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SOUND LIKE THE TEMPATURE SENSOR IS BAD REPLACE IT WITH ONE THAT THE CAR RECOMEND. IF THE CAR ENGINE IS HOT :CHECK THAT THE FAN IS PRODUCING ENOUGH AIR THRO THE RADIATOR IF OK THEN CHECK THAT THE THERMOSTATE IS NOT THE FOULT.
Have you checked out the water pump? Most of the time, you can feel movement in the /head shaft area before it fails. Water pumps usually go slowly, pumping less and less water (making the engine run hotter). The also get noisy when they start to fail.
replace the thermostant again this time get a hotter temp thermostant and buy it from the dealer, the other thing is that these cars are known for the temp sensors being bad this would give you the false reading on the gauge but would not affect the heat, if its taaking a long time then i would replace the stant and this time or before replacing the stant i want you to flush out the heater core, remove the hoses from the heatercore and use a water hose to flush water through the heater core, a plugged core will not throw heat or will start to allow water to flow when it gets good and hot to flow through the retricted core due to rust and crud, try the flush first and then try a new temp sensor if the flush helps the heat, hope this is helpful good luck.
CHECK FOR LOW COOLANT.YOUR CLUTCH FAN COULD BE BAD IT CAUSING ENGINE TO OVERHEAT.WHEN ENGINE GET HOT THE SILICONE OIL IN FAN CLUTCH GET HOT CAUSE THERMOSTAT SPRING EXPAND CAUSE FAN CLUTCH TO LOCK IN TURN FAST WITH ENGINE TO COOL OFF ENGINE. IF FAN IS WOBBLY OR FREEWHEELING ITS BAD.
It sounds like you may have a bad cooling fan. You can test this by running a jumper wire from the fire supply line going into the cooling fan to the battery. If the fan comes on this will indicate a bad fan relay which will have to be replaced. Or, it could be bad radiator hoses can **** together and cause it to run hot. Don't rule out a blown head gasket but start by checking the easier things first.
Do you loose water after about 1hr driving if no then the temp sensor needs replacing But if you do loose water and the engine is getting hot then you have a problem.
You wasted your money on the w/pump as if that doesent work the water will boil from the top and stay cold at the bottom of the radiator.
Let me know how you get on Ron
Take it to another shop, The water pump doen't hold the Thermostate. The thermostate is in the thermostate housing where the end of the radiator hose is connected to the egine.
There are different thermostate rating to which temprature you'll like your engine running at. Most common would be a 190 thermostate you can get them from 160 up to 220.
As for the water pump you would know if that failed do to over heating or leaking from the weep holes in it.
Bring the truck to another shop and have them flush and Antifreeze if it's never benn done and change the Thermostate to a 180 or 190 and should be done every Two years do to waer and tear. Note the 180 runs cooler then the 190 and so on.
I run mine on 160 since I tow a trailer and the radiator also cools the transmisson oil too. Just for though but you should be fine at 180 or 190.
Good luck and hope this helps.