Question about 1999 Oldsmobile Alero

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The coolant light keeps coming on but the car is not overheating. it does leak coolant every now and again not all the time.

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It is the coolant level sensor that is making the light come on, your car does not have to be overheating for it to come on.
once the coolant level goes below the sensor it turns the light on.
If you fix the leak it will stop the light going on unless the sensor is faulty.
Hope this has helped.

Posted on Jun 17, 2009

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It happens while going over bumps right? then your coolant level may just be low

Posted on Jun 17, 2009

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Why is the temperature light keep coming on and the gauge keep going up and down?


Temperature Warning Light is on Inspection Service How this system works: With the exception of older, air-cooled vehicles, cars rely on a liquid called coolant (or antifreeze) to keep the engine at an optimal temperature. Coolant is a mixture of water and ethylene glycol, and it circulates around the engine block and absorbs excess heat, which keeps the engine from overheating. The coolant converts that heat to air in the radiator, and then the air is emitted, at which time the coolant is ready to absorb more heat. Without coolant, the engine would quickly ruin itself with its own heat production. Common reasons for this to happen:
  • Coolant is low or weak: The most common culprit when an engine overheats is low or weak coolant. If your car doesn't have enough coolant, then it can't absorb enough heat. While your car will naturally lose small amounts of coolant over the years, a leak is the most likely cause of low coolant levels.The proper ratio of coolant to water can also get distorted, resulting in a problem. Too little or even too much antifreeze can dramatically lower the boiling point of the coolant. A proper ratio of antifreeze to water is 50/50 to 60/40, depending on the vehicle.
  • Broken radiator fan shroud: The radiator fan shroud directs the airflow across the radiator so the air can absorb the coolant's heat. When the fan shroud breaks or becomes dislodged, air fails to enter the radiator, and the coolant will no longer have a place to direct the transfer of heat.
  • Broken or missing air dam: Along with the shroud, some vehicles have an air dam (or deflector) underneath the vehicle. If this is broken or missing then the air can pass underneath the vehicle but not also through the radiator, which will cause overheating. These air dams are essential in newer vehicles, as they force the air through the fan shroud.
  • Faulty coolant temperature sensor: The temperature sensor takes constant readings of the coolant temperature and sends that information to the engine control unit. Based on the temperature of the coolant, the engine control unit adjusts the ignition timing, the fuel injector pulse, and the operation of the electric cooling fan.
  • Bad water pump: The water pump is responsible for keeping the coolant cycling throughout the engine. After the coolant transfers its heat energy to the air, the water pump recirculates it around the engine so that it can absorb more heat. The most common water pump problems are a leaking pump, bad bearings, or an impeller that has rotted away due to a low coolant ratio.
  • Stuck thermostat: The thermostat acts as a dam for the coolant. When the engine first turns on, and it is still cold, the thermostat keeps the coolant from circulating, which allows the engine to warm up as quickly as possible. Once the engine has reached its operating temperature, the thermostat opens and allows the coolant to circulate. A stuck thermometer may stay permanently sealed and therefore keep the coolant from reaching the engine block.
  • The thermostat may also stick open. This will not usually result in overheating, but it will waste gas.
  • Broken engine cooling fan: The engine has a cooling fan that is deployed when the coolant needs some extra help. When the coolant temperature sensor notices that the coolant temperature is getting too high, the engine control unit (on newer vehicles) will initiate the cooling fan to reduce the temperature.
  • Broken thermostatic fan clutch: Older vehicles use a thermostatic fan clutch to engage the engine cooling fan, which is mounted to the fan blades. The fan clutch uses a bi-metallic spring that tightens when the temperature increases. This acts as a "high speed" option for the fan, and when engaged, it draws more air across the radiator.
  • Blown head gasket: The head gaskets sit between the engine block and the cylinder heads, and keep coolant from entering the engine's oil and combustion chamber. When a gasket blows and coolant seeps in, the issue is not only that the engine will overheat, but also that damage may be done to the catalytic converter and oxygen sensors due to contamination from the coolant. What to expect: A top-rated mobile mechanic will come to your home or office to determine the cause of the temperature warning light turning on and the source of the overheating, and will then provide a detailed inspection report that includes the scope and cost of the necessary repairs. How important is this service? An overheating engine is extremely dangerous. It is not safe to drive a vehicle with an overheating engine, or you may ruin the engine completely and put yourself at risk. As soon as you notice the light come on, pull over. If there is no place to safely pull over, turn off your radio and other electrical units, and turn your heat on high (this will funnel some of the hot engine air into the cabin). As soon as you can safely pull over, do so, and then book one of our mechanics to perform an inspection.

