Question about 1994 Oldsmobile Cutlass Ciera

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The engine overheats but is not boiling the coolant out of the system. The coolant actually flows into the reservoir tank and fills it above the actual fill line.

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Sounds like a failing water pump

Posted on Oct 10, 2010

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I drive a Camry V6 3.0L Every time I top up the coolant to the recommended level and after driving the contents in the reservoir boil over and spill out.


There may be a slight head gasket leak to the coolant jacket, not large enough to overheat the engine. It is normal for some coolant to escape at operating temp, but not lots, and it should cool down to about the recommended level again.

Something is pressurising the coolant jacket. Have it tested for the presence of combustion gasses in the coolant. This is a simple test.

Another thing, that model often develops a crack in the radiator plastic top tank. It is not the problem here, but worth knowing.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a3J00_e7fyo

Oct 29, 2016 | Cars & Trucks

1 Answer

I have a 95 impala i changed my radiator,water pump & hoses i changed everything on the car to stop making it run hot...but now it doesn't run hot but the water in my reservoir tank is keep boiling & my...


Sounds like your coolant is not circulating for some reason. Typically it's the thermostat that blocks the flow. If turning on the heater inside helps the car not overheat then your coolant is not flowing. Other issues can be a water pump that isn't working, air in the system that has not been bleed out, engine head broken (blocked).

Nov 19, 2013 | Cars & Trucks

2 Answers

My sunfire overheats and leaks out overflow everytime i drivee it.i changed water pump,thermostat the fan is working fine and had a water pressure test done last mth


DID YOU BLEED AIR OUT THE COOLANT SYSTEM.TO BLEED COOLANT SYSTEM, FILL THE COOLANT SYSTEM THROUGH THE RESERVOIR TANK OR THE RADIATOR UNTIL THE FULL COLD MARK IS REACHED.BESURE TO USE 50/50 HALF WATER AND ANTIFREEZE.YOU CAN BUY ANTIFREEZE THAT IS ALREADY PREMIX 50/50.AFTER ADDING ANTIFREEZE TO RESERVOIR OR RADIATOR FILL RADIATOR TO FULL MARK OR IF YOU DONT HAVE RADIATOR CAP ON RADIATOR POUR ANTIFREEZE IN THE OVERFLOW JUG UNTIL COOLANT LEVEL STAY THE FULL COLD MARK.WAIT AWHILE UNTIL COOLANT LEVEL STOP DROPPING.NOW INSTALL THE RADIATOR OR OVER FLOW JUG CAP.START THE ENGINE AND ALLOW IT TO RUN UNTIL NORMAL OPERATING TEMPERATURE IS REACHED AND THE UPPER RADIATOR HOSE BECOME HOT.STOP THE ENGINE AND OBSERVE THE COOLANT LEVEL IN THE OVERFLOW JUG. THE COOLANT LEVEL SHOULD BE AT THE FULL HOT LINE.ALLOW THE ENGINE TO COOL UNTIL THE AMBIENT TEMPERATURE IS REACHED THEN CHECK THE COOLANT LEVEL IT SHOULD BE AT OR ABOVE THE FULL COLD LINE.ADD MORE COOLANT IF NECESSARY. WARNING BECAREFUL WHEN OPEN THE RADIATOR CAP OR JUG OVER FLOW CAP.USE A LARGE RAG OVER THE RADIATOR CAP TO KEEP FROM GETTING SCALDED.OPEN RADIATOR CAP A LITTLE AT A TIME TO KEEP FROM GETTING SCALDED.WAIT UNTIL ENGINE COOL DOWN BEFORE OPENING RADIATOR CAP OR OVERFLOW JUG CAP.WEAR SAFETY GLASSES.

Jul 12, 2011 | Pontiac Sunfire Cars & Trucks

1 Answer

I realise my engine lights comes on high coolant temp and when i opened the hood ,the coolant was dripping from the container you fill it at,can you please tell me possible problems


Depending on your system (either sealled radiator without a cap and a pressurized surge tank or standard radiator with cap and an overflow tank) either the radiator/surge tank cap is not holding pressure and the coolant is unable to pressurized and boils at a lower temp, boiling off until you coolant level is so low the engine overheats. More than likely it is either the thermostat or water pump. Commonly it is the thermostat

Dec 14, 2010 | Pontiac Aztek Cars & Trucks

3 Answers

Losing coolant from the reservoir but cannot see any coolant leaking on drive. Fill reservior to MAX and within ~10miles, reservoir is drained. Refill while engine still hot and don't lose nearly as much...


my '01 Jetta had a similar problem. I could always smell coolant and the bottle was always low. I crawled under the car and there it was..a caked on mess of pink antifreeze. There is a plastic intersection 3 way valve where the coolant temp sensor resides. it has 2 bolts and a rubber o-ring. Because it is plastic, it cracks. it drips down onto areas which are really not visible from above and then sizzles and melts onto areas under the engine. The part was only about $25, took 30 min to install and my problem is now fixed. Air was getting into the system through the small crack in the valve further complicating the system operation.

