View Full Version : I could use some help/ suggestions
07-30-2001, 01:53 AM
Ok, I have a 4 cyl 91' pontiac sunbird. The stupid radiator is constantly acting up. Problem is, it is always overheating. First, it had a bad waterpump, eventually leaked out all my fluid, i blew a head gasket. Well, I got that fixed 2 years ago, now it won't use fluid from the resavour, it will run out and start to over heat and the resavour will be full. It used to go 3 weeks between having to take out the thermostat and manually fill it, but now it only takes 3 days, and the radiator is really hot when i stop the car. it hisses and steams. I don't even think water runs through it, but i took it to a radiator guy in town and he said he didn't know what it was. I was hoping maybe one of you has come across this in the past, or might know something about it.
A few things you should know: I have changed the thermostst twice and fluid pressure cap once. The check engine light is on and the problem is a bad "manifold air temp sensor" that has too low of voltage. I would seriously appreciate any help. Thanks
07-30-2001, 11:43 AM
I know approximately zip about American cars, but it sounds like the first thing to check would be the pickup from the reservoir. With as much work as it sounds like you've had done on it, it could just be that the tube has gotten bent or warped (or broken) and isn't picking up fluid properly. Unless, of course, your reservoir drains from the bottom, in which case you should check for clogs. Other than that, I agree with DarkFury. American cars between 8 and 25 years old are junk. Buy German. :D
07-30-2001, 07:46 PM
Thanks a bunch guys. I guess it's 3 liters of water every couple of days for the next two years...doh (unless I win the lottery) Thx again though
07-31-2001, 09:35 AM
When does it overheat? At idle or running down the road? If you look into the radiator with the cap off, do you see a lot of activity or is it stagnant? Also, what is the thermostat opening temperature: 195, 190, 185 degrees?Sometimes aftermarket thermostats are junk. Have you felt the hoses? Are they both hot?
A decent radiator shop should be able to diagnose this problem in minutes.
07-31-2001, 11:03 AM
Originally posted by DarkFury
Originally Posted by Ice-9
Other than that, I agree with DarkFury. American cars between 8 and 25 years old are junk. Buy German. :D
Hey... now I didn't say all that!
Ooops. What I meant to say was:
Other than that, I agree with DarkFury.
Also, I feel that American cars between 8 and 25 years old are junk. I like German cars for the fact that their engines are reliable as hell, even though all other minor repairs cost a ridiculous amount.
07-31-2001, 01:59 PM
im starting to get a feel for those other "minor" parts... water pump: $160 (?).
Suspension and bushings: $1000
Smelling smoke from your tires ars you whip around corner #3: Priceless..... :D
07-31-2001, 02:31 PM
Heheheh, yep. That's the reason...
And getting burned by a Mustang on a straight may not be fun, but taking a 15-mph curve at 50 where that Mustang would slide off the edge of the mountain is what puts a grin on my face.
08-01-2001, 07:38 AM
it only really overheats when it idles. I think the thermometor temp is 190, but i am not quite sure. The hose into the radiator is hot, and the radiator is actually blazing hot, I am not sure about the hose out, I need to check that. I can't remember if there is much acttivity under the cap or not either, what does it mean if there is none? Anyway, I figured it wouldn't be a big deal for someone who knew their stuff, but maybe the person i took it to before was a dolt. Thanks again...
08-03-2001, 05:59 AM
Sorry for taking so long to get back. Does the fan come on when you turn the A/C on? Could be the fan motor or the sensor if it doesn't.
08-03-2001, 07:41 AM
that's cool... i think the fan is crappy, because i have never seen it come on. i don't know how one tests for that kind of thing, i guess i could pull it out and take a look at it. if only it were a computer... the hoses inside also are a golden color from the nasty radiator water getting on them, but i haven't been able to find a leak and i can determine where the steam is coming from when it's hot. i need to schedule an appointment at someplace for next week. what is a resonable price to pay for a radiator inspection?
08-03-2001, 07:52 AM
It's been years since I have been to a radiator shop, so I wouldn't know the price. But if you suspect the fan, you can disconnect the plug to the fan, run a hot and a ground wire from the battery to the plug to see if the fan motor even operates. If it does, then you will have to look at the sensor or elsewhere.
08-03-2001, 08:07 PM
cool, i will have to try that. thanks
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