Sep 30, 2016 | 2008 Pontiac G6

1 Answer

Coolant light keeps coming on


I wouldnt worry. Maybe a level indicator thinks it is being depleted. Give it a while. If it becomes more frequent or your engine overheats check coolant levels in reservoir. Most people will tell you it is common to have an empty reservoir, but not i. Check for signs of leaks in your driveway and fluid on water pump. If those are fine keep in mind coolant will still leak from your head gasket! There are a million ways for your coolant system to go wrong and little time to prevent overheating. Watch temp gauge and low coolant display staying on for elongated periods. :)

Mar 29, 2014 | 2001 BMW 325

1 Answer

2003 hyundai elentra overheating and already did alot of standard procedures to fix the problem and still overheats. Car vurrently has 64k on it. Here is the history. Last year it overheated and changed...


The only other thing I can think of is maybe you put in the wrong kind of coolant? Not every type of coolant works in every car. Other than that, try head gasket sealer because if your head gasket is leaking, it can't be a big leak, otherwise you'd have problems right away.

Jul 17, 2013 | Cars & Trucks

2 Answers

My s 430 has smoke coming from under hood after driving but not all the time temp gauage reads normal. I had oil and trans leaks sealed but it is still happening, what else could it be? Thanks


SMOKE UNDER HOOD COULD BE COOLANT LEAK FROM RADIATOR ITSELF OR CHECK FOR LEAKING TOP RADIATOR HOSE AND CHECK FOR LEAKING BOTTOM RADIATOR HOSE.LOOK UNDER THE HOOD IF COOLANT BOILING OUT COOLANT OVERFLOW JUG ENGINE OVERHEATING FROM BAD THERMOSTAT OR BAD WATER PUMP.CHECK FOR COOLANT LEAK AT WATER PUMP WEEP HOLE.IF SO WATER PUMP NEED REPLACING.ADD MORE COOLANT UNTIL LEVEL CORRECT.TRY LOCATE LEAK. IF CAR OVERHEATED AND BOILED IT OUT. SMOKE UNDER THE HOOD CAN ALSO BE CAUSED BY LEAKING VALVE COVERS WHICH CAN BE FIRE HAZARD IF OIL LEAKS ON HOT EXHAUST MANIFOLD.

Mar 21, 2011 | 2002 Mercedes-Benz S-Class

2 Answers

My car started to overheat. I checked it out, and found a hole in a small radiator type hose. The hose is top left (facing the engine), is about 8" long, and comes from a black cylinder shaped object....


This one is not easy to tell without seeing the car. But, a logical guess would be that the water pump is starting to go bad and is leaking intermediatly. If you can pressure check the cooling system or have it done that should give you the answer.

Sep 18, 2010 | 2003 Pontiac Grand Prix

1 Answer

Over heating


Is it low on coolant? Is the rad plugged? can be a thermostat issue.

May 30, 2010 | 1997 Chevrolet Lumina

2 Answers

99 Sunfire Coolant keeps dumping


You need to find the source of the leak. it hasn't overheated yet because you keep catching it and re-filling. From your description, it sounds a lot like a bad water pump seal (part of pump) but without physically looking you can't be sure of that. when the pump seal begins to fail, internal pressure while running often will drive the seal tighter against the shaft stopping the leak. as pressure drops as the engine cools, the seal relaxes and permits seepage.
With time, that will change and it will leak all the time.

Oct 06, 2009 | 1999 Pontiac Sunfire

2 Answers

Coolant warning lights keeps coming on


Hello what i would do replace the fluid level run your car with the heater on hood up watch under your car for any fluid leaking if so try to determin about where it is coming from one of the hoses could have a small hole or a clamps not tight enough the right way is with a pressure checker but this is the best way for non proffesional rule out all hoses clamps and over flow bottle leaks before you start replacing parts goodluck please rate thanks

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