Nov 09, 2010 | 2006 Volkswagen Jetta

1 Answer

Mechanic went to change out the thermostat on the 03 Cruiser...drove it back to me..overheated when he got it back...removed the thermostat to see if that would at suppress the overheat problem until the...


Removal of the thermostat from the cooling system is not a good idea. This upsets the coolant flow rate in the system, and that can cause the engine to overheat, even when no other problem with the cooling system exists.

Try to identify the cause of the overheating.

Ensure that engine tune, or other engine mechanical fault condition is not the cause of the overheating, then go through the checklist following:-

1) Check engine cooling fan/s are operating as required when engine temp rises above cut-in threshold - check fan control relay is ok,
2) Check for collapsing radiator hose on suction side of water-pump when motor revs raised above idle.
3) Check coolant reservoir pressure cap is serviceable,
4) Check coolant system is properly filled - carry out any bleed off procedure specified to clear any air locks- (ensure heater core coolant flow is turned on).
5) Check for combustion gas bubbles in the coolant reservoir while the motor is running - this indicates a blown head gasket. If in doubt, take it to a radiator shop and ask for a combustion gas check on your radiator.
6) Check condition of radiator core:-
i) for blockage of air flow to (bugs/grass etc),
ii) for core internal blockage to coolant flow,

If all above ok, replace the thermostat again (also ensure it is not installed upside down) - faulty new thermostats are not unheard of.

Oct 20, 2009 | 2003 Chrysler PT Cruiser

2 Answers

The cooling fans wont kick in and its boiling


The most common overheating problem with the Northstar engine is a blocked purge line. It's job is to purge air out of the cooling system.
If the purge line is blocked you may have an air lock preventing coolant flow.
There is a small diameter hose coming from near the top of the coolant tank,this is the purge line.
With the engine idling,pull the purge line from the tank,if there is no coolant flow from this small hose,it is blocked and this will cause overheating.If the hose is clear, check for blockage at the nipple on the tank.

Air locks in the Northstar engine shouldn't be a problem as the system is self purging, providing all the hoses are clear.

Check the coolant level in the tank,it should be half way when cold.
There is no cap on the radiator as it is a fully pressurized system.

The expansion tank is the only means by which to add coolant to the Northstar engine.

Check to see if your fans are working by switching on the air con,they should run all the time.

With the air con off,the fans won't come on until the temp hits around 225 degrees.

Also, if it's boiling over, the cap on the expansion tank may not be holding pressure and therefore needs replacing.....a new cap only costs a few dollars so it is worth replacing to see if this solves your problem.

Oct 09, 2009 | 1998 Cadillac Seville

3 Answers

Overheating when driving no mixing of the coolant and oil


The three most likely thing's cause overheating are faulty thermostat,electric fan or clogged radiator. Only at has been overheat so much it boils dry that it will cause engine trouble. Most common problem's are blown cylinder head gasket or a cracked cylinder head.
mixing coolant and water depends on where the gasket has blown or head is cracked. You will first need to check if it actually is overheating. The reason is. If the head is cracked or gasket blown then you can get a false boiling which is compresion from the cylinders blows through the crack in the head or gasket causing the coolant to blow out of the radiator cap.Fill the radiator to the top leave the cap off then start the engine.If the water blows out then you will need to remove the cylinder head check the gasket is ok. If its damaged replace if not get the head checked for crack's. If no water blow's when you start it check the thermostat is working properly. To check the thermostat put it a in a saucepan cover it with water bring the water to the boil. It should open before the water boil's but near boiling-point. If its ok then start the engine again leave it running until it boils and check the fan is running. If that's ok then its radiator problem. Their is no way to check if the radiator is ok you will need to get a new one. One last point. If the cylinder head or gasket are faulty it was caused by overheating so by just fixing the cylinder head problem is not a cure it will overheat again. Check the three things I mentioned at the begining and told you how to check them. Hope this help's. Cheer's

Aug 16, 2009 | 1992 Ford Explorer

2 Answers

Water from radiator is boiling over to antifreeze


when does it do this? If it does it right after you shut it off, then its supposed to do that, as your engine will actually get hotter, before it cools down.

May 08, 2009 | 1991 Honda Civic

2 Answers

My 1986 plymouth turismo runs hot and overheats


You say it gets hot and overheats, are you losing coolant when it overheats? If it isn't boiling over, you seemed to cover everything that could be wrong, the fan is working, if it is not boiling over, just registering hot on the gauge, I wonder if it's just a temp. sending unit that's bad, indicating a overheating problem when there really isn't one. The water pump is bad when the shaft bearings go bad, and it will leak at that point. So, let me know if the car is actually boiling over (steam visible, exiting the cooling system)

Apr 14, 2009 | 1986 Plymouth Conquest

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