In Reply to: Overheating question posted by sam on June 12, 2000 at 02:24:23:
1) check all hoses and clamps - tighten if need.
2) Never open a radiator cap when car is hot! Check coolant level - if low, fill it up
3) when engine running, check pressure w/ radiator cap on - feel hoses as the car gets hot (with a wet rag). Is the hose full of pressure? (most likely, yes) Is the hose hot? Is the other hose hot? If one side cold and one hot (usually side w/ thermostat cold, check thermostat).
4) check for leaks around plastic tanks or radiator fluid on ground. If no fluid on ground, carefully check plastic tanks for high pressure leaks (corroded looking green or brownish gunk running down sides.) If so, need a new radiator.
5) If full of pressure (which they will be if car running 3/4) - check thermostat - open it up (when car is cool) and see if it's stuck in the slightly open position (obviously you are getting some flow as the car only runs 3/4 not to redline so thermostat will be somewhat open or stuck (pour cold water on it when you take thermostat out, if it doesn't close - it's stuck - change it! If it does close, might as well change it anyway since it's out. A good trick when changing a thermostat, drill a small hole on thermostat housing (most have changed w/ a small hole and piece of metal on housing keeps some flow going to radiator and sensors.)
6) check the radiator fan (back of kidney grill), is it on when car gets to 1/2 position??? (check for a sound of the fan going on) If no, most times fan switch is bad, if not switch, fan motor bad. If the radiator fan comes on great, when temp. rises above 1/2 try and turn the a/c on - did the temp drop after turning a/c on???? If no, something else most likely the radiator or water pump.
7) If none of the above could be a couple of other things like clogged radiator or waterpump impellor eaten away (no flow).
8) If none of the above helps, take your car to a good radiator shop, don't go to a dealer because they normally have the work done at a specialty shop and bill you at their prices.
Hope this helps, if you have any other ???'s let me know.