into a local repair shop to have that replaced before the sale of the car. Once completed, and verified to be functioning, we bought it.

Aside from finding a leaking transmission cooler line upon getting the car home (I've since replaced both lines), the car seemed to be a good purchase. I saw that there was a recall for the catalyst, so I brought it into our local Chrysler dealer to have that done. Because there was a flash done as part of the recall, the shifting definitely characteristics definitely changed, but I'm hoping it re-learns and settles back to how it used to shift. Still, no regrets with the purchase.

Fast-forward a few weeks... Earlier this week, though, I noticed small puddles under the car. Upon inspection, it was coolant. After doing a thorough cleaning, and a quick test drive, the coolant was found to be coming from the seam where the engine bolts up to the transmission. Perplexed at how that could be (as I didn't see any freeze plugs in the parts diagrams on the flywheel-side of the motor), I'm scratching my head. Using mirrors and flashlights, I see no coolant leaks from anywhere else (water pump, lines, etc.) above/along the sides of the engine or transmission; only the bottom seam, leading me to believe it is coming from the block. In the process of trying to figure it out, I was looking through receipts from the last owner and noticed that the shop that replaced the heater core put Dex-Cool in. Knowing that mixing OAT and HOAT is a no-no, I'm really worried now with what might be going on. I noticed a gelatin-like substance in the overflow reservoir as well.

So, I'm wondering if anyone has any experience with a leak in that location? Any thoughts or advice would be greatly appreciated. I included pictures (moving inwards in succession to where the coolant is leaking) of the leak itself, as well as photos of the coolant reservoir and an example of the "gel" I wiped off the inside of the cap.
 

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2016 Chrysler 200 S, 1998 Sebring JX
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The 'gel' may be a stop-leak. If you have doubts about the correct coolant, drain, flush and refill (reservoir also) with the proper coolant.
2012 may still be HOAT coolant?
There should be an underhood label or sticker stating which coolant to install.
Leaks tend to flow downward (gravity) and rearward (road draft), however underhood turbulence can move the coolant to a different area from the leak source. Locating the leak source is the 1st step in diagnosis.
Double check the rear of the head and upper hose thermostat area? I have had the 2-piece upper radiator hose leak at the plastic joint.
 

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The 'gel' may be a stop-leak. If you have doubts about the correct coolant, drain, flush and refill (reservoir also) with the proper coolant.
2012 may still be HOAT coolant?
There should be an underhood label or sticker stating which coolant to install.
Leaks tend to flow downward (gravity) and rearward (road draft), however underhood turbulence can move the coolant to a different area from the leak source. Locating the leak source is the 1st step in diagnosis.
Double check the rear of the head and upper hose thermostat area? I have had the 2-piece upper radiator hose leak at the plastic joint.
Thank you very much for taking the time to respond. The Owner's Manual specifies HOAT (there wasn't an underhood decal to be found specifying coolant, so I'm just going by the manual). I'd gladly flush and replace the coolant, but if the motor has to come out, then it makes more sense probably to wait.

As for the leak itself, it's definitely leaking through that seam. I can wipe it clean/dry, and slowly watch the coolant seep through the seam and start to puddle on the castings. I looked everywhere else (head, thermostat housing, hoses, etc.) and everything is dry. I just have a horrible feeling that this is going to be a very costly endeavor...
 

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Attached are a couple pictures of the radiator cap and filler neck...some deposits found in both, making me wonder if the mechanic's mixing of the OAT and HOAT has now caused accelerated corrosion?
 

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I don't know what they used, but the opaque orange doesn't look very nice.
Fresh coolant should be translucent.
Verify the leak source before continuing. A pressure tester can pump up the system and accelerate a leak for easier diagnosis. Many auto parts stores will loan tools.
 

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I don't know what they used, but the opaque orange doesn't look very nice.
Fresh coolant should be translucent.
Verify the leak source before continuing. A pressure tester can pump up the system and accelerate a leak for easier diagnosis. Many auto parts stores will loan tools.
Thanks for the response and suggestion. The car is getting pressure tested tomorrow morning. I'll let you know what we find. Again, thanks for the suggestion.
 

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After doing a pressure test, at 15-1/2#'s there was finally a little trickle from the corner of the thermostat housing. According to the shop, it looked like it flowed down to the top of, and into, the bell housing. They loosened the transmission up from the block and spread it apart just enough to drain a substantial amount from the bell housing. They replaced the thermostat housing and then did a thorough flush of the entire cooling system. (I requested Zerex G-05 be installed.) So, we'll see what happens. I'll report back after a few weeks to let everyone know if that was indeed the problem, but at this point, I'm hoping so. Again, thanks all for taking the time to respond.
 

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Hi there
A couples days ago I got same your problem so could you please tell us the results after changing the thermostat housing.
Thanks
 

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Sorry for not following up sooner. Because of everything going on, the car's been sitting in the garage, so we haven't been driving it much. We've probably put a few hundred miles on it since the issue, and so far, it hasn't been marking it's territory in the garage. So, as of right now, I think that the thermostat housing fixed the issue.
 
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