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Old 01-20-2012, 05:35 PM   #1
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Default Heater problems

I have a 2001 SE that is having some heating problems. The tempature seems to be running a lot colder lately. I am getting some heat its just not very hot. Does this sound like a thermostat problem?
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Old 01-21-2012, 10:16 AM   #2
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if your engine temp is not coming up to normal its the thermostat or down on coolant. if the engine temp is fine but you arent getting heat, you probably need to flush your heater core.
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Old 01-21-2012, 11:08 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by putty34 View Post
I have a 2001 SE that is having some heating problems. The tempature seems to be running a lot colder lately. I am getting some heat its just not very hot. Does this sound like a thermostat problem?
First check to be sure coolant level inside the radiator itself is full. Check after the car has cooled a while so you don't get boiling coolant out when you crack the cap.

If coolant is not full in radiator, fill. Run engine up to temperature and run at 2500 rpm for 10 seconds to help push air out of heater core; Repeat 4 more times.

Then check level in radiator and fill. Bleed at thermostat with screw to let out all air.

Like the OP said, it'* likely a thermostat. Is the upper radiator hose so hot you can only hold your hand on it for 10 seconds after the car has been running for 10-15 minutes. That would tell me the thermostat is opening at 190 and above letting out water to the radiator that is at that temp. If not, time for a replacement thermostat, especially if you've never replaced it: it'* 11 years old approximately.

Then with the blower motor on high for a few minutes and the engine running, are both of the heater hoses fairly hot compared to the upper radiator hose--with one being cooler by a step since coolant in it lost heat to the air in the heater core? It may help to have someone run the motor at 2000 or so to push water through better.

If one hose is substantially cooler, your heater core may be clogged. Time for a good flush
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Old 01-21-2012, 06:07 PM   #4
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The engine temp is not getting up to the normal temp. I will check the fluid level in the radiator. If that is ok I will atempt to replace the thermostat. I've never done this so it should be interesting.
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Old 01-21-2012, 06:46 PM   #5
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The engine temp is not getting up to the normal temp. I will check the fluid level in the radiator. If that is ok I will atempt to replace the thermostat. I've never done this so it should be interesting.
It helps if you have a plastic hose to siphon off about 2 quarts of coolant. That lowers the level so not much will come out when you remove the two bolts that hold the top of the thermostat housing down.

Note there is not a paper gasket between the top and bottom halves of the thermostat housing like old days. Instead, the metal edge of the thermostat goes into a slit in the middle of the rubber gasket, like a giant o-ring, and that squeezes between the top and bottom of the housing to seal when you tighten the top back down. Be sure to put the same end of the thermostat down into the motor the way the old one goes when you take it out!
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Old 01-21-2012, 07:05 PM   #6
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Thanks for the tips. Are there any other parts that I might need other than the thermostat?
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Old 01-22-2012, 09:18 AM   #7
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if you havent changed your coolant now would be a good time. i put one of those garden hose adapters in all my cars to flush it out while im changing the coolant.
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Old 01-22-2012, 11:36 PM   #8
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Replaced the thermostat today and it is heating up like it should. I spilled quite a bit of coolant on the engine and it is smoking pretty good. Is there anything I can do to clean it off or will it just burn off?
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Old 01-23-2012, 09:03 AM   #9
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You can rinse your engine with a garden hose or a spray wand at a car wash, or just let the coolant burn off. If you have driven the car since your last post its probably gone already.
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Old 01-23-2012, 07:44 PM   #10
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I'll just let it burn off. It doesn't smell too much now. Thanks for everyones help. I'm feeling pretty good after my first big fix. Not sure what I'm going to tackle next.
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