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Vehicle running hot but coolant is still in the radiator

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There are several possible causes. Most likely, the thermostat is not opening fully to allow good coolant flow. A thermostat is cheap and pretty easy to replace, so that is where I would start. Next, make sure the radiator is not clogged.

Posted on Aug 05, 2010


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My fan clutch is bad, will it damage anything to drive it until I can get the funds to fix it

If your radiator fan will not operate normally the your engine coolant will get excessively hot and your engine WILL overheat. The fan is required to boost air flow through the radiator when the temperature of the coolant gets to a specific level and prevent the coolant getting too hot..

If you run the vehicle you WILL overheat the engine without the assistance of the radiator fan and if you do that you WILL cause very expensive engine damage requiring repairs costing multiple times what it will cost to fix the current fan issue.

Either get the problem fixed immediately or do not drive the vehicle.

Mar 31, 2016 | Cars & Trucks

1 Answer

Can there be a tiny hole somewhere making car run hot?

Hi Terri:
Considering the age of the vehicle I would be suspicious that the radiator is probably pretty corroded on the inside.
A good project would be to drain the coolant (being environmentally conscious) and flush the radiator. You should be able to determine if the coolant is flowing freely or if the inside is clogged with scale.
Could be that it's time for a new radiator.

Jul 18, 2015 | 1993 Buick Century

1 Answer

My Nissan Sentra's thermostat goes to hot and hesitates when I get to the second gear.

Check the coolant level in the radiator with the vehicle cold, if you remove the radiator cap with it hot you could get burned badly. Just checking the catch bottle won't tell you if the radiator is full or not. If it is down, fill it with 50% solution of coolant and partly fill the plastic catch bottle. Then check it again after it has run and cooled again until the radiator level stays topped.
If the coolant level is down, you may have a leak; check for leaking coolant when it is warm and engine off. If it goes through lots of coolant and/or if it looks like brown mayonnaise in the radiator or oil filler, you may have a blown head gasket.
The engine being too hot could easily cause the hesitation but so could a bad head gasket.

Feb 03, 2015 | Nissan Cars & Trucks

1 Answer

Fluid around my the radiator and not sure what it is?

Check the coolant in the radiator if it need coolant there is a leak if you find the leak from the radiator renew it .and renew the thermostat

Jul 16, 2014 | 1998 Toyota Tacoma

1 Answer

My coolant resevoir is full but top coolant hose is empty. Is there a bleeder system?

Here is a basic description of cooling system, the top hose going to engine is the supply hose the bottom hose is the return hose. On your overflow coolant reservoir there is a lower cold level mark and a hot level mark above it also there is an overflow drain spout several inches above hot level mark to relieve pressure if system is overfilled. As to a bleeder system, bleeders purge air from a system to allowed it to become primed (pressure built up) generally on hydraulic systems like brakes or pneumatic systems like a diaphram pump for example. the only drain available is the petcock valve at the bottom of the radiator used to drain coolant. Now to your top hose being empty, you can remove top hose to engine have a garden hose running into radiator and if radiator cores are not stopped up water should flow freely from hose if not radiator is clogged. If you have water flow now you can pressure test system it should hold between 15-18lbs pressure constantly otherwise check all hoses/clamps etc (if leaks were present before replace faulty component/s) your vehicles water pump circulates coolant and is what pressurizes cooling system. A faulty thermostat will also restrict coolant from entering the engines coolant passageways if it doesn't open and your vehicle would overheat soon after, but you should still have coolant in upper hose when engine is running regardless. If you can add other info like your vehicle is running hot or coolant light coming on I can narrow it down for you.

Jan 07, 2011 | 1996 Pontiac Sunfire

2 Answers

I have a 91 chevy cavalier 2.2 I'm about to replace the water pump, and have already replaced the thermostat. I'm wondering if there is a valve that I can use to bleed the air out of my coolant system,...

The easiest way to purge air from the cooling system is to raise the vehicle so the radiator cap is higher than the engine. Make sure the heater control is on the highest setting. Remove the radiator cap and let the engine run. When the thermostat opens, the coolant level will drop in the radiator. Add antifreeze to bring the level back up to the top. As the coolant level drops again, add more antifreeze. If the thermostat closes, the coolant may overflow out of the radiator, so be careful of hot coolant. Continue to let the engine run, and watch for the coolant level to drop again when the thermostat opens. Continue to do this until the coolant level stabilizes. Put the radiator cap back on and lower the vehicle.

Jan 01, 2011 | Chevrolet Cavalier Cars & Trucks

1 Answer

My 2001 Montero gage is showing hot. The thermostat has been replaced twice. What could it be?

Could be the coolant temperature sending sensor , the circuit the gauge, incorrect coolant mix , water pump, defective radiator or the vehicle could be running hot.Have the vehicle checked out by a repair shop.

Mar 31, 2010 | 2002 Mitsubishi Montero

1 Answer

2007 ford expedition makes sound like if it was running hot, but temp. indicator stays a little bit below normal. Air conditioner stops working when making this sound.


First, DO NOT open coolant system while vehicle has been running...Danger of sclading

Make sure radiator fluid is at its proper level. vehicle being low on coolant can cause this problem.

If coolant was low (indicates a leak in radiator system); suspect a leaky radiator cap, coolant reclaimer, or bad radiator hoses.

If the problem appears to be anything other than low coolant, or a leaky radiator cap (cheap checks); it's very easy to start chasing your tale on coolant issues, and too expensive to be second guessing. Best thing at that point would be to go to a local trusted mechanic.

Water pump could also be leaking; but not likely since the vehicle is too new.


Nov 30, 2009 | 2007 Ford Expedition Eddie Bauer EL

1 Answer

Coolant level warning

Means you need to add coolant to either the radiater or the overflow tank on your vehicle. If the engine is hot add to the overflow tank while engine is running in case it is low so it draws it into the engine. DO NOT open the radiator when it is hot as you could get burned by hot steam. If cool, take off the radiator cap and poor into radiator, then run for a while and then recheck the overflow tank to see it is between the MIN and MAX lines on the tank.

Oct 08, 2009 | 1998 Cadillac DeVille

1 Answer

My 02 town & country blows cold air and run hot

Check the coolant level and thermostate. Also check if the water pump is running. Also check/replace the radiator cap (ask for recommended one). Also check the coolant color (ENGINE SHOULD BE NOT RUNNING AND COLD, NOT HOT). If you see it has rust pieces in it (not orange as the usual color of DexCool used for GM vehicles) you might need to do the radiator and/or cooling system flush.
Good Luck

Feb 21, 2009 | 2002 Chrysler Town & Country

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