Question about 2001 Chevrolet Cavalier

2 Answers

Overheats, smoke from TOP of engine, blows cold air from heater

It overheated on Christmas eve, I pulled over right away. Changed thermostat today, and it over heated again, AND blew cold air from the heater! No fluids leaking underneath but there is smoke coming from the top of engine(on the case that covers the valves? I guess? big silver cover on top of engine)

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  • Jackie Rogers
    Jackie Rogers Dec 30, 2013

    By the way, I have checked and filled Coolant. let it warm up and continued to fill, so i am guessing the thermostat opened.

  • Behind_Blue_Eyes
    Behind_Blue_Eyes Dec 31, 2013

    yes it can and will and if it does, you might not have to actually bleed the air pocket out... in the morning top off the radiator and you might get lucky :-)

  • Jackie Rogers
    Jackie Rogers Dec 31, 2013

    okay, waited till this morning...yep, levels dropped again. started it again. let it run, and this may sound silly, but tapped around on the hoses...and i am guessing I tapped it in the right place...cause, then it suddenly went down again...topped off again...and tada...I now have heat inside vehile. didn't over heat, actually never got to full temp and blew andother hose. but...the fan on the rad. never came back on? is that normal? and what/where is the "ECT". is this something I should be changing? could it be the issue?

  • Jackie Rogers
    Jackie Rogers Dec 31, 2013

    sorry, I am a disabled woman, alone with a g-baby. need help. Husband in hospital from injury, and we are stuck out in middle of no where...so not to be a pain in rear...just trying to do it myself.

  • Behind_Blue_Eyes
    Behind_Blue_Eyes Dec 31, 2013

    the fan will not kick on until the engine temperature reaches about 212ish. then it will cycle off around 200. So don't be alarmed if the fan didn't come on yet... it the gauge passes 3/4 mark and the fan still isn't on, then worry. Now remember that is cooler/colder weather it may take some time for the engine to reach 212 degrees even sitting still... If you DO NOT feel a thumping in the radiator hose when you've shut the engine off after an enxtended run then you are not over heating.

  • Behind_Blue_Eyes
    Behind_Blue_Eyes Dec 31, 2013

    And if you have the heat turned on inside the car, the car will never overheat sitting still. A normal heater core is designed to keep the engine cool enough during an overheating situation to pull the car safely to the side of the road and let it cool down... It will NOT let you drive the vehicle in normal traffic but it will help to keep the car from overheating without a functioning fan in the winter months... Interesting tid bit from 20 years spent within a radiator shop :-)

  • Jackie Rogers
    Jackie Rogers Dec 31, 2013

    well, now its not overheating, but pouring...I mean POURING antifreeze out the middle of the back of the engine!

  • Jackie Rogers
    Jackie Rogers Dec 31, 2013

    i am beginning to wonder if the engine hasn't blown

  • Behind_Blue_Eyes
    Behind_Blue_Eyes Dec 31, 2013

    you either have another heater or bypass hose blown, a freeze plug or a head gasket... First two or my likely than the last one because it's rare for a gasket to blow externally... Oh and the engine hasn't blown. it still runs. If you turn the key and hear a loud clunk and the engine doesn't crank over. Call the scrap yard !!!

  • Jackie Rogers
    Jackie Rogers Jan 01, 2014

    ok...what/where is the freeze [lug

  • Jackie Rogers
    Jackie Rogers Jan 01, 2014

    Add a Commentplug

  • Behind_Blue_Eyes
    Behind_Blue_Eyes Jan 01, 2014

    there are freeze plugs on the front and rear of the engine block... these plugs are used in the holes for when the blocks are sand cast... they have to get the sand out.... Now without seeing I cannot say this is the problem... as mentioned you could have a busted hose, a busted heater core or ??? this requires checking and looking.

  • Behind_Blue_Eyes
    Behind_Blue_Eyes Jan 01, 2014

    they can and will pop out in the event of freezing or over heating... they will also rust.

  • Jackie Rogers
    Jackie Rogers Jan 01, 2014

    oh boy!...I apreciate your assistance truly

  • Jackie Rogers
    Jackie Rogers Jan 01, 2014

    it got pretty hot 2 times on the 23rd. I pulled over really quick, but she blew REAL hot

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  • Contributor
  • 11 Answers

I would recommend that you start with verifying that the cooling system has been bled properly, and is completely free of any air pockets. Any air in the cooling system can cause an overheat, and can also prevent warm coolant from flowing through the heater core, giving you the cold air out of the vents. The fact that you had to add coolant, with no visual leaks, means that either the cooling system still has air pockets in it, or you have internal coolant consumption from a blown head gasket. The Ecotech motors are notorious for blowing head gaskets after a moderate to severe engine overheat. If your absolutely positive that the cooling system is full, and bled, than it may be time to (if you have access to the proper tools) perform a compression test, leakdown test, or chemical combustion gas test. I believe most auto parts stores that have rental tools should be able to provide you with the compression tester, and or the chemical, and tools needed to check the cooling system for combustion gasses. One more thing, does your cooling fan operate? Is the radiator free of debris that would inhibit air flow through the radiator?

