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Overheating (Possibly Solved - But I Don't Know)

 
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Old 17 Apr 2015, 11:25 pm
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Wink Overheating (Possibly Solved - But I Don't Know)

Hello everyone, my name is Michael my issue was overheating and I think I may have solved it, but not sure. Looking for a little more experienced feedback.

Here is a little background:

2002 PT LTD, 160,000 miles when purchased 6/14. Currently 170,000. (Have a motorcycle that I ride most of the time )

Had overheating issue 1 day after purchase, took to mechanic.

Items replaced upon mechanic visit:
1) Front Pads
2) Timing Belt
3) Water Pump
4) 3 Motor Mounts
5) 2 Drive Belts
6) Spark Plugs
7) Ignition Wire Set
8) Fan Motor
** Blown Head Gasket was ruled out during this visit.

Items replaced by me after reading forum and trip to Phoenix, AZ from Long Beach, CA
1) Thermostat
2) Radiator Cap
** Changing the radiator cap seemed to have the biggest effect! Kind of felt a little cheated by the mechanic, but since the car had the mileage it had, I figured I would have to change out most of those parts anyway.

My issue issue was this; I'm not an everyday driver of this car, so I don't get to explore this issue everyday. But, I have driven from CA to AZ with no problems and I have driven the same route and had it overheat. It mostly happens when idling in traffic. The new radiator cap "solved" the problem for a long time, but it's sort of back. I recently moved from a house where the car was parked on a black street to a house where I have to park in the driveway. Because of this I noticed a coolant puddle under the right side of the car. (see pic ptcruiser_1.jpg)

I'm pretty sure something needs to be tightened or a hole in something needs to be replaced. Just posting to see if any of you can look at the attached photo and provide any insight to where I should start?

Note: It may also be I'm not bleeding all of the air out of the system. When I have to fill with coolant, I take off the radiator cap, start the car, let the coolant rise to the top, sometimes there are bubbles, sometimes there isn't, then replace cap. Sometimes, I don't have to add coolant.

Update/Add'l Info:

Have been reading the forum concerning HOAT coolant and thinking that might be the problem, decided if I'm going to change out the coolant, I might as well try some BAR'S RADIATOR STOP LEAK. (Info I also read on this forum) (second picture)

Added the BAR'S, turned on the heater, let the engine run for 30-40 minutes. Temp gauge held steady at 3 o'clock (third picture)

Now comes the interesting part, thought I had everything worked out, but 3 days later on a drive of about 46 miles, the car overheats at about mile 20 in freeway traffic. I pull over and there isn't any coolant dripping under the car, but the radiator and reserve are filled!

I have now driven the car for 2 weeks in stop and go traffic and it's not overheating or making the gurgling sounds after cutting the engine off.

Someone has given me the advice of checking the fan connecter on the driver's side of the radiator. Going to do that in the morning. But I still would like to know what was "fixed" and what was/is happening from your more experienced perspectives.

I also plan on buying a new radiator, since they are only a $100 or so.

If you read through all of this, thank you!
Attached Images
File Type: jpg ptCruiser_1.jpg (32.4 KB, 29 views)
File Type: jpg 20150403_180153.jpg (38.1 KB, 28 views)
File Type: jpg 20150403_131117.jpg (46.4 KB, 30 views)
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Old 18 Apr 2015, 06:37 am
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Default Re: Overheating (Possibly Solved - But I Don't Know)

I would say check the fan speeds. Let the car idle to temp & see if fan comes on, after that turn on A/C & check if high speed comes on.
You can also do this: New here....and a question
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Old 18 Apr 2015, 09:04 am
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Thumbs up Re: Overheating (Possibly Solved - But I Don't Know)

Thanks for your response! I will do this later today. Since I have a new fan motor, maybe it possibly the fan motor connection. Obviously I also had some leaks. I read the can, but in general, what does the BAR'S seal up?

MJB
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Old 18 Apr 2015, 10:14 am
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Default Re: Overheating (Possibly Solved - But I Don't Know)

Quote:
Originally Posted by MJB_LBC View Post
Thanks for your response! I will do this later today. Since I have a new fan motor, maybe it possibly the fan motor connection. Obviously I also had some leaks. I read the can, but in general, what does the BAR'S seal up?

