The only thing i could figure it was after checking the "easy" things was the head gasket. tore it down this morning and sure enough that was the problem. now that i have it a part i am going to do a complete rebuild on it, then it will last me for a while longer and i won't have to worry to much about it.
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I don't know your model, but generally if it has an electric fan check that it is coming on at the right temp. If only a mechanical fan, check the fan clutch, belt tension, and insure all shrouds and air dams are in place and undamaged.
OVERHEATING CAN BE CAUSED BY LOW COOLANT,TOU COULD HAVE TOO MUCH WATER IN COOLANT SYSTEM YOU NEED 50/ 50 MIXTURE OF ANTIFREEZE AND WATER TO RAISE BOILING POINT.IF COOLANT OKAY, IF VECHICLE OVERHEATING DURING SHORT DRIVE COULD HAVE BAD THERMOSTAT AND FAULTY RADIATOR PRESSURE COOLANT CAP. IF THERMOSTAT OKAY CHECK WATER PUMP IF WATER PUMP WEEP HOLE LEAKING.YOU NEED NEW WATER PUMP.IF VECHICLE OVERHEATING WHILE VECHICLE SITTING IN A LONG TRAFFIC LINE.CHECK TO SEE IF COOLANT FANS RUNNING IF NOT CHECK COOLING FANS FUSE AND RELAYS.IF ALL IS GOOD. YOU COULD HAVE ENGINE COOLANT TEMPERATURE SENSOR CODE SCAN FOR FAULTY PCM. HOT WIRE TO SEE IF COOLANT FANS WORK IF NO FAN MOTOR BAD IF YES COOLANT FANS WHEN HOT WIRED. FAULT COULD BE IN THE COOLANT FANS WIRES MAKE COOLANT FANS RECEIVING POWER IF NOT YOU HAVE BLOWED FUSE OR BAD RELAYS.
Water pump impeller could be bad or thermostat is stuck shut. I would change thermostat first,easy to change, cost under $10.00 Water pump is hard to change in this van, you have to remove right tire, then inside wheel well, then loosen 3 top motor mount bolts which will lower engine so you can get to water pump and tensioner.
About the only things are the thermostat and the water pump.There could be something with the radiator but that is the rarest because the water shoots straight through.If it overheats fairly rapid,it's most likely the thermostat.Sometimes a water pump will let you go 20-30 miles before overheat.The thermostat is cheaper and easier if you're going to try it systematically.Overheat will probably cause the check engine light too.Good luck! Greg