The GoWesty Cooling System Pressurization Tool provides a simple way to test your coolant reservoir cap, check your system for coolant leaks, and bleed the air out of the cooling system when the engine is COLD and the conditions are safe.
In a Vanagon, the top of the radiator is higher than the coolant bottle in the rear (where you add coolant). When filling an empty system, whatever air is in the radiator (above the level of the top of the coolant bottle) stays in the radiator... because water doesn't flow uphill. Also, any air remaining in the system in the form of bubbles will accumulate in the radiator. Contrary to popular belief, simply lifting the front of the vehicle with a jack does not help. In fact, one could argue that it actually exacerbates the problem!
The more air in the radiator, the less effective it is at keeping your engine cool. It is like having a small radiator that looks big. Failing to get all the air out of the radiator can cause all sorts of phantom cooling system performance issues—and some that are not so phantom, like a complete melt-down of your engine.
This GoWesty tool does exactly the same thing as the OEM tool shown in the Bentley Repair Manual on page 19.17 (part number VW1274 or VAG1274B). Our tool may not be as robust, but—unless you are a professional mechanic needing daily use—this one will do the trick for a lot less money!
• Hand pump with built-in pressure gauge
• Rubber valve stem to adapt the Schrader-valve end of pump hose to the nipple on the coolant bottle cap
• Detailed instructions for checking cap, testing for leaks, and thorough bleeding of the cooling system