MJB
I would suggest unplugging the radiator fan connector and look at the metal slots. On my new radiator fan I put in one of my PT Cruisers one of the metal slots on the connector was way deeper then the other ones not making contact. I replaced the new radiator connector with my used connector from the original radiator fan that was better quality with the rubber seal keeping moisture out.
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Old 24 Apr 2015, 11:00 am
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Default Re: Overheating (Possibly Solved - But I Don't Know)

Ok, here is my update - not a very good one

So before I could check the connections, my car blew up! I have included a few pics. I'm hoping it is just the radiator, but hoping it's not the head gasket.

There were no leaks as mentioned before and the temp didn't shoot up. Was driving and noticed the temp gauge move just a little higher than the 3 O'clock position. Then I noticed white smoke coming from under the hood. From looking at the picks, I'm pretty sure that was the coolant hitting the hot engine.

Pulled over, no burning smell.

Here is what I think I happened: Either I blew a hose, or it's the radiator. Worse case scenario, it's the head gasket.

** Yes I know the green coolant is the wrong coolant, was going to flush it out after I got the leak solved.

Thanks in advance for any comments!
Attached Images
File Type: jpg pt_oh_01.jpg (83.9 KB, 27 views)
File Type: jpg pt_oh_03.jpg (98.5 KB, 26 views)
File Type: jpg pt_oh_06.jpg (99.9 KB, 25 views)
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Old 24 Apr 2015, 02:00 pm
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Default Re: Overheating (Possibly Solved - But I Don't Know)

I would suggest checking the radiator hoses. Did you take one of the hoses off to replace the radiator fan?
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Old 24 Apr 2015, 02:08 pm
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Default Re: Overheating (Possibly Solved - But I Don't Know)

I didn't take the fan off, that was done at the shop. But I'm going to check the hoses and radiator this weekend. Priced a radiator at Pep Boys for $100, will check into hoses while I'm there.

At 170,000 probably a good idea to just go ahead and replace the radiator. Especially if the wrong coolant has been in it. What do you think?
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Old 24 Apr 2015, 02:19 pm
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Default Re: Overheating (Possibly Solved - But I Don't Know)

It is usually my habit to change all radiator and heater hoses on cars I buy that are old, and that is all I buy. I also change drive belts especially if they are OEM ones as the hoses often are as well. Not a bad idea to change the radiator cap if original and the thermostat too. Of course an engine oil and filter change, transmission filter and fluid would be good too as well as air filter and that ugly block of oily foam in the box with it that no one ever changes.
For a little money and work you can eliminate what may be waiting to fail and avoid a breakdown.
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Old 24 Apr 2015, 04:47 pm
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Default Re: Overheating (Possibly Solved - But I Don't Know)

Quote:
Originally Posted by MJB_LBC View Post
I didn't take the fan off, that was done at the shop. But I'm going to check the hoses and radiator this weekend. Priced a radiator at Pep Boys for $100, will check into hoses while I'm there.

At 170,000 probably a good idea to just go ahead and replace the radiator. Especially if the wrong coolant has been in it. What do you think?
Check the hoses, tighten all clamps...don't forget the 2 little hoses under the intake on the left side by thermostat housing.

Mystery coolant leak
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Old 24 Apr 2015, 10:30 pm
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Default Re: Overheating (Possibly Solved - But I Don't Know)

Success...for the moment!

Want to thank everyone for their comments!

So, got home and took everything off to get a look at the radiator. Upon closer inspection I see that it appears wet on the passenger side. (Pic 12)

Turn car on, bringing it up to temp. to recreate the problem.

Let it run for 5 min, then BAM! I see where the leak is! (Pic 14)

There is a leak in that hose right by where the clamp is. Tried to get to it without pulling out the radiator but my hands are too big and I had nothing in the tool kit to reach back there.

Going to find some 11" bent pliers, that should allow me to pull those bands off, take off the hose, get another, then see where we go from here.

The top and bottom hoses looked fine.
Attached Images
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File Type: jpg pt_oh_13.jpg (97.8 KB, 20 views)
File Type: jpg pt_oh_14.jpg (78.5 KB, 23 views)
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2002 pt crusier, coolant leak, overheating engine


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