Question about 2001 Chevrolet Impala

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Overheating/No Heat 2001 Impala

My girlfriend has a 2001 Impala. In the last month or so, her heat has stopped working intermittently. The low coolant light comes on. I filled the coolant and it didn't fix the problem. Her car will go all the way up past the half way mark and start making this high pitch whine/whistle noise from the engine and then it stops and the temp gauge shoots back down to about the 1/4 mark. I took the car in and got the coolant system flushed. This did not fix the problem. The low coolant light was still coming on and off. I added coolant to the hot line. Today while driving, the heat was ice cold and the temp gauge went above half way, made that whine/whistle noise and then dropped back down to 1/4 temp. The heat started working a little. I looked under the hood and noticed that the fans in the front wern't on. Today it was about 12 degrees F. Later this evening we were taking the car to get an oil change and the heat wasn't working, and while we were driving the temp gauge started going up and up and it passed the 1/2 way mark, started making the noise and kept going. it was almost all the way into the red. i quickly pulled over and shut off the car. I popped the hood and checked the coolant. still full. I felt the radiator. it was hot. I let the car sit for a few minutes and started it again. I stood outside this time. The temp gauge started going up, passed the 1/2 way mark and made the noise. The noise was coming from the front of the engine. After letting it sit for about 10min i started it up again and the temp stayed down. we drove home and still didnt get good heat. at red lights the temp would climb to 1/2 way. once we started driving it would drop back down. Is this a bad thermostat? Water pump?

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  • mgorman Mar 03, 2009

    are those hard to change? Is there anything else I can do to confirm that before I change it?

  • mgorman Mar 03, 2009

    Where are the bleeders?

  • mgorman Mar 03, 2009

    I am now leaning towards a bad thermostat. What i think is happening is that the thermostat is getting stuck closed and the engine is heating up the water and the pressure builds up and pushes past the thermostat making that noise. It sounds like a tea kettle when the water is ready. Then thermostat opens and the water rushes into the engine and quickly cools it down. Then the thermostat closes again and the process repeats. Im going to try to change the thermostat and see if that fixes the problem.

  • oldrig May 11, 2010

    blown head gasket...$$$

  • mike loshbough
    mike loshbough May 11, 2010

    if the tstat was closed you would still have heat.when the pressure builds up in the system and the fins on the water pump are bad this will turn the fins more.

  • mike loshbough
    mike loshbough May 11, 2010

    on t-stat housing and tube connecting to water pump housing

  • mike loshbough
    mike loshbough May 11, 2010

    make sure your open the bleeders before filling coolant back in because you will have a air pocket and it will act the same.

  • mike loshbough
    mike loshbough May 11, 2010

    most likely a bad water pump


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Change the thermostat and the temp gauge in the radiator

Posted on Mar 08, 2009

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