Question about 2004 Volkswagen Jetta

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Thermostat? My car is overheating, but only when i am driving. When the car sits idle the temperature is fine and the fans do kick on. I was told it was the thermostat and that it should be switched out. I have purchased the parts and a couple of my friends are going to fix it for me but are unsure where the thermostat is located. Help...

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  • angie7700 Jul 25, 2008

    I have the exact same problem with my Jetta, my boyfriend and I replaced the Thermostat and tested the old one (easy to do! just put it into a pan of water and boil it, the spring will move and the valve will open if it's okay)- the problem continued and the Thermostat was just fine. I took it to a mechanic and found out it is most likely the water pump. I'm scheduled to have it repaired next Friday- do you have the extended warranty? I do, and it will be covered.

  • Eve Mathews Aug 26, 2008

    Our 2004 Jetta was overheating after a short time of driving (first happened four days ago) and we have not been able to drive it for over 5 minutes since them without the temperature going too high. It is at the mechanic right now and he said it was not the thermostat. He did say one of the fans was out, but it did not fix the problem completely. They think it might be a blown head gasket - there was no smoke or anything when it first overheated though.



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The thermostat is located behind the alternator. Atleast on the 1.8t it is. I had the same problem and same symptoms. I hate to tell you this but its probably not the thermostat. Its the water pump. They have plastic impellers on them that that deteriorate after a while. Make sure if you get your water pump replaced you get one that has a metal impeller on it. You should get a new timing belt well they are in there as well. They have a pretty good deal on kits at

Posted on Jul 22, 2008


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1 Answer

Overheating when I sit idle.

Over heating the engine is a serious concern. With the hood raised you should hear the motorized fan turn on just behind the radiator as the engine requires additional cooling.. If you look in from the rear of the radiator you should see the fan blades.

This electric powered motor operates on a thermostat and when the engine temperature rises this fan should come on. I'm assuming from your description that when driving and air is flowing through the radiator as the car travels the engine is nor overheating.

Check fan motor thermostat, check fan motor and check wiring.

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firstly the the fan will stay on for few time(cooling fan).And its not the thermostat climb its the high temperature indication at the intrumental pannel cluster meter if the temperature indication is too high than there will b any problem in ur car related to overheating may b the coolent leakage or the thermostat valve not working properly

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When i am driving my 2002 buick rendevous, the temperature gauge sits between 1/4 and 1/2. however when i have to sit idle ( ex. like at a red light) the temperature gauge creeps up to between 1/2 and...

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94 Accord Overheating. So my temp gauge goes all the way up slowly when i sit at a stop light and when i take off obviously it cools the car down or if it turn the heat on that helps. So over the...

Unless you are using old antifreeze with enough globs of crud in it to constrict your thermostat and prevent good coolant movement, your overheating is more likely caused by a problem with your electric fan, rather than a problem with your thermostat. The fans in front of your radiator and A/C heat exchanger don't do anything when your car is moving faster than, say, 20 or 25 miles per hour. If you only drove on the highway, you wouldn't even need a fan. However, they're really needed when you're sitting at a stoplight or driving at low speed.

Your fan system has a few possible trouble spots. I believe that your Accord has an electric, not a belt-driven main fan. And, those electric fans do go bad. This is not uncommon; fans are stuck out in the elements, and they can rust up, a blade can crack, or the contacts could corrode. You can test this by jumping 12v of power to the fan terminals to see if it spins up--and stays spinning for at least 30 seconds or so. A fan may work briefly and then cut out if its bearings are shot--as they overheat and expand, they'll grind the fan to a halt. If your fan seems to be working fine, double-check that the wiring connectors are nice and shiny so that they're making a good connection.

Second, and equally possible, your fan relay may have gone bad. There's a coolant temperature sensor that is designed to send a signal to the fan relay if the coolant gets too hot. That relay has a mechanical element in it that also can go bad--it may be receiving the signal to do something, but the relay isn't closing properly to kick off the fan.

Third, the coolant sensor sending a signal to the fan relay may also have gone bad. This is normally a separate sensor from the one sending a signal to the temperature gauge in your dashboard.

Driving entirely without a thermostat will greatly lower the coolant temperature in your car and will give you a temporary fix for this problem while you troubleshoot your fan system. However, because the coolant will never fully heat up, you may experience a decrease in fuel economy and your tailpipe emissions may go up. And, of course, you won't get very much heat from your climate control system. Driving without a thermostat is a short-term fix, not the solution to your problem.

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When idling my jeep overheats. The cooling fan is running and it speeds up when temperature goes up. The temperature gets close to 260 degrees and the engine tries to stall. when I start moving it cools...

At idling speed an engine does build up a lot of heat and the cooling fan will kick in. In slow moving traffic or traffic jams the temperature gauge can touch the red - particularly on hot days. The reason it cools down when you start moving is because of the air flow through the radiator.

Presumably there are no leaks from the cooling system otherwise you would have mentioned it. In normal circumstances the fan will not be running as you are driving at speed, as the air-flow through the radiator is sufficient to cool things. The fan only kicks in to get rid of excess heat - and this usually occurs at idling speed or after you have parked the car.

If the fan is running all the time as you drive, this points to either a fault in the fan switch, or the car is running too hot. presumably in normal driving the fan isn't running and the temperature gauge reads normal?

It is common - in stationary traffic many cars overheat (particularly big engined models) try to stall and 'cut out'. Restarting can be difficult until the engine cools down.

Is your car overheating in normal driving conditions or just at idle speed? Overheating in normal driving conditions can be caused by things like a failing water pump, blocked radiator, collapsed hose, faulty thermostat or, in the worst case scenario, cylinder head problems.

Overheating at idling speed is 'common'. Check your coolant level. If your car isn't using/losing coolant then there probably is no major problem. You can flush out the cooling system and refill with new coolant - and also check your radiator. Are the cooling fins crumbling with age? Or maybe they're partly clogged with insects and debris from the road? A blast with a hosepipe wil sort that out ..

The question is how much does your car overheat in normal driving? If it doesn't .. it appears as though you have nothing to worry about as such. Most cars have 2 speed fans... the 2nd faster stage kicks in at some point dependant on engine temperature. Perfectly normal.

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