I noticed my coolant level was down to the min line on the reserve tank. So I decided to raise the level up between the two lines. I got the proper coolant for the car and started filling. I did not notice just how fast the tank was filling up and ended up with a level which was between the max line and the top of the tank.

I thought about using a baster to take the fluid out, but my wife (bless her heart) decided to throw our baster out, and I don't have anything at hand that can pump the fluid out. I searched on the internet for solutions but the first suggestion everybody gives is "use a baster".

So how can I fix the fluid level without using a pump?

2 Answers 2


If you look at the top of the tank, you'll see a screw that holds the tank to the car frame. You can't miss it. This is the only screw that holds the tank. So:

  1. Find an appropriate container for the fluid you are going to remove.

  2. Unscrew the tank cap and take the tube out. Unscrew the screw that holds the tank.

  3. Take the tank out and dump the fluid into the container you found in the first step.

  4. Put the tank back in. There is a plastic tab at the bottom of the tank that fits into a slot. Make sure that the tab fits in the slot before you screw the screw back in. Screw the cap back on.

  5. Dispose of the waste fluid according to your local laws. In most jurisdictions, it is considered hazardous waste that must be disposed of specially.



Depending on what type of vehicle and the coolant overflow reservoir type (pressurized/non-pressurized), the easiest way to accomplish this is to take the small hose the fluid travels to the overflow through off at the radiator and suspend it down below the level of the reservoir. Gravity will do the rest. Of course you need to drain it into the appropriate container and dispose of it properly.

If your vehicle has a pressurized type reservoir, you need to first, relieve the pressure on the system, then find a suitably small hose line as described above. You'd want to remove it from the point farthest away from the coolant tank. Drain as appropriate.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .