Question about Hyundai Motor 2003 Elantra

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Engine overheats on 2003 Elantra VE

I was traveling to work this week (approx 35 min drive with traffic lights, stop and go traffic). I lost heat about 25 mins into the drive. After I stopped and looked, the hose from the radiator to the expansion tank came off. I put it back on and drove to work... still no heat. Found out that I lost a significant amount of antifreeze. Once I put about 4L (1 gal) of premix (to top it off) I got lots of heat. However, the gauge for engine temp still went hard into the H. It takes about 10 mins of driving in -5 to 0C (22 - 32F) weather to get to the normal point of just below half. It takes about another 3 to 5 mins to go to H.
The car is an automatic, uses 87 octane fuel (who can afford more on a regular basis in Canada?) I'm sure of the engine size, either 1.6 or 1.8L. The cooling system may have a leak, but given that there was a significant build of pressure (to pop the exp tank hose off) probably not.

Any thoughts on what to test next? I did test the thermostat - it works fine - opens at 190.
Thanks for your help!

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  • rstone677 Nov 23, 2008

    Okay, just a bit more info:

    Engine: 2.0L DOHC

    Water pump doesn't make a noise.

    Cooling fan does run, not sure at what temp it comes on though.

    Belts seem alright, from what I can see. Did 1/4 turn test - appears to be good tension.

  • pswilco Dec 02, 2008

    Got in my Hyundai 2003 Elantra and no heat.. then noticed the temp gauge wasz rising fast...pulled over as not to damage the engine...Got a ride home and will check coolant/hoses but just had an oil change last week and I am pretty sure they chk those levels....I am hoping its the thermostat...good luck

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I'm hoping this reaches you before you've damaged your head gasket. You have a bad thermostat in your car. I currently have three Elantra's in the shop torn down right now for the same problem. If you replace it now, hopefully you're ok. You may have noticed antifreeze spilling out from the reservoir, or the cap suspisciouly knocked off the reservoir (this happens when the reservoir overfills).

Replace the thermostat, and if the car isn't driving right or smokes unusually (like it's still a little smokey when you get to work) then take it to a shop and have it checked.

Also, be sure you check the thermostat when you put it in! There's a little notch that fits into a groove, if you just throw it in without lining it up correctly you will have to purchase a new housing and that's not cheap. Also, take the hoses off and clean all the green hard stuff off with sandpaper so things are nice and clean, this will keep you from having hoses blow off again.

Remember to change your antifreeze once every 2 years and your trans fluid every 30,000. Those are the only 2 cardinal sins for these cars with maintenance.

Good luck.

Posted on Nov 23, 2009

  • ImportTek Nov 23, 2009

    I'm hoping this reaches you before you've damaged your head gasket. You have a bad thermostat in your car. I currently have three Elantra's in the shop torn down right now for the same problem. If you replace it now, hopefully you're ok. You may have noticed antifreeze spilling out from the reservoir, or the cap suspisciouly knocked off the reservoir (this happens when the reservoir overfills).

    Replace the thermostat, and if the car isn't driving right or smokes unusually (like it's still a little smokey when you get to work) then take it to a shop and have it checked.

    Also, be sure you check the thermostat when you put it in! There's a little notch that fits into a groove, if you just throw it in without lining it up correctly you will have to purchase a new housing and that's not cheap. Also, take the hoses off and clean all the green hard stuff off with sandpaper so things are nice and clean, this will keep you from having hoses blow off again.

    Remember to change your antifreeze once every 2 years and your trans fluid every 30,000. Those are the only 2 cardinal sins for these cars with maintenance.

    Good luck.

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PROCEDURE 1
EVAPORATIVE EMISSION SYSTEM LEAK MONITOR
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