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02 PT Cruiser Overheating (Very Weird issue)

 
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Old 09 Feb 2011, 02:56 pm
HDuece2's Avatar
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Default 02 PT Cruiser Overheating (Very Weird issue)

Hello All,

I Have 2002 PT Cruiser that I'm currently working on for a neighbor of mine. I always maintain all of his vehicles and brings any issues he has to me. About two weeks ago, he told me he got stuck about 45 mins from home and the Car was Over Heating. He also said he didn't hear the fan coming on either, but this guy has no sense of what to look for, so my questions to him don't really get very far. I took a look @ it the next day, started the car and waited for the fan to come on. The fan never came and the car began to Overheat as it passed the middle. I checked the relay and fuses and everything seemed fine. I even switched out the Horn relay w/the Fan Relay and that was not the problem. The Next day I came back and accessed the Fan connector, ran direct power to the battery and it all worked fine. I then cleaned all the connections, put everything back together, fired it up and the fan came on as it was supposed to and maintained temp right below the half way point as usual. The car was leaking coolant and determined it to be from the Water Pump. I had previously Flushed the Radiator, changed the Thermostat and plastic water Neck that the Radiator Cap goes on to which was cracked. Since the fan seemed to be working correctly and now there was just a coolant leak coming from the car, I put together a quote on a Water Pump Replacement w/timing Belt and all other belts. I performed the job which was A PITA.
Everything worked perfectly, road tested the car and no more leaks or Over Heating.

I gave the car back to the neighbor and after him driving on the streets for over two hours the car began to overheat! I received that dreaded call while I watching the Super Bowl this past Sunday. My thoughts were that the Temp Sensor (ECT) was defective not giving the signal to the ECU to tell the fan to come on. I purchased a new Temp Sensor from AutoZone and found the Pig Tail clip to be broken not allowing the sensor to be locked in place. I totally hate working on this car so decided to replace the Pig tail so that it can be connected the proper way and the vehicle won't come back to me. After replacing the pig tail and the Temp. Sensor, the car worked perfectly. Fan came on w/in minutes of starting up the car. I decided to road test the car on the streets for a long period of time. After about 45 mins. of driving, I saw the needle begin to rise above the middle. I instantly listened for the Fan, but heard nothing. I pulled over & sure enough the fan would not turn on. I tried turning the A/C on and the fan still would not turn on. I turned the car off, disconnected the temp sensor and checked to make sure everything was fine with the pig tail & temp sensor I had just installed. After plugging everything back in, I turned the car on and the fan still would not come on.

I was driving the car local and the Temp Gauge was barely above the half way point, so I decided to see if it would make it home w/out the fans operating. Sure enough, with the cool air flowing from driving w/out stopping, the car maintained temp and brought me back home. I tried disconnecting the power to the ECU thinking maybe there was a glitch, but that did not get the fan to come on either.

I'm starting to believe this issue is from a bad fan, but I have a problem w/that because I have ran direct power to it before in the past and that worked fine. Any thoughts or suggestions on this would be greatly appreciated.....

Last edited by CREWZIN; 10 Feb 2011 at 07:48 am.
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Old 09 Feb 2011, 04:13 pm
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Default Re: 02 PT Cruiser Overheating (Very Weird issue)

Welcome Deuce to the Forum!!! The fan goes bad on the PT, either the high or the low side, also we suggest to buy electrical parts from a dealer as our PT's do not like aftermarket for some reason.
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Old 09 Feb 2011, 04:24 pm
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Default Re: 02 PT Cruiser Overheating (Very Weird issue)

change the fan adn hope like all heck you did not warp the heads they are easy to warm adn getting them hot is never good
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Old 09 Feb 2011, 07:36 pm
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Default Re: 02 PT Cruiser Overheating (Very Weird issue)

Thanks Fellas!

I'm currently working on the car right now! When I got here, I moved into My Workspace and let the car run to see if the fan would come on. Remember, last night, I could not get the fan to come on for the life of me and it was dark too....Darn PT Cruiser has no hand space and my hands are burned from disconnecting/reconnecting the ECT Sensor in the dark last night. Well, wouldn't you believe, the Fan came on between the 1/4 & 1/2 way point and maintained temp. It's doing the same thing as it did yesterday & I just know if I take it for a drive, it will probably stop working again.

