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2001 PT Water temp. problem

 
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Old 27 Feb 2006, 12:50 pm
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Default 2001 PT Water temp. problem

My PT's Water gauge previously set at the 1/2 way point, that's horizontal to the right, after warming up. Recently it drops a full mark on the gauge when I come to a stop or coast in neutral gear. When I drive away from the stop the temperature will increase back to the 1/2 way point again after a minute.

The dealer is saying it appears to be within normal operating conditions. However, every Chrysler Dodge product I 've driven, 1 PT & 2 Minivans, all have had a steady Water temperature once the cars have warmed up.

The trick is to narrow this down somehow. I could be a bad sensor, gauge, thermostat, pump, or belt. Has anyone seen this behavior?
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Old 27 Feb 2006, 02:15 pm
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Haven't seen or heard of that behaver with the temp guage, but it could be worse and head toward the overheating mark. Mine stays at half way all the time.....except when the fan motor burnt out, but that's another story.
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Old 27 Feb 2006, 06:00 pm
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hi john, same as crewzin said never heard of your problem, but mine & my wifes stay right in the middle could be the senor, you dont have any anti freeze drips do you ??
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Old 27 Feb 2006, 06:36 pm
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Thanks for your replies, the information about the water gauge being 1/2 way and steady is a real help.

The temp. gauge behavior caused the dealer to look into the seals and drains on the shaft of the water pump. The seals were replaced and the special 'orange' cooling fluid was checked for air pockets and level. Even after that the gauge behavior is the nearly the same, it goes lower on stopping or engine-to-idle when coasting.

The water pump shaft enclosure has a couple of holes that allow for some drainage of that area where the shaft extends towards the outside of that housing. If you develop a water leak around the shaft of the pump then water will 'weep' out the holes. Here's the kicker - you will not see an obvious water leak just some white stains around or below the water pump shaft. This could really zap your engine accorrding the service writer. Water leaves the system slowly without any obvious steam cloud, you may not notice the temperature rising, and on a hot day it could result in damage.

I have smelled an odor like anti-freeze for the last several months when I would run the fan or heater and have mentioned it to service. It seemed to come and go. No one there could find anything wrong, it may have been leaking all this time.

The car has been at the dealer for a week, they have not called me yet today, it's nearing 5 pm here. I guess the next thing to check is if the water pump or temp. sensor are broken.
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Old 28 Feb 2006, 03:25 am
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Thermostat maybe? If it is stuck open it would run cooler and could explain the lower temps especially at idle.
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Old 01 Mar 2006, 03:30 pm
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Today they are replacing the sensor and gauge, they have not tried the thermostat yet. You would think they would do that as one of the first choices. Luckily I bought an extened warranty, no matter what this will only cost $50.

I just heard of another case through ptcruiserclub.org discussion form. A fellow there also had a 2001 with the same behavior.

There I discussed casting a wider net to see if more cases can be found. Any ideas of other places to post this story?
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Old 02 Mar 2006, 10:01 am
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Strange behavior. I had a thermostat go bad on a trip, and not having a replacement, I just too the thermostat out - it NEVER warmed up.
My gauge and the one on my '02 stay rock-solid at 1/2 mark.
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Old 09 Mar 2006, 06:40 pm
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did you get your car back ?? is it any better ?? let us know thanks
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Old 13 Mar 2006, 12:17 pm
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Reading this again, and seeing Crewzin's post again about the fan... what if your fan is on all the time? Easy enough to check - just start engine & look...
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Old 13 Mar 2006, 03:35 pm
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Sounds kinda like what happened to mine it had a faulty coolant sensor. It would drop from normal to cold on the gauge.
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