Posted on Dec 30, 2013

Testimonial: "How would I tell If I blew the head gasket?"

  • Jackie Rogers
    Jackie Rogers Dec 30, 2013

    will start checking the air pockets tomorrow. Not sure how to tell if I blew the head gasket though.

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  • Chevrolet Master
  • 1,727 Answers

Suspect a blown hose, heater hose probably behind the engine. now when you fill it back up you have to bleed the air out of the system and the bleeder valve is usually a brass screw close to the area of the thermostat... find the leak first and foremost or catastrophic engine damage can and will occur

Posted on Dec 30, 2013

  • Jackie Rogers
    Jackie Rogers Dec 30, 2013

    Thank You, I wasn't sure HOW to "bleed" the line or where the valve was! this is next thing to do...early in the am.

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Posted on Jan 02, 2017

  • 152 Answers

SOURCE: Blowing Cold Air

It sounds like you need to do a process of elimination, by following the travel of the hot coolant.

1. Before beginning, safety must come first, so put on a pair of safety glasses/goggles and a pair of gloves.

2.Open the hood and check the coolant level, and add if needed. If you needed to add then recheck for heat after step # 3

3. Close the hood and start and run the engine to normal operating temp.

4."TURN THE ENGINE OFF"

5.Reopen the hood and lightly grasp the top radiator hose feeling for heat caused by hot coolant in the hose. Also feel the bottom radiator hose for heat, (you may have to access the bottom hose from under the car) (while down there look for coolant leak...dripping) If heat is somewhat equal between the two hoses move on. If not there are three areas to check
A) Your thermostat may not be opening
B) Your radiator might be obstructed/clogged
C) Your water pump may not be functioning

6. Locate the two smaller hoses that lead to and from your heater core (a small radiator type device located inside cab under the dash that connects through the firewall) (one is connected at the water pump to the heater core the other is connected at the engine to the heater core) one hose may have a regulator (a small mechanical device operated by either cable,electric,or vacuum that controls the flow of coolant into the heater core) attached inline

7. With the hood raised, restart the engine and adjust the heater control to max heat. Locate a safe area under the hood (free of all moving parts) to access and grasp each of the smaller heater hoses, check for heat, caused by hot coolant in the hose, also check the hose before and after the regulator described in step # 6.
If either of these locations are cold to the touch we can safely say we have narrowed the problem down to one or all of three things.

A) If all heater hoses are cold or only the inlet side of the regulator is hot and the other side is cold or warm, its possible that the regulator is faulty requiring a replacement or is not functioning due to inadequate cable,electric,and/or vacuum to operate it caused by a broken cable, electrical short or disconnected/ broken vacuum line, it also could be a defective (in dash) heater control unit or just a fuse if its electrically operated.

B) If the inlet hose to the heater core is hot and the other outlet hose is cold or warm then its possible that the heater core is obstructed/clogged, requiring a flush out or replacement.

C) If all heater hoses are hot (you may also feel a flow vibration in the hoses) then you should have heat, unless the under dash duct work is disconnected or blower fan is not operating.

I hope this helps.....

Posted on Feb 20, 2009

  • 66 Answers

SOURCE: Truck overheat after thermostat was replaced. Blows cold heat too

Have you checked the coolant to make sure its full.Try this.Run the truck with the radiator cap off and let it warm up.When it reaches normal temps sqeeze the rubber hoses.These hose should be a little hard to squeeze.If they are the thermo and water pump are fine.

Posted on Apr 28, 2009

  • 401 Answers

SOURCE: 2006 Pontiac Torrent heater blowing cold air

hi
check the heater hoses and if both are hot then the mode door is broken
i have replaced 2 in the torrents(not a nice job)

Posted on Jun 21, 2009

  • 108 Answers

SOURCE: Air, no heat '98 Astro. No leaks, engine

It sounds to me that you may have 2 problems. 1). Air Lock in the Heater Core. 2). Inactive Heat Damper in the Plenum.

But since you state that the Heater Hoses do not get warm that is indicative of an Air Lock in the Heater Core. This is a relatively simple fix. It is best performed COLD but requires a method of pressurizing the Cooling System. All reputable Auto Parts stores Sell and/or Rent Pumps that temporarily replace the Radiator Pressure Cap for Leak tests and curing Air Lock. The Collant Level must be filled FULL then pressurized and then loosening the Highest Heater Hose at the Firewall so that Air and a Small Amount of Coolant escapes. Once all the Air has escaped tighten the Heater Hose Clamp, remove the Pressure Pump, Restore the Collant Level to FULL, re-install the Pressure Cap and Start the Engine. As it Warms up you should be able to feel coolant running through the Heater Hoses and they should become warm.

Posted on Dec 07, 2009

  • 398 Answers

SOURCE: 2002 chevy cavalier is over heating but running

R the fans blowing, make sure its full of water...waterpump may be bad

Posted on Dec 10, 2009

Testimonial: "fan wasnt blowing at first then started to... water pump huh? thats what i am hearing from many"

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