I just came back in after checking all the relays and they seem to be fine. I swapped them out w/the horn relay as they are all the same and each time, the horn had no issues in working. I'm going to run direct power to the fan for a period of time to see if the Fan will duplicate the same issue as if I were operating it on the city streets. I should be able to test both speeds, that way it is no doubt the correct fix.

The neighbor treats me odd @ times & if we weren't neighbors, Iíd probably choose not to work on his car. Everything I do is legit and I do not "Throw Parts" @ any car. He just gives me a weird vibe and I don't like it. Lol

Either way, I just want to make sure it's the Fan before that amount of money is spent and I'm stuck with the same issue after it is replaced. My thought on the issue is that itís only between 2 parts right now, the Fan or the PCM. Please let me know any thoughts on what I have said. Your time and Help is Greatly Appreciated.

Steven
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Old 09 Feb 2011, 07:55 pm
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Default Re: 02 PT Cruiser Overheating (Very Weird issue)

HD, there is something weird about the PT fan. When it's going out (not always, of course), sometimes it works--and sometimes it doesn't. It even has the ability to run ... slowly. Too slow, in fact. I'd replace the fan--especially if it hasn't been replaced previously. PT fans are one of the most coomon problems with the PT. They're just not engineered to last.

Tim
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Old 09 Feb 2011, 10:20 pm
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Default Re: 02 PT Cruiser Overheating (Very Weird issue)

Okay, so I spent another hour on this darn thing trying to pin point the issue w/100% accuracy. I ran direct power to the fan for 15 minutes. Middle pin on the Fan connecter is the ground & from my understanding the yellow on one side is for the High Speed & the Green on the opposite side of the ground is the Low Speed. Fan worked perfectly in what sounds like the High Speed. I then switched to the Green and see/hear no change in fan speed. I then tried hooking the two outer pins together (Which would be the Yellow & Green) & ran direct power that way w/no change in fan speed.

Is this process correct on how I tested the fan? If so, then that would lead me to believe the Fan is BAD! It's just very weird to me because it had no problem running in the High Speed mode. Let me know any thoughts or suggestions. Thanks for all the help.

Steven
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Old 10 Feb 2011, 12:43 am
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Default Re: 02 PT Cruiser Overheating (Very Weird issue)

You want a Factory Service Manual?

I'd decline to work on it further, your neighbor's just not going to be happy and this is one of those problems you're probably not going to figure out.

You can turn the heater on, it'll keep the engine cool enough; above 20MPH the fan is useless/unneeded.
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Old 10 Feb 2011, 09:44 am
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Default Re: 02 PT Cruiser Overheating (Very Weird issue)

I'm sure having the Factory Service Manual would not hurt, but I use AllDataPro.com and that works very well. I'm thinking of just replacing the Fan and see if that resolves the issue. If not, maybe Iíll just wash my hands & tell him to take it somewhere else after that. Any other suggestions or comments would be greatly appreciated.

Steven
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Old 10 Feb 2011, 12:05 pm
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Default Re: 02 PT Cruiser Overheating (Very Weird issue)

I got a really nice fan off ebay it was like $85 or so get the one for the right year its just a plug and go no more problems at all new fan new relays and it works
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Old 10 Feb 2011, 12:38 pm
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Default Re: 02 PT Cruiser Overheating (Very Weird issue)

Does ANYONE know the correct way to test the LOW SPEED Fan? In 1 of my previous updates, I did as follows:

"I ran direct power to the fan for 15 minutes. Middle pin on the Fan connecter is the ground & from my understanding the yellow on one side is for the High Speed & the Green on the opposite side of the ground is the Low Speed. Fan worked perfectly in what sounds like the High Speed. I then switched to the Green and see/hear no change in fan speed. I then tried hooking the two outer pins together (Which would be the Yellow & Green) & ran direct power that way w/no change in fan speed."

I never was able to get the Low Speed Fan to activate. Is this because I didn't test properly or because I did test properly & it's now confirmed a new Fan is needed? Thanks for All The Input....

Steven
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